Rep. John Ward, DFL-Baxter, was recognized by the Coalition of Greater Minnesota Cities (CGMC) July 25 during the coalition’s three-day summer conference in Bemidji for his positive impact on economic development policy.
Ward is serving his fourth term in the Minnesota House. The Legislator of Distinction Award is given to legislators who played key roles in advancing CGMC’s policy during the preceding session.
Ward served as the House author of CGMC’s legislation to provide more job training options for Greater Minnesota businesses. The proposal used escrowed tax dollars from the employees receiving the training to help pay for the training.
“Rep. Ward understood that this job training proposal could mean a lot more jobs in the manufacturing-heavy Brainerd lakes area he represents, so was an enthusiastic advocate,” said Bruce Ahlgren, president of the CGMC and mayor of Cloquet. “His energy and flexibility were key to securing a hearing in the House Tax Committee. Though the bill was not ultimately passed into law this past session, Rep. Ward laid a strong foundation for progress in 2014.”