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Murray, Lyon counties pass transportation resolution

WORTHINGTON — Sending a strong signal that the state can no longer afford to delay, Murray County and Lyon County are joining more than 70 other counties from across Minnesota that have passed a resolution to support a comprehensive transportation funding package in 2014.

By passing its resolutions, Murray County and Lyon County recognize the state’s current system puts at risk Minnesota’s long-term economic health, and global competitiveness for jobs and talent. The action is intended to send a clear message to Gov. Mark Dayton and legislative leaders that this issue must be addressed this year, according to a press release issued by Move MN, a coalition dedicated to starting to erase Minnesota’s transportation deficit.

“Without immediate action on transportation, Minnesota will lose its best talent, our businesses will experience higher costs, and we will fall further behind,” said Bob Moline, Murray County Commissioner. “Just counting the boarded up storefronts on main streets across the state quickly shows the need we have, not simply to support specific modes of travel ­— but to ensure that Minnesota is a leader in job growth and economic development for years to come.”

According to data cited by Move MN, the state received a 2008 increase in transportation funding that helped fuel economic recovery. Today, funds are nearly exhausted, Move MN added. Minnesota will not have enough funding to maintain the current transportation system, or fund critical improvements or expansions, for the next 20 years, the coalition maintains.

“By 2030, Minnesota is expected to add more than 350,000 new jobs and by 2040, the population is expected to grow by nearly 1 million people,” the press release states. “As demand continue to increase, the shortcomings of our transportation system will only be exacerbated.”

Counties passing resolutions include: Aitkin, , Benton, Big Stone, Blue Earth, Brown, Carleton, Carver, Cass, Chippewa, Chisago, Clay, Clearwater, Cook, Cottonwood, Crow Wing, Dakota, Dodge, Douglas, Faribault, Fillmore, Freeborn, Goodhue, Houston, Hubbard, Isanti, Itasca , Kandiyohi, Kittson, Koochiching, Lac qui Parle, Lake, Lake of the Woods, Le Sueur, Lincoln, Lyon, Mahnomen, Marshall, Martin, McLeod, Mille Lacs, Mower, Murray, Nicollet, Nobles, Olmsted, Otter Tail, Pennington, Pine, Polk, Pope, Ramsey, Red Lake, Redwood, Renville, Rice, Rock, Roseau, Sibley, St Louis, Stearns, Steele, Stevens, Swift, Todd, Traverse, Waseca, Watonwan, Wilkin, Winona, Wright and Yellow Medicine.