The medical device industry got another high-profile advocate Monday -- Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty -- in opposing a new tax proposed in the influential Senate Finance Committee bill. The committee, led by Democrat Sen. Max Baucus of Montana, calls for a $4 billion a year tax on devicemakers to help pay for health care reform. On Monday, Pawlenty sent a strongly worded letter to Minnesota Sens. Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken, arguing that the new tax would place a “significant and damaging burden” on the industry, which directly employs 60,000 Minnesotans.
Minnesota is home to many of the world's leaders in the design and manufacture of life-saving medical devices including Medtronic, Boston Scientific, 3M, and St. Jude. Together these companies directly employ 60,000 Minnesotans, with an additional 200,000 employed by hundreds of other companies that are vital to this economic sector. These high-paying jobs (average of $60,000/year) are an essential part of our economy.
Star Tribune by Jill Burcum, 09/14/09