As the 2017 legislative session nears its adjournment deadline, Growth & Justice is partnering closely with key non-profits and partisan coalitions and advocating for policies that strengthen our economy, broaden prosperity, and improve the lives of ALL Minnesotans. Some of our efforts are defensive, opposing proposed deep cuts in our public investments for economic security, health care and opportunity. But most of our advocacy is constructively aimed at reforming and expanding efforts to improve our human capital and public infrastructure. Here are links to these key partnerships where you will find action-steps you can take to move Minnesota forward.
Our Minnesota Rural Equity Project includes a dozen policy priorities that will stimulate the rural economy and address inequalities and racial disparity in Greater Minnesota, and we’re urging involvement in the May 11 (Thursday) Coalition for Greater Minnesota Cities Lobby Day. The MinneMinds coalition supports a range of policies that promise to close disparities in early childhood development for our youngest children and their families. Voices for Racial Justice maintains a “Bill Watch” that summarizes key legislation impacting racial disparities. The Minnesota Budget Project fights for budget sufficiency and tax changes that help low-income households. Transportation Forward and many business leaders are making the case for a major transportation funding package and statewide transit investments. The Minnesota Broadband Coalition is advocating for expansion of local grants funding to speed up universal border-to-border access to high-speed internet, which is especially lacking in rural areas.
Our sponsored content is now a regular feature in the “Morning Take,” a tipsheet about news and public affairs seen daily by an estimated 10,000 prominent influencers, and often featured on WCCO-AM radio with founder and editor Blois Olson. This week highlights our Minnesota Rural Equity Project and proposals that improve transportation options for low-income folks in Greater Minnesota, advocated by one of our rural project co-sponsors, the Minnesota Asset Building Coalition. Here’s a link so you can sign up for Morning Take, Business Take, or Ag Take.
The Brookings Institution and the American Enterprise Institute are Washington think tanks that occupy center-left and center-right ideological territory, respectively. Recently they collaborated on a report entitled “Opportunity, Responsibility, and Security: A Consensus Plan for Reducing Poverty and Restoring the American Dream.” The lead authors, Ron Haskins and Robert Doar, will share with us why and how the collaboration came about, the specifics of a possible “grand bargain” on social welfare policy, and the prospects for progress in a divided nation. Here’s your link to register for this free event. It’s our 9th annual conversation commemorating the spirit of John Brandl, a former legislator and U of M professor known for seeking bipartisan common ground and consensus in public policy. Growth & Justice is a founding co-sponsor of the event, along with an ecumenical group of policy organizations.
“A concerted effort is needed to knock down misinformation and stereotypes. Minnesotans need to hear anew how much this state’s rural and urban regions have in common, and how intertwined their fates have always been, and are still.” From Star Tribune lead editorial headlined, “Needed in Minnesota: More rural-urban unity,” May 7, 2017.