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Governor Dayton Delivers First State of the State Address

February 09, 2011
Dayton lays out bold vision for getting Minnesotans back to work, calls for investment in education, innovation and reforming state government
St. Paul—Today, Governor Mark Dayton delivered his first State of the State address to a Joint Session of the Minnesota Legislature, laying out his vision for a better Minnesota.  Stressing the need to make key investments in order to get Minnesota working again, Governor Dayton outlined clear vision for future prosperity: 
1. Invest in more jobs
2. Invest in better education
3. Invest in improved transportation
4. Invest in the health of our citizens, our communities, and our environment
5. Invest in the transformation of government services
Dayton called on business leaders to invest in more jobs in Minnesota, saying, “We all agree upon the need to create more jobs.  More people working in Minnesota is essential to our economic recovery, to our social well-being, to a better future for all of us.”
Dayton’s plan also outlines investments that the public sector needs to make to promote job growth across the state.  Excellence in education, quality infrastructure and protecting the quality services that make Minnesota communities great places to live are essential to future growth and prosperity.  Governor Dayton also reaffirmed his commitment to transform government services, to make government more efficient and provide high quality services to the public, while lowering costs.
Acknowledging challenges facing Minnesota, Governor Dayton said, “Whether we unite or whether we divide is hanging in the balance.  The challenges we face threaten to divide us, rather than bring us together.”
Dayton also emphasized the need to work together, noting cooperation was the only path to solutions for the challenges we face:
“Our shared success is essential to turn our state around and get us—all of us—working again.  By all of us working together.
“To create together a successful Minnesota, we need to believe once again in each other and in our collective talents, abilities, and wisdom.  We need to believe that our fellow Minnesotans are acting in good faith, doing their best, and that they, like us, want the best for their children, their communities, and our state.
“So let us believe again in Minnesota.  Let us believe again in one another.  Let us invest together in our better future.”
Underscoring the Governor’s commitment to education and to public service, special guests in attendance at the address included:

• President Robert Bruininks of the University of Minnesota and Chancellor James McCormick of Minnesota State Colleges and Universities
• Dr. Efe Agbamu, Secondary School Principal of the Year and Mr. James Sonju, Math and Science    Principal of the Year
• Mr. Ryan Vernosh, Minnesota Teacher of the Year
• Col. Eric Kerska, Commander of the Red Bulls
• The Wenzel Family, members of the Minnesota National Guard
• Officer Adam Bailey, Police Officer of the Year
Biographical information is attached. [PDF]
A complete copy of the State of the State speech, as prepared for delivery, is attached. [PDF]