House Committee Approves Bonding Bill Proposal Without $10M For Wayzata Panoway Project

On Tuesday, the Minnesota House Ways and Means Committee approved a proposed bonding bill
HF 2529 by a vote of 17-10.

This bill now moves to the House floor for a vote without a component asked by the City of Wayzata.

“The Wayzata Lake Effect project is not included in the bonding bill as proposed by the House DFL majority,” said Rep. Jerry Hertaus. Hertaus represents Wayzata in St. Paul and authored an initial bill for the Wayzata project.

Courtesy Lake Effect Conservancy/City of Wayzata

Before any bonding proposal moves out of either chamber, it needs a super majority (two-thirds) vote.

Republicans are in the minority in the House. Even if all 75 House DFLers (of the total 134-member House) voted for the bill, at least 15 Republicans would have to vote yes to get the 90-vote super majority.

“If House Republicans agree to a bonding bill, it will require having projects included in it that Republicans insist upon,” said Hertaus. Hertaus is a Republican.

“Wayzata has to hope the project is included in the Senate version, which hasn’t been released yet,” said Noah Rouen, President of the Rouen Group. “Then we would have to hope the senate and house agree to include it.” 

“These are unique times in St. Paul and the political process is a bit of a roller coaster,” said Wayzata City Manager Jeff Dahl. “If a bonding bill is passed, we remain hopeful that our project will be funded given its emphasis on safety enhancements, increased lake access, and shoreland restoration.”

Back in October, Wayzata city officials hosted the Minnesota Senate Capital Investment Committee to educate them on the importance of a boardwalk and ecological restoration along the shoreline of Lake Minnetonka as a part of Phase II.

In January, Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz recommended a $10 million for a grant to the City of Wayzata.

The money is a part of a $300 million proposed investment in water quality and infrastructure projects which is part of the 2020 bonding bill.

Panoway (Lake Effect) Project Phase II includes the restoration of the Section Foreman House, building a boardwalk along the lakefront, and restoring the Lake Minnetonka shoreline.

Panoway (Lake Effect) Project Phase I is already underway – reconstructing Lake Street from Barry Avenue to Broadway Avenue, creating a multi-use park, and extending the Dakota Rail Regional Trail.

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