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2007 Minnesota Statutes

This is a historical version of this statute chapter. Also view the most recent published version.

Chapter 116O. Minnesota Technology, Inc.

Chapter Sections
Section Headnote
116O.01CITATION.
116O.011NAME CHANGE.
116O.02DEFINITIONS.
116O.03CORPORATION; BOARD OF DIRECTORS; POWERS.
116O.04CORPORATE PERSONNEL.
116O.05POWERS OF CORPORATION.
116O.06FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE.
116O.07ON-SITE RESEARCH.
116O.071SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY.
116O.072TECHNOLOGY RESOURCE CENTERS.
116O.08REGIONAL RESEARCH INSTITUTES.
116O.09AGRICULTURAL UTILIZATION RESEARCH INSTITUTE.
116O.091PROJECT OUTREACH.
116O.092Repealed, 1993 c 363 s 8
116O.10RESEARCH ADVISORY BOARD.
116O.11RESEARCH GRANTS TO EDUCATION UNITS.
116O.115116O.115 SMALL BUSINESS GROWTH ACCELERATION PROGRAM.
116O.12MINNESOTA TECHNOLOGY ACCOUNT.
116O.122SEED CAPITAL FUND.
116O.13AGRICULTURAL PROJECT UTILIZATION ACCOUNT.
116O.14AUDITS.
116O.15ANNUAL REPORT.
116O.20DISSOLUTION.
116O.01 CITATION.
Sections 116O.01 to 116O.10 may be cited as the "Minnesota Technology, Inc. Act."
History: 1987 c 386 art 2 s 1; 1991 c 322 s 19
116O.011 NAME CHANGE.
The Greater Minnesota Corporation is renamed Minnesota Technology, Inc.
History: 1991 c 322 s 1
116O.02 DEFINITIONS.
    Subdivision 1. Applicability. The definitions in this section apply to sections 116O.01 to
116O.15.
    Subd. 1a. Account. "Account" means the Minnesota technology account.
    Subd. 2. Board. "Board" means the board of directors of Minnesota Technology, Inc.
    Subd. 3. Corporation. "Corporation" means Minnesota Technology, Inc.
    Subd. 4.[Renumbered subd 1a]
    Subd. 5. Greater Minnesota. "Greater Minnesota" means the area of Minnesota located
outside of the metropolitan area as defined in section 473.121, subdivision 2.
    Subd. 6. Technology-related assistance. "Technology-related assistance" means the transfer
of technological information and technologies to assist in the development and production of new
technology-related products or services or to increase the productivity or otherwise enhance the
production or delivery of existing products or services. "Technology-related assistance" includes
assistance in utilizing and developing processes and products that conserve energy.
History: 1987 c 386 art 2 s 2; 1989 c 335 art 1 s 168; art 4 s 106; 1991 c 322 s 19; 1993
c 163 art 2 s 2
116O.03 CORPORATION; BOARD OF DIRECTORS; POWERS.
    Subdivision 1. Establishment. Minnesota Technology, Inc. is established as a public
corporation of the state and is not subject to the laws governing a state agency except as provided
in this chapter. The business of the corporation must be conducted under the name "Minnesota
Technology, Inc."
    Subd. 1a. Purpose. The purpose of the corporation is to foster long-term economic growth
and job creation by stimulating innovation and the development of new products, services,
and production processes through energy conservation, technology transfer, applied research,
and financial assistance. The corporation's purpose is not to create new programs or services
but to build on the existing educational, business, and economic development infrastructure.
The primary focus of the corporation's activities must be to benefit new or existing small and
medium-sized businesses in greater Minnesota.
    Subd. 2. Board of directors. The corporation is governed by a board of directors. The
selection, membership terms, compensation, removal, and filling of vacancies of members of the
board are as provided in the corporation's bylaws.
    Subd. 2a.[Repealed, 1991 c 322 s 20]
    Subd. 3. Bylaws. The board of directors shall adopt bylaws necessary for the conduct of
the business of the corporation, consistent with this chapter. The corporation must publish the
bylaws and amendments to the bylaws in the State Register.
    Subd. 4. Places of business. The board shall locate and maintain the corporation's places of
business within the state.
    Subd. 5. Meetings and actions of the board. The board shall meet at least twice a
year and may hold additional meetings upon giving notice in accordance with the bylaws of
the corporation. Board meetings are subject to chapter 13D, except when data described in
subdivision 7 is discussed.
    Subd. 6. Closed meetings; recording. The board of directors may by a majority vote in a
public meeting decide to hold a closed meeting authorized under subdivision 5. The time and
place of the closed meeting must be announced at the public meeting. A written roll of members
present at the closed meeting must be made available to the public after the closed meeting. The
proceedings of a closed meeting must be tape recorded at the expense of the board and must
be preserved by the board for two years. The data on the tape is nonpublic data under section
13.02, subdivision 9.
    Subd. 7. Application and investigative data. The following data is classified as private data
with regard to data on individuals under section 13.02, subdivision 12, or as nonpublic data with
regard to data not on individuals under section 13.02, subdivision 9, whichever is applicable:
(1) financial data, statistics, and information furnished in connection with assistance or
proposed assistance under section 116O.06, including credit reports, financial statements,
statements of net worth, income tax returns, either personal or corporate, and any other business
and personal financial records; or
(2) security information, trade secret information, or labor relations information, as defined
in section 13.37, subdivision 1, disclosed to members of the corporation board or employees of
the corporation under section 116O.06.
    Subd. 8. Conflict of interest. A director, employee, or officer of the corporation may not
participate in or vote on a decision of the board relating to an organization in which the director
has either a direct or indirect financial interest.
    Subd. 9. Contributions to public officials; disclosure. Each director shall file a statement
with the Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board disclosing the nature, amount, date, and
recipient of any contribution made to a public official, political committee, political fund, or
political party, as defined in chapter 10A, that:
(1) was made within the four years preceding appointment to the Minnesota Technology,
Inc. board; and
(2) was subject to the reporting requirements of chapter 10A.
The statement must be updated annually during the director's term to reflect contributions
made to public officials during the appointed director's tenure.
    Subd. 10. Tort claims. The corporation is a state agency for purposes of section 3.736.
    Subd. 11. Statements of economic interest. Directors and officers of the corporation are
public officials for the purpose of section 10A.09, and must file statements of economic interest
with the Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board.
History: 1987 c 386 art 2 s 3; 1988 c 686 art 1 s 66; 1988 c 708 s 2; 1989 c 335 art 1 s
169,170,177; art 4 s 55,56; 1990 c 423 s 5; 1991 c 322 s 2,19; 1993 c 163 art 2 s 3; 1997 c 202
art 2 s 63; 1998 c 270 s 3; 1999 c 250 art 1 s 114; 2003 c 128 art 15 s 3
116O.04 CORPORATE PERSONNEL.
    Subdivision 1. Generally. The board shall appoint and set the compensation for a president,
who serves as chief executive officer of the corporation, and who may appoint subordinate
officers. The president's salary may not exceed 95 percent of the governor's salary. The board
may designate the president as its general agent. Subject to the control of the board, the president
shall employ employees, consultants, and agents the president considers necessary. The staff of
the corporation must include individuals knowledgeable in commercial and industrial financing,
energy conservation, research and development, economic development, and general fiscal affairs.
The board shall define the duties and designate the titles of the employees and agents.
    Subd. 2. Status of employees. (a) Employees, officers, and directors of the corporation and
programs governed by this chapter are not state employees, but are covered by section 3.736 and,
at the option of the board, may participate in the state retirement plan and the state deferred
compensation plan for employees in the unclassified service and an insurance plan administered
by the commissioner of employee relations.
(b) The board of Minnesota Project Innovation, Inc., may extend the health care insurance
benefits and coverage referenced in paragraph (a) to all of its employees.
    Subd. 3. Contributions to public officials; disclosure. The president shall file a statement
with the Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board disclosing the nature, amount, date, and
recipient of any contribution made to a public official which:
(1) was made within the four years preceding employment with the Minnesota Technology,
Inc. board; and
(2) was subject to the reporting requirements of chapter 10A.
The statement must be updated annually during the president's employment to reflect
contributions made to public officials during the president's tenure.
    Subd. 4. Personnel policies. (a) The corporation must adopt and periodically revise, if
necessary, an affirmative action plan similar to the affirmative action plan under section 43A.19,
subdivision 1
. The corporation is subject to the audit and reporting requirements under section
43A.191, subdivision 3.
(b) Employees of the corporation are subject to the prohibition of political activities and
required leave of absences under section 43A.32.
(c) Employees of the corporation are subject to the code of ethics requirements under
section 43A.38.
History: 1987 c 386 art 2 s 4; 1988 c 686 art 1 s 67; 1988 c 708 s 3; 1989 c 335 art 4 s 57;
1991 c 322 s 3,19; 1993 c 163 art 2 s 4; 1994 c 554 s 1; 1997 c 202 art 2 s 63
116O.05 POWERS OF CORPORATION.
    Subdivision 1. General corporate powers. (a) The corporation has the powers granted to a
business corporation by section 302A.161, subdivisions 3; 4; 5; 7; 8; 9; 11; 12; 13, except that the
corporation may not act as a general partner in any partnership; 14; 15; 16; 17; 18; and 22.
(b) The state is not liable for the obligations of the corporation.
(c) Section 302A.041 applies to this chapter and the corporation in the same manner that it
applies to business corporations established under chapter 302A.
(d) The corporation is a state agency for the purposes of the following accounting and
budgeting requirements:
(1) financial reports and other requirements under section 16A.06;
(2) the state budget system under sections 16A.095, 16A.10, and 16A.11;
(3) the state allotment and encumbrance, and accounting systems under sections 16A.14,
subdivisions 2, 3, 4, and 5
; and 16A.15, subdivisions 2 and 3; and
(4) indirect costs under section 16A.127.
    Subd. 2. Duties. (a) The primary duties of the corporation shall include:
(1) applied research; and
(2) technology transfer and early stage funding to small manufacturers.
(b) The corporation shall also:
(1) establish programs, activities, and policies that provide technology transfer and
applied research and development assistance to individuals, sole proprietorships, partnerships,
corporations, other business entities, and nonprofit organizations in the state that are primarily
new and existing small and medium-sized businesses in greater Minnesota;
(2) provide or provide for technology-related assistance to individuals, sole proprietorships,
partnerships, corporations, other business entities, and nonprofit organizations;
(3) provide financial assistance under section 116O.06 to assist the development of new
products, services, or production processes, to assist in energy conservation, or to assist in
bringing new products or services to the marketplace;
(4) provide or provide for research services including on-site research and testing of
production techniques and product quality;
(5) establish and operate regional research institutes as provided for in section 116O.08;
(6) make matching research grants for applied research and development to public and
private postsecondary education institutes as provided for in section 116O.11;
(7) enter into contracts for establishing formal relationships with public or private research
institutes or facilities;
(8) establish the Agricultural Utilization Research Institute under section 116O.09; and
(9) not duplicate existing services or activities provided by other public and private
organizations but shall build on the existing educational, business, and economic development
infrastructure.
    Subd. 3. Rules. The corporation must publish in the State Register any guidelines, policies,
or eligibility criteria prepared or adopted by the corporation for any of its financial or technology
transfer programs.
    Subd. 4. Supporting organizations. On making a determination that the public policies and
purposes of this chapter will be carried out to a greater extent than what might otherwise occur,
the board may cause to be created and may delegate, assign, or transfer to one or more entities,
including without limitation a corporation, nonprofit corporation, limited liability company,
partnership, or limited partnership, any or all rights and duties, assets and liabilities, powers or
authority created, authorized, or allowed under this chapter, including without limitation those
pertaining to the seed capital fund under section 116O.122, except to the extent specifically
limited by the Constitution or by law.
History: 1987 c 386 art 2 s 5; 1989 c 335 art 1 s 171; art 4 s 58; 1991 c 322 s 4; 1993 c 163
art 2 s 5; 1997 c 187 art 3 s 24; 1997 c 200 art 1 s 61
116O.06 FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE.
    Subdivision 1. Financial assistance; types. The corporation may provide financial
assistance to individuals, sole proprietorships, partnerships, corporations, other business entities,
or nonprofit organizations that have (1) received research assistance from a corporation research
facility or as a result of a research grant under section 116O.09, subdivision 4, or 116O.11;
or (2) received favorable review through a peer review process established under guidelines
developed under section 116O.10, subdivision 2. Financial assistance includes, but is not limited
to, loan guarantees or insurance, direct loans, and interest subsidy payments. The corporation
may participate in loans by purchasing from a lender up to 50 percent of each loan. Financial
assistance under this section is for assisting in the financing of a business's debt financing, energy
conservation, product development financing, or working capital needs.
    Subd. 2. Equity investments. The corporation may acquire an interest in a product or
a private business entity, except that the corporation may not acquire an interest in a business
entity engaged in a trade or industry whose profits are directly regulated by the commissioner
of commerce or the Public Utilities Commission. The corporation may enter into joint venture
agreements with other private corporations to promote economic development and job creation.
    Subd. 3. Minnesota Technology, Inc. Finance Authority. The board may designate the
Minnesota Technology, Inc. Finance Authority to provide financial assistance. The authority,
if established, consists of seven members, five of whom are members of the general public
appointed by the board with experience in business development, finance, banking, or venture
capital. The president of the corporation and one board member must be members of the authority.
Members of the authority shall serve without compensation but shall receive necessary and actual
expenses while engaged in the business of the corporation.
    Subd. 4. Standards. The board may establish minimum interest rates, security requirements,
restrictions on the amount of the corporation's financial participation in a project, and other
financial standards the board determines necessary to establish in providing financial assistance.
    Subd. 5. Preference. In providing financial assistance, the corporation must give preference
to individuals, sole proprietorships, partnerships, corporations, other business entities, or
organizations that are starting or expanding their operations in greater Minnesota.
History: 1987 c 386 art 2 s 6; 1988 c 686 art 1 s 68; 1989 c 335 art 1 s 172,173; 1990 c 426
art 2 s 1; 1991 c 322 s 19; 1993 c 163 art 2 s 6; 1Sp2001 c 4 art 6 s 18
116O.07 ON-SITE RESEARCH.
The corporation may construct, acquire, lease, own, or operate one or more on-site research
facilities in Minnesota.
History: 1987 c 386 art 2 s 7
116O.071 SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY.
    Subdivision 1. Duties. The corporation shall:
(1) prepare and deliver to the legislature every January 15 a science and technology annual
report that must contain:
(i) a list of the scientifically and technologically related research and development projects
and development activities funded by a grant or loan of state money that provides significant
promise for the development of job-creating businesses; and
(ii) an analysis of the efficacy and completeness of a decentralized research peer review
process, with special emphasis on whether or not scientifically and technologically related
research and development projects in Minnesota have resulted or will result in creating
scientifically and technologically related jobs;
(2) keep a current roster of technology intensive businesses in the state;
(3) collect and disseminate information on financial, technical, marketing, management,
and other services available to technology intensive small and emerging businesses, including
potential sources of debt and equity capital;
(4) review the technological development potential of various regions of the state and
cooperate with and make recommendations to the legislature, state agencies, local governments,
local technology development agencies, the federal government, private businesses, and
individuals for the realization of the development potential; and
(5) sponsor and conduct conferences and studies, collect and disseminate information,
and issue periodic reports relating to scientifically and technologically related research and
development and education in the state, and represent the state at appropriate interstate and
national conferences.
    Subd. 2. Peer review plans. A state agency, board, commission, authority, institution,
or other entity that allocates state money by a grant, loan, or contract for scientifically and
technologically related research shall establish a peer review system to evaluate the research.
The corporation shall recommend guidelines for establishing effective peer review. An agency,
board, commission, authority, or institution that funds scientifically and technologically related
research shall, at least biennially, present to the corporation or to ad hoc committees a review and
evaluation of the peer review process used in that organization.
    Subd. 3. Authority to perform requested evaluations. The governor, speaker of the
house of representatives, house of representatives minority leader, senate majority leader, senate
minority leader, chair of the house of representatives Ways and Means Committee, chair of the
senate Finance Committee, director, or a member of the legislature considering the introduction or
approval of legislation containing funding for scientifically and technologically related research
and development may request the corporation to evaluate a loan or grant made or to be made
or the proposed legislation for funding scientifically and technologically related research and
development to determine (1) whether it complies with the guidelines required by subdivision
1, clause (1), item (ii); (2) whether it is technically feasible; and (3) for development proposals,
whether the proposal appears to have the potential for economic development. Ad hoc committees
may be appointed by the corporation.
History: 1991 c 322 s 5; 2004 c 284 art 2 s 13
116O.072 TECHNOLOGY RESOURCE CENTERS.
The corporation must provide funding for technology resource centers so as to maintain a
geographic balance of services throughout Minnesota.
History: 1991 c 322 s 17
116O.08 REGIONAL RESEARCH INSTITUTES.
    Subdivision 1. Establishment. The board may establish up to four regional research
institutes in greater Minnesota. Each institute shall be located at or near a postsecondary education
institution whose primary focus is comparable to the mission of the institute.
    Subd. 2. Purpose. The purpose of the institutes is to provide applied research and
development services to individuals, businesses, or organizations for the purposes of developing
the region's economy through the utilization of the region's resources and the development of
technology. Research and development services may include energy conservation consultations,
on-site research, product development grants, testing of production techniques and product
quality and feasibility studies.
    Subd. 3. Institute administration; staff. The board shall appoint a director to manage the
operation of the institute. The director may employ employees and enter into contracts with
postsecondary education governing boards for research services of postsecondary institution
staff, facilities, or equipment.
    Subd. 4. Research contracts. The director of each institute may enter into contracts with
individuals, businesses, or organizations to provide research and development assistance at
institute facilities or at other sites the director determines appropriate. The board shall establish
the overall contract guidelines.
    Subd. 5. Product development grants. The director of each institute may provide product
development grants to those individuals, businesses, or for-profit or nonprofit organizations
that, without financial assistance, would not be able to undertake the development of a product
or technology-related service. The board shall establish eligibility criteria and the terms of the
product development grants.
    Subd. 6. Institute advisory board. A regional research institute advisory board may
be appointed by the board. The advisory board may consist of representatives of public
postsecondary institutions in the area surrounding the institute, business owners, and members of
the general public. Terms and removal of members must be set by the board and the members
of each advisory board shall serve without compensation but shall receive their necessary and
actual expenses. The purpose of the advisory board is to provide the institute director assistance
in operating the institute, review contract proposals and provide recommendations relating to
product development grants.
    Subd. 7. Designated research institute. The Agricultural Utilization Research Institute
established in section 116O.09 is designated as one of the regional research institutes authorized
under this section.
History: 1987 c 386 art 2 s 8; 1989 c 335 art 1 s 174; 1993 c 163 art 2 s 7
116O.09 AGRICULTURAL UTILIZATION RESEARCH INSTITUTE.
    Subdivision 1. Establishment. The Agricultural Utilization Research Institute is established
as a nonprofit corporation under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as
amended. The Agricultural Utilization Research Institute shall promote the establishment of
new products and product uses and the expansion of existing markets for the state's agricultural
commodities and products, including direct financial and technical assistance for Minnesota
entrepreneurs. The institute must establish or maintain facilities and work with private and public
entities to leverage the resources available to achieve maximum results for Minnesota agriculture.
    Subd. 1a. Board of directors. The board of directors of the Agricultural Utilization Research
Institute is comprised of:
(1) the chairs of the senate and the house of representatives standing committees with
jurisdiction over agriculture finance or the chair's designee;
(2) two representatives of statewide farm organizations;
(3) two representatives of agribusiness; and
(4) three representatives of the commodity promotion councils.
    Subd. 2. Duties. (a) In addition to the duties and powers assigned to the institutes in section
116O.08, the Agricultural Utilization Research Institute shall:
    (1) identify development opportunities for agricultural products;
    (2) implement a program that identifies techniques to meet those opportunities;
    (3) monitor and coordinate research among the public and private organizations and
individuals specifically addressing procedures to transfer new technology to businesses, farmers,
and individuals;
    (4) provide research grants to public and private educational institutions and other
organizations that are undertaking basic and applied research to promote the development
of emerging agricultural industries;
    (5) assist organizations and individuals with market analysis and product marketing
implementations;
    (6) to the extent possible earn and receive revenue from contracts, patents, licenses, royalties,
grants, fees-for-service, and memberships;
    (7) work with the Department of Agriculture, the United States Department of Agriculture,
the Department of Employment and Economic Development, and other agencies to maximize
marketing opportunities locally, nationally, and internationally; and
    (8) leverage available funds from federal, state, and private sources to develop new markets
and value added opportunities for Minnesota agricultural products.
    (b) The Agricultural Utilization Research Institute board of directors shall have the sole
approval authority for establishing agricultural utilization research priorities, requests for
proposals to meet those priorities, awarding of grants, hiring and direction of personnel, and
other expenditures of funds consistent with the adopted and approved mission and goals of the
Agricultural Utilization Research Institute. The actions and expenditures of the Agricultural
Utilization Research Institute are subject to audit. The institute shall annually report by February 1
to the senate and house of representatives standing committees with jurisdiction over agricultural
policy and funding. The report must list projects initiated, progress on projects, and financial
information relating to expenditures, income from other sources, and other information to allow
the committees to evaluate the effectiveness of the institute's activities.
    (c) The Agricultural Utilization Research Institute shall convene a Renewable Energy
Roundtable, the purpose of which shall be to further the state's leadership on bioenergy issues.
    (i) The Renewable Energy Roundtable shall consist of one representative appointed by the
commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Agriculture, one appointed by the commissioner of
the Minnesota Department of Commerce, one appointed by the chancellor of the Minnesota State
Colleges and Universities, and one appointed by the president of the University of Minnesota.
The appointees must have expertise relevant to bioenergy.
    (ii) The board shall oversee the activities and shall provide staff to assist the Renewable
Energy Roundtable.
    (iii) The Renewable Energy Roundtable will engage professionals and experts from private,
government, academic, and nonprofit entities across the state to identify bioenergy opportunities
and collaborate with a broad group of interested parties to identify future alternative courses of
action the state can take to sustain a long-term competitive position in renewable energy through
the year 2025. The Renewable Energy Roundtable will consult, advise, and review projects and
initiatives funded by the state as directed by the administration and the legislature.
    Subd. 3. Staff. The board of directors shall hire staff for the Agricultural Utilization
Research Institute. Persons employed by the Agricultural Utilization Research Institute are not
state employees and may participate in state retirement, deferred compensation, insurance, or
other plans that apply to state employees generally and are subject to regulation by the state
Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board.
    Subd. 4. Agricultural research grants. The institute may make matching grants for
agricultural product utilization research to the University of Minnesota, the Minnesota State
Colleges and Universities, a Minnesota private college or university, a private corporation, or
a person. Grants may be matched from private sources, including farm commodity groups and
farm organizations.
    Subd. 5. Advisory board. A 26-member advisory board may be established to identify
priorities for the Agricultural Utilization Research Institute. Members of the advisory board
are appointed by the board. The advisory board consists of: the chair of the Minnesota House
of Representatives Agricultural Committee; the chair of the Minnesota Senate Agricultural
Committee; a representative from each of the ten largest agricultural-related businesses in the
state as determined by the corporation; a member from each of the appropriate trade organizations
representing producers of beef cattle, dairy, corn, soybeans, pork, wheat, turkey, barley, wild rice,
edible beans, eggs, and potatoes; a member of the Farmers's Union; and a member of the Farm
Bureau. Terms and removal of members must be set by the board and members of the advisory
board serve without compensation but shall receive their necessary and actual expenses.
The advisory board shall annually provide a list of priorities and suggested research and
marketing studies that should be performed by the Agricultural Utilization Research Institute.
    Subd. 6. Bylaws. The board of directors shall adopt bylaws necessary for the conduct of the
business of the institute consistent with this section. The corporation must publish bylaws and
amendments to the bylaws in the State Register.
    Subd. 7. Place of business. The board of directors shall locate and maintain the institute's
place of business within the state.
    Subd. 8. Chair. The board of directors shall annually elect from among its members a chair
and other officers necessary for the performance of its duties.
    Subd. 9. Meetings. The board of directors shall meet at least twice each year and may hold
additional meetings upon giving notice in accordance with the bylaws of the institute. Board
meetings are subject to chapter 13D, except subdivision 1b as it pertains to financial information,
business plans, income and expense projections, customer lists, market and feasibility studies, and
trade secret information as defined by section 13.37, subdivision 1, paragraph (b).
    Subd. 10. Conflict of interest. A director, employee, or officer of the institute may not
participate in or vote on a decision of the board relating to an organization in which the director
has either a direct or indirect financial interest.
    Subd. 11. No benefit to private individuals or corporations. This institute shall not afford
pecuniary gain, incidental or otherwise, to any private individual, firm, or corporation, except the
payment of reasonable fees for goods and services provided and approved in accordance with the
bylaws of the corporation. No part of the net income or net earnings of the institute shall, directly
or indirectly, be distributable to or otherwise inure to the benefit of any individual.
    Subd. 12. Funds. The institute may accept and use gifts, grants, or contributions from any
source. Unless otherwise restricted by the terms of a gift or bequest, the board may sell, exchange,
or otherwise dispose of and invest or reinvest the money, securities, or other property given
or bequested to it. The principal of these funds, the income from them, and all other revenues
received by it from any nonstate source must be placed in the depositories the board determines
and is subject to expenditure for the board's purposes. Expenditures of more than $25,000 must be
approved by the full board.
    Subd. 13. Accounts; audits. The institute may establish funds and accounts that it finds
convenient. The board shall provide for and pay the cost of an independent annual audit of its
official books and records by the legislative auditor subject to sections 3.971 and 3.972. A copy of
this audit shall be filed with the secretary of state.
For purposes of this section, "institute" means the Agricultural Utilization Research Institute
established under this section and "board of directors" means the board of directors of the
Agricultural Utilization Research Institute.
History: 1987 c 258 s 12; 1987 c 386 art 2 s 9; 1989 c 246 s 2; 1989 c 350 art 7 s 1-3;
1991 c 322 s 6-14,19; 1996 c 395 s 18; 1997 c 202 art 2 s 63; 1997 c 216 s 120-122; 1Sp2001
c 2 s 139; 2003 c 128 art 3 s 41-43; 1Sp2003 c 4 s 1; 1Sp2003 c 23 s 4; 1Sp2005 c 1 art 1
s 79; 2007 c 45 art 1 s 57
116O.091 PROJECT OUTREACH.
    Subdivision 1. Establishment; purpose. Project Outreach is established. The purpose of
the project is to (i) facilitate the transfer of technology and scientific advice from the University
of Minnesota and other institutions to businesses in the state that may make economic use of
the information; and (ii) to assist small and medium-sized businesses in finding technical and
financial assistance providers that meet their needs.
    Subd. 2.[Repealed by amendment, 1993 c 363 s 4]
    Subd. 3.[Repealed by amendment, 1993 c 363 s 4]
    Subd. 4. Duties. The corporation shall:
(1) establish a technology assistance system to assist business, specifically new and other
small and medium-sized businesses across the state, in gaining access to technical information,
including but not limited to technologies developed by the University of Minnesota and other
higher education systems and their personnel; and in gaining access to technology-related federal
programs;
(2) establish and maintain a database or databases that provide information for the technology
assistance system under clause (1) that may include information on (i) science and technology
experts, (ii) technical research projects underway at public higher education institutions in the
state, (iii) licensable technology available at public higher education institutions in the state, (iv)
access to federal technology and technical information, and (v) access to technical and business
education;
(3) provide literature search and document retrieval services through the technology
assistance system under clause (1);
(4) establish and continually update a business assistance referral system which includes a
database of economic development related technical assistance and financial assistance providers
or programs sponsored by federal agencies, state agencies, educational institutions, chambers
of commerce, civic organizations, community development groups, local governments, private
industry associations, and other organizations and individuals that provide assistance;
(5) establish and maintain or contract for the establishment of a toll-free telephone number
operated by trained staff familiar with the business assistance referral system and database;
(6) maintain a marketing and outreach program informing persons interested in starting,
operating, or expanding small business and assistance providers of the technology assistance
system and the business assistance referral system;
(7) establish, where possible, regional bases and referral systems for the business assistance
referral system, and a system to reference experts in the state university system; and
(8) make available the database of the business assistance referral system to the legislature,
the Department of Employment and Economic Development, and other state agencies for
evaluating the effectiveness and efficiency of the provision of economic development-related
technical and financial assistance in the state.
    Subd. 5. State agency cooperation. The corporation shall consult with the Department of
Employment and Economic Development in the development and marketing of the business
assistance referral system. The corporation shall assist the Department of Employment and
Economic Development in establishing an evaluation mechanism for the business assistance
referral system which at least includes a process for determining the effectiveness of the economic
development related technical or financial assistance provider's service in meeting the needs of
the client referred to the provider.
    Subd. 6. Charges to clients. (a) The corporation may charge reasonable fees to a client
for the technology assistance system. The corporation shall establish a fee structure for the
technology assistance system and may base the fee structure on the type of service provided, the
size of the client based on number of employees or amount of annual revenues, the length of time
the client has been in operation, and other criteria.
(b) The corporation shall provide the business assistance referral system at no cost to the
client and may not charge the client a fee or any other compensation for the referral to a provider.
This subdivision does not prohibit the technical or financial assistance provider from charging
a fee or other compensation to a client that has been referred to the provider by the business
assistance referral system.
    Subd. 7.[Repealed, 2007 c 13 art 2 s 8; 2007 c 133 art 2 s 13]
    Subd. 8.[Repealed by amendment, 1993 c 363 s 4]
    Subd. 9.[Repealed by amendment, 1993 c 363 s 4]
History: 1989 c 304 s 137; 1989 c 335 art 1 s 143; 1990 c 423 s 1-3; 1991 c 322 s 19; 1993
c 363 s 4; 2003 c 128 art 15 s 4; 1Sp2003 c 4 s 1
116O.092 [Repealed, 1993 c 363 s 8]
116O.10 RESEARCH ADVISORY BOARD.
    Subdivision 1. Establishment. The board shall establish a Research Advisory Board to
provide advisory assistance to the board and the research institutes. The Research Advisory Board
consists of seven members appointed by the board. Terms and removal of members must be set by
the board and Research Advisory Board members shall serve without compensation but shall
receive their necessary and actual expenses while engaged in the business of the corporation.
The membership of the advisory board must have representatives that are experienced or have
expertise in technology, applied research, agriculture, business, labor, or productivity.
    Subd. 2. Duties. The Research Advisory Board has the following duties and responsibilities:
(1) identify specific areas where research and development will contribute to the productivity
of the state's businesses and farms.
(2) determine specific areas where financial assistance for research and development could
assist the development of businesses and create new employment opportunities.
(3) advise the board in the development and establishment of the regional research institutes
and the research grants to public and private postsecondary education institutions.
(4) advise public and private postsecondary education institutions on the research and
development needs of businesses in Minnesota.
(5) review the applications and make recommendations to the board for research grants to
public and private postsecondary education institutions.
(6) develop guidelines for an effective peer review process for evaluating scientifically or
technologically related financial assistance.
History: 1987 c 386 art 2 s 10
116O.11 RESEARCH GRANTS TO EDUCATION UNITS.
The board may make matching grants to public and private postsecondary education
institutions or units within those institutions, including the Natural Resource Research Institute,
for applied research and development. Grants are to be made for projects which will likely result
in assisting economic and employment development in greater Minnesota. The corporation
board shall not give final approval to a research grant until it has received an evaluation and
recommendation from the Research Advisory Board established in section 116O.10.
History: 1987 c 384 art 3 s 20; 1987 c 386 art 2 s 11
116O.115 SMALL BUSINESS GROWTH ACCELERATION PROGRAM.
    Subdivision 1. Establishment; purpose. The small business growth acceleration program is
established. The purpose of the program is to (1) help qualified companies implement technology
and business improvements; and (2) bridge the gap between standard market pricing for
technology and business improvements and what qualified companies can afford to pay.
    Subd. 2. Qualified company. A company is qualified to receive assistance under the small
business growth acceleration program if it is a manufacturing company or a manufacturing-related
service company that employs 100 or fewer full-time equivalent employees.
    Subd. 3. Applications for assistance. A company seeking assistance under the small
business growth acceleration program must file an application according to the requirements
of the corporation. A company's application for small business growth acceleration program
assistance must include documentation of the company's overall plan for technology and business
improvement and prioritize the components of the overall plan. The application must also
document the company's need for small business growth acceleration program funds in order to
carry forward the highest priority components of the plan.
    Subd. 4. Fund awards; use of funds. (a) The corporation shall establish procedures for
determining which applicants for assistance under the small business growth acceleration program
will receive program funding. Funding shall be awarded only to accelerate a qualified company's
adoption of needed technology or business improvements when the corporation concludes that it
is unlikely the improvements could be accomplished in any other way.
    (b) The maximum amount of funds awarded to a qualified company under the small business
growth acceleration program for a particular project must not exceed 50 percent of the total cost
of a project and must not under any circumstances exceed $25,000 during a calendar year. The
corporation shall not award to a qualified company small business growth acceleration program
funds in excess of $50,000 per year.
    (c) Any funds awarded to a qualified company under the small business growth acceleration
program must be used for business services and products that will enhance the operation of the
company. These business services and products must come either directly from the corporation
or from a network of expert providers identified and approved by the corporation. No company
receiving small business growth acceleration program funds may use the funds for refinancing,
overhead costs, new construction, renovation, equipment, or computer hardware.
    (d) Any funds awarded must be disbursed to the qualified company as reimbursement
documented according to requirements of the corporation.
    Subd. 5. Service agreements. The corporation shall enter a written service agreement with
each company awarded funds under the small business growth acceleration program. Each service
agreement shall clearly articulate the company's need for service, state the cost of the service,
identify who will provide the service, and define the scope of the service that will be provided.
The service agreement must also include an estimate of the financial impact of the service on
the company and require the company to report the actual financial impact of the service to the
corporation 24 months after the service is provided.
    Subd. 6. Reporting. The corporation shall report annually to the legislative committees with
fiscal jurisdiction over the Department of Employment and Economic Development:
    (1) the funds awarded under the small business growth acceleration program during the
past 12 months;
    (2) the estimated financial impact of the funds awarded to each company receiving service
under the program; and
    (3) the actual financial impact of funds awarded during the past 24 months.
History: 2007 c 135 art 2 s 18
116O.12 MINNESOTA TECHNOLOGY ACCOUNT.
The Minnesota technology account is in the special revenue fund. Money in the account
not needed for the immediate purposes of the corporation may be invested by the State Board of
Investment in any way authorized by section 11A.24. Money in the account is appropriated to the
corporation to be used as provided in this chapter.
History: 1987 c 386 art 2 s 12; 1988 c 690 art 2 s 3; 1989 c 335 art 4 s 59; 1990 c 610 art 1
s 43; 1991 c 322 s 19; 2003 c 128 art 15 s 5
116O.122 SEED CAPITAL FUND.
    Subdivision 1. Establishment. The corporation shall, in consultation with private venture
and seed capital companies and other public and private organizations as appropriate, implement
a centrally managed seed capital fund to invest in early stage companies and small companies
in Minnesota through equity or equity-type investments. The seed capital fund may receive
contributions from the corporation, as well as from local, state, or federal government, private
foundations, or other sources. Total investments by the seed capital fund in seven-county
metropolitan area based companies must not exceed 20 percent of the total capitalization
appropriated by the legislature or provided by the corporation. Investments which contribute to
the 20 percent metropolitan area limitation are those which will primarily enhance the operations
of a metropolitan based facility. Investments that benefit a Greater Minnesota facility of a
metropolitan based company are not subject to the limitation. Investments by the seed capital fund
must be matched by other sources of capital at a ratio to be determined by the corporation. The
seed capital fund shall identify sources of technical, management, and marketing assistance for
companies funded by the seed capital program and make appropriate referrals. The seed capital
fund shall establish a procedure for liquidating private investments.
    Subd. 2. Regional seed capital report. By February 15, the board shall submit to the
legislature and governor an annual report on the activities of the seed capital program.
History: 1991 c 295 s 1; 1997 c 200 art 1 s 62
116O.13 AGRICULTURAL PROJECT UTILIZATION ACCOUNT.
The agricultural project utilization account is an account in the special revenue fund.
Money in the account is appropriated to the Agricultural Utilization Research Institute to be
used for agricultural research grants as provided in section 116O.09, subdivision 4, and for the
Agricultural Utilization Research Institute.
History: 1987 c 386 art 2 s 13; 1989 c 335 art 4 s 60
116O.14 AUDITS.
The corporation board shall contract with a certified public accounting firm to do a financial
and compliance audit of the corporation and any subsidiary annually in accordance with generally
accepted accounting standards. A copy of this audit must be submitted to the chairs of the senate
Finance and Economic Development and Housing Committees, and the house Appropriations and
Economic Development Committees.
The corporation is subject to the auditing requirements under sections 3.971 and 3.972.
History: 1987 c 386 art 2 s 14; 1989 c 335 art 1 s 175
116O.15 ANNUAL REPORT.
The board shall submit a report to the chairs of the senate Economic Development and
Housing and the house Economic Development Committees of the legislature and the governor
on the activities of the corporation by February 1 of each year. A copy of the report shall also
be provided to the president of the University of Minnesota. The report must include at least
the following:
(1) a description of each of the programs that the corporation has provided or undertaken
at some time during the previous year. The description of each program must describe (i)
the statement of purpose for the program, (ii) the administration of the program including the
activities the corporation was responsible for and the responsibilities that other organizations
had in administering the program, (iii) the results of the program including how the results
were measured, (iv) the expenses of the program paid by the corporation, and (v) the source of
corporate and noncorporate funding for the program;
(2) an identification of the sources of funding in the previous year for the corporation and
its programs including federal, state and local government, foundations, gifts, donations, fees,
and all other sources;
(3) a description of the distribution of all money spent by the corporation in the previous
year including an identification of the total expenditures, other than corporate administrative
expenditures, by sector of the economy;
(4) a description of the administrative expenses of the corporation during the previous year;
(5) a listing of the assets and liabilities of the corporation at the end of the previous fiscal year;
(6) a list and description of each grant awarded by the corporation during the previous year;
(7) a description of any changes made to the operational plan during the previous year; and
(8) a description of any newly adopted or significant changes to bylaws, programmatic
or administrative guidelines, policies, rules, or eligibility criteria for programs created or
administered by the corporation during the previous year.
Reports must be made to the legislature as required by section 3.195.
History: 1987 c 386 art 2 s 15; 1989 c 335 art 1 s 176; 1993 c 363 s 5
116O.20 DISSOLUTION.
In the event of dissolution of Minnesota Technology, Inc. for any reason, the state of
Minnesota, upon action by the governor, and after consultation with the Legislative Advisory
Commission, may require the liquidation of all holdings and investments and the return of the
proceeds of that liquidation and any wholly-owned assets of the corporation to the state, in
exchange for the assumption of all outstanding obligations of the corporation.
If the corporation is dissolved, or certain of its functions transferred to another entity, the
assets and liabilities and property associated with the dissolved or transferred functions must
return to the state or to the entity designated by laws.
History: 1987 c 386 art 2 s 20; 1991 c 322 s 19

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