New bills focus on new construction projects

Minnesota State Capitol

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — A pair of House proposals is being released to spend a combined $975 million on public works construction projects.

Rather than putting everything into one bill, House Capital Investment Committee Chairwoman Alice Hausman says she’ll introduce two on Tuesday. She says one will contain $850 million worth of proposed borrowing and the other will have $125 million in projects that would be paid in cash.

It’s an unusual tact, but one spurred on in part by the state’s surplus. Lawmakers plan to pay cash for some things to save on interest costs.

There’s also political intrigue. Borrowing bills require three-fifths majorities to pass. A cash bill would require only a simple majority.

The final installment for the ongoing state Capitol renovation is expected to consume the largest overall chunk.

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