Posts Tagged ‘ County ’

Toni Carter

Toni Carter

Ramsey County Commissioner Toni Carter

In 1971, Toni Carter moved to Northfield, Minn. to attend Carleton College — a liberal arts school located near the Twin Cities. Upon graduating, she moved to St. Paul, where she became an active member in the community.

“As a young person coming here from Carleton, I was active in a lot of ways,” Carter said of her beginnings, “I was an artist and a performer who became very involved with theatre.”

Upon entering her mid-twenties, however, her lifestyle began to shift. “My activities changed as I grew up and had children,” Carter said, “and I became involved with business and the community in a much deeper way.” Now, after more than 30 years of service to Ramsey County, this deep involvement has not gone unnoticed.

Carter is currently the Commissioner of District 4 in Ramsey County and has been since 2005. In the years since her term began, the Commissioner has dedicated herself to a variety of issues and hopes to continue doing so through re-election in November.

One of the Commissioner’s top priorities is the Central Corridor Light Rail Transit line — the transportation corridor that will link downtown St. Paul and downtown Minneapolis. While the construction continues on this project, the Commissioner plans to focus on support for local businesses and neighborhoods, and resolve outstanding issues such as parking.

“The Light Rail Transit is really good for a number of reasons,” the Commissioner said. “We know for sure that it will create jobs — at least for a period of time.”

Other county projects that will allow for job expansion include the restoration of the Roseville Library and the creation of new buildings around the city. “We hope to have a continual flow of work in order to ensure jobs for years to come,” she said, “we want to create living wages for the people in our community.”

The Central Corridor Light Rail will also create new opportunities for quality, affordable housing — a change that can already be seen in many areas of the community. “People can see the structures being built and they get amped up because of it,” she said.

The Commissioner believes that new jobs and more housing will have a positive effect on youth in the community. “Making jobs available is key to creating a vibrant home environment,” she said. “We need to work together in order to provide the best for our children.”

One program the Commissioner uses to reach youth is the Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative — a systems reform that reduces the number of detained youth in detention centers in Ramsey County. Since 2005, the number of detained youth has decreased by 70 percent. The Commissioner plans to continue building support and spreading the initiative statewide.

Along with her duties as Commissioner of District 4, Carter also serves as chair of the Association of Minnesota Counties Human Services Policy Committee, and of Ramsey County’s Legislative, Human Services and Workforce, and Juvenile Detention Alternatives Stakeholder Committees. Commissioner Carter also serves on the leadership teams of Ramsey County’s Workforce Investment Board, the Saint Paul Children’s Collaborative and the Ramsey County Children’s Mental Health Collaborative.


Celebrate our Victory on LRT stations

Nieeta Presley and Joan Vanhala of the Stops for Us! Coalition

Nieeta Presley and Joan Vanhala of the Stops for Us! Coalition

Please join us for a Stops for Us Victory Celebration and Potluck at 1080 University Avenue, St. Paul, MN on Friday, February 5th at 4pm.

Bring your favorite victory food and beverages to share as we celebrate the inclusion of the three stations at Western, Hamline, and Victoria into the Central Corridor LRT project.

Also feel free to bring your favorite music and a story to share.

Not to be missed! See you there!

In case you missed the news reports, here are details from Joan Vanhala, Coalition Organizer, Alliance for Metropolitan Stability:

The 3 stations at Western, Victoria, and Hamline will be included in the Central Corridor LRT project budget and be built by the completion of the Central Corridor LRT line!!

At a historic press conference at Model Cities with Mayor Chris Coleman, Department of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, Congressman Jim Oberstar, Senator Amy Klobuchar, Congressman Keith Ellison, City Councilmember Melvin Carter, Commissioner Toni Carter, and Commissioner Jim McDonough it was announced that all three stations at Western, Victoria and Hamline will be included and built by the completion of the Central Corridor LRT line.

With the changes at the federal level, the federal government will now match the city of St. Paul’s commitment of $5.2 million, which will pay for two stations. The third station’s funding was pieced together with local funds from the Counties Transit Improvement Board, Ramsey County and the Central Corridor Funders Collaborative and will be matched by federal funds.

DOT Secretary Ray LaHood was quoted as telling the Stops for Us organizers, “You’ve made a difference and we will use you as an example across the country…that if you hang together, have a great project that’s for the people, and work with your delegation, you can make things happen.”

Congratulations to the to the East University Avenue community members, the Stops for Us coalition and supporting partner organizations, and elected officials who worked hard together to make this happen!!

To quote Councilmember Carter’s press release:

This is a HUGE victory, but our work to ensure that this project will serve those of us who chose this community long before light rail, is far from done. I’m glad to know our federal partners understand the importance of this project and its impact on our community, and I look forward to our continued work together to:

  • Mitigate the loss of on-street parking;
  • Help small businesses survive construction; and
  • Ensure that we will build our future here by supporting our diverse set of residents and businesses, not by allowing them to be displaced.

UABA, AEDA, University United and U-Plan Move in Together

Community members turned out for opening of new center.

Community members turned out for opening of new center.

By Jake Kulju

September 22, 2009 may have seemed like any other day, but on University Avenue, it was a day of celebration. Hundreds of people gathered for free food, entertainment and speeches from local politicians, including a welcome from mayor Chris Coleman, at the new Community Solutions Center at 712 University Ave.

The event marked the grand opening of the center, a joint effort of the University Avenue Business Association (UABA), the Asian Economic Development Association (AEDA), University UNITED and U-Plan.

The open house was held from 3 to 6 p.m., with a welcome by the mayor and program beginning at 4:30 p.m. Special guests included City Council members Russ Stark and Melvin Carter III, County Commissioners Toni Carter and Janice Rettman, state Reps. Alice Hausman, Erin Murphy, Phyllis Kahn and Cy Thao and state Sens. Mee Moua and Dick Cohen.

Several large tents spanned the parking area in front of the new Community Solutions Center, covering tables full of free food from local businesses. Food and beverages were provided by Abundant  Catering, China One, Chindian, Mai Village, Ngon Vietnamese Bistro, Saigon Restaurant, Shuang Hur Supermarket and SugaRush.

The grand opening of the center was sponsored by US Bank, Update Company, Impressive Print, Lao Family Community and Lifetrack Resources.

City Councilman Russ Stark, right, speaks with a constituent at the grand opening.

City Councilman Russ Stark, right, speaks with a constituent at the grand opening.