GOVERNOR’S WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL Chair’s Report May 18, 2005 Highlights from February 2005 through May 2005 Activity in support of developing vision and policy direction for Minnesota’s workforce system 1. The GWDC had an opportunity to participate in the development of Minnesota’s Workforce Investment Act (WIA) State Unified Plan via a GWDC ad hoc committee that met on March 31st. The committee outlined a broad vision for Minnesota’s workforce development system. The two-year state plan will represent the collaboration of multiple key stakeholders to continue the development of a workforce investment system that addresses customer needs, delivers integrated, user-friendly services, and is accountable to its customers and the public. The GWDC will also have the opportunity to review and approve the plan in its entirety before the Governor submits it to the federal government. 2. Minnesota met eligibility requirements for another WIA Incentive Grant this year due to the youth, adult, dislocated worker, Perkins, and adult basic education programs having met performance goals. The GWDC is charged with developing an application for the WIA Incentive Grant and will engage partners from each of the program areas and additional stakeholders for planning and development. 3. Each of the GWDC’s committees met at least once between February and May, which was the first meeting for many of the committees. All of the committees engage a broad range of stakeholders from across Minnesota. Committee work will primarily focus on creating policy recommendations for the Governor around each committee’s specified topic areas. Each of the committees’ focus is also designed to address one or more items in the GWDC work plan. 4. Staff represented Minnesota at the National Governor’s Association meeting and the National Association of Workforce Board’s annual conference in Washington, D.C. in March. Key topics at these events included WIA Reauthorization, Peer to Peer Best Practices, and the report on the Integrated Performance Information system, an initiative piloted by Washington, Florida, Texas, Montana, Oregon, and Michigan. Minnesota was represented at one of the IPI Institutes by LaDonna Boyd, Mark Jacobs and Libby Starling. 5. GWDC members and staff also represented the GWDC at three events in Minnesota. These events included: a. The 43rd annual Winter Economic Institute at St. Cloud State University on March 15th. The event featured poverty expert Ruby Paine and Princeton University economist Alan Krueger. Ruby Paine’s discussion concentrated on the hidden rules of work and class, while Alan Krueger addressed the rising implications of income inequality. b. The Early Childhood Conference, sponsored by the McKnight Foundation, was held on March 21 and 22. The conference focused on the value added to society when investments are made in early learning and enrichment opportunities for infants and children and featured many programs as models for success. Keynote speakers and presenters included Al Strouken, President and CEO, H.B. Fuller Company, US Senator Norm Coleman, and David Lawrence, Jr., Founder and President, The Early Childhood Initiative. c. DEED and GWDC staff visited the Dakota County Get Jobs Job Fair at the Eagan Civic Center on March 24, where nearly 2,000 jobseekers and businesses connected at In addition to the 50-plus Twin City employers and nine educational institutions, Marvin Windows, Arctic Cat Inc., Digi-Key, Central Boilers, and TEAM industries, all from the northwest part of the state, were able to participate as exhibitors in the job fair. Mark Lofthus, DEED's Business Development Director, suggested that Northwest businesses participate in the event. He said without a merged agency focusing on the business customer, it would not have been possible to marry the services of business development and workforce development as fully as they need to be. 6. GWDC staff is working with the Minnesota Job Skills Partnership Board (MJSP) to plan a joint meeting for the GWDC and MJSP for later this summer. Dates and information regarding the joint meeting will be sent out to Council members shortly. The half-day session will provide an opportunity to take a more in-depth look at a current workforce development issue in Minnesota through a keynote presentation and audience dialogue. 7. There are three upcoming opportunities for GWDC Council members to participate in review and recommendation activities and committees: a. an ad hoc committee to review the 16 local council plans, which are due May 31 b. an ad hoc committee to review the LMI plan due within 45 days after notification c. a committee that will begin meeting in June to review and make recommendations to the MJSP Board on changes to the Dislocated Worker allocation formula. Activity to strengthen Local Workforce Councils and other Stakeholders as Strategic Community Leaders 8. The GWDC along with DEED, the Dakota County Local Workforce Council, and the Minnesota Workforce Council Association sponsored futurist Ed Barlow to come to Minnesota to talk with GWDC members, Local Workforce Council members, and state and local staff. Ed Barlow provided guidance on how Minnesota can improve governance and strategic leadership at both the state and local levels. 9. GWDC members and staff visited with the Southwest Minnesota and Ramsey County Local Workforce Councils. Staff provided an overview of the WorkForce Center Business Plan and Local Workforce Council responsibilities to the Southwest Minnesota council in early May. Local council members expressed concern that funds are not available to support Local Workforce Council activities, including the implementation of strategic plans created at the local level. GWDC staff will continue to schedule visits to local council meetings around the state to discuss the Workforce Center Business Plan and encourage council involvement in the implementation planning process. 10. Staff continues to work with the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system, DEED, Minnesota Workforce Council Association, and Minnesota Economic Development Association to plan the 10th Annual Minnesota Development Conference. The conference will be held October 5th – 6th at the Radisson Riverfront Hotel in Saint Paul.
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