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Mayor Roe is optimistic about Roseville’s future
Roseville Mayor Dan Roe delivered his annual State of the City address Monday, Feb. 25 from city hall.
The mayor spoke for about 30 minutes on the city’s accomplishments from last year and the goals of civic leaders for the community in 2013 and beyond.
Roe contended that the efforts of Roseville’s residents, and business and community leaders, have a larger impact on the state of the city than that of local government.
However, he thinks that elected officials have an important role in seeing the city succeed by “working to do the best we can to make policies that reflect the community’s values and aspirations.”
He also said he thinks the city is in good shape overall and will only get better moving forward.
“Based on the work we in Roseville have done over the last year, and the plans we have for the coming year and beyond, I believe that the state of our city is sound and strong, with opportunities for improvement,” the mayor said.
Roe said that the city received more $60 million in new tax base from the development of new commercial and industrial facilities.
Councilmember Robert Willmus said that this trend should continue into 2013 and beyond.
“Slowly old buildings have been coming down around the Twin Lakes site, making room for new businesses like healthcare facilities and Walmart,” Willmus said. “We have started the process of looking at ways to increase development in that area with planning staff.”
Roe explained the city expanded its residential tax base by more than $20 million, a trend he expects to continue.
The mayor also applauded the efforts of the Roseville Police Department during his address. The crime rate, overall, dropped two percent in 2012, Roe noted. The biggest drops were seen in robberies, assaults, shoplifting and weapons crimes.
Last year, Rose added, Roseville police partnered with the Ramsey County Attorney’s Office and local hotel owners to target prostitution and sex-trafficking in the city. Those efforts paid off in the arrests of several offenders.
Another area of public safety city staff addressed in 2012 was the adoption of a new policy that helps homeowners if a sanitary sewer backup occurs. Roe said the city is now able to provide contracted services for clean-up work if a backup happens. The program assists homeowners in the cost of these services.
“If a sewer back-up occurs because of a blockage in a city’s main, then the city will send out a contractor for clean-up, and assist in the cost of that clean-up,” Roseville City Engineer Debra Bloom explained.
Roe said that past councils have ignored budget shortfalls and have failed to address infrastructure improvement needs.
The mayor added during the past two years the city has implemented several measures to address shortfalls and provide funding for infrastructure improvements that will happen during the next 20 years and beyond.
“While this has led to sharp increases in water and sewage fees each of the last two years, and it cannot be denied that those increases can have an especially notable impact on those who are struggling financially, the result will be stable and predictable funding that our residents and businesses will be able to count on for years to come,” Roe said.
The mayor also spoke about city efforts to be environmentally responsible, such as a planned 2013 project to address sedimentation in the Villa Park water treatment system, that will improve water quality in nearby Lake McCarrons.
In a post speech interview, Roe said that two key areas he wants to work on this year are engaging the public in the governmental process and economic development and retention.
“Two ways we can encourage economic development and keep our businesses here is by making sure we have well maintained resources and infrastructure, and by working with organizations to find out what the needs of local businesses are,” Roe noted.
Joshua Nielsen can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 651-748-7824.
Roseville’s aspirations adopted by the city council in 2012
Roseville Mayor Dan Roe listed the city’s strategic planning aspirations during his State of the City address. The mayor, council members and city staff drew them from the Imagine Roseville 2025 vision, 2030 Comprehensive Plan and the Park and Recreation Master Plan. The city council adopted these plans in 2012 as a broad set of aspirations for the Roseville.
Those aspirations are as follows:
As a community, we in Roseville aspire to be: welcoming, inclusive, and respectful; safe and law-abiding; economically prosperous, with a stable and broad tax base; secure in our diverse and quality housing and neighborhoods; environmentally responsible, with well-maintained natural assets; physically and mentally active and healthy; well-connected through transportation and technology infrastructure; and engaged in our community’s citizens, neighbors, volunteers, leaders and business people.