Entries Tagged 'SF City Council' ↓

I warned the City of Sioux Falls about the geese problem 20 years ago

And I haven’t stopped telling them about it since. Just last year I told them to eliminate the geese from downtown. Besides the fact that they are mean and chase you, they cover the bike trail from Falls Park to Cliff Avenue in crap. What a great way to welcome visitors to our Multi-Million dollar River Greenway, covered in crap. When I first complained 20 years ago, it was at Covell Lake, and how a group of idiots kept feeding the crap making machines, they didn’t really stop and now we have it city wide. And not just crapping up our parks, it is a safety issue at the Airport.

So you would think after years of warning the city about this, they would take action. Nope, until now;

“They were absolutely fouling the fairways and the greens, making holes in the putting greens on some occasion and then just golfers having to navigate through goose droppings,” Jansa said. “It just kind of reached critical mass this year.”

So I guess when the rich golfers in town complain, than the city does something about it. I think a semi-automatic weapon in the Spring would work wonders, and donate the meat to the Banquet for a Spring Goose Feed, or freeze it and give it to Feeding South Dakota;

About 80 geese were slaughtered and are being processed for food pantry donations. Seven goslings — baby geese — were set free in other locations.

If I want to see that kind of nature I will take a nice country drive. I live in the city for a reason, and it’s not to get crapped on by a bunch of mean, goofy birds.

Huether shows us his grim CIP, he created LEGACY building

The mayor spent 7 years blowing our money on every play palace he could, straddling us with debt for over 20 years, than today he presents us with the crumbs that are left.

Notice in 2013 we spent $68 million in play palaces, in 2017, $6 million.

DOC: CAP-2017

He didn’t seem ashamed one bit that he created this BOOMTOWN that lacks affordable housing, decent wages and has a soaring crime and drug problem.

Steve Hildebrand who helped anoint King Huether, and has since turned away from him, was on the Good Ship Lalley Pop show talking about a possible run for Mayor (I think he is blowing smoke) but he didn’t hold any punches against MMM. He said Mike concentrates too much on telling everything that is positive about Sioux Falls and doesn’t concentrate on the real problems facing SF, like poverty. He also ripped MMM a new one about how idiotic building the Administration Building was.

Does Lalley have a podcast replay?

Street Talk #3: June 25, 2017 – No Mow Policy

The AL did story today about using mediation between neighbors instead of a system of anonymously turning in neighbors for the purpose of being vindictive;

City council members Michelle Erpenbach and Theresa Stehly both see potential in mediation, a process that supplements or sidesteps the courts with negotiation through a third party.

“It takes some of the pressure off of the people that are involved and it creates the opportunities to find out ‘what’s really going on here,’” said Erpenbach. “You can’t force people to be good neighbors, but hopefully we can walk down a path where we can learn to live with each other”

In Dayton, Ohio, there’s a mediation center inside city hall. Larger cities use housing court – which Erpenbach calls “glorified mediation” – as a less adversarial forum to sort disputes between landlords and tenants and deal with code violations.

Stehly thinks a more personal approach could stave off more serious issues in some cases.

“Sometimes when people get boxed in, they’re pigeonholed with their backs against the wall it doesn’t help,” said Stehly, herself a target of overgrown lawn ticketing. Judges in some states won’t set a court date without an attempt at mediation through a third party.

First off, I am a little shocked Theresa and Michelle are in agreement on something (bravo). But they both make a good point. Put our efforts in trying to get along instead of trying to tear each other down.

Now if the city can just figure out how to mow their nasty weeds;

The property across the street from Rick Larsen’s western Sioux Falls home was well kept for most of the 35 years he’s lived there.

But since the city bought the property in 2015, weeds and grass have grown unkempt around the former greenhouse at Madison Street and Harlem Avenue.

The lot has prompted calls to City Hall from neighbors wondering why it’s not being mowed and better maintained.

“Eight inches means eight inches,” Larsen said, referring to the grass length limit spelled out in city ordinance. “The city seems to be the worst slum lord of them all.”

They are a ‘Lord’ alright. Surprised the city didn’t come back and say they don’t have to mow their weeds because they are an ‘Act of God’.

UPDATE: Mayor Huether to give his 2018-2022 Capital Program Presentation on Tuesday

This of course is really just a big waste of time. Nevermind the fact that besides Mike’s VETO power, he really is just a lame duck. But it really has nothing to do with that. Sioux Falls mayors before Huether have had there capital programs squashed in their last year in office, simply because they won’t be around to see it to its fruition. Take that and the fact we could see 2-4 new city councilors come this Spring and any capital program Mike puts forward is pretty much just a very nice wish list, kind of like when your a kid and you want a new bicycle for Christmas and all you get is new underwear.

Lalley also talks today about his very dim political future;

It may also signal something greater: Maybe he’s done with politics altogether.

I realize that seems hard to believe.

Only Mayor Mike knows for sure – and maybe he doesn’t – but looking at the landscape it seems a distinct possibility.

The two-term Sioux Falls mayor can’t run for his current job again.

There just aren’t that many potential political spots out there for someone with his ambition.

Like I said recently, if Huether doesn’t announce something by the end of July, he probably won’t run for higher office and sit it out until the next mayoral election. I do think though that a guy with such a huge ego will take a shot at Governor. Guess we will have to wait and see.

UPDATE: There is also one more factor, Rob Oliver officially retiring and leaving Augie. I believe if Mike runs for Governor, Oliver will chair his campaign, or be closely involved with it. As I understand it, Oliver will not be done at Augie until July.

Bob Kolbe explains why some people speak at Public Input

Sioux Falls City Council Public Input, Bob Kolbe, June 20, 2017

“You know sometimes people like myself come before you and people say why do they always come forward? They always are criticizing and always pointing at things that are not necessarily the highlight of the activity of the city, county or the state. Part of it is because the good things that are done by the people on that side of the bench will take credit and publicize what they feel are the good things and the people on this side of the bench are those who are looking at things and trying to see with joint mutual concern for the city and the county, whatever, that they are trying to make it better.”

REMSA supports transparency, fooled me

All of a sudden Gary Meyers and The Bride of Franken are claiming they are all about transparency, even B-N-B chimes in and says ‘It sounds like you are being transparent’ (Greg had to call a city official the night before for questions to ask Franken and Meyers).

I call BS on both of them, heck, all 3 of them.

Franken has said to councilors and the public in the past when asked to explain the new 980 policies that it was ‘too complicated to explain’ and buried herself in a hole. It is also rumored she was ushered off to Texas for a brief period to learn the NEW system.

Meyers says he has NO idea who Commissioner Barth is, even though Barth sits on the county medical board.

Meyers says you can come to their meetings that they are open, yet they often change the schedule of the meeting at the last minute and REFUSE to have the meetings recorded (with the backing of the mayor) so the public can view them later online or in replay on Channel 16.

As I have told the mayor during public input in the past, saying your transparent and ACTUALLY being transparent are two different things.

Here is a transcript of the show (it gets interesting at about page 8); 2017-06-22-belfrage-show

Sioux Falls City Councilor Erpenbach; We’ll get you coming or going

This kitty likes dry and moist cat food both.

Michelle shows her true colors once again. When the Republicans speak of the ‘Tax and Spend’ Democrats, you only have to point your finger at the wine and cheese peeps in the group, or as I refer to as the ‘elitist’ Dems. Huether was part of the club, and just because he changed his registration doesn’t mean he still doesn’t wear the badge with his bestie Erpenbach.

Last night at the SF City Council meeting they were hearing the 1st reading on the fee increases for zoning applications (Item#32), during the discussion, Stehly said this;

“I will be voting NO on this, I’m committed to affordable living . . . (she was the only one to state this).

Erpenbach quickly responds by saying;

“I encourage my colleagues to vote for this. Continue to require people to pay the fee, that covers our cost, helps keep our taxes down. This is a user fee only.”

In other words, if we can’t nail you when you build, we will get you after it is built. Ironically, it seems Erpenbach supports both ways since she has NEVER voted against a property tax increase in the 7 years she has sat on the council, or for that matter a fee increase. So which is it Michelle. Seems you want your cake, and you want to eat it to.

The Chamber gives their SLANTED view of city government

Nothing like the Chamber Advocate for a little light reading about how the city of Sioux Falls is running like a well oiled machine.

First they would like us to know OUR rights when it comes to Public Input and the 1st Amendment;

However, if a public body agrees to hold public input sessions, then some limited constitutional rights are extended to the speakers. Still, the U.S. Supreme Court has recognized that a public body has the right to put time, manner and place restrictions on speech as long as those restrictions are generally content neutral and serve a governmental purpose. Courts have also noted that the purpose of these meetings, City Council for example, is to conduct city business and not to take public input. That recognized purpose permits the Council to legally restrict public input.

We of course have had this debate here before, and I have come to the realization that the city council CAN restrict public input. I get it. That wasn’t my point. My point is, that IF the city is going to allow Public Input, which they do, then they shouldn’t restrict our 1st Amendment rights during that time period by chastising us for speaking. If you don’t want us to ‘redress our grievances’ than eliminate public input, which I think would be difficult. As pointed out above, these meetings are for the city council to conduct business, a lot of decisions are made, based on input from the public, or at least should be.

In other Advice from the Advocate, they would like us to believe an OPT-OUT by the school district is for our own ‘safety’;

In other words, increasing the opt-out puts a safety net in place and ensures the District is able to provide a high-quality education for all students for years to come.

Make no mistake, if a governmental entity has the power to increase your taxes, they will use that same power to spend that money. Their is no such thing as a ‘safety net’ or ‘savings account’ in government. They WILL spend every last penny that they suck out of us, and you can almost guarantee that $5 million dollar ‘possible’ increase is already spent. The Chamber of course advocates for property tax and regressive increases on food taxes to help fund education because they are protecting members from an income tax.

The Chamber also decides to weigh in on the ambulance service in town. They have determined that it is what we are willing to pay for that determines what kind of quality of care we are getting . . . imagine that, always about the bottom line with the Chamber;

We will close with this. It appears our emergency medical response system is working when the objective data is considered. Also, the REMSA Board, not an elected lay council, is the right way to manage the system. The Council, by Charter, is a policy setting and legislative body and is to avoid administrative and management issues. It also appears that six of our councilors generally agree the system is working and the structure in place is valuable while two spearheaded the critical questioning.

However, we also understand that if your 911 call is one where there is a delay, you will have a concern. The provision of public services is always a balance between resources and expectations. If we expect (as an exaggerated example) a two-minute ambulance response for every emergency call, we can probably achieve it – but you won’t want to pay for it. Quality assurance conversations are important and we encourage them using the right data and in the right context.

We wouldn’t need more than two mutual aid agreements if PP would just staff more ambulances, but they won’t, as the Chamber has pointed out, too expensive. Yet, ironically our first responders, the SFPD and SFFD seem to show up first, subsidized by the tax payers while PP rides to bank with the profit from the transfer and delivery of a patient. All the more reason showing us a PUBLIC ambulance service not only would save patients money, it would probably save tax payers money (because we would be reimbursed for those calls), but more importantly, it would probably be 10X faster and more reliable than a FOR PROFIT ambulance service.

The Chamber has members to protect, we get it.

Sioux Falls city tax collection still down from year before

It kind of looks like we may be flatlining for the year.

In other news at the city council informational meeting, we get to meet the ‘code enforcement’ team. Surprised they would want the public to know their identity. “You need help, here I am.” Maybe Ruby can help with tax collection?

Also, at the Public Services Committee meeting they want to get barking dogs under control. Good Luck.

Sioux Falls Planning Director Cooper gets openly laughed at, at annex meeting

During Mike Cooper’s presentation he said that the city doesn’t annex people to take in more municipal property taxes, and almost the entire crowd in attendance laughed out loud. After chair Kiley calmed the crowd down, Cooper did admit they do collect more property taxes, but that wasn’t the purpose. Wink, wink, nod, nod.

One of the other members of the task force gets applauded because she believes the city benefits from annexation for certain aspects, like curb and gutter and sidewalks, so they should pay for those things.

Mr. Davis, another task force member suggested some OUTSIDE experts should also be making some recommendations besides city staff so there is a compromise. Councilor Selberg agreed that it was a good idea.

More meetings will be added to the agenda in the future.