Work & Money

Minnesota job vacancies up, labor market improving

BY: - April 27, 2021

Job vacancies went up 14% in the last quarter of 2020 compared to the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new report from the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development.  “These job vacancy numbers show us there’s a lot of opportunity in Minnesota right now,” said DEED Commissioner Steve Grove. The state […]

Biden to order $15-an-hour minimum wage for federal contract workers

BY: - April 27, 2021

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden plans to sign an executive order Tuesday to raise the minimum wage for federal contract workers to $15 an hour, according to senior administration officials. The order will go into effect Jan. 30 of next year, according to a fact sheet provided by the administration. Once in place through new […]

St. Paul mayor clears path for new apartment building after city council voted to block it

BY: - April 15, 2021

Arguing St. Paul needs to add more housing of all kinds to meet growing demand, Mayor Melvin Carter vetoed a city council resolution that would have blocked construction of a 288-unit apartment building on an empty lot near Lexington Parkway and University Avenue. Neighborhood activists have organized to fight the proposed $57-million Lexington Station development, […]

Vilsack keys in on food insecurity and nutrition in USDA budget request

BY: - April 14, 2021

WASHINGTON — Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack on Wednesday laid out USDA’s goals to expand food insecurity and nutrition programs in the president’s budget request, as well as the agency’s focus on programs to address longtime racial discrimination.   “Normally I would talk to you all about numbers in the budget,” Vilsack, the former governor of Iowa, […]

Biden’s budget aims to fight climate change, promote conservation, aid Native Americans

BY: - April 12, 2021

President Joe Biden’s first budget request laid out on last week reflects the administration’s commitments to advancing conservation and combating climate change, proposing new money across federal agencies to address those issues.  Like most domestic programs in Biden’s overall $1.5 trillion budget proposal for fiscal 2022, the recommendations for increased spending on conservation and climate […]

Biden unveils $2T plan to rebuild infrastructure, create jobs, move to clean energy

BY: - March 31, 2021

WASHINGTON—President Joe Biden on Wednesday in Pennsylvania will unveil a nearly $2 trillion infrastructure package to rebuild highways and bridges, along with funding programs for housing, broadband and schools and increasing U.S. manufacturing jobs over the next eight years, an administration official told reporters on Tuesday night. Alongside the expansive infrastructure plan, the president will […]

apartment building

St. Paul residents launch rent stabilization campaign to cap increases at 3%

BY: - March 30, 2021

Renter advocates in St. Paul announced a campaign on Tuesday to put rent control on the 2021 ballot, which if approved by voters in November would limit rent increases to 3% over a 12-month period for all rental units across the city. The move follows a similar effort underway in the city of Minneapolis and […]

Minnesota’s unemployment rate fell to 4.3% in February

BY: - March 25, 2021

Minnesota’s unemployment rate was 4.3% in February, down from 4.5% in January as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to stress businesses and workers. People of color are still the most affected by the economic downturn. The unemployment rate for Black Minnesotans was 9.2% in February, and 7.5% for Latino Minnesotans. For white Minnesotans, the rate was […]

Collapsing union pension plans win long-sought help from rescue package

BY: - March 23, 2021

WASHINGTON — Tucked in the Democrats’ massive coronavirus stimulus package was a long-awaited solution for a financial ticking time bomb: private pension funds on the brink of collapse, jeopardizing the retirement plans of millions of union members. The $1.9 trillion pandemic relief measure included $86 billion that will be used for grants to help shore […]

White Earth Nation to boost minimum wage to $16 an hour, highest in the state

BY: and - March 18, 2021

When the White Earth Nation increases its minimum wage to $16 an hour on March 27, it will be the highest minimum wage of any government entity in the state. The move by the state’s largest tribe — also one of its poorest — aims to raise living standards for hundreds of employees and make […]

COMMENTARY

Farmer-Labor leadership for climate progress

BY: - March 16, 2021

After Democrats scored landmark victories in Georgia and secured control of the U.S. Senate, hope for rapid progress against climate change has surged. Failure is simply not an option. Extreme weather systems continue to inflict an ever-growing toll on Americans coast to coast. From California wildfires to rain-starved cropland in Minnesota, the annual consequences are […]

Millions of American parents will soon get a monthly allowance: 4 questions answered

BY: - March 12, 2021

The federal government’s US$1.9 trillion relief package Congress passed on March 10 will temporarily expand the child tax credit. This credit, currently pegged at up to $2,000 a year per child until they turn 17, will instead total $3,600 for children under 6 and $3,000 for kids up to the age of 18 over the […]