Senator Bigham Participates in Groundbreaking Ceremony for State-of-the-Art Public Safety Facility in Cottage Grove

Senator Karla Bigham (DFL-Cottage Grove) today participated in a groundbreaking ceremony for a new 41,000-square-foot public safety training facility in Cottage Grove. She is the chief author of a bill that provided $9.5 million in state financing for the project (Senate File 2645).

Scheduled to open in late 2019 or early 2020, the Health and Emergency Response Occupations (HERO) Center is a joint project between Cottage Grove and Woodbury that will improve local public safety by providing state-of-the-art training for police officers, firefighters, and paramedics. A video with more information about the project is available here.

“Cottage Grove Mayor Myron Baily, Woodbury Mayor Mary Giuliani Stephens, and our local public safety departments did an outstanding job setting the vision for the HERO Center and turning it into a reality,” said Sen. Bigham. “State government is contributing $9.5 million toward construction costs, which takes enormous pressure off of local property taxpayers to pay for the facility. I look forward to returning to celebrate the HERO Center’s grand opening, touring the facility, and learning about its impact first-hand from our brave police officers, paramedics, and firefighters.”


The Legislature’s $9.5 million contribution towards financing was part of a larger capital investment bill signed into law earlier this year. The public construction package includes other investments in regional public safety infrastructure, including a $6.2 million grant to build a Safety and Mental Health Alternative Response Training (SMART) Center for Dakota County. The center will serve as a centrally located regional hub and provide training space for the Minnesota Crisis Intervention Team as well as provide a central location for other public safety resources. Construction of the SMART Center is scheduled to begin sometime in 2019.


Senator Karla Bigham
Karla Bigham represents District 54 in the southeast Twin Cities metro, including parts of Dakota and Washington counties.

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