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Editorial: Let's share

Gov. Tim Pawlenty announces an $86 million plan to add jobs in the renewable, solar and similar industries Monday at the Capitol. He later flew around the state to promote the proposal.

It appears Minnesota and Wisconsin are going shopping together, and that's not a bad thing by any means.

Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty and Wisconsin Gov. Jim Doyle, speaking together Tuesday in St. Paul, announced jointly that they are exploring the possibility of purchasing software and bulldozers -- among other items --together. An Associated Press report also indicated the states are considering "sharing helicopters, patrol boats on the rivers that separate them and possibly administrative services for state licenses, prisons and adjoining harbors in Duluth, Minn., and Superior, Wis."

It easy to figure out why these states are exploring such concepts. Minnesota is facing a projected deficit of $4.8 billion; Wisconsin, not to be outdone, is up against a $5.4 billion shortfall.

Finding innovative ways to collaborate has been an increasingly common goal of such entities as the City of Worthington, Nobles County and Minnesota West Community Technical College -- to name just a few -- in recent years. We're glad our state government is catching on to the notion that increased efficiency, in these challenging economic times, is more important than ever.