August Newsletter: Hennepin Commissioner Debbie Goettel

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debbie goettel

Hennepin Happening

Welcome to the District 5 August newsletter! Scroll down to read more about

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Board renews $1.1 million fund to support local businesses

Grow your business


Hennepin County is renewing its investment in two programs designed to grow jobs and businesses in the county. The county board voted last week as the Housing and Redevelopment Authority to approve agreements with the Minneapolis Consortium of Community Developers (MCCD) for the Open to Business Program (up to $405,000), and with the Edward Lowe Foundation for CEO Next Business Institute (up to $720,000).

Put these programs to use for your small business:

CEO Next Business Institute—now accepting applications

The program helps second-stage companies through advanced business and market research, peer and cohort learning, and expert forums. Privately held businesses that have between 10 and 99 employees, and $1 million -$50 million in revenue are eligible.

Apply online by September 30.


Open to Business 

Entrepreneurs can access technical assistance, including business plan development, feasibility studies, marketing, loan request preparation, finance projections and much more.

Watch how the program has helped past participants succeed (2:14).

Visit the program's website.

Volunteers sought for Nine Mile Creek Watershed District Board

9 Mile Creek


The Hennepin County Board is seeking applicants for two vacancies on the Nine Mile Creek Watershed District Board. This board coordinates the management of water and related land resources in the watershed. Apply by August 15 at

NOAH Impact Fund | Keeping housing affordable



A few weeks ago, I met with members of over a dozen congregations at a Beacon Interfaith at Woodlake Lutheran Church to discuss Hennepin County's role in reducing and preventing homelessness in the metro area. One key tool we discussed was the NOAH Fund, a public-private partnership that preserves unsubsidized affordable rental properties before they are renovated or destroyed by prospective development.

It is critical that we preserve housing for our families and workforce across the socio-economic spectrum. I'm proud that the county board and I are supporting this initiative and others to keep everyone at home in Hennepin County. You can read more about the NOAH Impact Fund here.

Debbie around the district

Since my last newsletter at the beginning of the month, here are a few highlights from my work...



After an 11-month wait, neighbors and patrons of Oxboro Library were welcomed back into a newly renovated space; brighter, more open, and better equipped to handle the variety of needs of our community. Check out more photos of the library and the grand opening ceremony.


Eden Prairie


Sheriff Hutchinson and I provided county updates to the Eden Prairie City Council. Strong partnerships and coordination between the County and the cities we serve is critical to serving our communities well.




Addressed the National Organization for Women conference in Bloomington. It was a privilege to address so many bright and energized women who traveled from all over the country to convene in District 5. Watch the video here.


Joan T.A. Gabel


Newly appointed University of Minnesota President Joan T.A. Gabel addressed the County Board regarding the long partnership between the University and Hennepin County. It's an invaluable asset to have such a strong relationship with our colleges and universities.

Hennepin History Museum

John Crippen


I'd like to extend a warm welcome to John Crippen, the new Executive Director at the Hennepin History Museum! John has an extensive career in museum management having worked at the Minnesota Historical Society for 30 years, including serving as Director of the Mill City Museum and, more recently, as Director of Historic Sites and Museums. A native of Minnesota, John earned his B.A. in History at the University of Minnesota and received his M.A. in History Museum Studies from Cooperstown Graduate Program at SUNY-Oneonta.

John uses creative program leadership and strategic partnerships to bring diverse communities together and seeks ways to find new, sustainable operating models for the places that make history relevant to people in the 21st Century. Museum Board President, Kim Wm. Jeppesen notes: “With John’s extraordinary background in museum management, programming and development, he will bring a new dimension that will enable the Museum to position itself for long-term growth.”

John assumes his duties in August. Stay tuned for information about a reception this fall to meet him.

Road construction

MnDOT and Hennepin County are beginning reconstruction of France Avenue over Highway 62. The bridge and all on-off ramps will be closed between April and July. The project is likely to push more traffic onto Xerxes, Penn, and 66th Street. Read more about the project on the MnDOT website.

35W and Eden Prairie's Flying Cloud Drive are also 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 |

Casey Krolczyk
Principal Aide
612-348-7885  |

Michael Ohama
Policy Director
612-348-7885 |

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