Jobs and Minnesota’s Future
As the Legislature discusses possible solutions for the $6 billion deficit, we also need to look to Minnesota’s future and create legislation that shapes our state’s economic outlook. To do this, we need to put the political campaign rhetoric aside and do what is best for Minnesota and its citizens.
In the early weeks of session, legislators gathered at the Hubert H. Humphrey Center at the University of Minnesota for the One Minnesota 2011 Legislative Policy Conference. The goal of the conference was to bring legislators from both sides of the isle to discuss the challenges facing our state and discuss what we can do today to strengthen our state’s future.
We heard several presentations on our state and national economies, how we can restart private sector job growth and how we can move from “campaign mode” to creating quality legislation together. One presentation I would like to highlight was the “Jobs and Minnesota’s Future” presentation by the Minnesota State Economist, Tom Stinson.
The theme of his presentation was that our economy is headed to a “new normal”. He made the case that our nation is recovering from a great recession and we will likely not return to where we were before it began. The states that adapt first will be the most successful and the next four years will be critical for Minnesota’s future.
This means we must invest in quality workforce development. Early education, K-12 Education and Higher Education need to be top priorities to ensure Minnesota is a leader in the future economy. This doesn’t just mean investing financially. We also need to improve the relationship between our colleges and E-12 education facilities. Together, they must identify and improve on what is working and isolate what isn’t to create a better path for our young learners to become leaders in the workforce.
As always, please contact me with questions or suggestions as needed. Please visit my Senate website at senate.mn/senatorwiger. I also encourage you to visit me at the Capitol, or let me know if you’d like me to stop by your house or apartment. Also, please tune in to my local cable TV show, “Your Capitol: What’s Up?,” which appears on public access channels 15 and 16.