Mayor Michael Brown Discusses Issues Affecting Grand Forks in State of the City Address

The theme is "dotting the I's," which include infrastructure, innovation, inclusion, and investment

GRAND FORKS, N.D. — Mayor Michael Brown gave his 17th state of the city address. The theme for the speech was “dotting the I’s,” and Brown covered the areas of infrastructure, innovation, inclusion, and investment.

The mayor says with all the growth in the city, including a hospital and downtown development, there will be a $1 billion return in investment.

“That was beyond my wildest dreams to think that, ‘wow, it’s a great place to live in Grand Forks, great time live in Grand Forks,'” Brown said.

“I think it’s great we have such a visionary mayor, with the four I’s he hit on really set some good goals for us,” Collin Hanson, executive director of Evolve Grand Forks, said.

“It’s really fun to see a full year recap of Grand Forks and it’s always really inspiring to hear everything that’s going on in this community and how the city plans to do better as well as a recap of what we did better this year,” Kathryn Kester, executive director of Greater Grand Forks Young Professionals, said.

Some of the progress Mayor Brown highlighted includes improving road conditions and research being done at UND.

He also addresses issues the city will continue work on like substance abuse and child poverty.

Some young leaders say they want to stay in Grand Forks and work with all the innovation that’s happening as the city grows.

“We’re seeing that shift, we used to emigrate our young, now we’re emigrating young people,” Brown said.

Hanson says he wanted to leave Grand Forks but says the community investing in him inspired him to stay.

“We’re demonstrating if we invest in people and students, they’re going to invest back in the community,” he said.

“Young people being involved in local government is super important because they’re the future of the city and they’re going to be the ones that hopefully stick around and having them make decisions will keep them here longer,” Kester said.

Brown was first elected mayor in 2000.

Categories: Local News, North Dakota News, Politics / Elections