Warning signs signal need for better long-term economic strategy

September 29, 2016 at 11:48 am

At first glance, Minnesota’s economy appears to be humming along like a well-oiled machine. Beneath the surface, however, some troubling signs are emerging. The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development, for example, reports that exports declined five percent during the first quarter of 2016. That’s better than some neighboring states but it’s nevertheless negative. DEED’s 2015 year-end business conditions report also suggests that companies are investing less. And the Minnesota office of Management and Budget now reports that State revenues are off $42 million, or 2.9 percent, from forecasts.

In its monthly Business Index report, Creighton University noted that Minnesota fell below “growth neutral” – meaning a contraction. The report noted that Minnesota’s “[b]usiness losses for metal manufacturers and machinery producers more than offset gains for computer and electronic product manufacturers and food processors in the state,” adding that job growth is below average. And NAIOP’s own analysis recently revealed that Minnesota is nowhere to be found in its listing of the Nation’s Top 10 economies – normally a regular home for the Gopher State.

One hallmark of effective public policy is how well it can make appropriate adjustments today in order to achieve greater (or maintain today’s) prosperity in the future. In order to influence policy for the better we must get engaged and stay engaged. If we put the time in now and work on public policies concerning issues such as property valuation and tax, solid waste, transparency, etc., we can positively impact all economic indicators, including the unemployment rate and new job creation.

The kind of work we have to do is just starting with the current election season. In addition to national and statewide races, it is critical that we support business-minded candidates for the State Legislature. After Nov. 8, we will need to pull together and reach out to policy makers on the issues that directly influence our businesses.

If you agree and want to join with us in our mission, please contact me: quinn@naiopmn.org

Entry filed under: Industry News, Public Policy | Government Affairs.

David Kordonowy receives NAIOP MN President’s Award November 15 Closer Look Lunch: Leveraging the Use of Drones with Commercial Real Estate

For more information about NAIOP Minnesota, visit www.NAIOPMN.org.

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