GOP senator: Impending shutdown already affecting construction

Republican legislators say the impending state government shutdown is already having a negative effect on the state's roads and bridges, and the chair of the Senate Transportation Committee says it doesn't have to be that way.

Sen. Joe Gimse, R-Willmar, cited a letter from Minnetonka city manager John Gunyou. He said the letter stated that the state won't let contractors work on road projects that have already been paid for.

"Now, we're seeing examples of where fully funded, projects that were underway, and in this letter, you'll see where they were prepared to tear down the Bren Road bridge tomorrow, but this project is going to be stopped because of a potential shutdown," Gimse said.

Gimse said he believed that the Dayton administration is making the shutdown deliberately difficult for contractors to put political pressure on legislators to compromise in their budget negotiations. Gimse called on the governor to call a special session to pass non-controversial road funding measures.

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