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DEED Debuts New Blog for Minnesota Small Businesses

Posted on May 02, 2013 at 10:30 AM
Categories: Jobs, Economy

blog_deed_sm_biz_blog

Continuing its mission to promote Minnesota small business, the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) launched a new blog today aimed at providing practical guidance for aspiring entrepreneurs and new business owners in Minnesota. 

Dubbed Minnesota Business 101, the weekly blog touches on topics ranging from how to organize and register a business to licensing, regulations and financing. It will focus primarily on helping new business owners navigate through DEED’s Guide to Starting a New Business in Minnesota.

“Small businesses re the driving force of the economy and account for half of our private sector jobs in Minnesota,” said DEED Commissioner Katie Clark Sieben. “This new blog is just one tool we are using to connect those hoping to start a small business with the expertise and resources we offer at DEED.”

Minnesota Business 101 will also include videos offering expert guidance from DEED consultants, advice from real Minnesota small-business owners, and profiles of small businesses. The blog launches today and will appear on Mondays in the future. Check it out at: http://mnbusiness101.wordpress.com/.

DEED is the state’s principal economic development agency, promoting business recruitment, expansion and retention, workforce development, international trade and community development. For more details about the agency and our services, visit DEED at www.PositivelyMinnesota.com. You can also follow DEED on Twitter at www.twitter.com/PositivelyMN.


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Building a Better Minnesota: Regional Civic Centers and Downtown Improvements

Posted on April 17, 2013 at 10:35 AM
Categories: Bonding, Economy, Jobs, Greater Minnesota

Convention_Center_2013
Governor Dayton's bonding proposal invests $98.5 million in Minnesota's downtowns

Governor Dayton’s commitment to building a better Minnesota starts with jobs that help build communities. The governor’s bonding proposal invests $98.5 million in the downtowns of regional centers; projects that will create jobs, attract additional private investment, and support economic development in communities across Minnesota. Those investments include: 
  • $35 million for the Rochester Civic Center expansion
  • $20 million for reconstruction of Nicollet Avenue in downtown Minneapolis
  • $14.5 million for a new addition to the Mankato Civic Center
  • $14 million to double the size of the Children’s Museum in downtown St. Paul
  • $10.1 million for an expansion of the St. Cloud Civic Center

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Mayor Tabke's Story: Why Transit Matters

Posted on March 04, 2013 at 11:17 AM
Categories: Budget, Transportation, Economy

Shakopee Mayor TabkeGovernor Dayton understands that in order to achieve a world-class economy, we must prioritize investments in our metro area transit system.

That is why the governor’s budget includes a commitment to a multi-modal transit system that will give Minnesota a competitive edge for growing business and jobs, drawing new talent, and serving the transit needs of a growing and aging population. In support of Governor Dayton’s increased transit funding is Shakopee Mayor Brad Tabke.

Governor Dayton:

I write to express the support of the Shakopee City Council for your proposal to increase the sales tax for transit purposes by 1/4 cent in the seven-county Metropolitan Area. On Tuesday, February 19, the City Council and I voted to support this proposal. We share your belief that the development of a complete and competitive transit system in the Region is key to its long-term economic competitiveness and vitality. The development of a complete and multi-modal transit system in the Twin Cities Region will also be of great benefit to the Region’s workers and residents. The $200 million per year your proposal is expected to generate is essential to completing important rail, LRT, and BRT projects in the Region, as well as assuring that areas like Scott County can continue to expand local and express bus service that will help to best utilize the investments in regional roadways. In Shakopee, we have been committed to the beneficial expansion of transit options that serve our residents and businesses. Most recently, this has been expressed in the partnership between the cities of Shakopee and Prior Lake, and Scott County. This partnership led to the creation of the BlueXpress in July of 2007, a commuter service which has continued to experience among the greatest rates of growth of any regional bus service provider (9% increase in 2012). We look forward to working with you, your office, and the Legislature on the implementation of this important proposal.

Brad Tabke Mayor, City of Shakopee


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Infographic: Minnesota Investment Fund

Posted on March 01, 2013 at 12:28 PM
Categories: Budget, Jobs, Economy

Governor Dayton's budget calls for $30 million in ongoing funding for MIF to provide crucial incentives to companies expanding in or relocating operations to Minnesota. In the past 8 years MIF has used $7 million in public funds to stimulate $587 million in private development. Funded at Governor Dayton's proposed level, MIF would attract an estimated $990 million in private investment.

How MIF works


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Today in the Budget

Posted on February 22, 2013 at 1:11 PM
Categories: Budget, Economy, Greater Minnesota

MSU Logo photo credit: Flickr user xavierla

Today, St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman submitted a commentary to the Star Tribune, strongly supporting Governor Dayton’s proposed investments in aid to local governments and $1.4 billion in direct property tax relief to homeowners. Mayor Coleman’s commentary is provided in the attached document. The governor has proposed a $120 million increase in aid to cities and counties, and a $500 property tax rebate for every Minnesota homeowner. More details on the governor’s property tax relief plan are detailed below.


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Today in the Budget

Posted on February 20, 2013 at 12:06 PM
Categories: Budget, Economy, Education, Health

At a news conference this morning, St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman, St. Cloud Mayor Dave Kleis, Richfield Mayor Debbie Goettel, Circle Pines Mayor Dave Bartholomay, and other Minnesota mayors urged legislators to pass Governor Dayton’s plan to stabilize local government aid and deliver property tax relief to Minnesota homeowners and businesses.

Over the last ten years, property taxes have gone up 86 percent, placing a huge burden on the middle class. The governor’s plan would deliver $1.4 billion in direct property tax relief to homeowners, increase aid to cities and counties by $120 million over the next two years. Businesses would also benefit from Governor Dayton’s plan. His budget freezes state property taxes for all businesses and cuts state business property taxes by 3.6 percent, or over $120 million through 2017. More information about these measures is outlined below.

Today in Duluth, DEED Commissioner Katie Clark Sieben and Duluth Mayor Don Ness held a news conference to discuss Governor Dayton’s proposed $30 million investment in the Minnesota Investment Fund (MIF).

MIF is one of the state’s key job creation tools. It helps encourage Minnesota firms that have options outside of the state to expand here, and provides incentives for businesses outside Minnesota to locate in our state. In recent years, MIF sustained an 86 percent budget cut which severely limited its impact in creating and retaining Minnesota jobs. The governor’s proposed reinvestment in the program will help create tens of thousands of jobs and leverage an estimated $990 million in private investment. More information about MIF is included below.

For additional details about the Governor’s budget, visit http://mn.gov/governor/budget/toolkit and follow the conversation on Twitter at #BetterMN.


In the News

Wadena Pioneer Journal
Minnesota expands health care for poor

Another 35,000 poor Minnesotans will get health care under a bill Gov. Mark Dayton signed Tuesday. The bill expands Medical Assistance, the state’s Medicaid program. The federally funded expansion would save $129 million in the next two-year budget, supporters say.

“Minnesotans who will be covered by this legislation desperately need better-quality health care,” Dayton said. “Instead of taking their health crises to emergency rooms, thousands of low-income children, families and individuals will be able to see doctors sooner and live healthier lives.”

State Rep. Tom Huntley added: “This legislation allows us to cover more Minnesotans with health insurance and at the same time get more bang for our buck for Minnesota taxpayers.”

The senior citizen advocacy group AARP praised the action. “We represent thousands of consumers who have either gone without health care for years because they didn’t qualify for coverage or have lost their health insurance during the economic downturn; they will benefit greatly from this expansion,” AARP Minnesota Director Michele Kimball said.


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Budget for a Better Minnesota: Helping Veterans Succeed

Posted on February 14, 2013 at 8:00 AM
Categories: Budget, Veterans, Economy, Education

Budget for a Better MN: Helping Veterans Succeed 

Nearly 400,000 veterans call Minnesota home. Their commitment to service and their personal sacrifices have earned them the right to education, opportunities, and benefits.

Governor Dayton’s budget seeks to underscore the service these men and women have given to our country and our state through GI Bill expansion, increased veteran services funding to secure benefits, Honor Guard preservation, and Health Care IT infrastructure improvements to raise the quality of care for our veterans to the highest degree.

The men and women of our armed forced have invaluable skills, skills the state of Minnesota looks to preserve and foster. The funds allocated in the budget invest in our veterans, help create a better Minnesota, and help veterans succeed.

» $1 Million to Expand the Minnesota GI Bill. The Governor’s budget expands the Minnesota GI Bill program to all generations of veterans, not just those serving on or after 9/11. This expansion will ensure all Minnesota veterans have access to the education and training they need to get good paying jobs.

» $1 Million for County Veteran Service Office Grants. The Governor’s budget provides increased grant funding for County Veteran Services Offices, which help veterans and their families obtain benefits and services earned through military service.

» $5 Million for Health Care IT Improvement. The Governor’s budget invests in IT infrastructure upgrades at the Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs. This investment will allow the department to achieve industry standards in delivering high-quality health care to Minnesota veterans and ensure their safety.

» $400,000 for Honor Guards. The Governor’s budget includes $400,000 in permanent funding for the Honor Guard Program, which supports veterans and their families by providing military burial honors earned through their service and sacrifice. Governor Dayton is committed to ensuring all veterans who request funeral honors receive them. 
 
» $200,000 for the Gold Star Program. The Governor’s budget includes $200,000 in permanent funding for the Gold Star Program, which supports the families of those service members who lost their lives in combat as they heal from their loss.

» $425,000 for new State Veterans Cemetery in Fillmore County. The Governor’s budget includes start-up and ongoing funding for a new state veterans cemetery in Fillmore County, opening in 2015. This State Veterans Cemetery will provide burial space for nearly 40,000 veterans. Governor Dayton believes every veteran deserves a dignified final resting place.


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Results Minnesota: Reforming State Government

Posted on December 20, 2012 at 8:30 AM
Categories: Reform, Commerce, Economy, Technology

Governor Dayton, Commissioner Cassellius, and Melissa Schaller, Special Education Director for Intermediate School District #917 compare original TSES and reduced TSES packets.

Two years into his administration, Governor Mark Dayton remains committed to building a better Government for a Better Minnesota.

One important aspect of continuing this progress is improving the value, efficiency, and accountability of state government. Building a better government for Minnesota requires new thinking, and changing the way the state conducts its business. Governor Dayton is focused on using every tax dollar wisely to deliver valuable services that improve the lives of Minnesotans. This includes using new technology to improve efficiency and reduce waste, controlling cost increases, and eliminating programs that don’t work.

In the Spotlight

The Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) has significantly reduced time-consuming, burdensome paperwork for special education teachers and administrators. MDE reduced a 279 page special education manual to just 16 pages – a 94 percent reduction in paperwork.

The manual used to take several teachers and administrators more than 40 hours to complete. But Melissa Schaller, a special education administrator from Rosemount, completed the new manual by herself in less than three hours.

Reducing unnecessary piles of paperwork means administrators and teachers can direct more of their time and attention to students with disabilities.

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Results Minnesota: Minnesota Mobility

Posted on December 19, 2012 at 8:40 AM
Categories: Commerce, Transportation, Technology, Outdoors, Economy

Pictured: iPhone Autism App Emergency Scale Screenshot Pictured: An additional photo of the iPhone Autism App

The Autism Help App assists individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and other disabilities to communicate and regulate in emergency situations. 

Two years into his administration, Governor Mark Dayton is making important progress toward building a Better Minnesota by working to provide sustainable options to safely move people, goods, services, and information.

The success of Minnesota’s economy depends on a transportation system that safely and efficiently gets people and goods where they need to be. Our roadways, bridges, and rail systems are continuously improving thanks to Governor Dayton’s strong leadership.  In addition to strong physical infrastructure, Minnesota citizens and businesses need affordable access to the high-tech infrastructure that drives our global economy, including high-speed internet in every corner of our state.

In the Spotlight

The Governor’s Council on Developmental Disabilities (DDC) at the Minnesota Department of Administration has developed a free award winning mobile device application that helps individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) communicate in emergency situations.

Using a proven 5-point, color-coded scale, the Application can be customized for an individual or family.  In an emergency situation, a parent’s calming voice can explain what to do.  For example, in the case of a fire, the App shows a picture of a safe meeting place and the parent’s voice instructs the individual to go there.  The 5-Point Scale was created by Kari Dunn Buron and Mitzi Beth Curtis of Hamline University, which is a nationally known and accepted system, widely used in public schools.

This mobile tool is designed to be simple and user friendly.  To date, more than 16,300 people have downloaded this App.


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Commissioner’s Column: Minnesota’s Agricultural Exports Hit a Record

Posted on December 18, 2012 at 10:36 AM
Categories: Agriculture, Trade Mission, Economy, Commerce

 Commissioner Fredrickson
When I became the commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Agriculture in 2011, I resolved to continue the good work this agency had been doing with regard to international trade. Like other commissioners who came before me, I understood that Minnesota’s farm and food sector needed to expand its visibility and market share in the fast-growing international markets of Asia and Latin America.

Two years in, I am pleased to say that we are making good progress. New figures from the Minnesota Trade Office show Minnesota exports of agricultural, mining and manufactured products reached a record $5.1 billion in the third quarter of 2012. State exports for the third quarter increased by 1 percent compared with the same period from 2011. This marks the eighth straight quarter of record exports in Minnesota. 

MDA’s own economic studies show Minnesota’s agricultural exports hit a record $6.8 billion last year. This is up 13 percent or about $750 million over the previous year. Agriculture is well-established as Minnesota’s second-largest exporting sector, with major markets in China, Mexico, Japan, and Canada. Minnesota now ranks sixth among all states in agricultural exports.

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