Minnesota House takes up bill with disputed gas tax hike

Published 9:38 am Saturday, April 27, 2019

ST. PAUL — The Minnesota House has begun debating a $7.2 billion transportation funding package that includes Gov. Tim Walz’s proposal to raise the state gasoline tax by 20 cents per gallon to pay for road and bridge improvements.

That’s a 70 percent hike that GOP lawmakers have said from the start of the session that they would never accept.

The bill is expected to pass the Democratic-controlled House by a wide margin when the final vote comes next week. But there’s no gas tax increase in the Senate GOP majority’s transportation plan. And it’s unclear whether even a scaled-back hike can emerge from the negotiations over the final package.

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The House adjourned for Passover at midafternoon Friday, putting off the heart of the gas tax debate for when lawmakers return Monday.