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5 Questions to Assess Policy Effectiveness MNLEG 2017 – New Report and Data

Bruce P. Corrie, PhD

As the Minnesota Legislature moves towards critical negotiations on spending there are 5 Questions (with supporting data) that a new report raises to assess the policy effectiveness of the 2017 legislature. (See ALANA Assets and Disparities by Legislative District ALANA Assets and Opportunities By Legislative District. The report offers data on ALANA Income, Tax Payments, Unemployment, Disability and Female Headed households in poverty by Minnesota Legislative District).

  1. How has current legislative policy action worked to reduce unemployment especially of the ALANA constituents in the district?  See data in report

  2. How has current legislative policy action worked to support the disabled especially of the ALANA constituents in your district? See data in report

  3. How has current legislative policy action worked to support female headed households in poverty especially of the ALANA constituents in the district? See data in report

  4. How has current legislative policy action worked to grow ALANA income ($19 Billion in Minnesota) and assets given that it is an important engine of economic growth in the district? See data in report

  5. How well are the economic interests of the ALANA constituents reflected in current legislative action given their estimated tax payments in the district? (The Minnesota Judicial Panel heard testimony from about the need for economic representation before they drew up 2010 legislative districts and responded with current districts).ALANA communities paid an estimated over $2.1 billion in Minnesota taxes. See data in report

 These indicators are a good measure of the depth of economic development progress in an area. Assessing the policy effectiveness from the perspective of traditionally marginalized groups is a good measure of policy effectiveness at the micro level.

Tied to these indicators are 5 recommendations to Legislators for the short and long term:

Five Recommendations


  1. Ask the key question if the current Jobs and Educational bills adequately close the racial gaps in the district as illustrated in the data? Examine trends in the Workforce and Business development areas of the Jobs Bill and the spending areas in the e-12 and higher education bills – are these efforts enough?

 Medium to Long Term

  1. Convene a meeting of key players in economic development in the district to assess if the following economic development infrastructure is supporting all constituents and establish baseline data of economic assets and outcomes for future assessment.
    1. Local workforce programs
    2. Local business development programs
    3. College and workforce readiness of high school and college students
    4. Internships and apprenticeship programs
    5. Major local businesses
    6. Local transportation projects
    7. Compile a comprehensive set of indicators on the economy of your district, ALANA assets and ask economic data offered by economic development region to be translated to district level data so the best possible data is available on your district.
  2. Develop a resource map of key policies and programs with contact information so that constituents can access district resources.
  3. Recruit a community advisory group reflective of all constituents so that policy leaders have local resources to draw upon when they think through policy choices and decisions. Make the names and contact information public so all constituents can provide input.
  4. Develop a district social innovation incubator where community groups can come together to develop local solutions to local challenges.

In all these efforts is available to assist – a non-partisan multiethnic collaborative working towards a vision for shared prosperity in Minnesota

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