Now is a moment of pause. Of reflection.
One year ago George Floyd was killed. And he was not the last Black man killed in police custody since then. The legacy of his death and the national reckoning that has followed has been, at the risk of overusing this word, unprecedented. I know I’m not alone in reflecting long on this...Floyd’s death ignited a week of civil unrest and a nationwide examination of the many issues around racial injustice and law enforcement that continues today. On Sunday, Floyd’s family led a march in Minneapolis. Other events include a virtual “day of action,” and a candlelight vigil on Tuesday.
Sweet Potato Comfort Pie is sharing the week’s events dedicated to healing.
This time is being marked as an “inflection point,” a “watershed moment.” I wonder, though, will the momentum last? Do we have the internal fortitude for real change? In a recent MSPBJ interview, US Bank’s Chief Diversity Officer, Greg Cunningham, expressed the wonderings I’ve heard from others: “My biggest concern is that we won’t have the stamina required to do the work. Far too often, we move on to the issues of the day and we lose momentum and we lose stamina. I think it’s really important that we recognize that this moment is different.”
Each of us, I think, must face our own reckoning. My thinking, my choices, my commitments, my own unacknowledged resistance… I reflect on the history of injustice experienced within non-white communities; I think of my dear friends, the good cops who are devoted to serving the community in the face of ongoing public safety perceptions and issues; I reflect on my own situation and the agency I have – my voice – to help maintain focus, momentum, stamina towards change. And I return to the power of one – change happens one moment, one conversation, one acknowledgement, one policy at a time. On that I can focus.
What are WE doing? How is your Chamber using its agency to advance change?
I encourage all of us to maintain the momentum, to stay focused on change that will benefit all of us. There is a spark of hope for real change; may we flame it into something truly transformational within us and across our community.
See you in the trenches.
For the first time since the beginning of the pandemic, a majority of respondents to the Minneapolis Fed’s quarterly general business survey reported optimism – though labor costs and supply chain disruptions remain challenges. Read more.
The MSPBJ provides info on what to do if you have been denied a PPP loan. Here's what to do next.
The unemployment rate dropped to 4.1% in April, as Minnesota added 11,000 jobs. Read more
The Legislature adjourned on May 17 without creating the state’s 2022-23 budget, without an agreement on how to allocate the $2.8 billion in federal funds, and without agreements on many other key policy items of interest.
From our perspective, the best thing about the budget deal / targets announcement last week was the inclusion of full tax conformity for forgiven PPP loans. Your Chamber team advocated hard for this provision. Regarding the potential bill’s impact on 2020 taxes, the Department of Revenue is trying to find a way to make those adjustments automatically -- IF the legislature passes the bills in a June special session as intended -- but if they cannot, impacted businesses will have to file an amended return.
Messerli Kramer was kind enough to share their 2021 Legislative Session Summary. In answer to the question “What’s next?”, they write:
With budget targets agreed to and announced, the real work will now start. Legislative leaders instructed conference committees (which will now act in work groups) to iron out all financial issues in their respective areas by May 28; they also instructed those same groups to finalize policy matters and final bill language by June 4. The budget agreement is clear that anything not resolved by subject area work groups will be decided by legislative leaders. The agreement framework does not contain any resolution to more controversial policy matters, leaving those decisions to work groups or, ultimately, in the hands of leadership.
Read more updates in our weekly Chamber Advocacy Update
This Thursday, our Business Learning Toolbox offers Best Practices for Hiring, Engaging, and Retaining Your Employees.
Twins have unveiled their $5 “Summer Fun” ticket deal!
Be sure to celebrate the artist in your child, by participating in the Ordway’s annual Flint Hills Family Festival, June 1-12! Would be lovely to see you: www.flinthillsfestival.ordway.or
10 Leadership Lessons from the last year: “Never waste a good crisis,” so said Winston Churchill towards the end of World War II. How can we learn and benefit from the year behind us, to emerge stronger on the other side? Brian Lassiter of Performance Excellence Network compiled an encouraging list of insights.
As our largest companies announce their return-to-office plans for late Summer/early Fall, we mustn’t forget the devastating impacts of this last year on our small businesses and restaurants. Please, as we recover, remember to keep our local companies in mind. Shopping local recirculates money back into our local economy, benefitting us all.
Consider 5 ways to help small businesses recover from the pandemic: READ MORE