St. Paul, MN (KROC-AM News) - A bill that includes language to fix a "glitch" that threatened to delay the expansion of Highway 14 between Dodge Center and Owatonna has been signed by Governor Tim Walz.

The "fix" was incorporated into a small bonding bill covering a number wastewater treatment projects that was approved yesterday in the House on a vote of 105-16 before it cleared the State Senate on a 63-1 vote. The signing of the bill today by the governor authorizes the state to issue the trunk highway bonds to fund the long-awaited $160 million project and clears the way for the Minnesota Department of Transportation to advertise for bids.

 

Karen Foreman, president of the U.S. Highway 14 Partnership and a member of the Mankato City Council praised the legislature and Governor Walz for their quick action.“We are grateful that the Governor and Legislature were able to come to an agreement that will allow construction on the Owatonna to Dodge Center Highway 14 expansion project to proceed as scheduled. The legislation signed by the Governor today fixes a technical glitch in a bill passed last year that would have held up $160 million of funding and delayed the project’s start until 2022."

The legislation was put on a fast track at the State Capitol a few weeks ago after it was discovered that a "technical issue" in the bonding bill approved last year to fund the project could have delayed the start of construction for 2 to 4 years if the state legislature had not taken action.