IRRRB Commissioner Tony Sertich to address regional housing workshop; engineering club

May 03, 2011

EVELETH, Minnesota – Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation Board (IRRRB) Commissioner Tony Sertich on Wednesday, May 4, 2011, addresses a regional housing discussion regarding northeastern Minnesota housing and community needs and later in the day speaks to an engineering club about economic development project planning. 

The Northeast Regional Housing Dialogue is from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Wednesday, May 4, 2011, at Mountain Iron Community Center along Highway 169 in Mountain Iron. Hosts are the Minnesota Housing Finance Agency, United States Department of Agriculture Rural Development, and Greater Minnesota Housing Fund. Sertich speaks at the event at 10 a.m. 

The dialogue is one of five regional housing discussions taking place across the state. Representatives from regional, statewide and federal housing organizations, community leaders, and government agencies, will ascertain specific housing needs within the region and cultivate plans to address opportunities and challenges. 

A goal of the workshop is to generate an ongoing regional dialogue and partnership among community leaders, housing planners, and economic development entities to improve northeastern Minnesota’s housing stock. 

The preservation and rehabilitation of existing housing units, energy improvement in existing affordable housing, revitalization of neighborhoods, and development of assisted living facilities, are expected to be primary topics. 

“The IRRRB, along with its housing and community partners, view affordable housing and healthy communities as one of the region’s most important assets,” said Sertich. “Helping make our communities more attractive places to live and work is one of our agency’s primary missions.” 

Since the early 1990s, investments made by the IRRRB to support the construction of assisted living facilities, multi-family complexes and single-family homes, has helped fund more than 2,200 units of new housing valued at $397 million. 

The workshop is open to the public. 

At 7:30 p.m., Sertich addresses the Engineers’ Club of Northern Minnesota at the Rustic Rock Chop House along Hat Trick Avenue in Eveleth. 

The Engineer’s Club of Northern Minnesota, celebrating its 97th anniversary, is composed of engineers from mining, power, utility, transportation and construction industries. The club’s mission is to promote engineering in the region. 

“Virtually all of the large scale economic development projects underway in northeastern Minnesota are planned by engineers like those in the Engineers’ Club of Northern Minnesota,” said Sertich. “With all of the projects we have under construction and planned within the region, there is a huge demand for engineers on Minnesota’s Iron Range. As part of its mission to help develop the region’s workforce, the IRRRB recognizes the importance of supporting education and programs such as the Iron Range Engineering Program based at Mesabi Range Community & Technical College in Virginia.” 

Iron Range Resources & Rehabilitation Board (IRRRB) is a state economic development agency headquartered in Northeastern Minnesota whose vision is to promote and invest in business, community and workforce development for the betterment of the region.