Category Archives: infrastructure

Mike Rowe on the skills gap, and American jobs

Mike RoweMike Rowe addresses U.S. Congress

Of course, he cleaned up a bit for his appearance before the Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee, but don’t hold that against him. He got their attention, and his message about skilled workers and the struggle to fill hundreds of thousands of trades, utilities, transportation, and manufacturing positions is well worth sharing.

Mike Rowe's Testimony Before the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation May 11, 2011“In general, people are surprised that high unemployment can exist at the same time as a skilled labor shortage…

…we talk about creating millions of shovel-ready jobs for a society that doesn’t really encourage people to pick up a shovel.”
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Unanimous Senate Approves Klobuchar’s “St. Croix River Crossing Authorization Act”

Stillwater Lift BridgeSenate passes Amy Klobuchar’s Stillwater bridge bill unanimously.

Of course, it’s not a done deal, especially with the lingering opposition from Representatives McCollum & Ellison, but think about that word “unanimous.” When was the last time anything passed either house of Congress without a single dissenting vote?

Senator Klobuchar’s success winning not just bi-partisan support but a unanimous vote to move the “St. Croix River Crossing Authorization Act” forward signals two key facts:
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Jobs Can’t Wait, Keystone XL edition.

The lies being spread about Keystone XL reveal how desperate opponents are to confuse the public

Minnesota Laborers continue to fight for the Keystone XL Pipeline and the 20,000 direct and 120,000 indirect jobs it will bring to our members and our region. The Department of State is set to formally reject the Keystone XL Pipeline project application today. This decision was the dominant topic in today’s earlier White House press briefing.

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Governor Mark Dayton: A Jobs Plan for Minnesota

Getting Minnesota Back to Work

Governor Mark Dayton and Minnesota state Democrat-Farmer-Labor (DFL) Legislators have announced a plan to put thousands of Minnesotans back to work this year. The plan includes a number of proposals designed to provide incentives for businesses to hire out-of-work Minnesotans, invest in infrastructure and train workers for the jobs of the future.

MN Gov Dayton“From day one, my top priority has been to get Minnesota working again. Our jobs plan will help businesses create good jobs for thousands of Minnesotans who are looking for work. We need to focus on what we know will work: investing in infrastructure, providing incentives to private sector businesses to create more jobs, and training workers for high-demand careers. Read the rest of this entry

Time to fix the Stillwater Bridge

U.S. Reps McCollum (MN-4) & Ellison (MN-5) oppose spending OUTSIDE their districts?Star-Tribune:
Bridge opposition from metro-area Reps McCollum & Ellison is misguided

After 80 years of increasingly heavy use, the historic two-lane Stillwater Lift Bridge is a landmark in dangerous disrepair while growth along the MN/WI border is steadily creating more traffic.

The proposed 4-lane bridge replacement project has been thoroughly vetted over the course of three decades. This is the plan that citizens and other stakeholders chose to best meet the traffic needs of the 21st century while causing the least environmental harm – and you know if both Rep. Bachmann and Senator Klobuchar can agree on the value and importance that this is not some minor, back-burner issue.

U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), who wrote the bill and co-sponsors it with U.S. Senator Al Franken (D-MN), discussed why she supports the $690 million bridge project with MPR Morning Edition host Cathy Wurzer in November.
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Senate ready to pass tax cut extension that includes great stuff for us!

Tax cuts, Keystone, and Unemployment Insurance, oh my!

Negotiation to fund the government, including the extensions of both the current tax “cut” needed to keep money in the pockets of working-class consumers and the extended Unemployment Insurance that’s helping some of our friends and neighbors fight through the lingering bad economy as job creation starts to revive has also revived the interest in the Keystone XL pipeline schedule.

A senior administration official noted that though the president has said he would reject any attempt to “mandate” construction of the pipeline before it receives further review, the Keystone provision Senate leaders have agreed to speeds up the approval process — giving the administration 60 days to make a decision — but does not mandate construction.

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