The Minnesota Rural Equity Project identifies legislative priorities for revitalizing local economies and reducing disparities in Greater Minnesota. Project partnership includes: Coalition of Greater Minnesota Cities, the Greater Minnesota Partnership, and the Minnesota Asset Building Coalition. This project is made possible by the generosity of funders including the Blandin Foundation.
The wide-ranging initiatives provide new investments and incentives including: early childhood care and education, broadband access, specialized Career Pathways training, Local Government Aid restoration, tax credits for working families and farmers, and a “Getting to Work” bill that helps low-income workers with car repairs or donated vehicles.
“Our policy priorities are evidence-based and draw upon input from communities and stakeholders across the state,’’ said Matt Schmit, Policy & Projects Director for Growth & Justice, a non-partisan policy research and advocacy organization committed to a more inclusive prosperity for Minnesota. “We believe these ideas and initiatives can bring together Republicans and Democrats from all corners of Minnesota – rural and metro alike.’’
The Minnesota Rural Equity Project seeks answers to this large question: What kinds of state policies, public and private investments, business incentives, and local initiatives will work best to strengthen Greater Minnesota communities, revitalize local economies and reduce inequality, poverty and racial disparity?
The Minnesota Legislature and state government can’t provide all the answers. Individuals, businesses, philanthropy, non-profits and hundreds of local community organizations and governments must take initiative and be part of this effort. But the Legislature and the governor can be a leading partner, and many proposals currently in front of the 2017 Legislature could have a significant beneficial impact on rural vitality and erasing racial and economic disparities.