A MinnWest employee shows off innovations to Governor Dayton and Agriculture Commissioner Dave Frederickson
Governor Mark Dayton wrapped up his “Working for Minnesota Jobs” tour last week, after a month of traveling around the state to find out directly from Minnesotans how state government can help their communities get back to work.
“As Minnesota’s economy continues to recover from one of the worst recessions in our nation’s history, we need to do more to ensure that our state is well positioned to compete in a global economy,” Dayton said. “That means investing in our people, ensuring a viable workforce, and fostering the natural resources that have been the foundation of our economy.”
On Sept. 28, Governor Dayton visited MinnWest Technology Campus in Willmar, a local center for development of agricultural technology. The Governor hosted a roundtable discussion with area business and education leaders about the future of Minnesota’s agriculture technology industry. The state’s agriculture and food production industry is responsible for 4,800 jobs and $250 million in wages.
Dayton visited the Iron Range on Oct. 3 where he and IRRRB Commissioner Tony Sertich toured Magnetation Inc., an iron ore producer, and hold held a roundtable discussion with mining industry leaders in at NRRI Colerain Minerals Research Laboratory. Mining is a crucial part of Minnesota’s economy. In 2011, the industry contributed over 5,800 jobs in the state paying $474 million in annual wages.
Gov. Dayton talking to a student following the roundtable discussion.
Governor Mark Dayton continued his commitment to job creation and economic prosperity in Minnesota today, as his “Working for Minnesota Jobs” tour visited Brooklyn Park. The Governor hosted a roundtable discussion with information technology leaders in Minnesota’s retail sector. The Governor was joined by industry leaders and top CIOs from major Minnesota retailers, including Best Buy, Gander Mountain and Supervalu. The roundtable was held at North Hennepin Community College in Brooklyn Park.
The discussion focused on new strategies to connect Minnesota workers with the skills and training they need to keep good-paying IT jobs here in the state. Minnesota retailers discussed the challenge of finding qualified IT workers located within the state. Often, businesses rely on advanced enterprise information technologies, such as Oracle Retail. Without local training programs for specific software, many retail companies must import workers or employ workers from outside of Minnesota.
In response to this shortfall, a group of private companies based in and around Minnesota, including Gander Mountain, Mills Fleet Farm, Maurice's, Orscheln Farm and Home, Scheels Sports, and others, have established the Oracle Retail User Group. This group, representing more than $2 billion a year in revenue, has launched an initiative to improve the skills of the Minnesota workforce in this key area of Minnesota’s economy. The Oracle Retail User Group is forming a public-private partnership with North Hennepin Technical College to establish an Oracle Retail Center of Excellence that will train Minnesota workers and keep good-paying jobs here in our state.
Governor Dayton observes how a heart catheter is inserted into a chamber of the heart.
Today, Governor Dayton continued “Working for Minnesota Jobs,” hosting a roundtable discussion with medical technology innovators from across Minnesota. The event took place at Lake Region Medical – a medical device manufacturer headquartered in Chaska.
Governor Dayton observed a Menthis Cath Lab simulator demonstration, which utilizes real case studies to help Lake Region Medical develop and improve product technology and performance to meet patient and physician needs. Afterwards, sixteen business and research leaders in the emerging medical device field joined Governor Dayton for a medical technology roundtable discussion.
There are currently 585 medical device companies in Minnesota. There are roughly 29,351 Minnesota workers in this industry with 16,061 employed in the manufacturing of medical devices totaling $1.21 billion in annual wages.
Governor Dayton tours the Biotechnology Advancement Center
Governor Mark Dayton visited Worthington’s Biotechnology Advancement Center last Friday to assess opportunities and challenges to Minnesota’s agriculture sector as he continued Working for Minnesota Jobs.
While visiting the center, Governor Dayton and Agriculture Commissioner Dave Frederickson held a roundtable talk with industry leaders, farmers, and business owners to discuss how to grow jobs in Minnesota’s farm and food sector, and to encourage continued innovation in the state’s agriculture technology industry. Following the roundtable discussion, Governor Dayton and Commissioner Frederickson took some time out of their busy schedules to tour the Center and Newport Laboratories.
After manufacturing, Minnesota’s farm and food sector is the second largest segment of the state’s economy providing more than 340,000 jobs and $75 billion in annual economic activity. More than 80 percent of those jobs are off-farm jobs in categories like transportation, finance, manufacturing, and retail.
Governor Dayton joins Magnetation employees for a tour of mining facilities
Governor Mark Dayton’s “Working for Minnesota Jobs” tour continued today on the Iron Range, focused on value-added mining opportunities that will get Minnesotans back to work.
Governor Dayton was joined by IRRRB Commissioner Tony Sertich on a tour of Magnetation, Inc., a company founded in 2006 that uses low-grade natural ore tailings to produce marketable iron ore concentrate. Following the tour, the Governor and Commissioner Sertich hosted a roundtable discussion with area mining industry leaders at NRRI Coleraine Minerals Research Laboratory.
Minnesota is one of the world’s largest producers of iron ore with over 100 million tons of taconite being mined each year. In 2011 the mining industry contributed over 5,800 direct Minnesota jobs totaling $474 million in wages. Minnesota is also home to four billion ton deposits of critical and strategic metals.
Working for Minnesota Jobs
Continuing his strong commitment to job creation and economic prosperity, Governor Dayton is traveling statewide to identify opportunities and barriers to economic growth in key sectors of Minnesota’s economy. The Governor is meeting directly with business owners, workers, and local leaders to seek input on what measures should be taken in the upcoming legislative session to enhance Minnesota’s economic competitiveness, stimulate private sector job growth, and open new doors of employment opportunity for Minnesota workers.
A MinnWest employee shows off innovations to Governor Mark Dayton and Agriculture Commissioner Dave Frederickson
Governor Mark Dayton kicked off his statewide jobs tour on Friday in Willmar, meeting with a dozen local leaders in business, government, and higher education to discuss opportunities and barriers for the state’s economic growth. The tour will continue over the next several months as Dayton meets with leaders in other Minnesota communities to solicit direct input.
Dayton began the tour in the midst of Minnesota’s recovery from one of the worst recessions in the nation’s history. The governor will use his listening tour to gather ideas on what should be done in the next legislative session to position the state for economic growth and job creation in the recession’s aftermath.
The public meeting in Willmar was held at the MinnWest Technology Campus, where businesses are working to develop new bioscience and agricultural technology with significant implications for export growth – and new jobs. The state’s agriculture and food production industry is already responsible for 4,800 jobs and $250 million in annual wages.
Elected officials and Polaris leadership gathered together for a groundbreaking ceremony
Many people have been recognized for inventing machines that could travel through snow, but credit for the birth of the modern-day recreational snowmobile still goes to Polaris Industries in Roseau in 1954. Employees built a prototype snowmobile using a grain silo conveyor belt for a track and an old Chevy bumper for skis.
Nearly 60 years later, this quintessential Minnesota company is still going strong. Polaris, now based in Medina, has added all-terrain vehicles, side-by-side vehicles and motorcycles to its manufacturing repertoire and employs more than 5,000 people. Revenue last year hit nearly $2.7 billion.
In the latest bit of good news from Polaris, the company broke ground Friday on a 144,000-square-foot expansion project at its research and development facility in the Chisago County community of Wyoming. The project will double the size of the facility and create capacity for up to 350 more jobs, according to company officials.
The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development had a role in making sure the project happened, providing the company with a $400,000 forgivable loan from the Minnesota Investment Fund. Under terms of the loan, Polaris has committed to creating 150 permanent jobs within two years. Polaris is also eligible to receive JOBZ tax exemption benefits
The Minneapolis-St. Paul area’s population will grow in two ways in the coming decades: it will grow in size, and it will grow in diversity.
The Metropolitan Council has predicted that by 2040, the population of the Twin Cities Metropolitan Area will grow by 893,000 people to a total population of 3,743,000, and that 43% of residents will be people of color in 2040 – up from 24% in 2010. The region’s Hispanic population is expected to nearly triple, from 168,000 in 2010 to 479,000 in 2040.
The region will also see a more diverse student population. The population of color under age 25 will double in size by 2040 up from 335,000 in 2010 to 676,000. This change will then be reflected in Minnesota’s workforce as that population moves from school into the job market further down the road; likewise, the workforce by 2040 will reflect the diversity of today’s under-25 population.