Today we were thrilled to present the annual Leaders in Local Government Awards!
The Leaders in Local Government Awards honor leading individuals and organizations that exemplify and demonstrate innovation, excellence, and success in local government. Finalists are selected based on their contributions to innovative initiatives or policies that advance the public good while demonstrating a commitment to efficient and responsive government.
Business Retention and Expansion
City of Rosemount WINNER!
Saint Paul Port Authority
The City of Rosemount Economic Development department has really been an asset to the city, with efforts such as hiring an additional staff member, and sharing creative posts on social media regarding the city and promoting local businesses. Their Rosemount Business Bulletins have included important information for the businesses in Rosemount during COVID. The Rosemount Cares initiative encouraged all of us to stand together as a community and participate in cohesive action to keep our residents, employees, and customers safe. The city created the Rosemount CARES grant program and allocated $500,000 towards it, which provided $10,000 grants for small businesses affected by COVID. They also developed branded marketing materials and templates, which were a big help to the business community.
Communications and Marketing
Ramsey County WINNER!
Saint Paul Port Authority
Saint Paul – Ramsey County Public Health’s COVID-19 Hmong and Karen Community Outreach and Public Information and Communications teams
In late 2019, Ramsey County launched www.RamseyCountyMeansBusiness.com, to attract and retain businesses to the region. The site offered the first incentives dashboard layering development programs and incentives across city-county-state jurisdictions and identified key redevelopment properties across the county, linking them to various redevelopment incentives available. Just a few months later, the world came to a halt due to Covid-19. RamseyCountyMeansBusiness.com became the landing spot for real time information. The premise around the incentives dashboard was replicated for a recovery dashboard allowing the business community to quickly identify business relief resources and technical assistance through the myriad of government programs available.
Dakota County & Dakota County Community Development Agency
Metro Transit Police Department Homeless Action Team WINNER!
Ramsey County Workforce Solutions and Saint Paul Public Library
The Homeless Action Team (HAT) assists folks who are utilizing Metro Transit buses and trains as shelter. The object was to meet people where they are at and offer tools and resources from shelter to clothing and food. They have also helped in finding them employment. Last year over 100 individuals and families were housed. Relationships and trust have been built, and this team continues to check in on past clients while they continue moving forward with new clients. Once you are able to change the trajectory for one person in a family, others start to see that change is possible.
Planning, Land Use and Public Works finalists
City of Shoreview
City of Vadnais Heights WINNER!
Ramsey/Washington Recycling & Energy
After establishing a street reinvestment plan as a top priority, the Vadnais Heights City Council authorized a city-wide assessment of pavement conditions. The “PCI” uses a nationally recognized ranking to characterize the condition of pavement at a moment in time. The citywide average was similar to a letter grade of C or C minus. The City Council authorized nearly $2 million dollars of construction for residential streets for 2020. With a long-term plan in place, the City Council has also worked to implement a long-term funding strategy. This includes fees that are dedicated and helps build a sustainable funding source for the future.
South Saint Paul Police Department, West Saint Paul Police Department and Dakota County Sheriff Department
Maplewood Fire Department
Maplewood Police Department WINNER!
Since 2017, the Maplewood Police Department had been emphasizing community outreach, racial equity, and diversity in hiring. This coincides with the City of Maplewood’s overall strategic priority of “Community Inclusiveness,” which has led to systematically changing hiring, training and promotion of all staff, with an emphasis on Public Safety. Among other metrics, the department has achieved a125% increase in hiring non-traditional police officers (women, people of color) and has increased police-community outreach from a few dozen hours annually to more than 2000. This emphasis has built accountability, trust and transparency and benefits the department and the entire Maplewood community.
Elected Official of Note
Dakota County Commissioner Thomas Egan
Senator Norm Coleman did us the honor of providing our keynote address, reminding us about the power of positivity. Thank you for joining us, Senator!
A big thank you to our East Metro Chamber Partners who joined us in the production of this event:
Dakota County Regional Chamber of Commerce
Midway Chamber of Commerce
Minnesota Black Chamber of Commerce
Minnesota Hmong Chamber of Commerce
Oakdale Area Chamber of Commerce
River Heights Chamber of Commerce
White Bear Area Chamber of Commerce
And of course, our sponsors,
Presenting Sponsor Bremer Bank
Corporate Sponsors Comcast, Securian Financial, Shaw-Lundquist, and WSB
Contributing Sponsors 5 Eyewitness News, CliftonLarsonAllen and Platinum Bank
See you in 2021 for the next Leaders in Local Government Awards!