Legislative Update, May 8, 2012

The Senate took up the bonding bill Monday night and passed it by a vote of 45-22. The bill was amended, so instead of going straight to Gov. Mark Dayton for consideration, it will have to go back to the House who can either concur with the Senate bill or refuse to concur, and a conference committee will have to be formed. Included in the bill for the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities is $94.7 million in projects and asset preservation ($132 million with user financing included):

  • $20 million for HEAPR
  • $13.389 million for the Minneapolis Community and Technical College workforce program renovation;
  • $13.851 million for Ridgewater College, Willmar technical instruction lab renovation;
  • $4.606 million for Minnesota West Community and Technical College, Worthington renovation and addition;
  • $13.315 million for South Central College, Faribault classroom renovation and addition;
  • $0.980 million for Anoka Ramsey Community College, Coon Rapids bioscience and allied health addition;
  • $26.292 million for North Hennepin Community College bioscience and health careers center addition;
  • $0.500 million for Southwest Minnesota State University science lab renovation;
  • $1.5 million for Saint Paul College health and science center design;
  • $5 million for Century College academic partners classroom design and construction;
  • $7.230 million for Dakota County Technical College transportation and emerging technical lab renovation;
  • $8.746 million for Rochester Community and Technical College workforce center
  • $2.5 million for the system wide STEM renovation;
  • $2.065 million for Minnesota State University, Mankato clinical science building design
  • $3.303 million for Bemidji State University business building addition/renovation design and demolition
  • $4.549 million for Northeast Higher Education District Itasca Community College demolition, renovation and addition
  • $4 million for St. Cloud Technical and Community College medium heavy truck and auto body addition and renovation; and
  • $0.300 million for Northland Community and Technical College aviation maintenance facility expansion.

While the Senate was debating the bonding bill, the House was discussing the stadium bill. Members passed the stadium bill Monday night by a vote of 73-58. It now heads to the Senate who is expected to take it up when they convene at 9:00 a.m.

In addition to passing the bonding bill, the Senate passed another piece of legislation yesterday significant to the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities. HF 2967 includes $457,000 in fiscal year 2013 for MnSCU for a leveraged equipment program. “Equipment” is defined in the bill as being used for instructional purposes that the Board of Trustees has determined would produce graduates with skills for which there is a high employer need within the state. The appropriation is to be matched by cash or in-kind contributions from non-state sources.

HF 2967 is now the supplemental budget bill. In addition to appropriation for a leveraged equipment program, there are other provisions included in the bill, such as funding for the Dept. of Public Safety for soft body armor reimbursements; funding to support the Minnesota GI bill; funding to provide a match for Federal Emergency Management Agency disaster assistance; funding for the Dept. of Administration to contract for a benchmark study resulting in a report on efficiency and effectiveness of back office functions; and funding for veterans affairs. The bill heads next to the House for consideration.

The Senate will be in session at 9:00 a.m. today, and the House will go into session at 3:00 p.m.

Thank you.

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