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Walz signs $1.9 billion public works legislation at union center

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Gov. Tim Walz says the $1.9 billion public works bill he has signed into law will improve Minnesota’s infrastructure and ensure that construction crews keep busy as the economy digs out from a recession.

Walz went to an Iron Workers Union training center in St. Paul on Wednesday to give his final approval to the legislation after the Legislature sent it to him last week. The bonding bill will fund hundreds of projects across the state.

Passing the bill took almost all year — and many special sessions — to accomplish. But Walz said it will provide a perfectly timed boost with interest rates remaining low and crews still hungry for work. He said the record size speaks to the long backlog of projects.

The state will borrow most of the money by selling bonds to build or refurbish buildings and water treatment plants, replace roads and bridges, fix up trails and more. The measure also contains about $200 million in tax cuts for businesses and farmers. It also spares two state prison facilities from closure. But it could be months before the infrastructure projects get underway and create jobs

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