Gov. Mark Dayton and DFL legislative leaders traveled to Rochester on Wednesday to help locals celebrate the Mayo Clinic’s Destination Medical Center proposal, the Post Bulletin reports.
Minnesota lawmakers approved a $585 million funding package for public infrastructure upgrades that will help support the health-care giant's ambitious 20-year expansion plan.
The Star Tribune says the state will chip in $372 million over the next 27 years, but only after Mayo, Rochester and Olmsted County make investments of their own.
In January, Mayo pledged to invest $3.5 billion in capital improvements over the next two decades to expand its Rochester campus and another $2 billion in private investments.
During Wednesday's celebration, Dayton defended Mayo's President and CEO Dr. John Noseworthy who was criticized for saying “there are 49 states that would like us to invest in them. That’s the truth.”
"You got criticized unfairly for this, Dr. Noseworthy. I get criticized by the Legislature every day. But there are 49 other states that would really love to have this," Dayton said.
"It's a great day to be a Minnesotan, a great day to call Rochester our home," Noseworthy added, the newspaper reports.. "Based on this legislation, Mayo Clinic is prepared to invest in Minnesota, where we've been for 149 years, and now we'll be even stronger, for generations to come."
"Forty-five thousand jobs mean a lot, particularly in an economy that remains relatively fragile. It was the right project at the right time," John Wade, President and CEO of the Rochester Area Chamber of Commerce, told KARE 11.