2015: What We've Done

Improved HRA Assets and Operations

  • In June, we celebrated the Grand Re-Opening of The Groves residential complex in Cottage Grove. Nearly $5 million was invested to overhaul and refresh 67 units of housing, create additional play and recreation space for children, and implement cost-saving energy improvements throughout the buildings.
  • Over the course of the year, an $840,000 interior renovation of the Park Place apartments in St. Paul Park modernized units and ensured they would serve as an important affordable housing asset for many years to come.
  • We continue to phase in a smoke-free policy at HRA properties to better preserve taxpayer investment in affordable housing. All 1,000+ units will be 100% smoke-free by June 2016
     

Maintained Housing Stability for County Residents

  • Provided $177,000 in grants and loans to help 14 Washington County households with failing septic systems.
  • Counseled over 100 residents about refinancing and foreclosure, and helped over 7 in 10 counseled homeowners to avoid foreclosure.
  • Served 523 households, including 635 children, through our rental assistance programs.
  • 22 families are enrolled in the Family Self Sufficiency program, which helps individuals obtain the skills they need to obtain living wage employment and become less dependent on assistance. In 2015, 10 families graduated from the program, using their increased earnings and savings to move off of public assistance, purchase homes, and improve their economic viability.
     

Created Additional Workforce and Senior Housing Investment

  • In October, we broke ground on the Piccadilly Square senior housing facility in Mahtomedi. Due to open in late 2016, the facility will provide 79 units of one- and two-bedroom affordable senior housing.
  • We acquired and rehabilitated three single-family homes and resold two others through the Two Rivers Community Land Trust.
     

Supported Others in Their Efforts to Improve Our Communities

  • Through the Community Development Block Grant Program, we provided key support to organizations like the Hugo Good Neighbors Food Shelf, and supported activities like homelessness services, crisis assistance, and home rehabilitation loans.
  • Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity completed and sold its final townhomes in Cottage Grove's Mississippi Dunes development. This effort was supported by nearly $290,000 in HOME funds.
  • $117,000 in HOME funds will be invested in Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity's Generation Acres development in Hugo.