Local Mar Valdecantos was appointed to the Governor’s Task Force on Housing. She reported to the Northfield HRA last week. The Task Force focused on three key areas; home ownership, rental and housing stability. Valdecantos was placed in the home ownership group. She said that with a sense of urgency, they believe 300,000 homes need to be built by 2030. Referencing the 2008 recession, she said there are 10,000 fewer homes built each year than previously, lowering the housing stock. She stressed reviewing the current ordinances and codes that Northfield has and to think “outside the box” in terms of density and in terms of changing them to accommodate more affordable
housing. She offered that Carleton and St. Olaf students could be used to review the current ordinances and codes. Another area to looking into is products for mortgages and lending. Valdecantos mentioned a specific bank in Minneapolis that helps with financial classes and with the product options and “along the way. And that is something that community banks can do”. In terms of apartments, she said the required regulations, such as sprinkler systems, are so costly in those buildings that they are less affordable than homes. The Task Force will be asking legislators for $140 million for a Homes for All campaign. Click to read document: Governor’s Housing Task Force Report_FINALa (1)
$50 mil donation to Carleton’s “Every Carl for Carleton” campaign
With a $50 million commitment, Carleton College announced the launch of a $400 million comprehensive campaign, “Every Carl for Carleton”. For the past 3 years, Carleton has been quietly securing leadership gifts to support the campaign’s priorities and to maintain the college’s presence among the nation’s preeminent colleges. Board of Trustees chair Wally Weitz and his wife, Barbara, are both members of the campaign steering committee. Along with their 3 children, the family has made a commitment of $50 million to the campaign—the largest single commitment from a donor family in Carleton’s history. In a statement, Weitz said with this campaign, they’ll safeguard the high-quality education Carleton offers for years to come. The dollars will provide funding in four directions, enrolling the best students, prioritizing innovative teaching and learning, preparing students for life after graduation, and flexibly meeting needs as they arise. Click for full press release: Carleton Launches $400 Million Campaign with Momentum from $50 Million Gift
It’s Time to Ring the Bell
It’s that time of year! Can you hear the bell? Time to sign up for Bell ringing for the Salvation Army. Ringing starts November 16th. In Rice County, they’ll have stores in Northfield, Faribault and Lonsdale. You can sign up for two hour slots. 88% of each dollar raised stays in Rice County and assists in emergency situations such as gas vouchers, food, prescription medications, shelter, etc. The funds also provide programs for youth such as Shop with a Cop and Summer Camp. They have a senior visiting program too. Here’s the link to their sign up genius .