Entries Tagged 'Code Enforcement' ↓

City Junk Truck sits in park for over 3 weeks

Funny, as a homeowner you are not allowed to have non-operable vehicles in front of your house or in your driveway, but apparently the city can just park them in a park (Frank Olson) for weeks at a time. Maybe someone should call code enforcement. Oh, that’s right, the city doesn’t have to follow it’s own rules.

Sioux Falls Planning Director, Mike Cooper, a long time ‘Art Historian’

We are often told by the city councilors at meetings how talented are city staff is. Some of them have multiple skills.

Just look at Mike Cooper, not only was he once the Parks Director he got promoted to the Planning Director (which oversees code enforcement).

He apparently has a knack for art history, especially African inspired abstract impressionism and American Folk/Street art.

When he was the Parks Director he determined that the Mural on the horse barn by Ethiopian artist, Eyob Mergia, was NOT a mural, but a ‘large painting’ (like there is a difference) therefore it could remain without the approval of the Visual Arts Commission.

Recently, under his direction, the code enforcement office has determined that Mr. Bendo was NOT advertising, but ‘ART’ so he could have a pipe in his hand. He also made this determination without consulting the Visual Arts Commission once again.

Is Mr. Bendo art? Or is he a sign? I would go with neither on this one. While called a ‘street sculpture’ I would say this is more of ‘decoration’ than anything. He is a mass produced fiberglass sculpture that could be determined kitsch, folk or Americana, but if I had to make a determination if he was more a Michelangelo or more like the McDonald’s golden arches, I would go with the arches.

Let’s just be honest here. The code enforcement office looked like fools and they were trying to save face, so they backed out on their decision without admitting ignorance by using Cooper’s old trick, ‘It’s art’ excuse.

So the next time code enforcement says your junk truck can’t be parked in your driveway, or your grass is too long, just look at them and say ‘It’s Art’.

 

City’s Code Enforcement Office has highest per capita of geniuses in city hall

After it was recently decided that Mr. Bendo ‘could’ still hold an unusually small pipe in his hand by the city’s code enforcement office, something else came to realization,

“We just thought, WOW, another decision that had to be overturned by the code enforcement office. They really are the smartest people working in city government,” commented Bill Da’Tool, HR Director.

Unlike the Public Works department that must depend on engineering numbers and science or the IT department that has to depend on complicated software coding, it seems the code enforcement office is content with just pulling rules and regulations right out of their asses, than over turning the decisions later, either based on how the wind is blowing that day or by direction of the SD Supreme Court who has consistently found them to be unconstitutional.

Da’Tool continues, “Of course, second place for geniuses was the traffic control department. Even with millions of dollars in camera equipment, software and plush new offices, they still make you sit at a light for 5 minutes with no cars coming in either direction.”

Retaining wall at 300 North Duluth Avenue still not fixed

A South DaCola foot soldier told me this retaining wall fell down months ago and still nothing has been done to clean it up let alone start to rebuild it. The stone wall fell onto city property and now the area is blocked off with plastic fence. They have school kids needing to walk to school in about three weeks. We also have winter weather coming. I think it would be interesting to hear just where this is with the city. Remember the city was warned that this wall would probably fall over and did nothing to stop it, now they are doing nothing to fix it. I guess they are more concerned about making sure a hotel is built downtown.

Don’t think our sign regs in Sioux Falls are ridiculous?

Last year I found out that you cannot hang a sign on a business unless you are a certified sign installer with the city (There is a yearly licensing fee) And this isn’t just signs that require electrical hookup, this is any permanent sign. A downtown business owner told me that after having one of his employees make a custom wood sign for his business (no electrical or lighting) he was NOT allowed to hang it himself, he had to pay a certified sign installer to bolt it to his building. I guess drilling a couple of holes and holding a level requires a special license.

(Image: Siouxfalls.business)

Now the city is considering a pipe in a statue’s hand as a ‘sign’

Initially, city officials told him that according to zoning rules there wasn’t sufficient square footage on the property for the addition of the fiberglass statue. He hired a lawyer to work through that issue, but he couldn’t get the city to budge on another one: Mr. Bendo will go up without the pipe in his hand because that makes him a sign and the business already has one.

“I’ve never heard anything so dumb in my life,” Wallenstein said.

That’s because code enforcement under Former Mayor Bowl Cut & Buck Teeth didn’t want to allow people to have anything that looked out of place or to kitsch. That’s why people were getting tickets for 8.5″ grass, including a city councilor.

Some on FB have suggested they dress up Mr. Bendo. One person said they should make him into a Pirate. I have suggested they make a giant dress for him and have him in drag. Or put a bullwhip in his hand and a bondage ball in his mouth. Let’s see what code enforcement says than?

Moving Sale?

5/17/2018 (c) southdacola.com

UPDATE on Unresponsive Bidders

On the Sioux Falls City Council agenda, Item#2 for Tuesday’s meeting has more details on what disqualifies bidders. Here is the full Doc; BID-Dis

I highlighted the items that ‘could’ apply to Legacy and Hultgren;

City to hold bake sale to help fund notepads and pens

The city announced this today;

The City said because of Falls Park’s popularity, a loss control consultant contracted by the South Dakota Public Assurance Alliance (SDPAA) evaluates the park with a risk manager annually.

These reports, which were done orally, were completed in 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015, and 2017.

I called Central Services Director Sue QuanBeckBabbaling and asked why NO one with the city’s risk department, fire department, police department or parks department didn’t take notes during these ‘ORAL’ reviews.

She replied, “I know, kind of embarrassing isn’t it? To tell you the truth, the city just forgets to budget for pens and notepads each year for staff. That is why this year we are offering a solution by having a bake sale at city hall to fund these necessary office items.”

I wondered with all the other ‘expensive’ things the city spends it’s budget on, how such a oversight could happen. Tracy Turncoat the city’s finance director said this,

“Well, I thought we had the budget shortfall handled once we implemented the rule that city employees must bring their own bathroom tissue to work and making it SOP for SFPD officers to do their duty at McDonalds. But it just couldn’t shore up the shortfall enough.”

He did however tell me that they will see some cost savings once the notepads can be donated, “We will be spending less on chalk in the engineering department.”

Just when you think your city is doing fine financially, the little things rear their heads.

The sale will occur this Friday from 9 AM-4 PM, and for an extra dollar per cupcake the mayor will personally lick the frosting off the top.*

*Sorry, no refunds if you have a gag reflex.

Why is the City of Sioux Falls Code Enforcement ignoring obvious Junkyard?

There was some interesting things that came out of Angela’s story;

The City’s own definition of a junkyard: includes any land used for the “storage, wrecking, dismantling, salvage, collection, processing, purchase, sale or exchange of abandoned and discarded vehicles.”


Junkyard Definition according to Sioux Falls City Ordinance:      

JUNKYARD: Any lot, land, parcel, or portion thereof used for the storage, wrecking, dismantling, salvage, collection, processing, purchase, sale, or exchange of abandoned or discarded vehicles, goods, waste, and scrap materials including but not limited to two or more abandoned or inoperable motor vehicles, glass, tires, appliances, machinery or automotive and mechanical parts. A JUNKYARD does not include operations entirely enclosed within buildings.

If it walks like a duck . . .

However in 2012, Circuit Court Judge Stuart Tiede ruled that IAA did operate as a junkyard when the owner wanted to add a location near Crooks. Tiede overturned a Minnehaha County Commission decision to allow a permit for the operation as something “other” than a junkyard.

Tiede wrote in his decision: “The wrecking or dismantling of motor vehicles is not required in order for the use to a salvage or junk yard.”

Imagine that, another judge disagreeing with local government.

Angela Kennecke: Is the City taking regular inventory reports?
Tobias: No, At this point in time we’re not and what I can say from our perspective is that there are no violations on site at this time.

Uh, wrong answer. If you are NOT taking inventory how do you know there isn’t any violations? Funny how code enforcement in this city, using snow gates and planning and zoning depends on who you are NOT what you are. It’s a poor neighborhood so who cares about the rats and junk. Maybe they can put up another Bishop Dudley House up there.

Another falling wall after city building services department was warned

Here we go again, except this time, fortunately no one died.

The city building department was warned several times about a possible wall collapse, and ignored it;

In a string of emails between her and Warrington, Roti expressed her concerns, repeatedly asking whether a structural engineer had looked at the wall.

Warrington assured Roti and several others included on the email — multiple times over two months — that the situation was being handled appropriately.

One thing I have heard from a lot of contractors and citizens during this latest campaign season is that the city employees need to get better at customer service. Whether that is police, fire, code enforcement or building services.

The next mayor needs to support a renewed agenda of bringing customer service back to city hall, before more people die or get hurt.