Governor Tim Walz has called a special legislative session to start Friday to address racial inequalities, his executive powers during the COVID-19 pandemic and statewide bonding projects.  KAUS News spoke with State District 27B Representative Jeanne Poppe, DFL’er from Austin, who talked about whether House Republicans will continue to block a bonding bill if Governor Walz does not relinquish his executive powers, and added that their actions are disconcerting, given the fact that several projects in the Austin and Albert Lea areas are looking for bonding dollars….

$19 million in funding for a wastewater treatment facility improvement project for the City of Austin was included in the House’s original bonding bill, but not in the Senate’s, and Poppe stated that she hopes the funding will be part of a reported compromise bonding bill between the three sides totaling approximately $1.35 billion….

The bonding bill stalled in the regular session after failing to receive the required majority votes in the House and Senate.  The original bonding bill from the House totaled $2.5 billion, Governor Walz had proposed a bonding bill of approximately $2 billion, and the Senate’s bonding bill totaled approximately $960 million.