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Ruud applauds bonding bill

State Sen. Carrie Ruud, R-Breezy Point, joined her colleagues on Monday to pass legislation to amend the 2018 bonding bill and restore the integrity of the Environment and Natural Resource Trust Fund.

The bill, which passed with broad bipartisan support, was signed into law Tuesday morning by Gov. Tim Walz.

"This is a wonderful day for Minnesota," said Ruud. "With the governor's signature, our state has fully restored the integrity of the Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund and funded many deserving projects that had been put in jeopardy across our state. I want to recognize and thank the strong Senate leadership that went into making this bill succeed."

After last session, concerns were raised over using the Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund to fund certain projects that resulted in delayed implementation. The bonding bill changes the funding source from the Environment and Natural Resource Trust Fund to general obligation bonds to allow projects to move forward without delay.

Earlier this session, Ruud had introduced legislation that would have prohibited the use of the Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund for the payment of debt service on bond moving forward. Both her effort and the final bonding bill also save the state money in the future in the form of reduced interest payments.

"It's critical that we all continue to work to use the Environment and Natural Resource Trust Fund for its intended capacity to protect, conserve, preserve and enhance the state's air, natural resources, water, land, fish, and other wildlife," Ruud said in a news release.