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Linn County Supervisor Chair Stacey Walker presented Linn County’s accomplishments and future priorities during Linn County’s State of the County address on Wednesday, May 8, 2019, at The Hotel at Kirkwood Center.
During his presentation, Supervisor Walker laid out a vision of government that addresses the hard problems in our communities, and helps as many people as possible along the way.
“The public elected this Board to drive change and lead this county into a brave new future,” Supervisor Walker said. “But along with that mandate, we must also keep in mind county government’s most important role: to provide for the general welfare of our residents. Simply put, we exist to help people and solve problems; and if we perform both of those duties well, we will drive change.”
Walker highlighted Linn County’s accomplishments that include excellent fiscal health; the Dr. Percy and Lileah Harris Building that is scheduled to open later this year; the Dows Farm Agri-Community that will spur economic activity while preserving valued open green space; the new Mental Health Access Center that, once open, will help people experiencing a mental health crisis and divert them from jails or emergency rooms; social justice programs led in part by Linn County, including implicit bias training, the Safe Equitable and Thriving Communities Task Force, and Linn County’s first Expungement and Employment Barriers Resource Clinic.
Looking forward, Walker shared a vision for the future that includes a Fair Chance Hiring campaign for area employers, efforts to address food insecurity, and working with other governments and community partners to develop a program that would make achieving a college education a reality for those students who may not otherwise be able to afford it.
“No great accomplishment has come without the chance of failure and the ominous presence of uncertainty. But we don’t call ourselves leaders because the job is easy and the problems are small. We do this work because it calls on all of us to rise to the challenges of our time,” Walker said.
Linn County premiered three videos during the State of the County presentation that demonstrate how Linn County is helping people, solving problems, and leading change every day.
Watch our We Are Linn County video.
Watch our video about a new Mental Health Access Center planned for Linn County.
Watch our video about the important work of our LIFTS para-transit program.
Read Supervisor Walker's remarks (PDF) as prepared for delivery.
Watch the State of the County address.
The State of the County Luncheon is hosted by the League of Women Voters of Linn County. The event was open to the public.