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Minnesota mayors join effort to get Congress to extend transportation bill

Concerned that Congress won’t act in time to extend transportation fees set to expire at the end of the month, 128 mayors from around the country have signed a letter outlining the importance of the legislation.

Eight Minnesota mayors were among them, said the Star Tribune:

  • R.T. Rybak, Minneapolis
  • Sandy Martin, Shoreview
  • Elizabeth Kautz, Burnsville
  • Debbie Goettel, Richfield
  • Thomas Stiehm, Austin
  • Doug Anderson, Dayton
  • Tim Hultmann, Long Lake
  • Janet Williams, Savage

The debate over spending priorities in Washington has delayed passage of the extension, the story said.

The White House is on the case, too, urging passage.

White House officials say failure to renew the transportation bill “jeopardizes” 847,924 jobs and 140,536 highway and transit projects. In Minnesota, the administration says that 12,170 people working on roughly 2,200 highway and transit projects face layoffs if the bill isn’t extended.

The story quotes Rybak blaming “extreme members of the House Republican caucus” for being more interested “in trying to score political points than take routine action to create jobs.”

And Martin: “I would like to be optimistic. But the track record of the last couple of weeks is that this is more about politics and less about good policy.”

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