October newsletter: Hennepin Commissioner Debbie Goettel

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debbie goettel

Hennepin Happenings

Welcome to the District 5 October newsletter! This month, we have two library events in District 5 where you can learn about some of the creepy/crawly/scary stories from Minnesota. Residents should also take note of the complete closure of 35W for the next two weekends and our upcoming District 5 Open House on October 19.  Scroll down to read more about...

District 5 Open House - October 19


Hennepin County Government Center
300 S 6th St, A-2400; Minneapolis
Thursday, October 19, 4:30pm - 6:00pm

Please join us for an open house with Commissioner Debbie Goettel featuring local art and a newly renovated District 5 office. Guests are welcome. Light food and refreshments are provided. Please RSVP to casey.krolczyk@hennepin.us or call 612-348-7885.

Appointee Spotlight: Jill Joseph

Jill Joseph: front row, second from left

I depend on trusted appointees for their time, talent, and good judgement to better serve Hennepin County's residents. I cannot thank them enough for their service, and occasionally we will publish these highlights to recognize the phenomenal work they do.

Jill Joseph currently serves on the Capital Budget Task Force, but she has an extensive history of service on the Hennepin County Library Board.

Jill, what are your greatest passions in life?

My primary passion is my relationship with my husband and family. My husband and I have lived in Southwest Eden Prairie for over thirty years. We raised our two sons in District 5, enjoying all that the local community has to offer.

My second greatest passion is service to my community.  For the last nine years until January 2017, I served on the Hennepin County Library Board. I will always be committed to the library’s mission of lifelong learning, enriching minds, and building community. Now, as a member of the Capital Budgeting Task Force, I am strongly committed to the principal of fiscal responsibility in government and open communication between government and citizens.

What is your professional background?

My educational background includes two Master’s degrees from the University of Minnesota- a Master’s Degree in Business and a Master’s Degree in Education. I also hold a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Minnesota in Food Science. I have worked for several companies in the Twin Cities area and I have taught Business classes at Eden Prairie High School.

Briefly describe the duties of the position you were appointed to. What impact doe this have on the county?

As a member of the Capital Budgeting Task Force, it is my duty to read, study, explore and discuss in detail all aspects of the Hennepin County Capital Budget. This involves about twelve four-hour meetings over the course of the budget cycle. Presentations are made from all of the requesting departments detailing the budget requests. In addition, the Task Force visits a number of sites where capital spending is needed. Finally, we have several meetings in which the budget is discussed in detail and we come to consensus on our recommendations. A final presentation is made to the Hennepin County Board in early November.

What is your favorites thing to do in District 5?

Currently, my favorite thing to do in District 5 is to golf with my husband and friends at Olympic Hills Golf Club. The passing of good times and the communication with friends over the course of the game is actually what I enjoy even more than the game itself. Secondly, I enjoy reading books and subsequently discussing them with my friends in the two book clubs of which I am a member.

County updates


Zero-waste strategies: the County needs feedback!

Hennepin County is working to reduce waste output in the coming years, and we need your input to do that. We are currently seeking citizen comments on the Solid Waste Management Master Plan draft. Businesses, residents, haulers, city staff… all are invited to fill out a survey and submit comments on the County website (just click on “Solid waste management master plan”).

Thrivent Financial


I voted with majority of the Board to approve the County’s purchase of the Thrivent Financial building in downtown Minneapolis for $55 million. This was a rare opportunity to consolidate several county facilities into a single location, and it will immediately save $23 million from operations and management costs of properties we can now close. The continual creep of lease payments and buying space under duress would be even more costly in the long run.

In addition to money we save from facilities management, a cohesive downtown campus and a high quality work environment will help attract and retain better talent for Hennepin County. This will lower staff turnover, increase worker productivity, and improve service quality to residents for decades to come.


County raises levy 4.95%

In September, the Board voted to approve a $796.9 million maximum property tax levy increase, a 4.95% increase from 2017. The increase is mostly due to modest increases in staff salaries and health costs as well as significant cuts to health and human services program from the State, totaling about $60 million. It is my job to be a responsible steward of public resources for our community, and I determined that this increase was necessary to maintain an acceptable level of service to Hennepin residents.

I invite anyone wishing to join the conversation around the 2018 budget to attend the Truth-in-Taxation public meeting:
Tuesday, November 28 at 6pm
Hennepin County Government Center (300 S 6th St, Minneapolis)
24th floor of the Administration Tower (A-side)

Participants can park for free after 5pm in the parking ramp beneath the Government Center.

Debbie around the district

Since our last newsletter in September, here are a few of the highlights from Commissioner Goettel's work...

  • Discussed the 2018 legislative platform with Intergovernmental Relations staff
  • Met with Bloomington Schools Superintendent Les Fujitake to discuss collaboration between the County and schools to support vulnerable children
  • Attended a monthly Metropolitan Emergency Services Board meeting
  • Received a debrief from Jill Joseph regarding her work on the Capital Budget Task Force.

Attended a community meeting at the Eden Prairie Library discussing its upcoming renovation.


Joined Bloomington residents at Oxboro Library for a community meeting discussing its upcoming renovation.

  • Attended board meetings for the Hennepin County Library, Hennepin History Museum, and Community Action Partnership - Hennepin County (CAP-HC)

Hennepin History Museum


Exhibit opening: A Look at Glen Lake Tuberculosis Sanatorium

1-4pm on Sunday, October 1st | 2303 Third Avenue South, Minneapolis

Please join us for the opening reception for "A Look at Glen Lake Tuberculosis Sanatorium", an exhibit presented in partnership with the Hopkins Historical Society and based upon the work of Glen Lake historian Mary Krugerud. Visitors will gain a glimpse into what life was like for the patients and staff at one of the nation's most progressive sanatoriums and learn more about history and treatment of tuberculosis, a the disease that is still with us today.

At 2 pm Mary Krugerud will discuss her newly published book, "Interrupted Lives: Tuberculosis in Minnesota and at Glen Lake Sanatorium." Books will be available for sale and the author will for signing.

This event is free and open to the public. Please note that visiting the museum at this time does require the use of stairs.

Hennepin County Library events - ghost lore in the libraries

Minnesota's Most Haunted Locations

Learn about some of the most haunted places in Minnesota with Chad Lewis, paranormal researcher and author. Photos, eyewitness accounts, ghost lore and directions will encourage you to find your own ghost story.

Sunday, October 15, 3 to 4 p.m., Hennepin County Library—Augsburg Park, 7100 Nicollet Avenue, Richfield

Saturday, October 28, 10 to 11 a.m., Hennepin County Library—Penn Lake, 8800 Penn Avenue South, Bloomington

Register and learn more about these events.


Engaging Young Learners


Hennepin County Library has spaces for children and families to play and learn together.
Learn more about Play and Learn areas at our libraries.

Yes, you can write a novel

November is National Novel Writing Month, also known as NaNoWriMo. If you think you have a novel in you, our writing classes in October can get you ready to start writing.

See the catalogue of classes related to NaNoWriMo.

See a listing of all of our writing classes.

Learn more about your family history

Saturday, October 28, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Minneapolis Central Library, 300 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis

The Family History Fair will connect the curious with expert genealogists who will talk about how to use state, local and library resources; to identify clues to family history; find out how to use and evaluate DNA for family connections, and more.

Register and learn more about the Family History Fair.

Road construction - 35W closure

ATTENTION: 35W will be closed in both directions between Highway 62 and downtown Minneapolis from 10 p.m. on Friday to 5 a.m. on Monday for two consecutive weekends (September 29 – October 2 and October 6-9). Please plan ahead and expect traffic delays. View detour map.

For more information about the project and future 35W construction, please visit MNDOT’s website.

66th Street in Richfield and Bloomington's Normandale Boulevard are in the midst of major construction projects. Skip the traffic jams and sign up for updates on the projects impacting your commute.

You can also visit the Hennepin County website for updates on road maintenance projects and all other road construction.

Constituent services

Housing crises, energy assistance, child protection, emergency situations; we are here to advocate for you when it comes to navigating local and county services, and we want to help. Please call our office at 612-348-7885 with any questions or for assistance.


Commissioner Debbie Goettel
Hennepin County District 5
Bloomington | Eden Prairie | Richfield
612-348-7885 | debbie.goettel@hennepin.us

Casey Krolczyk
Principle Aide
612-596-7078 | casey.krolczyk@hennepin.us

Michael Ohama
Policy Director
612-348-7885 | michael.ohama@hennepin.us


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