Continuing to grow its membership, the Greater Minnesota Partnership has created an eight-point policy position to move forward with its 2016 projects.

 “Our goal is to speak for Greater Minnesota and bring more equity across the state, metro and Greater Minnesota,” said Dan Dorman, GMNP executive director.

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 A former legislator from Albert Lea, Dorman noted the GMNP wants to be a valued voice for Greater Minnesota.

“Our needs are different in Greater Minnesota,” said the former legislator, adding, “People want to live and work in Greater Minnesota but don’t have a lot of options with regards to workforce housing, broadband access and job training.”

To help improve the economic climate and boost economic growth n Greater Minnesota, the GMNP supports the following policy positons in the 2016 legislative session:

-Workforce housing: The GNMP supports a $30 each year for a Workforce Housing tax credit proposal, similar to the one currently awaiting action in the Omnibus Tax Bill.

-Business development public infrastructure grant program: The GMNP supports a $15 million appropriation in the 2016 legislative session.

-Broadband expansion: GMNP is working on programs that better target funds to Greater Minnesota with greatest economic benefit to the area.

-Statewide business property taxes exemption: Under the Greater Business Expansion program, offer seven year business property tax exemption.

-Transportation: The GMNP supports a $7 billion in road funding over 10 years with $200 million for Corridors of Commerce and $40 million for city streets

-Water quality regulation: The GMNP supports requiring independent scientific peer review and cost benefit analysis of new water quality rules before they are implemented.

-Bonding and infrastructure in Greater Minnesota: Bonding bills should focus more on transportation, infrastructure, wastewater and other infrastructure that grows local economies in Greater Minnesota.

-New employee job training program: The GMNP supports increased and permanent funding for the employer-drive job training legislation enacted in 2015

-Local Government Aid (LGA): The GMNP supports

restoring the LGA program to its 2002 funding level and annual increases in its appropriation thereafter.

“Our goal for 2016 is to grow our membership and continue to fight for policies that affect Greater Minnesota which are different from Metro and Suburban.”