I would like to respond to the recent criticism from the legislature and the media regarding comments made by Drs. Noseworthy and Narr. Dr. Noseworthy’s remark that 49 other states would like to be home to the Mayo Clinic is accurate. What state wouldn’t want tens of thousands of high paying jobs? Dr. Narr’s observation of the Minnesota Legislature’s willingness to offer millions of dollars of incentives to a, literally unknown, company in contrast to the resistance the DMC proposal has received is relevant and significant.
Some in the legislature and media have called these comments “arrogant,” “threatening,” and even “attacks.” These critics have parlayed these straightforward comments into a portrayal of Mayo as a spoiled child that is used to getting its way and not ever being told “no.” Really? Does Mayo deserve such criticism?
The reality is that the Mayo Clinic is one of the world’s most admired institutions. It has been a loyal and generous organization creating goodwill in Minnesota for over 150 years. It’s the largest private employer in the state. And although it would make more sense logistically for Mayo to relocate to to a major city to realize its plans for growth, Mayo chose to grow in Rochester.
What did Mayo receive in return for its unselfish loyalty? Let’s just say it wasn’t the open arms and checkbook reception that the “secret” biotech company got from the legislature and governor.
Mayo proposed a fair, but complicated, plan that redirected a small portion of Mayo-generated taxes back to the City of Rochester so that public infrastructure could be built to keep up with Mayo’s planned growth. The Minnesota Legislature quickly discarded Mayo’s plan and immediately started making demands. The politicians didn’t want any Mayo staff on the board that would distribute funds, it wanted more state control, more local taxes, the plan must be included in omnibus bill, etc. The tone of the debate even got so low that some legislators resorted to insults calling Rochester boring. Really? What has Mayo done to deserve such ill will?
In typical Mayo fashion, The Clinic’s response to this unwarranted contempt has been very restrained. Despite being treated by the legislature like a stray dog begging for scraps, Mayo has taken the high road and has persevered in trying to work out a reasonable DMC plan.
This aggressive approach by the legislature is not only unmerited, but in the long run, very dangerous. The reality is that Mayo holds the ultimate trump card. If the legislature decides to throw Mayo table scraps, Mayo may just reject the deal and move out of state. That’s not a threat, it’s a reality. A reality the legislature isn’t properly factoring into its rancorous negotiating and posturing.
If, and when, Mayo states its intention to start growing at one of its other campuses, the legislators will be tripping over each other in trying to find ways to incentivize Mayo to stay in Minnesota. But will it be too late?
Check out their Facebook page. Let me know if you have been there and what you think.
I went to Tilly’s Tavern a couple Fridays ago and had the best fried fish of my life.
The other day I was taking a “short cut” through AMPI’s parking lot when I noticed a sign for their company store. I decided to take a look at what they had to offer. The store is about the size of a walk in closet, but what it lacks in size it makes up for with value. I bought a piece of the Extra Sharp Cheddar for a little over $3, and I was very pleased with it.
Check it out and post a comment with your thoughts.
Today I saw a sign announcing that a new Think Bank is being built on the site of the former Mugby Junction site on Greenview Dr. SW. This new location is less than a mile away from the current Think Bank on the other end of Greenview Dr. SW. Is Think closing the existing location, or are they planning on having two banks within walking distance?
Why do they need so many locations anyway? I, and I assume most people, do the vast majority of my banking online. I think building more physical bank locations in the online era is a waste of money.
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