Greater Mankato Growth calls on state legislature for special session

Greater Mankato Growth is calling on the Minnesota Legislature to return to St. Paul for a special session and pass a bonding bill.

“Facing a record budget surplus, the legislature had the opportunity to provide meaningful tax relief and make strategic investments throughout the state,” said Andy Wilke, Director of Business Development and Public Affairs for Greater Mankato Growth.  “None of that happened and instead legislators simply went home without finishing their jobs.”

“[The legislature] had a great opportunity, a once-in-a-generation opportunity to make some meaningful tax cuts and provide tax relief and make important investments in the entire state, including right in Mankato, and they didn’t do any of that,” Wilke told SMN in an interview Friday.

Wilke ticked off a number of projects that were waiting on critical state funding through the bonding bill, including Mankato’s wastewater facility, North Mankato’s Caswell Park and fieldhouse, Armstrong Hall at Minnesota State University Mankato, and projects at South Central College.

GMG hosted a legislative forum earlier this week where Mankato area legislators talked about what happened at the end of the 2022 legislative session. Rep Luke Frederick, Rep Susan Akland, Senator Julie Rosen, and Senator Rich Draheim participated. But Wilke said there was mostly finger-pointing by the lawmakers who contributed.  “Ultimately, there was just a lot of disappointment in the room, and we don’t know that we heard great answers from our panel as far as the way things ended so disappointing.”

It was after that forum that GMG collectively decided to call for the special session.

“Our message is clear,” said Wilke.  “We can’t wait, we need to fix this. “

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