Stauber weighs in on infrastructure plan, other impacts to Northland

Updated: April 12, 2021 06:24 PM
Created: April 12, 2021 04:06 PM

Sometimes it may feel like things that happen in D.C. are so far away from us. Congressman Pete Stauber is flying back to Washington on Tuesday. But he spent time on Monday having a conversation with the Hermantown chamber about work out there and impacts here.

First up was COVID relief, and question about the Paycheck Protection Program. Stauber said it's been extended through the end of May. "As long as you follow the criteria, a vast majority of the money is going to be forgiven. So make sure you study that really well," he said.

He said he doesn't support President Biden's infrastructure bill, because only 6% is dedicated to roads and bridges and ports.

"There needs to be an opportunity for the minority to be present and offer solutions and amendments," he said.

On Monday in D.C., Biden did host a bipartisan group of lawmakers. 

One of the president's solutions to pay for the bill is a corporate tax hike, which Stauber doesn't agree with. "We've got to re-engage the American economy, and also keep those steel tariffs in place."

Biden spoke virtually to a group of CEOs on Monday as well. "We want to build out America's supply chain, so we are never at the mercy of other countries or nations for our critical needs," he said.

Stauber feels like that's why following the science is important when it comes to Twin Metals and PolyMet, the new copper-nickel mining ventures proposed for the Northland. "When people tell me they don't want mining in the Boundary Waters, I tell them I don't either. Or in the buffer zone. Since the beginning I've been saying if they can't do it right, they can't do it. We have such an opportunity for good paying jobs. We want to allow the process to move forward."

As for the Canadian border, he said they continue to push to have it reopened so Minnesotans can head to their cabins and more commerce can flow again. But he said Prime Minister Trudeau doesn't want to yet, because of a lack of vaccines in Canada.

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