HRDC Director’s Association Response to Governor’s Housing Task Force

Logo for the partnership between HRDC and Community Action Partnership.

October 14, 2022

Dear Members of the Governor’s Housing Task Force,

We are reaching out as the 10 Community Action agencies of Montana to provide feedback to your draft report. We thank you for your service on the Task Force and your efforts to develop recommendations to improve the lives of all Montanans.

The Association confirms and applauds the recommendations and urgency included in Section 1B pertaining to increasing the supply of housing, more specifically, the utilization of ARPA funds to subsidize large-scale development projects that are building affordable or workforce housing, expansion of uses of the Coal Trust to provide deeper investment in the State’s Housing fund and Housing Trust Fund, and developing a Montana State Tax Credit Program. Further, the Association recommends fast-tracking the ability to project base Housing Choice Vouchers to help address the under-utilization of DOC programming. These sorts of tools are vital to addressing affordability in our communities.

We believe that public-private partnerships are not just about allocating capital and removing barriers, but rather they find success when there is an interest from all parties in the well-being of the communities and residents they serve. Public-private partnerships have proven to be very effective when layered with appropriate accountability measures (i.e. deed restrictions, affordability periods, etc). It is imperative that any allocation of capital or incentive be appropriately tied to an affordability equivalent to ensure that the task force’s objectives are realized.

We cannot, however, support recommendations that completely usurp local government control on zoning, lot sizes, ADUs, and other housing development processes. Municipalities have been critical partners in the development of affordable housing and often generate innovative and unique opportunities that work for their individual communities. We believe that these recommendations can help local governments identify areas where they can relax regulations and increase supply but should not be mandated at the state level.

From homelessness to homeownership, our agencies are actively addressing and stand ready to address housing needs for every community across Montana. On behalf of our many organizations, thank you again for your service and considering our feedback to the recommendations.


Katie Mclain signature.

Katie McLain
Executive Director
Montana HRDC Director’s Association

City Director Organization Phone Email
Billings Denise Jordan HRDC District 7 406-247-4732
Bozeman Heather Grenier HRDC 406-587-4486
Butte Margie Seccomb Action Inc 406-533-6855
Glendive Clint Wynne Action for Eastern MT 406-377-3564
Great Falls Karla Seaman Opportunities Inc 406-761-0310
Havre Carilla French HRDC IV 406-265-6743
Helena Lori Ladas Rocky Mountain Development Council 406-457-7314
Kalispell Tracy Diaz Community Action Partnership of NW MT 406-752-6565
Lewistown Cathy Seilstad HRDC 6 406-535-7488
Missoula Ruth Burke Human Resource Council 406-728-3710
State-wide Katie McLain Montana HRDC Director’s Association 406-223-0112
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Brooke Poole

Public Sector

Since 2015, Brooke has been working with Allergan Aesthetics, Body Contouring. In 2018, Brooke began her role as Senior Manager of Training. Brooke graduated with a Bachelor’s of Science in Commercial Photography from Appalachian State University in 2011.

Brooke began her role on our Board in 2019. However, she feels it’s more fitting to say that she gets to serve on our Board. For Brooke, an evening at our Fork & Spoon was her first glance into our organization’s powerful work. As Brooke states, joining the Board has only expanded her appreciation for the caliber of people leading our mission and the impact of our vast ecosystem of services. While metrics alone are impressive, Brooke likes to visualize each number as an individual example of support – an extension of a helping hand, a moment of relief – given to one of our neighbors. She is grateful for the opportunity to participate in shaping HRDC’s future.

Although Brooke spends most of her volunteer time with HRDC, she was fortunate enough to build with Habitat for Humanity over the course of the summer in 2020. Her favorite place to spend time is anywhere under the Big Sky, although Hyalite may be her favorite place on Earth.

Ron Brey

Public Sector

Ron served as Bozeman’s Assistant City Manager from 1990 to 2008. After retiring, Ron joined our Board in 2011. Ron received his Bachelor of Arts in History from the University of Montana in 1977, and his Masters in Science in Rural, Town, and Regional Planning from the University of Montana in 1987.

During his time with the City of Bozeman, Ron saw the important role that HRDC has played in our community. Ron has seen that HRDC provides necessary social services to assure that all Bozeman residents could obtain housing, food, training, employment and the other necessities of life. He also came to understand that HRDC was always able to respond immediately as new community needs arose. Ron believes that the dedication, hard work, and compassion of HRDC’s staff make it a real honor to serve on the Board.

Ron also serves on the Trails, Open Space and Parks Committee for the City of Bozeman, and as a volunteer with the Red Cross. One of Ron’s favorite activities is walking his beloved dog every day, enjoying many of Bozeman’s trails and parks, like Burke Park, Bozeman Creek, and the Hyalite and Mount Ellis areas. Ron and his wife Claire enjoy spending their days with family, friends, and time outdoors.