The former Senate majority leader's very first bill seeks $4 million to build a veterans home in Rochester. It's an idea that Senjem came up with after visiting veterans homes in other cities across the state. He said it only makes sense that Rochester have its own home as well. He is eyeing the former Bethany Samaritan facility on Assisi Heights as a potential spot for the home, but the project faces some major hurdles. Read more about that in a story I wrote last week. Some lawmakers in northern Minnesota have introduced a bill seeking $250,000 to design a veterans home in Bemidji.
Senjem has also filed a bill seeking $2 million in Legacy amendment funds toward a $10 million project to dredge Lake Zumbro. That is $2 million less than Olmsted County officials had asked lawmakers to seek. Last session, the Legislature approved $3 million for the project, which requires a local match. Rochester Public Utilities has pledged $1 million and Olmsted and Wabasha counties are working to set up a taxing district to help pay for the project. Senjem has voiced concerns about Olmsted County being unwilling to contribute funding toward the project to move 1 million cubic yards of silt from the man-made lake.