General Updates: COVID, Census, No Entrance Fee County Parks, Low Income Housing, and Summer Road Construction Season!

Updates

Working Remotely Keeps the Levy Rate Low

Since COVID many County employees have been working from home.  We have found that working remotely allows the County to meet its obligation while, in many cases, increases the ability of the public to reach services.  Not all work can be done remotely and those services still remain face to face; however, much work can be done all or in part by working from home. Currently, about 60% of the County’s workforce works either part-time or full-time from a remote location.  As a result, the County is now studying remote working to gain insights that will be used to develop policies and practices to guide the County in future planning.  In addition to increasing the efficiency of the County’s work, other issues such as space needs will be studied.  For example, pre-COVID, the County was considering another building to house employees.  However, with the advent of remote working, the County may be able to remodel existing space and avoid a several million-dollar expense for a new building.  This cost savings is directly tied to keeping the levy rate.

91 Deaths

As of 3/8/21 there have been 91 COVID related deaths in Olmsted County.

 

75.1%.  Census 2020.  

Olmsted County residents beat the national average on returning self-reported census forms.

The rate of return for Olmsted was 75.1%.  The national average was 67%.  The 2020 Olmsted County self-reporting response rate also beat the 2010 return rate of 73.8%.

 

No Fee Park Entrance.  County Parks Invite You to Visit

See the video here: Chesterwoods 2020

I supported the County decision to eliminated the entrance fee at Chester Wood Park.  (Fees are still charged for rentals and camping.)  The County wants people to enjoy the parks.  Spring will be here soon, I encourage everyone to visit one of the County Parks and to enjoy the natural habitat which is preserved in our county Parks.

 

Olmsted County Vaccination is ahead of the State

Olmsted County Public Health vaccination rate and distribution is beating the rest of the State.

Minnesota vaccination rate for Ages 65+ is 75%.  Olmsted’s rate for 65+ is 81%

Minnesota vaccination rate for Ages 50-64 is 22%.  Olmsted rate for 50-64 is 38.8%

Olmsted is currently getting about 9,000 doses per week.  If the doses we get continue at the same rate, all people over 18 years of age will be able to be vaccinated by mid-May!

Learn About County Government

The League of Women Voters will feature county government on their “Get to Know Your Government” information program on March 25, 7:00pm to 8:30pm.  Please visit the League of Women Voters website for more information. www.lwvrochester.org

On Line Application/Permitting Make it Easier

Olmsted County now has a web-based permitting and application system that is separate from the City of Rochester’s.  (This is due to ending the Consolidating Planning department when the City of Rochester left the consolidated planning process.)

Here are the web addresses for each:

Olmsted County:  https://aca-prod.accelacom/OLMSTED

City of Rochester:  https://aca.rochestermn.gov/CitizenAccess

 

Low-Income Housing Project to be ready in Fall 2021

See the video here: Low Income Housing Project

The Housing and Redevelopment project on Mayowood Road is progressing and should be ready late summer or early Fall.  This housing is for low-income people with disabilities.

Road Building and Season to Start Soon

See the video here: Road Construction – County 101

County Road 101, the most traveled gravel road in the county is set to begin reconstruction this summer.  A new box culver will replace a narrow bridge, the road will be widened, and the hills will be reduced.  The road will be closed during construction.  In the 2022 construction season, County 101 will receive a concrete surface.  The portion of County 101 that will receive the upgrade is between County 1 and St. Bridget’s Road (by Shoppes on Maine).

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