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From Inauguration to State of the State: Minnesotans react to Gov. Walz' first months in office

It’s been nearly three months since Gov. Tim Walz took his oath. On Wednesday, he gave his first State of the State address.

Posted: Apr 3, 2019 10:31 PM
Updated: Apr 4, 2019 7:05 AM

ROCHESTER, Minn. – Gov. Tim Walz stood before a joint session of the Minnesota Legislature Wednesday for his first State of the State address.

It’s been nearly three months since Walz took his oath.

Since the beginning, his priorities have been education, health care, and transportation. Those are issues that Minnesotans view as important too.

“There's a lot of things that can be improved with the state, but you also have to look in terms of where's the money going to come from in order to do that,” Julie Bleimeyer, of Mantorville, said. “There's a number of projects that it's just a matter of what's going to be prioritized.”

One of the governor’s most controversial proposals is raising the state’s gas tax by 20-cents a gallon. He says that would pay for infrastructure and transportation projects.

“Do I want to pay more for gas? No, it's not like we are made of money,” Talie Sinnyala, of Winona, said, “And at the same time, I want to keep like living the same quality of life. I want to be able to have access, I want to be able to get places, I want to feel safe.”

It's been tough to get agendas through the split legislature, but the Democratic governor said he’ll stress the need for lawmakers to put aside partisanship and work together.

“Minnesota can be a place that's leading the way on how to work together, even in disagreement because that's always going to be there,” Josiah Litant, of Winona, said. “That to me is exciting.”

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