Entries Tagged 'Sioux Falls' ↓
December 9th, 2013 — Sioux Falls, Sioux Falls Mayor Race
Hanging with Janoct at Jazzfest, he never missed one.
Photo of Janoct I took at Black Sheep Coffee
Painting I did of Janoct that hangs in his mother’s house
Not sure what to say after hearing about Janoct’s death today. The man lived a full life, and did some pretty crazy-wonderful things. Always a fixture in Sioux Falls. I first met Janoct outside of JAMZ in about 1994(?) playing his blues harp and I haven’t been able to shake him since, even after we got into fight last year about ‘city shit’ he actually made up with me, proving he was the better man. He even gave me ‘the shirt off his back’ once, when I told him I liked a blues t-shirt he was wearing.
We have had our differences, but I have always enjoyed talking to him (or should I say ‘listening’ to him). You will be missed.
December 9th, 2013 — SF City Council, Sioux Falls, Washington Pavilion
1) Agenda for the Public Services Committee, 2) Pavilion Engineering Expense, 3) Ice & Tennis contracts
1) Looks like the city council is back to square one on the taxi cab ordinance. They are now reverting back to a work session to discuss further changes. The first thing that needs to go is the 24-hr requirement and they need to actively explore a central dispatch program. I have trouble believing the state department of revenue is hampering this program.
2) The Cinedome’s roof is only about 14 years old, (consent agenda) and already needs replacement? After spending millions on the Pavilion and Cinedome we can’t even build a roof that will last more then 14 years? Maybe the Kirby Family and Wells Fargo can donate some more money to get it fixed?
3) The council will be voting on the Ice & Tennis contracts (items 9 & 10). But they are not being presented as resolutions or ordinances, just contracts. I wonder if public input will be allowed?
December 6th, 2013 — Code Enforcement, Michelle Erpenbach, Sioux Falls
I recall Michelle saying this, and kind of just chuckled at the time, but this letter writer puts a whole new perspective on it;
In an article in the Nov. 24 Argus Leader, Michelle Erpenbach said “… If I’m going to rent a crappy house, I have to take responsibility for that.” She also stated that part of that responsibility is alerting city officials to code violations.
Does Erpenbach think people deliberately choose crappy houses and apartments to live in? For many renters, there are very few choices, so you take what you can afford. And many renters in those “crappy houses” are reluctant to snitch on their landlords because they are afraid of losing their homes if the landlord finds out.
And Kermit Staggers’ statement, “I’m glad we don’t enforce every code in the city,” must have made landlords with code violations jump for joy.
Well, Michelle, we are all not as fortunate as you to have a part-time gig as a newsletter writer and a husband that will provide you with ‘non-crappy’ housing. As the letter writer points out, many people don’t have a choice because they are priced out of decent housing. My last apartment I had before I purchased my home was in Pettigrew Heights. This was about 10 years ago, right when the neighborhood was beginning to become shady. I had cheap rent, and my landlord didn’t always upgrade things, but the place was livable and fine for me. Just because there is a little paint missing or a chip of concrete on the front steps, doesn’t mean the place is falling to pieces. I believe that is what Staggers is getting at. It seems some people in city government have this attitude that you should desire to live in safe, clean, updated, new affordable housing. The problem is, not a lot of that kind of housing exists. And the places that do have so many restrictions, they are almost impossible to get into. This is why I have often said we need to switch the purpose of TIF’s to almost ALL affordable housing projects and to individual, small landlords who want to fix up small-plex apartment buildings. Sioux Falls, CAN provide ’non-crappy’ affordable housing, the problem is, we are giving the tax breaks to sports complexes and luxury hotels instead of small time landlords that want to help people with affordable housing and that in itself is kinda ‘crappy’.
December 6th, 2013 — Event Center, Sioux Falls
Should this news come as some kind of surprise?
Sioux Falls will miss out on hosting a pair of youth sports tournaments and the millions of dollars in economic benefit that comes with them.
Other cities with newer facilities and unique fan amenities outshone Sioux Falls when the city went to bid for hosting the same softball and soccer tournaments it has held in the past. Sioux Falls even offered more cash to tournament operators than any other city, but it didn’t make a difference.
“We’re always in second place,” said Teri Schmidt, executive director of the Sioux Falls Convention and Visitor Bureau, which submitted bids on behalf of the city’s youth sports organizations.
Better not let MMM hear you say that Teri. This is San Antonio, gosh darn it, uh, I mean Sioux Falls, we should be first in everything!
There are a lot of factors why SF loses these kind of events. Bigger facilities, bigger cities, better weather, location, air travel, more lodging (remember the last time we had that soccer tournament, people had to lodge in Sioux City). A new bigger arena isn’t going to bring BETTER and BIGGER tournaments and conventions in. There is just some things Sioux Falls cannot provide, as I mentioned above. We are what we are, and once people like Teri and MMM realize this, we can focus on what WE ARE accessible to and capable of.
There seems to be this attitude that we need to shoot high, and if we miss, make a bunch of excuses. Sioux Falls should be trying to attain ALL kinds of tournaments. Tournaments THAT WE CAN ACCOMODATE.
Any kind of tax revenue being brought to our city is a good thing, big or small, but it seems we just want to continue to ‘think big’ and hope it pays off. I say ‘think medium’ and do it often, and it will pay off.
December 5th, 2013 — Art, Sioux Falls
Artists Against Hunger is a bi-annual art show that focuses on emerging and established area artists while raising money and awareness for Feeding South Dakota. Over the course of 4.5 years, we have donated over 60,000 pounds of food to local families in need while establishing a fun, and friendly environment for artists and the community alike. Three floors of 8th & Railroad Center will be filled with original, local artwork. The event is FREE and open to the public!
Friday December 6th: 5-9PM
Saturday December 7th: 10AM-5:30PM
I will have some paintings in the exhibit also for sale.
Also as a favor to Feeding South Dakota,
Sanaa’s is holding her annual charity dinner this Saturday, Dec. 7th, from 5pm to 8pm.
She is furnishing all the food and all the labor and will donate all the contributions to Feeding South Dakota. She is bearing the cost of the food and cost of the hired help to prepare and serve the dinner.
The contribution is $10 plus two cans of food of any kind. Representatives of Feeding South Dakota will be on hand to collect the contributions of the money and the cans of food.
Sanaa’s Mediterranean Gourmet restaurant is located at 401 East 8th Street, Sioux Falls, in the 8th & Railroad Center building there.
December 5th, 2013 — Sioux Falls, Transportation
Not sure if this is precedence or not, but I am trying to recall any individual business that has gotten it’s own traffic light entrance or a similar traffic advantage paid for by taxpayers?
The last I can recall is the McDonalds at 41st & Minnesota getting their own turn lane off of Minnesota Ave.
I wonder what the rule/law is with spacing between controlled intersections? Is there enough space between 41st and 49th to justify another traffic light?
The irony in all this is how the city has actually harmed a lot of private retail businesses throughout the city by putting in mediums so you can’t make a left turn into them from the right side of the street.
I wonder if a sizable donation to the Ice Plex may have something to do with it. Just curious.
December 4th, 2013 — Public Works, Sioux Falls
Over the last few years, I have heard more and more complaints from residents that public works is not sweeping the streets for leaves anymore. Obviously, today wouldn’t be the ideal day to do it, BUT over the last couple of months, the city could have easily swept the streets. We have the resources (funding, employees, street sweepers) so why don’t we do it?
The mayor and public works MAY claim this is a cost saving measure, but I would disagree. Clogging the street drains with leaves can get very expensive, very fast. Keeping streets clean from foliage waste also helps with cutting down on surface corrosion.
So why isn’t the city doing it? I know the mayor has been asked about it several times in public meetings, and Public Works director Cotter has mentioned that adjoining property owners are responsible for out to the middle of the street. Huh?! So not only must we fix the city’s sidewalks, maintain the trees in the boulevard, but now we need to sweep the streets for them to? What next? Put snowplows on the front of our cars and plow our own streets? (which isn’t too far from the truth considering the poor job they have been doing plowing the main roads today).
This push to conserve and save the city money on street sweeping might be prudent if the city was in dire straits, hardly the case after building a $100 million dollar events center and the council is preparing to give $500K to the mayor’s wife’s private indoor tennis facility.
The city has money to sweep the streets. Start doing it.
December 4th, 2013 — Rex Rolfing, SF City Council, Sioux Falls
Councilor Staggers has recently been pulling items from the consent agenda. During yesterday’s informational, he asked to pull the minutes from the last meeting (for a correction) and the Phillips Avenue Holiday Lights expenditure. Well that did not sit well with councilor Rolfing. He went into a tirade about inconveniencing city employees who might have to come to a council meeting and answer a question.
First off, the consent agenda is at the beginning of the meeting, if a department head had to come to a meeting to answer a question, they would be there 20 minutes tops. Secondly, most department heads are at the meeting anyway for other agenda items, and lastly, THEY ARE GETTING PAID like the councilors to do the public’s work, which may include attending the council meeting. If there are certain department heads and city employees that feel like they are being inconvenienced, I haven’t heard that. In fact for the over ten years I have watched the city council meetings I have only seen one person complain about how long the meetings are, a councilor, De Knudson. Rolfing seems to be crying wolf about a problem that does not exist.
Fortunately, councilors Karsky, Anderson and even Erpenbach defended the practice of pulling items from the consent agenda and the city attorney agreed to help with a better process.
Personally, I have not been a fan of the consent agenda, I think every item should be pulled and voted on separately, but since that is not the case, as Karsky pointed out, it is well within the power of the council to pull items from the consent agenda.
December 2nd, 2013 — Censorship, Sioux Falls
And the award goes to . . .
The web channel we’re saluting for the week of Nov. 8, 2013, is the City of Sioux Falls’ YouTube channel. At a crossroads between the nation’s east and west, Sioux Falls has arts, culture, parks, scenery and — of course — the needs of any city for basic services, safety and overall management. All these are represented well on Sioux Fall’s active YouTube channel, including public chats with the mayor that would be hard to imagine in many cities. For the mayor of Sioux Falls, it’s just another day at a restaurant with some friends.
Okay, I will give the city some credit, they have a YouTube Channel, WOOT! WOOT! So do many elementary students featuring videos of them farting and making funny faces. But the ‘salute’ to the YouTube channel isn’t my issue, it’s the assumption that Government Video makes about transparency in our city;
For doing a great job of making government friendly and accessible, Government Video salutes the City of Sioux Falls’ YouTube channel.
Friendly and accessible?! Okay. Let’s go;
SIRE is broken, it has been broken for several years. (SIRE is the online program used to watch public meetings & to see documents related to public meeting agenda items) Issues include; long intros to videos (sometimes up to 20 minutes dead air before meeting starts), missing videos, bad audio, missing documents, and documents not showing up on the online until minutes before a meeting starts. This is not ‘friendly accessibility’ it is form of ‘soft’ censorship hiding behind perceived software issues.
While Central Services, Media Services and the City Clerk’s office has been told several times that SIRE isn’t functioning properly they have given many excuses, including denying it isn’t functioning properly. The Clerk’s office blames Central Services. CS has denied to me there is any problems, even though there clearly is. Weekly, there is at least one or more public meetings that doesn’t work right, disappears for several days, or has other issues. Remember, the city spends over $1,000 a month for the maintenance of SIRE by the software company that makes it. The city has also spent thousands of dollars over the past year on software upgrades and a backup cooling unit for the server room at city hall.
I find it hard to believe that Central Services, the clerk’s office and Media Services are all this incompetent, that is virtually impossible.
My speculation is that certain employees within the city are being ‘instructed’ to make the appearance that SIRE isn’t working properly. Remember, the city budget address wasn’t handed to the city council until a few minutes before the address. Is that the kind of transparency you want between City Hall & the City Council? I know what kind of ‘Salute’ that deserves. I have this underlying assumption that somebody is tampering with our ‘accessibility’ as citizens. And until SIRE is fixed and working properly, I will have no reason otherwise to assume this is NOT happening.
So a SALUTE to the city for accessibility is laughable at best, sad, disheartening and distasteful, and I encourage Government Video to retract their salute.
UPDATE: (H/T – GP)
Follow the links on the upper right hand corner (screenshot above). The person in charge of the channel has some weird fetishes.
Please note how Google relates the City Of Sanford Falls channel to others, then read the descriptions.
Related channels on City of Sioux Falls’ YouTube channel (upper right side of page):
SUPERIOR HISTORY (The rarest and best military history videos on the internet for the serious and technically disciplined. Stay on subject or get hit in the head with a ratchet.)
nuclearvault (Atomic Films Courtesy of National Nuclear Security Administration / Nevada Site Office)
Primeda (Tales of the Gun – Early Guns)
DarkFellowships (WW2 – WW1 – Third Reich)
Vasile Iuga (Scorched Earth S1/E1 – Panzer Battles)
lord lucan (some old news of the day when britian was great, purely for educational purposes)
Verrrry Interestingggg. You see when you do not clear your cache files before setting up your channel, Google takes your computer’s tracking history and links to it. Now we know what they are doing while they are supposed to be working and it certainly isn’t repairing SIRE.
December 1st, 2013 — christmas, SF City Council, Sioux Falls
What?! is the city participating in the war on Christmas? Holiday lighting?
Kind of confused about this (Item #1), because I was always under the impression that DTSF paid for the holiday decorations and lights downtown while public works assisted in hanging them. Hopefully there will be some kind of explanation about this expenditure come Tuesday night.