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Legislative Update: March 25, 2019

Posted By Administration, Monday, March 25, 2019
This past Tuesday, March 19, the House Jobs and Economic Development Committee heard three bills which addressed funding levels for DEED programs. House File 1184, authored by Representative Erin Koegel (DFL-Spring Lake  Park), established funding in the amount of $6 million for each year of the biennium for the Redevelopment Account. House File 1185, authored by Zack Stephenson (DFL-Coon Rapids), established the funding level of $10.5 million for each year of the biennium for the Minnesota Investment Fund.  House File 1186, authored by Representative Anne Claflin (DFL-South St. Paul), would establish a funding level of $10.5 million for each year of the biennium for the Job Creation Fund.

Testimony was presented at the hearing in support of these bills by Charlie VanderAarde of Metro Cities. Bill King of CIRRUS Aircraft in Duluth testified in support of the Minnesota Investment Fund which provided a grant allowing CIRRUS to remain and grow in Minnesota. Deanna Kuennen, Community and Economic Development Director for the City of Faribault, spoke on behalf EDAM generally and focused more specifically on both the Minnesota Investment Fund and Job Creation Fund which Faribault has secured for business and job growth opportunities in their community. Monte Hilleman of the St. Paul Port Authority testified about the essential role that DEED’s Redevelopment Funds play in preparing land for new business development and job created where dilapidated buildings and outdated infrastructure once stood  

All of the bills were laid over for possible inclusion in the Omnibus Jobs and Economic Development Finance Bill.

We will be following-up with the Committee Chair and key Committee Members to request that funding on par with these request levels is included in the final House Bill.

Earlier this Session, the Senate Jobs and Economic Development Committee heard Senate File 1076 authored by Senator Paul Utke which proposed the same funding levels for each these programs – but did so in a single bill. We will also be following-up with the Senate Chairman Erik Pratt and key Committee Members to seek their support for the funding levels requested in Senator Utke’s bill.  

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