Updated: 05/14/2014 10:38 PM
Created: 05/14/2014 10:17 PM WDIO.com
Minnesota House and Senate DFL leaders on Wednesday have reached a compromise on a bonding bill. However, Republicans say they haven't agreed to anything yet and some GOP votes will be required.
The bill no longer includes a controversial provision that would have prohibited a new state building code mandate for home fire sprinklers from going into effect. Under the rule supported by the Dayton administration, all newly-constructed single-family homes over 4,500 square feet will require installation of fire sprinklers. Gov. Mark Dayton threatened to veto the entire bonding bill if it remained.
The sprinkler mandate is supported by Minnesota firefighter organizations who say it will save lives of homeowners and firefighters. The Builders Association of Minnesota is fiercely opposed, saying it will add at least $9,000 to the cost of new homes.
As for the package of building projects, they will now total more than $1 billion. It includes $846 million financed through general obligation bonds and an additional bill that includes $278 million in projects paid for with surplus dollars.
Other highlights of the Capital Investment bill include:
$126 million for completion of the State Capitol renovation
$240 million in higher education projects for the University of Minnesota and MnSCU
More than $100 million for roads, bridges and vital transportation infrastructure.
$100 million for housing, the largest investment in state history.
"We have worked hard to put together a statewide bonding bill that makes strategic investments that will create thousands of jobs," says Rep. Alice Hausman, DFL-St. Paul, chairwoman of the House Capital Investment Committee.
GOP House Republican leader, Rep. Kurt Daudt, R-Crown, says the bill was put together with little input from Republicans.
"Today's so-called agreement is nothing more than an idea between Democratic legislative leaders and not a plan Republicans agreed to or were involved in crafting," Daudt said in a statement late Wednesday.
The borrowing portion of the projects do require a three-fifths majority of the legislature, so Republican votes will be needed.
The bill still needs to pass both the House and Senate. The House is expected to vote on it Thursday. Then it heads to the governor for his approval.
Duluth House Fire Displaces Five
Five people are staying with friends after fire damaged their home early Sunday morning. The residents of the house at 1712 East 5th Street awoke to the sound of the smoke alarm and were able to make it out of the home safely.
8-Year-Old Girl Dies in Broadside Crash in Pine County
An 8-year-old girl died in an accident involving a semi in northern Minnesota on Friday morning. The incident happened on Highway 23 in Kerrick just before 8 a.m.
250 ATV's Ride in Memory of 2010 Chisholm Bar Shooting Victim
This year, six years will have passed since Ed Walberg Jr. was killed during a bar shooting in Chisholm. This year, about 250 all terrain vehicles rolled through the town and trails Walberg called home, the largest ride in his memory yet....
Benna Ford Raises Thousands of Dollars for Superior High School
Benna Ford partnered with Superior High School for a unique fundraiser. Folks test drove brand new vehicles and for every family that got behind the wheel Benna Ford donated $20 to Superior High School.
Tony G. Basketball Tournament Raises Money For Scholarship Fund
The Tony G 3-on-3 Basketball Tournament set out to remember a beloved Northlander and help others at the same time.