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ST. PAUL-There are some 60 development projects now underway and more than 130 other projects are at some stage of the review process the first seven months of the state of Minnesota’s Job Opportunity Building Zone. Since January, a diverse array of start-up companies and expanding or relocating businesses have signed agreements creating 60 development projects, promising to create more than 1,000 jobs and make close to $100 million in new capital investments in 39 Minnesota communities.

“The JOB Zones have exceeded our expectations,” says Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty. Companies that qualify for the tax relief offered by the JOBZ program are required to sign a business subsidy agreement in which they pledge to create new jobs and make new investments in their communities. These job creation and capital investment numbers represent the minimum threshold that the companies must meet in order to qualify for JOBZ benefits.

Created by the 2003 legislature at the request of Pawlenty, JOBZ is the state’s marquee economic development stimulus program. The program offers a variety of local and state tax incentives to companies that start up, expand or relocate in Greater Minnesota. The JOBZ program identifies 10 zones encompassing 329 communities throughout the state.

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