Support the 148th Fighter Wing

Support the 148th Fighter Wing by Investing in Necessary Hangar Upgrades

The Duluth Area Chamber of Commerce and our Military Affairs Committee (MAC) are advocating for a $25M request from the State of Minnesota for much-needed hangar upgrades at the Minnesota Air National Guard – 148th Fighter Wing in Duluth.

About the Project

When approved, the funding will go towards demolition of the current, outdated hangars and allow for new and safer hangers, which will also be to house updated aircraft such as the F-35s. This proposal received strong, bipartisan support at the legislature in 2022 yet was not funded since a bonding bill was not approved. Our goal is to get this bill passed in 2023 to ensure the 148th has what they need to succeed. Never before has more been asked of our National Guard, which has included pandemic response and additional security missions in recent years, including recent deployments. That is why this proposal has broad community support, including a unanimous resolution by the Duluth City Council.

Not only does the 148th serve our community and country, but they also have an incredible economic impact for our region serving as Duluth’s eighth largest employer with 1,100 jobs. We are grateful for their service and sacrifice, and now it’s our opportunity to help support them.

We are pleased the request has strong, bi-partisan support in both the Minnesota House and Senate again this legislative session. On the Senate side, we appreciate Chief Author of Senate File 1023, Senator Grant Hauschild (DFL-Hermantown), as well as co-authors: Senators Jennifer McEwen (DFL-Duluth); Zach Duckworth (Republican – Lakeville, Assistant Minority Leader, military veteran); and Senator Nicole Mitchell (DFL-Woodbury, military veteran). On the House side, we appreciate Chief Author of House File 1193, Rep. Dave Lislegard (DFL-Aurora), as well as co-authors: Rep. Alicia Kozlowski (DFL-Duluth); Rep. Liz Olson (DFL-Duluth); Rep. Natalie Zeleznikar (Republican – Hermantown); and Rep. Jerry Newtown (DFL- Coon Rapids, miliary veteran and Chair of the House Veterans and Military Affairs Finance and Policy Committee).

For more information, please feel free to contact Daniel Fanning, Vice President of Policy at the Duluth Area Chamber at 218.740.3743 or

Universal aircraft shelter 2 bay

Universal Aircraft Shelter 2 Bay

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Universal Aircraft Shelter 3 Bay

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Universal Aircraft Shelter 4 Bay

People standing in front of a fighter jet

Representatives of the Military Affairs Committee and 148th Fighter Wing meet with U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar to detail hangar upgrades needed.

Left to right:
Daniel Fanning, Duluth Chamber VP of Strategy and Policy
Matt Baumgartner, Duluth Chamber President
Senator Amy Klobuchar
Jennifer Cady, Chair of the Chamber’s MAC
Col. Curtis Grayson, Vice Wing Commander at the 148th Fighter Wing

Group photo of 5 men

Representatives of the Military Affairs Committee and stakeholders of Duluth’s aviation industry meet with U.S. Representative Pete Stauber to discuss investments in the 148th FW.

Left to right:
Matt Baumgartner, Duluth Chamber President
Patrick Mullen, Former Chair of MAC
Congressman Pete Stauber
Bill King, Former President of Cirrus Aircraft Corporation
Daniel Fanning, Duluth Chamber VP of Strategy and Policy

Support the 148th Fighter Wing
Front portion of a fighter jet in front of a hanger at night
A F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 148th Fighter Wing, Minnesota Air National is parked at sunset at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada
Duluth Area Chamber of Commerce Logo
148FW MN Air National Guard Logo
Duluth Area Chamber Foundation Logo

Additional Priorities

The 2023 legislative priorities of Duluth and St. Louis County include several key areas that will positively impact the region:

  • Funds for the Aerial Lift Bridge

  • Safeguard and Increase LGA

  • Funds for Spirit Mountain

  • Matching Funds for NLX

  • Funds for the Leachate Treatment at the Virginia Landfill; Initial Development of the Canyon Landfill

  • Funds for the St. Louis County Heritage & Arts Center (The Depot)

  • Support Efforts to Streamline Health Care Licensure Processes

  • Advance Policies for Rural Health Care

  • Lower Prescription Costs

  • Funding for the University of Minnesota-Duluth new Academic Health Care Center

  • Increase Funding to Expand Health Care Educational Programs

  • Increase Medicaid Reimbursement

  • Funding for Higher Education Asset Preservation and Replacement Projects

  • Address Cost Increases in Research, Education, and Outreach Activities in Conjunction with Cost Reductions and Tuition Revenue

  • Support Minnesota Resident Scholarship

  • Funding to Relocate, Expand, and Enhance LSC’s Manufacturing Program

  • Continued Support for the Minnesota State Grant Program

  • Funding for Structural Rehabilitation and Repair of Secondary Clarifiers

  • Support an Expansion of the Airport Property Tax Exemptions for Airport Hangars Owned or Operated by Cities with 50,000 – 150,000 Population

  • Invest in Aerospace Workforce Development

  • Reduce the Minnesota Statues, 327A.02 Statutory Warranties, Subsec-tion 3, Home Improvement Warranties

  • Funding for New Air Traffic Control Tower at DLH

  • Investment in Hermantown’s Community Recreation Initiative

  • Funding to Complete the City of Rice Lake Sewer Main Extension

  • Funding for a City of Rice Lake Public Safety/Emergency Shelter

  • Continued Support of the Port of Duluth

  • Funding for the Rehabilitation of the Historic Duluth Armory and the North Country Creative Center

Opportunity is North Booklet

The 2023 regional projects and funding requests are detailed within the Legislative Priorities Booklet. This booklet will be mailed to Minnesota legislators, distributed at the Duluth & St. Louis County at the Capitol events, and is available to view digitally.

The Priorities Booklet, linked below, is designed for optimal interaction:

  • Navigate through the Table of Contents.
  • Follow the links to continue reading about each entity and priority.
  • Engage with our sponsors by visiting their websites.
  • Locate easy access to D&SLC Event information

The Duluth Area Chamber of Commerce serves as the premier advocate for commerce and industry by facilitating interaction among business, government, education, labor, and the greater community by actively creating innovative opportunities for business to advance within local and global economies and encourages fairness in the political process by serving to help educate our members rather than endorsing or supporting political parties or affiliations.

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