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Public meetings scheduled to discuss Gallatin County employee housing

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GALLATIN MEDIA CENTER

BOZEMAN – Join Gallatin County and HRDC to discuss the future of the county-owned property north of the Gallatin Rest Home in Bozeman.

There are two meeting options:

  • Monday, May 23 – 6:30-8 p.m. – in person at Bozeman High School’s north cafeteria
  • Wednesday, May 25 – 6:30-8 p.m. – virtually on Zoom at us06web.zoom.us/j/83226367536

Gallatin County has contracted with HRDC to help come up with plans for how to develop a portion of a nearly 10-acre property the county owns in Bozeman, between Durston Road and Oak Street, directly north of the Gallatin Rest Home. County commissioners are seeking to use a portion of that property for future employee housing and daycare.

The public is invited to hear an update on the project, and provide feedback and ideas to the county.

The project is currently in the engagement phase. HRDC surveyed county employees to help determine housing and childcare needs, and held town hall meetings with dozens of employees in April to provide updates and solicit feedback. These public meetings with neighbors in the area are another step in the public engagement process.

The rest home property development is one of a number of ways the Gallatin County Commission is working to create employee housing opportunities and help ease the burden of high housing costs in our area. The Gallatin County Commission recognizes housing is an issue for current and prospective employees and is actively trying to address it in different ways.

The county recently put out a request for competitive bids seeking 3-year master leases with area landlords for residential units the county could sublet to employees. The county received no responses to the request. However, commissioners are continuing to work on other ways to secure some rentals for employee housing.

In the short-term, commissioners have also worked to improve pay and benefits for current employees. At the beginning of the ongoing budget cycle, commissioners opted to provide wage increases and one-time bonuses to employees for fiscal year 2023, which will begin July 1.

And in the last couple years, additional policies that were put into place include paid parental leave, tuition assistance, and remote work and flexible work policies.

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