Greater Mankato Growth Blog

Legislature Adjourns: What Passed (and What Didn’t)

FromTheDomeThe Minnesota Legislature ended on a less-than-graceful note as major bills were negotiated and considered just moments before the constitutionally mandated adjournment time of midnight on May 22. The legislature adopted a tax bill and supplemental budget bill that are awaiting signature by Governor Dayton, but a last-minute amendment derailed a bonding/transportation bill. As a result, a potential special session is in the works to complete action on that outstanding bill. Below you’ll find a rundown on where key issues that will impact businesses and the Greater Mankato region stand following the legislative session.

To get the full report on the Legislative session, be sure to attend our 2016 Legislative Session Recap Breakfast Forum with our local legislators on June 1. You can get more information and register here. Read More

Last Wednesday 43 participants graduated from Greater Mankato Growth’s Leadership Institute. Each year a graduation dinner is held on the last day to honor the participants’ hard work and dedication to the nine-month program. One of my favorite parts of this event is when class members volunteer to speak about their experiences and observations. One class member, Elisabeth Moat, Manager of the Mankato AmericInn presented a very eloquent and heart-felt testimonial about her experience and agreed to share it on this blog. If you’ve ever considered applying for the program, or if you are a graduate of Leadership Institute, it IS worth your time to read on and according to Elisabeth, it IS worth your time to participate in the program! Read More

Le Sueur, MN – Manufacturing & Workforce

le sueur workforce meetingLast week, Greater Mankato Growth collaborated with the City of Le Sueur Economic Development representatives to convene resources from South Central College and Minnesota State University, Mankato for manufacturing businesses.  Several of the community’s major employers were in attendance including Cambria, Le Sueur Incorporated, Seneca, and Bimeda.

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The Census Bureau released their 2015 population statistics for Minnesota cities. From 2014 to 2015, of the 852 Incorporated Jurisdictions (cities) in Minnesota, 316 had positive population growth, 152 stayed the same, and 384 lost population. Read More

Minneapolis Fed Writes Article Featuring Greater Mankato

fedgazette-logoA few months ago, a representative from the Minneapolis Federal Reserve Bank visited Greater Mankato and met with several business and community leaders on the state of the community. The result is a great community profile that was just published in their fedgazette. The article, titled District Spotlight: Mankato finds its big-city legs highlights how we’ve emerged as a top regional center in the upper Midwest and is worth a read and share to your colleges. Thanks to those who met with the Federal Reserve Representative and to all of you for making our community great! Keep the momentum going!

District Spotlight: Mankato finds its big-city legs

Must Read: New Overtime Rules

DOL Seal.pngToday the U.S. Department of Labor will finalize changes to rules on overtime pay for exempt “white collar” salaried workers.

Currently, the salary threshold for overtime eligibility for exempt “white collar” salaried workers is $23,660 per year ($455/week). The new rule will require overtime pay for those employees who makes less than $47,476 per year ($913/week), meaning that the employee must be paid  time and a half for hours worked over 40 each week. The Department of Labor states this will cover 4.2 million more employees, totaling about 35% of salaried workers.

This means that any exempt “white collar” salaried employee earning less than the new threshold amount of $47,476 per year must be paid overtime for all hours over 40 in a week, effective December 1, 2016. Read More

Looking for Great Local Government Candidates

I-want-you-small-for-webLike it or not, for good or bad, local government has a big impact on businesses in Greater Mankato and indeed, our overall community. Luckily, we have a strong tradition of well-run, financially-strong, clean local governments that have been a great asset. But this didn’t come by accident. It took dedicated women and men willing to step up and bring their expertise and sound judgement to bear in service to the public. Always remember that it only takes one election to make a mess of the progress we’ve collectively worked so hard to earn in our community. To be clear, this isn’t a statement about those currently in office, rather an argument that our democracy works best when we are engaged and involved in our government. That’s why it is critical that citizens are able to choose from a strong slate of candidates for local office at this November’s election. Read More

Sharing Your News

Is your business or organization making headlines? Are your employees being recognized with certifications or promotions? Share the fantastic news with all of our website visitors! Greater Mankato Growth (GMG) members have the opportunity to post business and employee news releases and articles on This perk is included as part of membership with GMG. Click here to submit your news on our brief online form.

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Community & State Ratings Survey

Greater Mankato Growth’s Business Retention and Expansion visits are a part of a larger statewide program. 

Grow Minnesota! — the statewide business retention and assistance program hosted by the Minnesota Chamber in partnership with 76 local chambers and economic development organizations — is excited to conduct its annual online Grow Minnesota! Business Survey: Community & State Ratings.

The survey will help us understand how Minnesota companies feel about their community and the state as a place to operate a business. The survey will take less than five minutes to complete.

Click here to take the Community & State Ratings survey.

All Minnesota businesses are invited to complete the survey. The responses from Minnesota business owners, directors and managers will help Grow Minnesota! partners better understand how Minnesota companies feel about their community and our state as a place to operate a business. The feedback will help us work statewide to improve Minnesota’s business climate.

 Your time and comments are sincerely appreciated. Responses are confidential and only aggregate feedback will be shared. Multiple people per business are allowed to respond. All of your answers will be aggregated with the responses from other business people throughout Minnesota, and the results will be shared with local Grow Minnesota! partners and local media outlets. We want to continue to work to improve the business climate in Minnesota for all companies.

 Note: If your company has facilities located in multiple Minnesota communities, please share this with each location so that they may also respond to the survey.


Forget sheepskins; go for the skill


This 10-minute video, “Success in the New Economy”, makes the compelling argument that in today’s job market, future graduates need to take a look at all opportunities not just a 4-year degree which is no longer the guaranteed ticket to career success.

$50K grant helps small biz on pollution

If your business deals with volatile organic compounds or VOC the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency has an offer for you. But you have to act before May 11.

The MPCA is offering grants up to $50,000 to small businesses to reduce their VOC emissions and it swears the application for the grant is easy.

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Serve on Mankato’s Planning Commission

CityMkto_LeadingTheWayThe City of Mankato is seeking citizens to serve on the Planning Commission. This is an excellent opportunity for a member of our business community to get involved in the community. You can learn more about this position and how to apply by reviewing the press release from the city below. Feel free to contact Patrick Baker at GMG with any questions. Read More