Capitol Corner: Business is Booming in the Northwest Metro
Reflecting on the economic health of Minnesota
Last month, the Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED), reported that Minnesota’s unemployment rate was sitting at a steady 3.8 percent. The economic health of our state has been widely reported for the past few years, the announcement that we have recovered from the recession has been proclaimed far and wide by many. But it wasn’t too long ago that Minnesota was far from healthy. When I was first running for Senate in the summer of 2012 – our state’s unemployment rate was sitting at 5.7 percent.
I believe remembering how far Minnesota has come since the low point, when our state’s unemployment rate reached nearly 8 percent in June of 2009, is incredibly important. Looking back can help make celebrating current business expansions and the creation of new jobs – all the more exciting.
Two businesses have chosen to relocate and expand in our district in the last year. Wurth Adams Nut & Bolt, an industry-fabricated metal products manufacturing company is moving its headquarters to Brooklyn Park. The $30 million, 160,000 square foot expansion will create 20 jobs. German-owned Wurth Adams – which manufactures nuts, bolts and other types of fasteners – has been headquartered in Maple Grove since 1995. The company said it decided to move to the new site because it needs more office and warehouse space. The project is receiving $590,000 from the State through the Minnesota Job Creation Fund.
This expansion and move is excellent news for our corner of the metro. To begin with, the company is creating 20 new jobs in a skilled labor market, meaning good-paying jobs for Minnesotans. The expansion also adds to Brooklyn Park’s tax base. Thirdly, the expansion was partially funded through the Minnesota Job Creation Fund – a program that has proven its success once again at aiding Minnesota companies to grow and succeed. In fact, last session the Senate voted to invest $25 million into the Job Creation Fund, and voted to put $30 million into the Minnesota Investment Fund. Both of these funds are vitally important to job creation and business expansion across the state.
Another company is also going to soon call Brooklyn Park home. Perbix Machine Co. plans to move its headquarters and operations from Golden Valley, to a new manufacturing facility in Brooklyn Park. The new 70,400 square foot building is located on a 36 acre site south of Hwy 610 and east of Hwy 169. The company is receiving $139,000 from the Minnesota Job Creation Fund to assist with the project. The expansion is allowing the company to add 12 new jobs to its existing workforce.
In 2013, our region received an incredible $80 million from the newly formed Corridors of Commerce program to begin extensive road construction on Highway 610. This is a main artery in our corner of the metro and extending the highway to connect with I-94 will make the region more attractive to new businesses. And you can tell this kind of investment in our community is already attracting positive attention. According to the Minnesota Secretary of State’s office, 800 new businesses have opened up shop in Brooklyn Park, Champlin and Coon Rapids in the last year. By supporting robust transportation bills and economic development packages I am voting to make it easier to create a business and hence create jobs.
I share this news with you, to highlight how well-running our state is in the fall of 2015. Since the end of 2012, the Minnesota Senate has been run by the DFL, and we have worked hard to ensure more Minnesotans are employed in well-paying jobs, that our children have access to high-quality public schools, and that the taxes we pay are fair and equitable. Minnesota is a great place to live, work and play. We have an abundance of bike trails and walking trails, public parks, and a wealth of successful companies who employ our state’s educated workforce and pay taxes which help fund the services that make Minnesota a happy and healthy state. Sometimes, it’s important to be reminded of why we live where we do. I’m proud to serve as state senator for the Land of 10,000 Lakes, and I’m proud to work hard to make Minnesota a great place for everyone to call home.
For questions Sen. Hoffman can be reached at Sen.John.Hoffman@senate.mn or at (651) 296-4154.