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Republicans want Minnesota Senate building killed

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Republicans want Minnesota Senate building killed
Detroit Lakes Minnesota 511 Washington Avenue 56501

ST. PAUL -- Republican senators say they want a proposed Minnesota Senate office building plan canceled.

Some will have a chance to talk about it and vote against it Wednesday, when the Senate Rules Committee is supposed to decide whether construction will begin. The Democratic-controlled committee is expected to produce enough votes.

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However, the House Rules Committee also needs to approve the building, and there are more problems expected in that panel.

The proposal calls for a $63 million Senate office building and $27 million in new parking facilities.

Supporters say the building is needed so all senators can be housed near one another, rather than many in a building farther way, and to provide larger meeting rooms to accommodate more citizens. They also say that a new building could ease the need to find space to relocate state workers during a multiyear Capitol building renovation.

Republicans are critical that Democratic leaders folded building project approval into last year's tax bill.

“Taxpayers of this state do not need to spend $90 million to fix a two-year problem," said Sen. Bill Ingebrigtsen, R-Alexandria.

Senate Minority Leader David Hann, R-Eden Prairie, said he wants the project delayed to allow a district court to hear a case against it.

“There is no reason the Senate Rules Committee should take action on this project with a court hearing only a week away,” Hann said.

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