Earmarks ban could put Central Corridor funding in doubt

Uncertainty is growing over federal funding for the Central Corridor light rail project.

A $45 million earmark for the Central Corridor light rail line between St. Paul and Minneapolis has won committee approval and awaits action by the full House of Representative.

But Republican leaders who will be a majority in the House when Congress convenes in January are moving closer to agreement on a ban against earmarks.

Rep. Betty McCollum, whose 4th congressional district includes a large portion of the Central Corridor project says the GOP effort to ban earmarks threatens the federal funding for the project.

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The Metropolitan Council is counting on federal dollars for half of Central Corrridor's $957 million price tag.

So far, about $100 million in local, state and federal funding has been spent on the project.

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