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House committee includes Hastings projects on bonding proposal

State Rep. Tony Jurgens has authored bills to help secure funding for the Highway 316 project and the renovation of Hastings City Hall. Now that they have been included on the Capital Investment Committee's bonding bill, the proposals will have to make it through the Ways and Means Committee. Submitted photo

Two bills that will secure funding for the Highway 316 improvement project and Hastings City Hall renovations have been included in a Minnesota House Capital Investment Committee bonding proposal for this legislative session.

The two bills, both sponsored by Rep. Tony Jurgens, D-Cottage Grove, requested a total of $3 million in bonding for projects in Hastings.

One bill would give $1 million in funding to the Highway 316 project, and the other would secure $2 million for the repairs and renovations at City Hall.

Although this is great news, Jurgens said, there are hurdles that the bonding proposal will have to make it through before it goes to the Senate.

The next step is for the bill to go through the Minnesota House Ways and Means Committee. After that, it has to be passed by the full Minnesota House.

"I don't see many changes being made to the bill from the Ways and Means Committee," Jurgens said. "The question is if a bill of this size will pass the full House."

The bill requests $1.5 billion in bonding for many different projects, according to Jurgens. Because it is so large, he expects that the bill will shrink if it comes before the House.

Jurgens has also written bills to secure funding through other means — transportation funds and Legacy dollars — but said the capital investment bill will be his priority.

"Right now, this is our best hope. We will continue to work on those proposals, but having these bills be a part of the bonding bill is going to be my focus," Jurgens said.