Four Minnesota Businesses to Receive State Money for Job Creation
Elk River-based Distinctive Iron was among the awardees. (Photo via Distinctive Iron's Facebook page)

Four Minnesota Businesses to Receive State Money for Job Creation

To obtain the money, the companies first need to meet certain hiring goals and capital investment requirements.

Four Minnesota businesses will receive thousands of dollars in state funding once they make good on their hiring goals and capital investment promises.

The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) on Tuesday said it will distribute more than $400,000 as part of its Job Creation Fund. The agency expects the companies to create a total of 35 new jobs over the next three years. Companies are also obligated to fulfill certain capital investment targets.

Minnesota’s Job Creation Fund was launched in 2014. Businesses first need to meet hiring and capital investment goals before they receive the funds.

DEED gave the awards to:

  • Central McGowan Inc. in St. Cloud ($120,000),
  • Distinctive Iron in Elk River ($42,474),
  • P.A. SpA in Bloomington ($110,619), and
  • Whirltronics Inc. in Buffalo ($139,422).

Over the next two years, Central McGowan is expected to spend a total of $1.6 million to expand its existing 12,000-square-foot automation center. The company says it will add eight new jobs with an average wage of $26.58 per hour.

Last month, Central McGowan acquired Jasons Beverage Carbonation Co., a St. Paul-based dry ice and bulk carbon-dioxide supplier. 

Distinctive Iron, meanwhile, plans to complete a $1.5 million project to purchase and renovate an existing building site. The company will also create five jobs.

For its part, P.A. SpA will expand into a 65,000-square-foot building in Bloomington and create 12 jobs. In total, the project will cost $5.5 million. Whirltronics, which manufactures rotary lawn mower blades, plans to expand its existing facility and create 10 jobs the next two years. That project will cost about $3.9 million.

To qualify for the Job Creation Funding, business need to invest at least $500,000 in real property improvements within one year of being designated the award. They’ll also need to create at least 10 new full-time permanent jobs within two years of the award designation, while maintaining existing employment numbers.

The requirements are lower if at least 51 percent of the business is cumulatively owned by minorities, veterans, women, or people with disabilities, or if the business is located in Greater Minnesota. Those businesses need to invest at least $250,000 within one year and create five new full-time permanent jobs within two years. 

Since 2014, the Job Creation Fund has led to 1,630 new jobs, according to DEED.