Olmsted Receives Top Credit Rating
Olmsted County received an Aaa credit rating from Moody’s Investor Service and AAA from Standard and Poor’s Global Ratings. These are the best ratings an organization can receive. It is an affirmation of the financial management of the county. Only 3% of counties in the United States receive this high rating and only a few counties in Minnesota receive this rating. We all can be proud of the great financial condition of Olmsted. These ratings equate to a taxpayer savings because it lowers the cost of borrowing. Stewardship of the county finances is a priority for me.
The Election is Underway
About 45,000 absentee ballots have been mailed. And as of October 9 about 20,000 absentee ballots have been accepted. This represents about 20% of the 100,600 registered voters in the county.
Homeless and Housing
Olmsted County staff have permanently housed 108 formerly homeless people since March. Housing people in one of my priorities. In spite of the COVID episode, Olmsted continues to house the homeless.
The Census counting will continue until October 31. It is important that everyone be counted because of the amount of Federal dollars that are attached to the population count. If you have not completed your census form, please do so before the October 31 deadline.
Bonding Bill Passes
The State Legislature passed a bonding bill and supplemental budget worth about $1.8 Billion. Because of the slowing economy and high unemployment due to COVID19, the bonding will help to Minnesota’s economy keep moving and help reduce unemployment. The money will also help several Olmsted, Rochester and Regional projects. Here are some of the projects included in the bonding bill:
Money for Roads, Bridges and Housing around the State:
- Transportation money which Olmsted will receive a portion. $15 Million for Local Road Wetland Replacement Program and $75 Million for the Local Road Improvement Program (some money was earmarked for specific projects), $30 Million for the Local Bridge Program.
- Housing (hopefully, Olmsted will be able to access some of this). $16 Million for the Minnesota Housing Financing Agency for housing rehabilitation and $100 Million Housing Infrastructure.
Local and Regional projects include:
- $11.4 Million for the Rochester Airport
- $2.5 Million for Rochester Cascade Park
- $24.027 Million for the Oronoco Wastewater System
- $2 Million for the Greater Minnesota Transit Capital Program
- $10 Million for the Regional Behavioral Health Crisis Facilities Grant Program
- $6 Million for the CR104/Trunk Highway Interchange Planning