A Vision for Economic Renewal – An American Jobs Agenda

America is facing a catastrophic jobs crisis. Not since the Great Depression has official unemployment hovered above nine percent – where it is today – for more than 20 months. Millions of American have given up looking for a job altogether.–-an-american-jobs-agenda/

Building Trades members gather and it’s all about jobs, jobs, jobs

Facing the worst employment outlook in decades, representatives of state construction unions gathered in their annual convention Thursday to put the focus on jobs. They heard from numerous speakers, including legislators, with Governor Mark Dayton scheduled to address delegates Friday.

The 65th annual convention of the Minnesota State Building & Construction Trades Council follows a nearly three-week state government shutdown that idled thousands of private sector construction workers in addition to 22,000 state employees. Read more »

August 1: Memorial to Interstate 35W bridge collapse victims will be dedicated on riverfront

A memorial to the victims of the Interstate 35W bridge collapse will be dedicated Monday, August 1 on the fourth anniversary of the tragedy. The dedication ceremony will begin at 5:15 p.m. at the memorial site, which overlooks the Mississippi River on West River Parkway across from Gold Medal Park (from Washington Ave. So., head to the river on 11th Ave. So, then turn left). The ceremony will conclude at 6:05 p.m., the time of the bridge collapse. Read more »

88% Of Income Growth Went To Corporate Profits, 1% Went To Wages

After the longest recession since WWII, many Americans are still struggling while S&P 500 corporations are sitting on $800 billion in cash and making massive profits. Now, economists from Northeastern University have released a study that finds our sluggish economic recovery has almost solely benefited corporations. According to the study: Read more »

Dayton signs budget, state shutdown to finally end

The Minnesota Legislature worked into the early morning hours to pass the 12 budget and spending bills to end the state government shutdown. Governor Dayton held a signing ceremony Wednesday morning.

After called by the governor, the Legislature convened for a special session at 3:05 p.m. Tuesday for the sole purpose of passing a budget. The House adjourned at 3:39 a.m. Wednesday, and the Senate about a minute later. View the votes on individual bills. Read more »

Keep your cool in the heat

J J Keller has some real simple ides about how to stay comfortable and safe in the summer heat. They range from engineering controls, personal protective equipment and work practice controls. There are also some ideas about which symptoms of heat stroke and heat exhaustion to look for.

Jobless construction workers pin hopes on infrastructure bill

As Minnesota lawmakers met late Tuesday in special session, they were slated to vote whether to invest $531 million in infrastructure projects and create thousands of jobs. Earlier in the day, both houses passed legislation to fund economic development and spur job growth.

Minnesota construction workers, who face some of the bleakest job prospects in the nation, were hoping for quick action on the infrastructure legislation. They also look forward to the end of the state government shutdown, which has idled numerous crews on state-funded road projects. Read more »

Sanders: Hands Off Social Security

As Social Security emerged as a target in White House budget negotiations, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) insisted that the retirement program must not be cut as part of any deficit reduction deal. “Let us be clear,” Sanders said. “Social Security has not contributed one nickel to our deficit or our national debt. Social Security is funded by the payroll tax, not the U.S. treasury.” Read more »

Unions await details of agreement to end state shutdown

Union members are awaiting details of the agreement to end the state government shutdown announced Thursday by Governor Mark Dayton and Republican legislative leaders.

The news came on the 13th day of the shutdown – the longest state government closure in U.S. history. The two sides were at an impasse over how to resolve a $5 billion deficit for the budget period that started July 1. Read more »

The Jobs Crisis — Moving to Action: A Dialogue Between Workers and Policymakers

At a July 11, 2011 Jobs Crisis Forum, Sen. Al Franken (D-MN), Rep. Sander Levin (D-MI) and AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka joined unemployed workers to discuss the nation's jobs crisis. There is a short (6 minute) and long version (1 hour 33 minute) version of the forum.