Mayor Chris Coleman has releases a six-point economic development plan for the City of Saint Paul. It was devised in conjunction with major St. Paul business organizations and states goals and responsibilities for improving commerce.
Acknowledging that St. Paul can do more to attract new businesses and keep the ones it has, the plan outlines common-sense ways for the city to:
- • Cut through some of the red tape.
- • Retain businesses and recruit new ones.
- • Revitalize downtown as well as neighborhoods
- • Ensure the schools are doing their part to build an educated and skilled workforce.
If St. Paul is going to become a better place to do business, it's going to take teamwork. But it's not the city that creates jobs and wealth, according to the plan it is the businesses and nonprofit organizations.
In the past, the city has offered tax incentives to companies such as Lawson and Gander Mountain. It also made a forgivable loan to the downtown Macy's -- as long as it doesn't leave before 2012. But St. Paul, like other cities across the United States, isn't flush with cash these days. Tough economic times have slowed investment and put pressure on many existing businesses.
It has taken about two years and many meetings with members of the Capital City Partnership, St. Paul Area Chamber of Commerce, St. Paul Port Authority and St. Paul Riverfront Corporation to come up with the goals.
With St. Paul in the national spotlight of the Republican National Convention in September, it's no wonder city leaders are unveiling this now. They want to sell St. Paul's livability.