Lisa Hughes, a regional economic developer for the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development, joins us this week to talk about what companies are looking for when the think about setting up in Minnesota. Infrastructure is a big part of it. For example, natural gas. Manufacturing and ag processing both depend on natural gas, but in some parts of Minnesota, there just isn’t a good supply. What’s an economic developer to do?
Mike Nolan, director of the Small Business Development Center in Mankato, joins us on RuralMN Radio this week to talk about innovation in business. Entrepreneurship isn’t just for starting a business, says Nolan. Successful companies are encouraging people within the organization to think entrepreneurially.
Tom Gottfried, program director for the Office of Transit at MnDOT, joins us again to conclude our discussion on public transportation in Greater Minnesota. This week Tom talks about planning for transportation services beyond what public transit can do. Regional transportation coordinating councils are forming around the state that will serve as local forums and think tanks where residents can discuss and make decisions on how to provide those services that MnDOT’s public transportation can’t provide. Many of these services are human services-related and support the elderly and disabled. While MnDOT will be helping with the structure of coordinating these services, local residents will have to make the decisions on how to make things work.
The essential problem of providing public transit services anywhere is geography and population density, says our guest, Tom Gottfried, program director for the Office of Transit at MnDOT, in part 2 of our interview. Transit systems in Greater MN are constantly seeking a balance to create the most efficiency while providing the right services to meet the needs of the people who need them.