The 2008 Legislature convened today and I am delighted to report that we are moving smartly and quickly at the Capitol.
This morning, DFL leaders introduced the Safe Roads and Bridges Improvement Act, the 2008 omnibus transportation funding legislation. The balanced proposal will help fix crumbling roads and bridges throughout the state, invest in mass transit, and index the gas tax for inflation so we never fall behind this far again with our transportation funding responsibility.
The bill will phase in the first gas tax increase in twenty year. Those in the lowest income bracket will get a $25 rebate to ease the burden for those earning the least. A half-cent metro-wide sales tax will add millions in needed investment for mass transit. Estimates are that over the next five years our bill will create 33,000 new jobs per year. We plan to act quickly on this legislation, that’s why it was introduced on the first day of session. I will keep you up to speed with new developments in the coming weeks.
This Thursday, the legislature intends to pass the Minnesota Legacy Act. The bill will put a constitutional amendment on the November ballot, which if passed by voters, would dedicate a portion of the state sales tax (0.375 percent) to Minnesota's environment and natural resources, parks, and the arts. Many in our district support the Minnesota Legacy Act.
With real challenges facing Minnesota, I enter this session with determination. We are going to send the Governor bills containing solutions to address soaring health care costs, underfunded transit ways and capital investment. I am optimistic that we have set the right course this session.
I encourage you to e-mail me (rep.erin.Murphy@house.mn) with input or questions you have about the Safe Roads and Bridges Improvement Act or the Minnesota Legacy Act. I love hearing from you.
Posted on Tuesday, February 12, 2008 by Erin Murphy,