Minn. could get $477 million in stimulus for roads and bridgesby Dan Olson, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — Minnesota could get more than $477 million of the economic stimulus moving through Congress to upgrade its highways and bridges.
The money for Minnesota is part of $30 billion for highway and bridge projects across the country. It's contained in the $819 billion economic recovery plan drafted by House Democrats and President Barack Obama's economic team.
The figures could change as lawmakers debate the plan. The House is expected to vote later today.
Kevin Gutknecht of the Minnesota Department of Transportation says it's still developing the list of projects it would fund with the money.
He says they're looking at projects that would create jobs quickly and benefit workers with a variety of skill sets. MnDOT is also looking for a balance between the metro area and outstate Minnesota.
The package also includes an additional $3 billion for transit. House members by voice vote approved the amendment, co-sponsored by U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison, DFL-Minn. An Ellison spokeswoman says Minnesota's share would be $21 million.
The money would be for capital or building projects, not transit operating expenses.
Ellison's district includes Minneapolis and a major portion of the Hiawatha light rail line. It also includes about one-third of the proposed Central Corridor light rail project, which would run between Minneapolis and St. Paul.
(The Associated Press contributed to this report)