RHRA to study Roseville business climate through taskforce

Joshua Nielsen
Review staff

In an effort to better understand the local business environment in the city, the Roseville Housing and Redevelopment Authority (RHRA) has launched a Business Retention and Expansion (BR&E) program, funded by Xcel Energy.

Through the BR&E program, the RHRA hopes to accomplish a goal set in its 2012-2016 Strategic Plan to‚ retain and attract desirable housing and businesses that lead to employment, investment, and commitment to the community.

A 24-person BR&E taskforce has been created to survey between 100-300 locally owned, non-retail businesses in Roseville through the end of the month to get a better understanding of what their needs are.

"In the current economy, we have to support the businesses in our community. We want to be responsive to their needs but we first need to understand what those needs are," Jeanne Kelsey, acting executive director of the RHRA explained. "By having teams interview business owners, we will learn why they like being in Roseville, whether they are facing challenges to stay or expand in Roseville, and if there is anything they would like the city to do differently to support the business community."

Kelsey said currently there are over 2,500 businesses in Roseville. She explained the new program has two goals: to address local business owners’ immediate concerns and help them be competitive, and to help forge stronger relationships between the city and businesses, so Roseville can implement an economic development plan that will support business growth and development. 

In December the data obtained through interview sessions with business owners will be handed over to the University of Minnesota Extension Center for Community Vitality to analyze. The Center will then compile a report and present its findings with the RHRA and community leaders, which the RHRA will review in February prior to deciding which programs or initiatives could be implemented to help Roseville businesses thrive. 

Joshua Nielsen can be reached at jnielsen@lillienews.com or 651-748-7824.

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