Greater Mankato Growth Blog

Weigh In On Mankato Transit

busesThe City of Mankato is in the process of gathering input for their transit development plan which will set the direction for the system for the next four to five years. The city would like to have business input during this process and is hosting two opportunities for business leaders to provide feedback. Read More

Highway 14 Makes Progress at Legislature

FromTheDomeAfter several years of gridlock, the Legislature and Governor came to an agreement this year on a transportation bill that injects much needed funding into our state’s transportation network. The bottom line for Highway 14: there is funding to keep working on the four-lane expansion from Rochester to New Ulm, but not enough to finish all of the remaining two-lane segments.    Read More

ADA Law Passed: New Mandatory Notice Requirement May Result in Fewer Lawsuits, Greater Accessibility

FromTheDomeMore than seventy businesses in our area over the past three years have been targeted with abusive lawsuits alleging accessibility violations. To help prevent these lawsuits, Greater Mankato Growth has been pursuing a two-prong strategy. First, we’ve worked to ensure our businesses have the information and resources they need to be compliant with the law (be sure to check out our blog post on how you can self-audit your business). Second, we’ve partnered with the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce to pursue legislation to reduce or eliminate the abusive lawsuits.

This year, new legislation was passed that provides new protections for businesses and builds upon legislation passed last year. Specifically, the legislation signed into law this year changes the Minnesota Human Rights Act by requiring that a person seeking to sue a business for removal of an accessibility barrier first give notice of the barrier.  Read More

Tax Relief Signed Into Law

FromTheDomeGovernor Dayton took action Tuesday on all the major bills sent to him – signing all the budget bills and tax bills to avoid a government shutdown. The Governor did veto a bill that would have preempted local governments from setting their own labor standards.

However, negotiations may not be done as Gov. Dayton line-item vetoed the House and Senate legislative budgets in an attempt to force them back to the table to negotiate some issues he has concerns with. Legislative leadership already has indicated that it will likely go to court to challenge Dayton’s line-item veto of the legislative appropriations as unconstitutional due to the separation of powers.

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REAL ID Passes: What You Need to Know

FromTheDomeGovernor Mark Dayton last week signed a bill that will finally bring Minnesota into compliance with the federal law known as REAL ID and allow the Minnesota Department of Public Safety to begin the process of making these new IDs available. The new law requires the state to begin issuing REAL ID licenses by Oct. 1, 2018.

Here’s what you need to know as the state moves forward with implementation:  Read More

Legislative Recap Forum

Forum-Series-Logo_SMJoin Greater Mankato Growth and your fellow colleagues for our June Public Affairs Forum breakfast as we recap the 2017 legislative session.

Friday, June 2
7:30 – 9:00 am
Greater Mankato Growth, Sakatah Trail Room

Register here

Hit ‘read more’ for additional information Read More

Protect Against ADA Lawsuits: Self-Audit Your Business

 

ADA-Compliance-are-you-ada-compliantAs you may be aware, hundreds of abusive lawsuits have been filed in the past two years both in federal and state court targeting Minnesota small businesses over alleged violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the MN Human Rights Act. In the Greater Mankato region, more than 70 businesses have had suits filed against them. This continues to be an ongoing issue as several local businesses were served lawsuits just recently.

While Greater Mankato Growth is partnering with the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce to enact legislation that would help prevent these abusive lawsuits, the best protection that a business can have against these suits is being in compliance with the law. Read More

Immigration Forum Resources

Forum-Series-Logo_SMGreater Mankato Growth held our May Public Affairs Forum today on The Economic Necessity of Immigration Reform. Below is a summary of the presentations and links to the slide decks and other resources. Read More

Chamber Coalition Sends Letters on Highway 14

FromTheDomeThe House and Senate have passed their comprehensive transportation bills and the next step is conference committee, which convened for the first time yesterday. While there are some very good parts of the two bills, the overall effect is the bills do not contain enough Corridors of Commerce funding to fund the completion of Highway 14 in the next 10 years. Read More

Uniform State Labor Standards Bill Up for Senate Vote

FromTheDomeTomorrow, the Minnesota Senate will vote on a bill being supported by the MN Chamber that would explicitly preempt local governments from enacting wage and benefit mandates on employers. This stems from efforts by the Cities of Minneapolis/St. Paul to mandate paid safe/sick time for employers in their city (with discussions on minimum wage, paid parental leave etc. pending). The worry is that this could spread to other cities across the state, creating a patchwork of laws and mandates on businesses.

Senator Frentz is currently a “no” vote on this bill. If you’d like to weigh in with Sen. Frentz with your thoughts, now is the time to do it. You can find his contact information here. Click read more to view the action alert from the MN Chamber with more information and talking points. Read More