The contract between the state Department of Transportation and a company called DULUTH road repair has been canceled because of a lack of funding, according to a letter sent to state officials Monday by a coalition of labor, business and community groups.
The letter, which was sent to the governors of Minnesota and Wisconsin, said the decision by the state to cancel the contract was not based on any recommendations by a technical analysis of the project that the agency made last year.
DULUSTS DAY: The latest news from the statehouse.
Read more The group, Minnesota Transportation Workers Alliance, which has represented DULUZSA employees and is involved in the ongoing protests over the project, said in a statement that the letter sent by the governor was inaccurate.
“The DOT has repeatedly stated that it has been working diligently to get the DOT to provide more money to repair the road, and it’s disappointing that this contract has been terminated without further explanation,” said Sarah Bader, a spokeswoman for the union.
DUTY SAYS IT’S ALL LESS THAN USUAL: Gov.
Mark Dayton says he plans to ask DOT officials to explain why the agency canceled the contract.
“We are very concerned about the contract cancellation, because it means that DOT is not paying for road repair work that has been done before,” he said Monday at a press conference.
“I hope that will be forthcoming.
We want to see what happened here.
I have no idea what went on in this process.”
The contract is to run until 2021.
In its statement, the DOT said that it “does not have a specific timeline for completing this project.”
“The agency does not have an estimate of how long it will take to complete this project, and we do not anticipate needing more than $10 million to complete the project,” the statement said.
The agency is expected to send a response to the union later Monday.
The union, which represents DULZSA workers, had requested the contract be cancelled because it would have meant higher health care costs for its members.
The state’s governor is also asking the Department of Labor to investigate the DOT’s failure to provide the required financial resources to repair Duluth’s roads.
The DOT said Monday that it was reviewing the union’s request and that the department was still in the process of conducting its own investigation.
DOUG FALLON, THE BIGGEST DONALD IN POLITICS: Doug Fields said the DOT decision was “a big disappointment.”
“This was an award of a contract and not a contract in which we were going to receive a contract,” Fields said.
“This is a decision that I hope they will reconsider.
I am hopeful they will do it.
We’re going to fight it.”
But he said he would continue to push for improvements to the project.
“Our jobs are in Duluth,” Fields added.
“That’s where our jobs are.”
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