Issues

Public Safety

Public safety is the most important job of government.

Keeping each of us – and our families – safe is one of the primary responsibilities of government. Ramsey County Commissioner Blake Huffman believes public safety is the most important job of government.

One of Huffman’s six sons served in the army as a Green Beret, so the idea of people sacrificing to keep us free – and safe – is one he holds very close. It doesn’t matter if these brave public servants are in service overseas or just down the block in the fire or police department.

Huffman believes that each of the public servants protecting Ramsey County’s citizens on the front lines in our community deserves to have the very best resources possible and the support of each and every one of us. He is a relentless advocate for our police officers, firefighters and first responders.

“I take pride in being a relentless advocate for our police officers, firefighters and first responders as they prepare for every threat Ramsey County may face.”

Economic Development

Planting the seeds for decades of growth.

More jobs. More homes. Better neighborhoods. Blake Huffman is focused on the challenges of economic development and the impact of these initiatives on the citizens of Ramsey County.

Keeping companies here is one challenge; attracting new businesses is another priority, whether it’s an individual retail business like Trader Joe’s or a project like TCAAP’s Rice Creek Commons, which will result in two million square feet of housing, retail shops, services and businesses.

Blake Huffman knows economic development works and how to get things done, so that everyone in Ramsey County has a chance to be more successful.

“Economic development is where it all comes together – infrastructure, business, jobs, opportunities, better homes, neighborhoods and schools. I’m committed to working even harder to address the needs of Ramsey County residents.”

Infrastructure

Making your daily life easier.

Blake works every day to secure funds for roads, bridges and transit projects. These investments are critical to attracting jobs and improving the lives of working families across Ramsey County.

Last year under Huffman’s leadership, Ramsey County doubled the number of miles of roads that were improved in 2014. In 2016, his goal is to double the total again, and provide even more improvements throughout the county.

Blake understands that a good infrastructure leads to a stronger community and better opportunity for economic development.

“I’m not in favor of improving roads just by filling potholes. Infrastructure maintenance and improvement should serve us – they should make getting to the places we need to be easier and our commutes shorter.“

Rice Creek Commons

Thousands of new job opportunities for Ramsey County residents.

Under Huffman’s leadership the Rice Creek Commons have risen on the site of the Twin Cities Army Ammunition Plant. The project will result in two million square feet of housing, retail shops, services and businesses.

The site is expected to bring three to four thousand new jobs in addition to more than 1,400 new housing units.

Tax revenue from the TCAAP project will be significant. The Rice Creek Commons is projected to bring between 10 and 15 million dollars in new tax revenues each year. According to Huffman, these revenues help the entire community.

“The TCAAP will provide revenues that help pay for infrastructure and services – helping us cover the costs of operating our community so there is ‘less squeeze’ on each of us.”

Housing

Belief in home ownership.

Blake Huffman believes one of the foundations of a great community is being committed to extending access to home ownership to as many people as possible.

When it comes to being committed to home ownership and safe neighborhoods, Blake Huffman talks the talk and walks the walk. He recently retired as Vice President of Strategy at Wells Fargo Home Mortgage, where he helped thousands of families achieve home ownership. As a public servant, Huffman is still committed to helping people access housing.

Huffman started a nonprofit, Journey Home Minnesota, which provides the opportunity of homeownership to survivors of domestic abuse, military veterans and their families.

“I’m committed to extending access to home ownership to as many people as possible. I’m passionate about pursuing public/private partnerships that address housing issues, including the needs of at-risk Ramsey County residents.”

Community Involvement

Continuous progress, together.

Blake has a core belief that citizens should give back through community service.

In addition to serving as Ramsey County Commissioner, Blake has chaired several committees that serve our community including:

  • The Housing Redevelopment Authority
  • The Metropolitan Emergency Service Board
  • The Public Works, Parks and Solid Waste Committee
  • The Community Action Partnership

Blake is also Chairman of the Board of the Ramsey County Children’s Mental Health Collaborative, is involved in legislative committees and still has the energy to run Journey Home Minnesota, his own nonprofit devoted to helping at-risk populations access neighborhood housing.

“Community can’t be legislated or mandated. It’s when people get together and help each other out. I’m a big fan of government putting structures together so people can have communities if that is what they want.”