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Entries Tagged 'Sioux Falls' ↓
December 24th, 2014 — Sioux Falls
There are times we send out our video machine to hopefully record something positive for our great city. This isn’t one of them. During the Mayor’s presser December 23, 2014 we learned nothing new and don’t dare ask for more than we are willing to tell you.
It reminded us of a Texas politician doing the side step. Now you see me now you don’t. We really don’t every get to see anything new but we do get an interesting demonstration of how to bust a move. When you are done, the movers feel like you need to bow your head and hide.
Instead of a run-off election, they should have had a dance-off.
Trust me, I would cry if I could
The (non) Big announcement will be made today at 2 PM at City Hall about the RR Relocation. I don’t expect any fireworks.
UPDATE: The appraisals have been finished, and shared with BNSF and Santa FE Railroads, but cannot be shared with the public (due to some obscure Federal law). The mayor said they are in ‘beginning stages’ of negoitiating a purchase (yeah right).
The mayor refuses to answer questions about the appraisal AND doesn’t mention that the MOU ends on Dec 31 (which will pretty much force the process to start over).
In other words, as I predicted NOTHING has been accomplished, and NOTHING is being said about that failure to cut a deal with the Railroads. It is time for the city to cut ties with this deal, it’s a waste of tax dollars and city employee resources.
Click to enlarge
A couple of sources confirmed to me today that the city definitely had a meeting last week to talk about re-siding the Events Center, and while it was decided that it will be re-done, the bigger question remains, “Who is footing the bill?”
Also, another bird landed on my shoulder and told me that the Parks and Rec department had to ‘recruit’ people to be on the Indoor Aquatics Center design committee after apparently the desired ‘kind’ of people did not apply. The city announced on November 24 they had 50 applicants, but I think some serious ‘scrubbing’ was going on. If this is true, I find it interesting that something that is supposedly so popular and needed that the city would have to recruit (cherry pick) people? I would have thought that would have been an easy list to fill.
Lastly, I guess all the grand development that is supposed to occur around the Events Center just had another bump in the road;
A recent auction failed to land a buyer for the property that used to be The Oaks Hotel & Convention Center. The land at 3300 W. Russell St. generated a lot of interest, according to Yvette VanDerBrink of VanDerBrink Auctions, but offers weren’t high enough . . .
Pretty sad when you can’t even auction off a blank plot of land less then a mile from the Events Center.
WOW. The Rhetoric couldn’t be more ridiculous. Better put a hat on it, or take it off, or make people sit down . . . I forget.
I have often shaken my head when Huether suggests this. They are not the same, for several reasons.
To my surprise I found this page in a booklet I was reading from the SD Association of County Commissioners. The booklet is called ‘So You Want to Be A County Commissioner’.
I thought the one page was very concise in explaining the differences.
The middle part that I highlighted actually intrigued me the most. While they are referencing County Government, I think Municipal Government would apply. Notice ‘Sharing decisions’, ‘Public involvement’ and ‘Public Eye’.
Huether prefers to run the city like a business because he doesn’t like to share the ball with the city legislators, the council, or the general public. He acts as the CEO of the city instead of a fellow lawmaker.
I want to remind Mike, once again, that government and business ARE not alike.
December 19th, 2014 — Sioux Falls
UPDATE: Well, I heard a few things from a reliable source tonight that I (we all) have suspected. Basically, BNSF is asking for an atrocious price for the land, I won’t say the amount, but let’s just say it is laughable.
You have to remember, this has been a switching yard for over 120 years, the amount of pollution on that plot of land is probably enormous, on top of the fact it will cost a lot to clean it up. I would compare it to buying a home with a bad roof and broken foundation, you would ask the seller to come down in price, way down.
The kicker though, and I am speculating here, is the first appraisal came in way, way, way lower then the asking price, and I hear the second one wasn’t much better.
Without saying too much I will put it in perspective. Let’s just say the appraisal isn’t matching up with the asking price, by a long shot.
This is probably why the negotiations are taking this long. It would be like you getting a $250 credit limit credit card with $190 dollars in fees on it when you receive it in the mail . . .
I have a feeling the FEDS are probably going to refuse to purchase the land for what BNSF is asking, or already have.
I know, I know, I have asked this question a couple (100) times over the past, I don’t know, 8 years? But the mayor mentioned at his Shut Up & Listen session last Saturday that it is still proceeding, and it has been one of the most challenging projects he has ever worked on (yeah, hoodwinking the Feds isn’t as easy as hoodwinking passive South Dakotans).
Now we have a local developer, and River Greenway welfare queen, Jeff ‘Government Handout’ Cherapa saying this;
Jeff Scherschlight, CEO of Howalt McDowell in Cherapa Place and managing partner of Cherapa, detailed the parameters of the potential changes.
“Basically, they’re going to leave the tracks that are furthest east will still exist,” Scherschlight said. “There’ll be two tracks, and everything from there coming west will be removed. And that is the railroad switchyard, which they’re going to relocate in smaller towns around Sioux Falls, and do their switching there, which is the big advantage that we gain this extra land downtown for downtown development.”
Scherschlight could see his building, Cherapa Place, expand to include a second building, should the current railway switch yard site become transformed into parking. Only two railroad tracks would remain, while the switchyard would be relocated away from downtown.
What I find interesting about this ‘edited’ story is that the original text that was posted last night on StormLand’s website has disappeared (I should have copied it) there was a mention in the original post that said “. . . an announcement could be made as soon as Tuesday” about the progress of the project.
UPDATE: It is in the video though if you listen closely. Wonder why the city didn’t want to do an on camera interview? And what does Jeff Cherapa know? If anything?
December 18th, 2014 — Sioux Falls
And the Boom Town Hail Storm award goes to . . . Building Services!
Not sure what this press conference is all about, but I can make some educated guesses;
News conference to announce another record breaker for Sioux Falls
I’m assuming it is due to Sioux Falls breaking the building permits record issued this year, not sure though.
As we all know, city officials have already said it would not have happened if we didn’t have the hail storms.
So I ask the question? Is this something we should be celebrating? Why not just a nice press release that says this;
Sioux Falls has once again broke the building permits issued record this year. Unfortunately it has cost insurance companies and individual homeowners millions due to hail storm repairs. While we applaud this achievement, we are sorry to say it is at the detriment of our citizens due to a natural disaster.
I guess it goes back to what I said the other day, there is positive and negative, and there is fact or fiction.