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Capitol bonding should pass

April 22, 2012
The Journal

We can understand the reluctance of the Minnesota Legislature to pass a stadium bill that would keep the Minnesota Vikings in Minnesota. A lot of people don't like the idea of building facilities for wealthy team owners.

We can understand the inability of legislators, even those within the same party, to agree on a bonding bill for a variety of infrastructure and state university projects.

But it is hard to fathom legislators not being able to pass a bonding bill to keep the Minnesota State Capitol building, an architectural and historic treasure of the state, from crumbling away.

The Minnesota House failed, by one vote, to pass a $221 million stand-alone bonding bill to fund repairs for the Capitol. The bill needed 81 votes, but failed on an 80-50 vote.

Some legislators prefered to keep the Capitol bill in with the full bonding bill, but there is no guarantee that the dysfunctional Legislature will be able to pass one of those this year.

Rep. Dean Urdahl, in the House debate, held up a chunk of stone that had broken off the State Capitol, as an example of what is happening to the building.

We suppose that when legislators need to wear hard hats to go to work, to avoid falling rock, they might get around to taking care of the state's main government building.



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