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Governor Dayton: Working for Minnesota Jobs in Willmar

Posted on October 01, 2012 at 2:44 PM
Categories: Jobs, Agriculture

Governor Dayton on the MinnWest Technology Campus

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.


Polaris Stays on Track

Posted on September 28, 2012 at 2:07 PM
Categories: Jobs, Economy

Breaking ground at Polaris

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


2,000 New Jobs

Posted on September 17, 2012 at 4:39 PM
Categories: Economy, Jobs, Bonding

Getting Minnesota back to work remains Governor Dayton’s highest priority. Last week DEED announced $47.5 million in competitive business development grants that will fund nine important economic development projects statewide. These targeted investments will put an estimated 2,000 Minnesotans to work building projects of regional and statewide significance.
The bonding bill signed by Governor Dayton last session has already saved and created 14,000 Minnesota jobs. If the legislature had adopted the governor’s jobs-focused bonding bill last session, another 7,000 Minnesotans would be on the job right now. In last week’s announcement, the governor told Minnesotans he plans to introduce another bonding proposal in January that will help get tens of thousands more Minnesotans back to work.


Duluth News Tribune
September 15, 2012         
“This project rocks the boat,” Mayor Ness said, noting that the Duluth Corporate Tower will spur the city’s economic growth, retain hundreds of jobs and create more than 200 professional jobs as well as 300 construction jobs.... Without that grant, the project would not be moving forward, Ness said.
Detroit Lakes Online
September 16, 2012
"We are extremely ecstatic," Mayor Wayne Wolden said. The award amount was short of $4.6 million asked for, but Wolden said private fundraising efforts had gone very well and a wellness center will be built.
Star Tribune
September 13, 2012‎
St. Paul Area Chamber of Commerce President Matt Kramer said, "I'm going to say what everyone's thinking: It's a great day to be in downtown freakin' St. Paul."


2040: Minnesota’s Economic Promise

Posted on July 19, 2012 at 8:00 AM
Categories: Economy, Greater Minnesota, Jobs


Metropolitan Council’s recently released growth forecasts are premised on analysis and modeling of the metro area’s economic strength, and regional position within a larger, world economy. The analysis suggests a very balanced industry mix, good labor supply across a complete range of occupations, and competitive strength in several high-value industries.  All of this suggests good prospects for economic and employment growth over the next three decades. 

The Council forecasts an employment gain of 570,000 jobs, up from 1,548,000 in 2010 to 2,118,000 in 2040. The Council anticipates employment growth will range from 13 percent in the current decade to 9 percent in the 2030s. This growth contrasts with a net employment loss experienced during the 2000s.
For more background on the Metropolitan Council’s projections for the metro area through 2040, click here.


2040: The Changing Face of Minnesota

Posted on July 17, 2012 at 2:04 PM
Categories: Economy, Greater Minnesota, Jobs


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.


Partners in Policymaking: Celebrating 25 Years Advocating for Disability Rights

Posted on July 16, 2012 at 8:00 AM
Categories: Human Rights, Jobs


Governor Dayton speaks at the 2012 Disabilities Day Rally in the Minnesota State Capitol Rotunda.

The Partners in Policymaking Program recently celebrated its 25th Anniversary, marking a quarter century of advocacy, education, and inspiration for people with developmental disabilities and their families.  

Since 1987, the program – led by the Department of Administration’s Developmental Disabilities Council (DDC), has provided leadership training for parents of children with developmental disabilities and adults with disabilities.  By helping these individuals self-advocate and form relationships with elected officials and policymakers, the program empowers them to positively shape the policies and services that impact their lives.


Hire a Veteran Month

Posted on July 11, 2012 at 10:53 AM
Categories: Jobs, Veterans


Governor Mark Dayton kicked off Minnesota’s largest veterans career fair this morning by proclaiming July “Hire a Veteran” month.  Today at the Minnesota Veterans Career Fair the Governor urged businesses to hire veterans and noted their skills and leadership abilities are what Minnesota employers are looking for. 

“Hiring veterans is one of the best investments businesses can make in the future success of their companies and of our state,” Governor Mark Dayton said.  “Veterans have the skills Minnesota employers are looking for, including leadership, intelligence, dedication, and loyalty.  They also have proven their abilities to perform at the highest levels under all kinds of pressures and conditions.”

Governor Dayton’s office also recently hired a Minnesota Veteran, Amanda Ingvaldson, after she returned from serving with the Minnesota National Guard in support of ‘Operation Iraqi Freedom.

By increasing the public’s awareness of the high unemployment rate of veterans, “Hire a Veteran” month not only gives veterans an opportunity to work but it also promotes good business in Minnesota. 


Minnesota Moving Forward into 2040

Posted on July 10, 2012 at 1:06 PM
Categories: Jobs, Economy, Greater Minnesota


The Minneapolis-St. Paul metro area is going to grow a lot in the next few decades, and Governor Dayton is proud to be leading Minnesota into a new era of increased output, population, and diversity.

According to demographic changes projected by the Metropolitan Council, the Twin Cities metro area will see substantial growth in overall population, population diversity, economic output and jobs  over the coming three decades.

The Council projects that by 2040, the greater Minneapolis-St. Paul metro area will grow by 893,000 people, to a total of 3,743,000, and that 43% of the metro population will be people of color (up from 24% in 2010). This is a slower growth rate per decade – at roughly 9 or 10 percent – than the 15 percent the metro area witnessed in the 1980s and 90s.


Reversed cuts a victory for Minnesota’s disabled

Posted on June 21, 2012 at 8:00 AM
Categories: Health, Reform, Jobs, Human Rights

In a recent editorial for Access Press, a Minnesota disability news outlet, Steve Larson, senior public policy director for The Arc Minnesota commended state leaders for their work to reverse a number of funding cuts to Minnesota Health and Human Services (HHS).

These reversals delayed cuts to the wages of personal care attendants and disability service providers until the next legislative session and reduced the cut to community services for 2,600 Minnesotans with disabilities by half. ” Disability advocates will need to fight again next session to make these reversals permanent,” says Larson.

The issues of funding to key Health and Human Services sectors were first highlighted by Governor Dayton in his 2012-2013 supplemental budget proposal, and were ultimately addressed with his signing of the HHS omnibus budget bill, a bipartisan effort which restored roughly $18 million in funding lost during the 2011 budget compromise. This new spending was offset by savings to the state from a 1 percent cap on health plan profits negotiated by the Dayton Administration which resulted in the return of $73 million to state and federal taxpayers .


Addressing Higher Education Costs Through Reform

Posted on April 17, 2012 at 12:07 PM
Categories: Education, Reform, Jobs


As part of Governor Mark Dayton’s Better Government for a Better Minnesota reform initiative, state government officials are turning their attention to the rising costs of higher education.

Last week, Governor Dayton, Senator Franken, and Office of Higher Education Director Larry Pogemiller met with students from around the state to discuss the challenges they face, including higher tuition costs and crippling student debt.  At the same time, state higher education funding per student has fallen by 48% since 2000.  Colleges are trying to educate students with far fewer resources, and many of the costs are now falling to students themselves. These obstacles are limiting Minnesota students’ educational opportunities and are making it more difficult for them to gain the education they need to succeed in the workforce.

After Monday’s meeting in Minneapolis, OHE Director Pogemiller toured the state to get feedback from other colleges.  He traveled to Austin and Winona last week to discuss the rising costs of college for students. He stressed the need for the state to return higher education funding to historical levels to help students manage their costs.  The Office of Higher Education already works to provide tips to current and prospective students on how they can lower the costs of a college education, and the department strives to improve the resources they offer.


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