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State Agency Commissioners Visit Southeast Minnesota

September 19, 2017 07:24 PM

(ABC 6 News) -- Multiple state agency commissioners are in southeast Minnesota this week to focus on supporting local businesses.

One of their stops included a tour at ENVIROLASTECH in St. Charles on Tuesday.

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Some of the commissioners helped launch the facility that now helps repurpose Mayo Clinic’s plastic.

"Mayo clinic has an enormous supply of plastic that they sterilized but then it use to go to a land fill," said ENVIROLASTECH CEO Jeff Mintz.  

Mintz says by keeping recyclables out of landfill, his company is helping the environment.

"ENVIROLASTECH produces alternative lumber materials, alternative building materials from post-consumer, recycled waste," said Mintz.

The company has thrived thanks in part to funds and support it has received from state agencies represented by commissioners who were visiting. 

“Really focus initially on how do we ease the entry points for businesses that have complex projects that have to work with multiple agencies. Really figuring out a better way to help them navigate,” said DEED Commissioner Shawntera Hardy.

The commissioners on wheels tour is focusing on issues and investments related to innovation, workforce, manufacturing, energy and food production.

They are also learning lessons from a business that has already created a product like no other.

"That's excitement, that’s exciting that people are getting employed. Which is the other part of my agency. Getting access to economic opportunities but to be able to have a strong business that can have a long future in the community is pretty exciting,” said Hardy.

"So it means a lot of economic boom for the city St. Charles, Olmsted and Winona Counties."

The partnership also possibly prompting Mayo's recycled products to one day help build the buildings of the future.

During the three-day bus tour, commissioners will also visit Rochester, Austin, Winona and Owatonna.

They will then take the feedback, debrief and figure out if they need to change policies or programs.


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