Entries Tagged 'Charter Revision Commission' ↓

Charter Revision Commission has first meeting of 2019

Local Attorney, Justin Smith was elected chair, and no surprise. He ran the meeting with an iron fist and made sure everyone was following procedures and gave extensive commentary to why policy and procedures should be followed. This is no surprise, as I told someone after the meeting, Smith made sure that the CRC last time around put nothing on the ballot, he was afraid that if something got on the ballot it ‘might pass’. Like a typical attorney, it was clear to me from this first meeting that Smith was building the case early to keep stuff off the ballot that may benefit the public. I’m not saying he won’t approve some minor language changes, but those likely will come from the administration.

During the meeting, councilor Neitzert spoke and told them to take their time on the salary increases for mayor and council (as if he was appointed by the rest of the city council to speak on their behalf) Well, he kind of is the self-appointed leader of the RS5. I’ve noticed several councilors depend on Neitzert’s research so they can hobble through the meetings while watching baseball games and texting their plumber or babysitter.

Another gentleman spoke at the end during public input, having several requests. One was to have a super majority for bonding (which I agree with). Smith asked him what would that threshold be ($$$)? The person said they could discuss later. IMO, there is no ‘threshold’. If the city council has to approve borrowing money, whether that is $20 or $20 million, it should have a super majority.

New CRC member, Anne Hajek also asked the public inputer for their street address, which took him off guard. We haven’t been required for several years to give our street address only our name and city we reside. He gave it anyway, though he didn’t have to.

I have lost all hope the CRC will put anything on the ballot accept pissy-ass crap about minor word changes in the charter. The only way to make real change in this city is by carrying a petition, and this time make sure the city clerk looks at it.

Sioux Falls Charter Revision Commission meets next week

This is their first meeting of 2019, so it is just preliminary meeting to go over the agenda for the year. There are some new members this year, but I don’t have much hope things will change since Justin Smith will still be on the Commission reminding the members that we can’t risk putting stuff on the ballot because ‘it could pass’.

The CRC’s job is to make sure something is LEGAL and REASONABLE within the law to put on the ballot when it comes to changes to the charter. Their job is NOT to make educated guesses on whether something will pass or not.

I have a feeling nothing will be put on the municipal ballot in 2020 that is brought forward by councilors or concerned citizens or groups through the CRC. But I guess we will have to wait and see.

Thank God we still have the petition process, the only logical way to get ordinances passed in this town anymore.

Sioux Falls Charter Revision Amendment History

This Document ( Summary of Charter Amendments ) was prepared by the Sioux Falls City Clerk’s office.

As you can see, this last year they approved no charter amendments for the ballot out of 10 proposals. I really think the CRC set a really bad precedent this year based on the ‘sky is falling’ arguments to kill all of the proposals.

Charter Revision Commission finishes 2017 with no items on the ballot

As I have mentioned already, I have been disappointed with the CRC this time around. They have chosen to put no proposed amendments on the ballot for the 2018 spring election. I really felt it was because of pressure and legal mumbo-jumbo from one particular member, Justin Smith, a local attorney who specializes in government relations.

I told them how I felt about their ‘pointless’ meetings during public input this afternoon and told them they wasted their time with these meetings and let down the voters of this city.

I think there was many great amendment proposals, but the CRC chickened out and didn’t think the public should decide. Democracy at it’s worst.

Sioux Falls City Council Agenda, Dec 19, 2017

Sioux Falls City Council Regular meeting

There is NO scheduled informational meeting.

Item#1, Consent Agenda. There are some strange items on the list I just can only speculate on. There is a massive Right of Way acquisition by the city along Ellis road, 12th street to 41st street.

There is also a curious building lease for $43K for vector control. I’m assuming the city is leasing space for safe storage of their highly poisonous and flammable concentrated mosquito control chemicals. I guess there was no room in the new city administration building 🙂

There is also several expenditures for affordable housing.

We are also throwing more money at the Railroads. Apparently they couldn’t squeeze $1,600 out of their $27 Million payout from Federal taxpayers.

Item #31, the city is moving forward borrowing money for storm drainage instead of just paying for it out of reserves, because it is a ‘heckuva’ deal.

Item #36, an ordinance change on essentially tool sheds with the county.

Item #39, A resolution for the new golf course management contract. This is the big one of the night. Rumor has it that the city will probably not buy the used equipment from Dakota Golf Management. The question is, if the city doesn’t buy it, will new equipment have to be purchased and if so, who will pay for it? The taxpayers or the new contractor? I find this disheartening for a couple of reasons. Like the Snowcat groomer at Great Bear, it seems the city has a habit of buying new equipment instead of maintaining what they have that is still useable. At a recent Minnehaha County Commission meeting (FF: 42:50) the commissioners were made aware of a county vehicle that was totaled in an accident (not the county’s fault) and their concern over replacing it because of it’s heavy usage (5 employees share 3 vehicles). Not only was the vehicle 13 years old it was originally a surplus vehicle gifted from the State DOT. If the city would use such prudence with maintaining city equipment we could probably save taxpayers millions each year.

Charter Revision meeting (Dec 20, 2017)

The CRC is in it’s final throws. In this meeting they will discuss increasing councilor’s pay. Like many things presented to the CRC so far, it will probably be thrown out. Erickson had suggested a super majority on the council for major bonds and Neitzert had suggested going back to plurality in council races (essentially letting voters decide how they want THEIR elections to be run). Both ideas were thrown out because they felt the council should change these things instead of the voters (even though ironically two councilors suggested taking it to voters). The whole purpose of having the CRC is to bring sensitive items like this to the voters instead of the council. I’m assuming the pay increase will be thrown out to. The CRC has been one of the most useless I have seen in recent history, though members like Sue Aguliar fought hard to put some of these items on the ballot, a new comer Attorney Justin Smith has been very vocal about squashing items and essentially keeping voters out of the legislative process. It’s almost as if Fiddle-Faddle has been sending him telepathic messages during the meetings. Hopefully the next mayor/council removes him from the CRC, he has been very detrimental to the process and the rest of the sheep on the CRC seem to be following him threw the hole in the fence.

Charter Revision Meeting, November 1, 2017

Council members Stehly, Neitzert, Starr and Erickson show how frustrated they are with the authoritarians in charge by speaking up for 2018 Council Charter changes. Joe Kirby and Dale Froehlich speak. Surprised Joe was still in Sioux Falls this late in the year and not at his ‘other’ sunny home. Don’t you love it when tax dodging millionaires tell you how to run your government from their armchairs in other ‘sunny’ states. FF to 15:00

Kirby & Froehlich want to ‘School’ us on the council’s duties

Seems a couple of high rollers in town are a little nervous some councilors are showing some muscle. They are doing the presentation below at the Charter Revision meeting on Wednesday at 4 PM.

They highlighted some interesting parts.

2.01, this makes sense and hasn’t changed since 1995.

2.04, this has changed quite a bit. The council has a large staff working for them now. Three city clerks, an operations manager and a budget analyst. (I would agree this large staff is probably not needed).

5.05, Funny, because every time the council tries to enact legislation or ordinances of their own the mayor intervenes with changes or vetos. Also, they have little to NO input on the budget. They have also been losing control of major RFPs.

If this presentation shows anything, it is that the home rule charter is extremely flawed and NOT working.