Updates on the new county website, Oxbow Nature Center, 2021 Budget, Hardship Abatement, and COVID Vaccine

Olmsted County Launches it new Website:  www.olmstedcounty.gov

View Olmsted County’s new and improved website.  I supported the cost of the website development so that the people can find County Information easier, do business, apply for services on line and be more engaged with county activities.

 

Oxbow Nature Center Upgrade

Olmsted County Parks received $2.3million Minnesota Legacy Grant to upgrade the Nature Center at Oxbow Park. County resources and Friends of Oxbow will contribute to the remainder of the costs.  (The total project is about $7million.)  The Nature Center and Zoo is the most visited venue in Olmsted County.  I supported the application for the grant and supported the Park Boards efforts to seek funding for upgrading the facilities.  The new building will replace the current building which is about 40 years old.  Construction will begin in spring of 2021 and be completed in 2022.

 

County Board sets 2021 Budget

The County Board set the 2021 County Budget with a 0.00% increase to 2021property taxes.  The budget of $260,217,845 is funded by

$107,552,788 property taxes and $152,665,057 from intergovernmental revenues, charges for services, transportation taxes, bond proceeds, interest income, other sources and reserves.

The Housing and Rehabilitation (HRA) budget of $3,777,655 is funded by property taxes.  The HRA 2021 property taxes was also set at 0.00% increase from 2020.

I supported the 0.00% increase in 2021 property taxes for Olmsted and HRA.

 

County Board helps Commercial/industrial Property Owners

The pandemic has caused great economic hardships for everyone including commercial business.  The County has approved a program for commercial businesses that qualify, to create a payment plan for 2020 property taxes that are in arrears.  Commercial businesses have to qualify for this plan and must create a payment plan with the property tax office (PRL).  Penalties for late payment will be abated for properties who qualify to participate.  Commercial/Industrial properties must apply by 5 p.m., February 15, 2021.

To view the full COVID-19 property tax hardship abatement policy  and/or fill out an application, please visit thewww.olmstedcounty.gov or call the PRL office.

 

The first Batch of COVID-19 Vaccines Arrived

Olmsted Medical Center received a batch of the Pfizer vaccine early this week.  Health care workers and vulnerable populations will be the first to receive the vaccine.  A vaccination program will be announced as more vaccines arrive.  Olmsted County Public Health will provide more information as it becomes available.

 

Have a Happy and Safe Holiday

Everyone is relieved that 2020 is coming to end.  Let us all look forward to 2021 and recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.  I appreciate the support and trust that you have given me this year as I worked to make sure that the county work continued, people’s needs for food and assistance were met, the homeless were sheltered, and the property tax levy did not see a percentage increase.

I look forward to providing you with vaccine news and county updates in 2021.

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