Minnesota Budget Includes Significant Transit Investments

After a contentious debate, the state legislature passed a budget that changes how transportation projects are funded and supports increased transit service in the state.

1 minute read

June 2, 2023, 7:00 AM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction


Minnesota just passed its largest transportation bill since 2008 as part of its $72 billion budget, reports Jared Brey in Governing, marking the culmination of “years’ worth of efforts by lawmakers and transit advocates to improve the way transportation projects and public transit operations are funded.”

According to lawmakers, “creates more stable financing for roads and bridges, provides new recurring funding for public transit, allocates $200 million for a new passenger rail line connecting the Twin Cities to Duluth, and forces state agencies to make good on aspirational climate goals.”

State legislators say the bill, which ties the state’s gas tax to inflation to boost transportation funding, creates a new Transit Rider Investment Program (TRIP), and decriminalizes fare evasion, could serve as a national model for transportation funding. “The bill also makes huge investments in transit operations, with a 0.75 percent sales tax in the Twin Cities area to help fund transit and active transportation projects, like bike paths. The tax is expected to generate more than $450 million a year for Metro Transit.”

Thursday, June 1, 2023 in Governing

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