Updated 5/7/2019: The full report has finally been released.
Updated 3/21/2019: Public Recod Media (PRM) has appealed the court ruling from January, challenging the courts interpretation of the DPA & whether DEED can withhold public information by allowing Greater MSP to store on their server.
A long list of 3rd parties have also since filed to appear as amicus curiae – essentially supporting PRM’s position in the context of broader DPA ramifications – without officially joining the lawsuit:
Center of the American Experiment, Freedom Foundation of Minnesota, Saint Paul STRONG, The Associated Press, Gannett Co., Inc., Gray Television Group, Inc., the Minnesota Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, the Minnesota Coalition on Government Information, Minnesota Public Radio, the St. Paul Pioneer Press, and TEGNA Inc., Tony Webster.
Updated 8/13/2018: PRM has added GreaterMSP to an amended lawsuit on multiple counts while DEED still maintains it “never collected, received, maintained or disseminated the unsuccessful proposal that is the subject of the complaint.”
“Minnesotan’s deserve to know…” Ehling told Minnesota Lawyer in a recent article.
Update 6/27: PRM has filed a lawsuit against DEED today on multiple counts, asserting that the agency’s conduct violates the Minnesota Government Data Practices Act Stat. § 13.03, etc. Extended coverage: MPR, WCCO, Pioneer Press
Updated 3/20: The Minneapolis-St. Paul Business Journal reports (paywall) on Bloomington’s pitch, which boils down to 141 acres of land, a new Blue Line light rail station and a $400 million subsidy.
Updated 3/18: The Pioneer Press reiterates that Greater MSP did the bidding (with Boston Consulting Group) on behalf of the state and other groups:
“From early on, Greater MSP was established as the lead, and groups wanting to pitch their sites were funneled through them. No one appeared to buck that order, at least not in the records available.”
Updated 2/27: Scott County (Shakopee, Elko New Market) releases their respective bids per PRM request; GreaterMSP is still holding out on second legal request made on 2/6.
Updated 2/7/2018: PRM submits legal request directly to DEED “partner” Greater MSP
Updated 12/9 1130 am CST: DEED has replied to PRMs request with two documents:
- A document dated 12/16 signed by DEED Comissioner Shawntera Hardy indicates an initial offer of between $3-$5m of state aid, which is consistent with current statutory limits. Also mentioned are special examples of incentive packages previously authorized by the Minnesota Legislature. Positioned as possibilities these include: tax exemptions, expanded awards, and infrastructure support. The “Unique public-private partnerships” section highlights such examples as Rochester’s Destination Medical Center and Minneapolis’ US Bank Stadium, which combined received over a billion dollars in Minnesota taxypayer funding.
- A cover letter for the actual proposal also dated October 16th and signed by Mark Dayton.
If the release of these two documents smells like red herring, you might be wondering: where is the actual proposal?
DEED doesn’t have that information, they say, because they didn’t actually submit it. Greater MSP did, according to DEED spokesperson Shane Delaney.
“These are the only documents DEED possesses that are responsive to this request,” he told PRM via email, adding:
“Minnesota’s complete proposal to the Amazon HQ2 RFP was submitted by Greater MSP, an organization that partnered with DEED on this project. After assessing the requirements of the Amazon RFP and the deadline to respond, it was clear that DEED and Greater MSP would need to perform duties that best fit each organization’s strengths. Greater MSP took on the task of compiling Minnesota’s response and submitting it to Amazon. Your additional request of supporting documentation related to this project is still pending. We will continue to process that portion of your request unless I hear otherwise from you.”
Originally published 10/19 @2:24pm: Local transparency in gov nonprofit Public Record Media (PRM) today submitted an official legal request to Minnesota’s Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) surrounding the complete details of a proposal submitted to Amazon for HQ2 on behalf of Minnesota.
Citing Minnesota statutes under Chapter 13, aka Minnesota Government Data Privacy Act, PRM is first and foremost seeking the full release of ‘any and all data submitted by the state to Amazon in response to HQ2 RFP’ and vice-versa, from Amazon to the state pertaining to the RFP.
Furthermore, the request also includes a third component that covers related communications between Greater MSP, the unelected quasi public/private economic development group that’s been intimately involved with the DEED + Amazon proposal.
“We have received PRM’s request and will process it through our regular legal channels,” DEED spokesperson Shane Delaney says of receipt.