Coalition of Greater Minnesota Cities President Patrick Baustian, the mayor of Luverne, released a statement this week about the conclusion of the 2022 Minnesota legislative session and the potential for a special session.
Wrote Baustian: “As the legislative session ends, the Coalition of Greater Minnesota Cities is extremely disappointed the legislature failed to address Greater Minnesota needs. Our cities are still reeling from hardships created and exacerbated by the pandemic and the staggering increase in inflation. We urge leadership to agree to a special session and pass legislation that provides meaningful investments in our communities this year."
Baustian noted an agreement was reached in a legislative committee that included a $30 million increase in Local Government Aid across the state but added that the funding never made it to the floor for a final vote.
Wrote Baustian: "The LGA appropriation has not kept up with city needs by any measure, and recent inflation makes it more difficult every day for cities to provide the public safety, core infrastructure, libraries, parks and recreation, and other services our residents and businesses rely on without imposing significant property tax increases or services cuts. Cities cannot wait another year to receive more LGA.”
Baustian also pointed out that important infrastructure needs across the state remain unmet. He called the possibility of the legislature not passing a bonding bill "an absolute failure."