Senate committee hosts transportation hearing Tuesday at Park Board HQ

The Senate Transportation and Public Safety Committee is holding a field hearing on transportation issues at the Park Board headquarters, 2117 W. River Road N., Tuesday evening. 

It’s a chance for people to share ideas and concerns about the metro’s transportation infrastructure and transit services. 

“Minnesota’s transportation network is under increasing pressure to deliver the high-quality and efficiency we deserve and expect,” said Sen. Scott Dibble (DFL-61). “As our population grows, especially in Minneapolis, this challenge threatens the prosperity of our community. People need a strong transportation network for access to jobs, to reduce their daily commutes, to ensure our businesses can succeed, and to make our community as strong as it can be. A comprehensive transportation plan, including the ability to accelerate the build-out of planned transit ways and stronger bus service, and better opportunities to walk and bike to destinations, can deliver on these needs.”

The hearing will run from 6–8 p.m. 

Senate DFL leaders unveiled a transportation plan in January that dedicates $6 billion in new revenue for the state’s transportation system over the next 10 years and $567 million in bonding for roads and bridges.

The money would be tapped from a variety of sources, including a 6.5 percent sales tax on gas at the wholesale level, an increase on annual license tab fees and a one-cent metro area sales tax on gas. A motor vehicle lease tax would also generate new revenue for transit in Greater Minnesota. 

The one-cent metro gas tax would help pay for the remainder of the state’s portion of the bill for Southwest LRT under the Senate plan. 

The Republican-controlled House, meanwhile, has proposed spending about $750 million on transporation projects over the next four years by tapping surplus dollars and money in the Minnesota Department of Transportation’s budget.