Entries Tagged 'Christine Erickson' ↓

Two Sioux Falls City Councilors supporting troublesome school bond issue

Councilors Kiley and Erickson have joined the drum beat of public officials who are encouraging people to vote yes for the school bond issue. It is well within their 1st Amendment rights to voice their opinions. What is troublesome though is that we have elected officials who support not only a dubious election but a very wasteful bond loan. For every $3 we put towards this in tax dollars over $1 goes towards interest and bond investors. Over a $100 million of tax dollars that will never be spent on education.

Another city councilor has worked behind the scenes to try to get the election to use ALL of the precincts, no E-Poll books and have the vote be electronically counted by the Minnehaha County Auditor. Their request fell on deaf ears.

The E-Poll books failed in the primaries because the company that created them no longer services them (Hart Interactiv) and another company, B-Pro has stepped in to try to get them to work. If the E-Poll books don’t work properly there is no way of knowing if people voted multiple times, and if they are hand counted, there is no way of knowing if ballots have been tampered with.

While the election process and extreme waste of tax dollars is troubling in itself, it upsets me even more that we have two public officials promoting this.

Talk about a lack of fiscal responsibility and democratic principles.

AirBnB mysteriously changes from Bed & Breakfast zoning to short term rentals

Short term rental or short term friendship with the mayor?

First off, I agree with the city, a ‘short term rental’ like AirBnB should be just that, a rental. For it to be considered a Bed & Breakfast it has to have a ‘service’ kitchen that serves food to the renters that needs to be inspected by the health department. Since it does not, it is pretty much like any other apartment, but just for a shorter time. But this could ruffle the feathers of your homeowner neighbors who ARE not short term renters.

The rules seem simple. The state requires a tax license;

Beginning Sept. 1, Airbnb will begin collecting and remitting state and municipal taxes on all eligible bookings in South Dakota.

The City of Sioux Falls requires rental registration;

Short Term rental properties (such as Airbnb, VRBO, etc.)

This all makes sense, taxes paid, registrations in check.

But here is where it gets a little ‘sticky’ and all that ‘transparency’ thingy a lot of council candidates like to talk about lately. This story from 2015 paints another picture;

“A bed and breakfast requires a Conditional Use Permit and approval of the Planning Commission for that permit to be approved,” said Shawna Goldammer, Sioux Falls Zoning Enforcement Manager.

Goldammer says an Airbnb is considered a bed and breakfast. Chances are, Airbnb hosts are unknowingly operating illegally.

“What the ordinance does for us in Shape Places makes residential residential. So when you live in a residential area under a residential zoning district, you can expect residential in your neighborhood,” said Goldammer.

Like I said at the beginning, I don’t consider short term rentals a bed and breakfast. What I take issue with is that after Shape Places passed and Goldammer made these statements, somehow the rules disappeared into the night without any action from the city council . . . that I can find.

What is also very interesting is that council candidate and incumbent, Christine Erickson’s main business is ‘short term rentals’ and AirBnB. Please tell me the rules didn’t change quietly in the night after a secret handshake with our mayor and code enforcement?

The irony of this is that Erickson could have had a very public debate about it, and would have probably won and got citizen support. Or maybe not. Would you want to own a home next to a short term rental in a residential neighborhood? I have renters in my neighborhood, I don’t take issue with it, but it’s not a revolving door either.

I would really like to know how these rules just magically change when it affects a city councilor’s business and a mysteriously renewed friendship with the mayor.

Kind of like the Downtown Parking ramp deal, Erickson got a little back peddling to do.

Dem Forum; At-Large ‘B’ Candidate Forum, Erickson & Weiland

Notice later on in the debate how Erickson tries to blow off her involvement with the Downtown parking ramp. She mentions that Hultgren is no longer involved and Lamont properties is in charge.

Hmmmmm.

When Erickson sat on the SECRET RFQ (Request for Qualifications) Committee, she picked Legacy, ran by Norm Drake and Aaron Hultgren. When she voted for the Parking Ramp, it was being developed by Legacy, Norm and Aaron (no mention of Lamont). When it was found out that Norm, Aaron and company were dragging illegal asbestos across our city and being criminally investigated, Erickson voted AGAINST the repeal.

Don’t let Christine fool you, she was all in from the beginning with Norm and Aaron, and she continues to support a private/public partnership with a company that is being sued in civil court and criminally investigated by the Feds.

There ain’t no splaining that will get you out of that.

Marty Jackboots to make a campaign stop at the Sioux Falls City Council Public Services meeting

I heard yesterday that Marty will be making the presentation to the council on Tuesday to talk about crime and drugs. I’m sure it has NOTHING to do with running for Governor.

It was sure nice of Councilor Erickson to invite our AG to campaign at Carnegie. The rumor in Republican circles she is on Jackboots ‘short list’ for possible Lt. Governor. First he has to beat Noem.

Erickson-Selberg proposal does little to help the contract approval process

I guess it is time the vice-chair of the Sioux Falls city council, Christine Erickson shows a little leadership now that she has a challenger;

City Councilors Christine Erickson and Marshall Selberg plan to introduce an ordinance that will require the mayor to open up facility management contract drafts for public inspection no fewer than seven days before councilors are asked to vote on them.

While the proposal isn’t completely worthless (it does let the public see contracts a week longer) it does NOTHING to help the council get involved with policy decisions;

That means if City Hall wants to renew a contract or enter a new one to authorize a third-party to run a city-owned facility, the proposed contract will need to be posted online a week in advance of an official hearing.

The idea comes just weeks after the Council was asked to approve a new golf course management contract that councilors had limited time to review.

The major problem with the golf contract wasn’t the timeframe that it was dropped on council, it was the fact the council had little or nothing to do with the decision to change over to a management agreement. As councilor Neitzert pointed out, the council should have been able to negotiate that policy change, and that change should have been approved by them before it made the RFP.

It is no surprise the mayor doesn’t have a problem with Erickson’s proposal;

In an email Friday, Huether said while his finance staff is meeting with councilors to further vet the proposal, he’s inclined to support it.

Of course he supports it, first off he has one foot out the door, and secondly, as I mentioned above, it does nothing to give the council negotiating powers when it comes to policy changes, even though they are the ones that should be setting policy.

Lastly, who cares if the Mayor supports it or not? That has been the major problem with the council over the past 8 years, their fear of what MMM thinks.

Sioux Falls City Councilor Erickson on KSOO 1000 AM TODAY, 4 PM

She will be talking about her re-election bid. The phone lines will be open, 338-KSOO (5766) so get your questions in. I would like some people to question Erickson on her votes for the golf contract, the DT parking ramp and why she chose Legacy when she sat on the RFQ committee. I would also like to see some questions about why Erickson has supported property tax rate increases and water rate increases while serving on the city council. The Christine we elected is NOT the Christine we have now.

Sioux Falls City Councilors Kiley and Erickson need opponents

 

It’s time to wipe these two faces from the city website after May 2018.

After the recent votes on the golf contract and parking ramp it is becoming more and more obvious councilors Christine Erickson (at-large) and Rick Kiley (SE) need opponents.

Kiley has always been a strong supporter of the mayor and his policies of secret government. But it seems Erickson has lost her way. It all seem to have happened when her and the mayor had their ‘special’ meeting when she became elected vice-chair. Some kind of handshake deal was made because a lot of people are wondering what happened to the old Christine that supported things like FREE bus rides for kids and opposed the city administration building. That ship has apparently sailed after signing a deal with the devil, or should I say dictator.

Unfortunately NO one has stepped up to run against these two. Clara Hart has decided to stay in the already crowded at-large position that Rolfing is leaving vacant (Paulson and Brekke are also running in that race).

There has been some talk about a possible challenger to Kiley (if not two) but I am still waiting for a challenger to Erickson.

We truly need a significant change in city government coming May, and I think we not only need to replace the mayor and any candidates with his philosophies (Entenman and TenHaken) we need four new fresh faces on the city council.

I encourage people to oppose Kiley and Erickson, they are beatable, you just have to expose their voting records that support a more closed and non-transparent government. Step up, your city needs you!

Sioux Falls City Council Race mash-up

The city council races are starting to come together, but there are still some unknowns and variables.

Currently the Central District has three running in the race. I won’t rule out that more could get in that race, but probably unlikely.

Retired Firefighter and Insurance Salesman, Curt Soehl. I don’t know a whole lot about Curt, but what I have read on his FB page is that he was very pro-Huether and approved of his accomplishments and leadership style, which is unfortunate.

Thor Bardon. I believe Thor works in banking. Thor’s platform is workforce development and other social issues in our community.

Local art promoter and business owner, Zach DeBoer. Zach is heavily involved with the downtown culture and development.

At-Large has 3 candidates, but that could change.

John Paulson, former Sanford Executive and Planning Commission member who lost to Theresa Stehly in the last election will probably run the same ‘everything is wonderful and great in Sioux Falls’ campaign.

Janet Brekke, who is a former city attorney and currently a private attorney is challenging Paulson. I don’t know a lot about Janet, but I think we will learn more in the coming weeks since she has formerly announced.

Clara Hart has said she will run in the At-Large, but she could just as easily challenge Rick Kiley to get out of a crowded At-Large race (which may get more crowded). Clara lives in his SE district and may have a better chance in a two person race, and avoid a run-off.

As I said, Kiley has announced he will run for a 2nd term and has no challengers currently, I hope that changes.

Erickson hasn’t announced whether she is running for a 2nd term or not, she has said she will probably NOT run for mayor. But currently if Erickson did announce, she doesn’t have a challenger. I’m wondering if someone is waiting in the wings until Erickson announces. One of the bigger questions I have been asked over the past couple of weeks has been, “Will Erickson run for a 2nd term to begin with or is she busy trying to recruit someone to run for the seat?”

As you can see, we have about 5-1/2 months until the city election and the council races are still shaping up. Anything could change at this point.

Chamber to host a TIF informational

I find the statement ‘TIF itself can be rather complex and confusing’ a little comical. TIFs are not complicated. They are basically a property tax rebate to private development. Funny how I could explain that in one sentence. Where it gets confusing and frustrating is when they hand this rebate to extremely successful and wealthy free enterprise private developers for property that isn’t blighted OR above and beyond what that blight is costing them to develop. It is also a little ironic that TIF recipients are often big campaign donors to the elected officials who authorize the TIFs. It’s a blatant conflict of interest, corruption and corporate welfare. It’s time we end TIFs. They don’t benefit the common citizen in any way. A better program would be more low interest or no interest community development loans to landlords who want to provide working class affordable housing. Read all about it;

Dear Community Leader,

You are invited to join Lt. Gov. Matt Michels and other state and local leaders in learning more about an economic development tool called Tax Increment Financing (TIF). TIF is a development incentive primarily used locally to redevelop blighted areas and grow the local economy. TIF is a useful economic development tool intended to attract private investment and new businesses, which in turn means more jobs, more customers, and a growing tax base. When used correctly, the benefit to our community seems to be straightforward—however, TIF itself can be rather complex and confusing.

With that in mind, we would like to take the opportunity to invite you to an informational “TIF Forum”. During this event, you will hear from:

*   Lieutenant Governor, Matt Michels
*   Secretary of the Department of Revenue, Andy Gerlach
*   Department of Revenue’s Director of Property Special Taxes, Mike Houdyshell
*   City Council Vice Chair, Christine Erickson.
This is an opportunity to simply learn more about TIF, how it works, and ask any questions you might have. We hope you will consider attending this event.

Tax Increment Financing Forum
Sioux Falls Area Chamber of Commerce- Betty J. Ordal Room
Monday, Nov. 13, 2017
3:00-5:00 p.m.

We kindly ask you to RSVP by responding to this email no later than Monday, Nov. 13th at noon. With limited seating available in the Chamber’s conference room, this event will be restricted to the first 45 people to RSVP.

Thank you,

Teresa Schreier
Public Affairs and Communications Assistant
Sioux Falls Area Chamber of Commerce
200 N. Phillips Ave., Suite 200
PO Box 1425 | Sioux Falls, SD 57101-1425
P 605.373.2050 | F 605.336.6499

Super Majority for bonding in Sioux Falls is great idea!

I might even add, that Councilor Erickson’s idea is way past due;

Erickson hopes to raise the bar on borrowing money by requiring a “super majority” on the Council. She says that if a project can’t get six of eight votes, it’s not worthy.

All other state governments require this majority for bonding. If this would have been in place when the Administration building was being debated, it would have failed.

Right now, the city is paying down eight sales tax revenue bonds, including ones that financed the administration building, the Denny Sanford Premier Center, and the tax increment financing bond that covered the removal of the former Zip Feed Mill in downtown Sioux Falls.

Also ironically if the Events Center vote would have been a LEGAL bonding vote instead of an ADVISORY VOTE, the bond sale would have failed (would have required 60% of the vote).