Minnesota leaders promote new infrastructure investments

By Holly Marie Moore, KEYC News Now — Nov 9, 2021

MANKATO, Minn. (KEYC) – On Tuesday, U.S. Reps. Dean Phillips (MN-03) and Angie Craig (MN-02) hosted an event with the Minnesota Department of Transportation commissioner to promote new investments.

The $1.2 trillion Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act of 2021 is designed to tackle big-ticket items such as expanding high-speed internet and building better airports.

Phillips said the $7 billion given to Minnesota will create jobs and is going to make Minnesota more competitive.

“Now we’re about to bring $7 billion to Minnesota that’s going to create jobs, expand our GDP,” Phillips said. “It is going to make our state more competitive, more effective and more efficient. But it’s not just roads and bridges, it’s ports all around the country.”

Craig said this bipartisan package will create over 2 million new jobs across America by 2025, and will create local jobs throughout the Second Congressional District of Minnesota.

“More importantly, though, there has been entire patches of America in Minnesota left out of high-speed internet broadband,” Craig stated.

Craig said the most important part of the legislation to her is that $65 billion is set aside to be invested across the country to bring high-speed internet to every community.

State Rep. Paul Torkelson (R-16B) calls the infrastructure bill a mixed blessing.

“I can certainly understand why the Republicans in Congress voted against it because of the excess spending, but at the same time the money is coming and we want to make sure that it’s put to good use,” Torkelson said.

Torkelson says he supports the money being put towards roads and bridges, water infrastructure and wastewater treatment and broadband access.

“We need broadband all over so that people who want to work in greater Minnesota can depend upon dependable Internet access.”

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