Growing prosperity in greater minnesota

Bill strengthens economic development programs in Greater Minnesota

GMNP Executive Director Dan Dorman testifies in favor of SF 784.

GMNP Executive Director Dan Dorman testifies in favor of SF 784.

On Wednesday, the Senate Jobs and Economic Growth Finance and Policy committee heard SF 784, authored by Sen. Paul Utke (R-Park Rapids), which would improve and strengthen several economic development programs. Specifically, the bill would fund the Greater Minnesota Business Development Public Infrastructure (BDPI) Grant Program at $2 million a year, expand the successful employer-driven Job Training Incentive Program to $2 million a year, and restore funding for the Job Creation Fund and the Minnesota Investment Fund (MIF) to $12.5 million and $15 million, respectively.

Owatonna Mayor Tom Kuntz, who also serves on the CGMC board, testified in support of the bill, and specifically about the need to restore funding for MIF and the Job Creation Fund. These economic development tools help rural Minnesota communities be more competitive.
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Workforce housing, BDPI bills sail through House committee hearing

GMNP Executive Director Dan Dorman and WREDC Executive Director Abraham Algadi listen as bill author Rep. Rod Hamilton (R-Mountain Lake) discusses the GMNP's workforce housing tax credit bill during a House committee hearing.

GMNP Executive Director Dan Dorman and WREDC Executive Director Abraham Algadi listen as bill author Rep. Rod Hamilton (R-Mountain Lake) describes the GMNP-supported workforce housing tax credit bill during a House committee hearing.

On Wednesday, members of the House Job Growth and Energy Affordability Committee heard testimony on two initiatives backed by the GMNP and Coalition of Greater Minnesota Cities.

First, the committee heard testimony on HF 653, authored by Rep. Bob Gunther (R-Fairmont), which would appropriate $15 million in state bonding funds to the Greater Minnesota Business Development Public Infrastructure (BDPI) Grant Program. BDPI is an extremely popular program that provides grants to cities of up to 50 percent of the capital costs of the public infrastructure required to expand or create new economic development projects. Due to its popularity, however, funding for BDPI is nearly depleted. Continue reading