As someone who grew up in oil sale country and spent two summers working oil rigs during college, I often cast a jaundiced eye over claims that combine "economic growth," "business-friendly regulatory and tax climate" and "oil and gas industry." Chances are, the writer is about to praise a government that is only starting to enjoy its first oil and gas boom before all the social costs have come due. High paying jobs and environmental problems te... Read More
You are a policymaker and you have a tough choice between two big development proposals for the same site on a key light rail line or transitway. All other things being equal, which do you choose: a major employer or a large housing complex? If overall accessibility improvement and employer access to labor is the goal, take the employer, says new research presented this week at the 23rd Annual Transportation Research Conference in St. Paul this w... Read More
Research shows that getting kids and their parents in a post-secondary mindset as early as possible -- creating not just hope but an expectation for college attainment -- makes a big difference in whether they get credentials. Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak and his top economic development official, Mike Christenson, without a lot of fanfare, have been working this angle for years. Every year in the fall Mayor Rybak addresses every 9th grade... Read More
Peter Heegaard is a former executive for a financial firm, and he's well-known in Minnesota public policy circles as a leader with a strong social conscience, a great combination of heart and passion for progressive change and hard-headed analytical sense on dollars and cents. His new book, "More Bang for Your Buck,'' should be required reading for policy wonks in Minnesota who want to be on the cutting edge ... Read More
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