Music Club: Blackberry Smoke covers Petty

Sioux Falls City Council Agenda, Oct 23, 2018

City Council Informational Meeting • 2 PM

I guess they are going to start the meeting off with a shotgun and go into executive session right away, than onto more planned city initiated annexations (they just won’t give up).

City Council Joint meeting with Minnehaha County Commission • 5 PM

The ‘Wedding Barn’ zoning is back (ironically so close to Halloween) and it looks like there is more sidewalk changes to county property. (click to enlarge)

Stormland TV Censors congressional candidates at debate because of $$$

Wow. I guess KELO-TV just went and flat out said it;

5) In addition to the requirements of Sections 1-4 inclusive, a candidate for a state or federal office must have reported, on official forms filed with the appropriate election authority, accepting at least $50,000 in monetary, as opposed to in-kind, campaign contributions, at least 25 percent of which must be raised from in-state constituents.  For local offices, a candidate must have reported, on official forms filed with the appropriate election authority, having accepted at least $15,000 in campaign contributions.

This is the reason why 3rd party candidates NEVER stand a chance, because the media essentially shuts them out because they don’t spend ad dollars with them. Call that a conspiracy theory all you want, but there is a little truth in it, a least a few years ago. A TV media salesperson told me a few years ago, “It’s NO secret we charge the political candidates more during the last throws of the campaign than we do our regular clients, because we give them the best rotation.”

As a person who works in direct mail and has worked on MANY winning local races the place I work for charges the normal rate. The only thing we require out of the candidates is that we treat them with normal turnaround times like our other clients and that they pay COD.

What is frustrating is that candidates like George Hendrickson has a lot to say. I had a very engaging conversation with George at the PRIDE festival. He is extremely sharp and is just as much qualified as the major party candidates. He would have been great in the debate as well as Mr. Wieczorek and he probably would have not worn faded tan socks at the debate like Bjorkman did 🙁

No surprise coming from Stormland TV’s GM, Jay Huizenga, who was personal friends with our former mayor, and would invite him to the station’s Christmas party and would go with him to Packer’s games in private box seats. I guess George and Ron need to give up some NFL tickets to be able to participate in the debates.

We will NEVER see a change in DC as long as we have a complicit local media that censors certain candidates.

Keystone XL Pipeline Protests

So a South DaCola foot soldier sent me an interesting email today;

Just a thought, this might come home quicker than we think. I would guess that our PD and firefighters will offer to fill in when the protests start. I’m guessing that we still pay and insure them when they volunteer.

What do you think as a taxpayer about that?

Trains in the Hood – Photos by Chuck Luden

I saw this the other day by my house in the NEW switching and storage yard by my house. I was going to snap some photos, but Chuck beat me to it;

Good morning,

Here’s a couple recent photos taken near your place.

It shows military tracked cranes.

In my love of trains, seeing military equipment on rail cars is an added bonus.

I refer this area south of 14th Street as the south rail yard.

Don’t know what BNSF calls it.

I suspect this area will see more activity after the downtown yard removal.

Yeah, you are not kidding. (click to enlarge)

Is it time Air BNB operators in Sioux Falls start paying a BID tax?

The hotels in Sioux Falls of a certain size have to pay into the BID tax. If you are long term rentals you have to pay taxes. If you are an Air BNB operator you just pay sales taxes;

AirBnB owners must register their property with City Hall as a rental.

Renting out a private residence as a bed and breakfast in Sioux Falls comes with other requirements, including applying for a $250 conditional use permit, making the necessary accommodations for off-street parking, registering with the state health department and filing a site plan of their home with officials.

In 2015, city officials raised a red flag when they found about 30 AirBnBs operating as rentals while breaking the law.

Last year, the San Francisco-based tech company agreed to collect sales tax from South Dakota renters.

But as we are seeing, it is becoming a very lucrative business for those operating it in Sioux Falls. And who can blame them? You make much more money from short term renters AND they are pre-vetted before they stay. In fact Sioux Falls city councilor Erickson and her Realtor husband have continued to expand their Air BNB business since it has been introduced in Sioux Falls.

What do you think? Should there be a separate BID tax for short term renters since they really are NOT supplying housing like long-term renters and are acting more like a hotel.

Amendment W gets some help from Lawrence

Sioux Falls Cell Phone Ban is rearing it’s head again

Oh, Shucks, Sneve beat me to the punch again. I actually heard about this this morning but dilly-dallied and didn’t post about it. He’s a better writer anyway;

City Councilor Janet Brekke this week said she plans to propose new restrictions on the use of cellphones and other electronic devices while behind the wheel in the coming months.

I still really haven’t changed my position on this. If I were on the city council I would vote against the measure. But I think if Brekke gets the whole council involved in helping to shape the ordinance, she will get more buy in, and I see at least 4-5 of them supporting it. If it is a tie though, not sure how the mayor would vote.

I guess I don’t get to worked up about this. I actually am more worried about Christian crosses being painted on snow plows owned by taxpayers. I would follow the ordinance if passed, but here are my issues with it;

• While talking or texting on your cell phone is distracted driving, so is eating, doing your makeup, playing with your dog, etc, etc. Should we ban ALL activity extra-curricular in a vehicle? Well maybe. But guess what, we already have laws for that;

• Reckless or careless driving is already an offense. If it is determined you caused an accident while talking on your cell phone, you can be charged. Should these penalties be stiffer? Should they be felonies with jail sentences attached? YES! But that is a job for our state legislature (if we can just get them to stop worrying about abortion and guns so much).

• It has also been determined through national studies that even hands free cell phone usage in a vehicle is distracting, because it is the conversation that is distracting NOT the actual holding of the device. So how do you remedy that?

• Enforcement is really a pickle. I think our patrol officers have enough to do without trying to see if people are talking on their phones or not.

• Lastly,  I often tell people, there are good drivers and there are bad drivers. No amount of laws will protect us from bad drivers. Ever! I tell young drivers something I learned riding a bike on the streets of Sioux Falls, you must ALWAYS be a defensive driver.

Like I said, I would follow the ordinance if passed, because it would make me a safer driver. But I also think it is just compounding laws that are already on the books.

 

City of Sioux Falls avoids Civil Rights Lawsuit

A frequent commenter at City Council meetings, Sierra Brussard, a transgender woman who talks about crime in our city (prostitution, drugs and gangs) and puts herself out there to track these bad folks down has complained for over a year(?) that the city, has blocked her number.

She finally got wise over the past month and realized that it is a civil rights violation for the city and police department to block her phone number. At Tuesday’s city council meeting she warned the council and mayor that if her phone was NOT unblocked by 9 AM this Friday she would be filing a civil rights lawsuit against them with the help of the ACLU.

Well, the lawyers with the city must have finally got wise and her phone was unblocked yesterday.

While some in the PD find Sierra to be an annoyance, she is actually trying to help the SFPD bust criminals, especially drug dealers and pimps. She has not been very complimentary of the SFPD, and that probably hasn’t helped the situation, but the best way to fix any issue in government is by uncomfortable and sometimes controversial dissent.

I believe Sierra told me she has testified in dozens of trials against these bad dudes. I have often been proud of the work she does trying to get these people off of our streets, it’s a thankless effort for sure. She is very courageous. The city should be helping her in anyway possible to track these yahoos down. Unblocking her phone was the first good move by the city.

We are setting ourselves up for quite a battle

Funny that this story came out today;

Construction on the Keystone XL Pipeline is scheduled to begin next spring in northwestern South Dakota. Officials in the nine counties affected by the pipeline construction are preparing for protests to break out along the route.

If protests become significant, the costs to manage the scenes will first fall on county governments, according to a state law.

Some are concerned that drawn-out protests such as the 7-month encampment of protesters opposed to the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline in North Dakota in 2016 could develop. A large protest could strain the budgets of the mostly rural counties along the Keystone XL route.

In the first of two stories, South Dakota News Watch reporter Bart Pfankuch examines the potential costs and outlines an effort to change the law. Find this story and other in-depth reporting at www.sdnewswatch.org.

I was just telling my barber that the Lakota Sioux tribes are very proud people, and they are going to fight this to the end. What do they have to lose? Really? We have taken everything else from them, all they have left is their dignity and reservation land. Keystone XL is going to have a rude awakening I’m afraid, and President Trump’s decision to allow this pipeline without the builder being responsible for security is going to cost South Dakota taxpayers a lot of money in defense costs. The PUC really needs to stop this before the protests begin. We really don’t need to be giving up our land, resources and capital for a foreign Canadian company to transport oil to shipping ports that send the oil to China.