Entries Tagged 'Sioux Falls' ↓

Events Center VIP Party

Little does the public know that about a thousand people were invited to a VIP party tonight at the center, this was the invitation, a stainless steel booklet hand delivered with goodies inside, It was told not at taxpayer expense, I guess Denny made an appearance, he jumped out of a Papa Johns pizza, or something like that.

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Whatever happed to the Events Center siding mockups?

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As you may or may not have noticed, the mockups have not occurred yet, and there is no timeline as to when they will. City attorney, Fiddle-Faddle told the Argus Leader they didn’t start them because of finish work on the EC. When asked about when they would start, he basically said within a year’s time.

This is unacceptable, because the longer we go without these mockups, the longer the fix goes on the back burner. I have a feeling that Mortenson and the City are going to try to find some way of not fixing it and leaving us with a big bag of Jiffy Pop waiting to explode.

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Man Bites Dog

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Surveillance of the surveillance (This is a shot of one of Bruce’s neighbors taking pictures of his yard, but you know, the city claims only the code enforcement officer was a ‘witness’)

To those interested in the Bruce Danielson case, try to understand some of the underlying issues at play.

The City of Sioux Falls has established itself as a Home Rule Charter form of government. The Home Rule Charter form of city government was designed for small villages with a limited number of people to help make decisions. It can be a benefit in emergencies to quickly make survival decisions but many safeguards must be in place to keep authoritarians in check.

Since 2010 city election, we in Sioux Falls have seen the rise of a dictator-like form of ‘efficient’ government. Our city government does not brag about trains running on time but we do have a city government bragging about cutting corners to get things done (Take the cuts in Paratransit, for example). The civil rights of ANY individual are not to be stripped from anyone for the expediency of another, tell this to a subprime credit card salesman turned mayor, practically overnight.

Do you know what it is like to be arrested and put in jail? I certainly do. I was arrested over 7 years ago. It was normal operating procedure to arrest me for what I did. I spent about 2 hours in jail before I paid bond.

We are seeing abuses in the operation of Sioux Falls and a few of us are willing to speak up.  For speaking up Bruce Danielson was arrested and put in jail for over 6 hours, not for a serious traffic violation, like myself, but for a ‘code violation’ (too much building materials in HIS fenced in and locked backyard).

The administration of Mike Huether has decided they do not need to follow the US Constitution, it’s Bill of Rights, the Laws of the United States, State of South Dakota or the Home Rule Charter of the City of Sioux Falls. We the people have no rights to question their authority or decisions.

This issue is not ‘piles’ of junk sitting around the property. This case is an example of a code enforcement system becoming an all-powerful entity onto itself, able to have citizens arrested without due process. It’s offensive and SICK.

The Sioux Falls code enforcement officers under the possible direction of superiors are to pick and choose one citizen over another. We are learning more everyday how this system works.

The Honorable Judge Joni Cutler saw through the city’s illegal activity.

Cutler showed she had the ability to listen to the witnesses, weigh the evidence and control the courtroom in order to perform the responsibilities of her office. Cutler decided the city had no right to interfere or set a ‘speed’ claim for project completion.

It is also the policy of the City of Sioux Falls to NOT work with possible offenders. As you can see in Darin McDonald’s public testimony to the city council and mayor, he tried several times to work with the city, only to find out they fined him anyway. And to add insult to injury, the city failed to comply multiple times with their own property for the same thing they were fining Darin for.

Code enforcement officer Todd Rhinehart admitted in court he never attempted to call Mr. Danielson, personally visit or return a telephone call in his process of building a case. He never supplied any information to help Bruce understand what the issues were. He also admitted to the unconstitutional, illegal service of notices and citations.

By Rhinehart’s court testimony admissions, It is the policy of the city code enforcement system to pile on without assisting or guidance to possible problems or corrections.

Mr. Danielson had proven an almost 20 year track record of working with the City of Sioux Falls. Prior to the administration abuses demonstrated in this case, Danielson never had any citable or serious violations. He always worked with the city to make sure everything was safe and presentable. I was actually witness to it once with councilman Staggers. Ron Bell from the city’s code enforcement office came out to inspect some repairs Bruce had made, and he approved the repairs and assured Bruce their would be no fines. That was probably the last time anyone from the city worked with Bruce on his home.

The reason Mr. Danielson began to seriously get involved in Sioux Falls politics was to have a voice in correcting the abuses of the personal liberty of the Huether administration. And apparently they like to bite back.

Breaking: Bruce Danielson found NOT guilty on all 3 criminal charges

Read the background here.

One of the counts was dismissed.

As you know Bruce is the person who started Citizens for Integrity. Bruce was also instrumental in helping SON, Save Spellerberg and the Snowgate petition drive. Bruce also has filed several ethics complaints against the mayor over pre-election presentations. He also helped file two complaints about the municipal election ballot language.

He is a man of integrity.

As for the case. Bruce’s neighbors have used city code enforcement for over  20 years to harass him while he has made improvements to his home, which has enraged the neighbors. They lost today, and rightly so. It is neither the city’s business or his neighbors on how he chooses to work on his house. In fact Joni Cutler, while giving her decision, commended Bruce for his ‘Passion’ in improving his property.

The city tried to prove that he held a criminal ‘public nuisance’ with his construction materials stored in his locked fenced off back yard. As judge Cutler pointed out, in the 20 years he has worked on his home, no health nuisances have occurred and the city failed to prove that one is imminent.

At one point in the trial, the city attorney became enraged when Bruce’s attorney brought up how Bruce was arrested and made to strip down and wear ‘stripes’ for 6 & half hours with common criminals over ‘building materials’. Bruce’s attorney, Charles Dorothy said in his closing arguments that being arrested for this was ‘offensive’. The city attorney ranted that this was brought up to fuel a civil suit against the city and the the media was ‘called’ in to report this. John Hult from the Argus Leader was at the trial all day, and I am sure he will write a long story about it.

Bruce has believed that this was a vendetta by the city for all of his involvement with the different petition drives and ethics complaints, and also bringing to attention that the EC siding was put on wrong.

There is much more to come. This is only the beginning.

Today the GOOD neighbor WON and the BAD neighbors lost.

I agree with Mayor Huether, let’s end bullying in Sioux Falls, let’s start at Carnegie & City Hall

I have a little different perspective on it then he does, as I am sure you suspected.

While I do agree with him that work place/school discrimination and domestic violence is intolerable I do draw a line with freedom of speech. While saying ‘naughty hurtful words’ should be discouraged, the 1st Amendment is pretty clear about our constitutional rights. In yesterday’s press conference, Huether referred to a FB comment he read that said (in reference to the man getting punched outside of Wiley’s) “LOL. Maybe he should have minded his own business.” While the LOL was not needed (Lot’s of Laughs, is what Huether said it meant, which made me LMFAO*) I kind of agree with the rest of the comment to a point.

If it was a different situation, I would have definitely said something to the lady, but since the situation occurred while everyone involved was probably tanked outside of Wiley’s (a place known for it’s fighting problems) probably not a time to take a stand. For example, last night me and about 5 other people got doused with beer when someone behind us threw a cup. I turned around and saw some wannabe bikers laughing. I certainly could have went over and asked who the f’ing wise guy was, but you know what? I minded my own business, and guess what, no one got hurt. Did the gentleman outside of Wiley’s deserve to get punched? Nope. Violence is never a solution. Do I commend him for sticking up for himself and friends? Definitely! But like I said, if you put yourself in certain situations, there can be unintended consequences, especially when fueled by alcohol. Just look at the problems associated with drinking at Van Eps Park.

There are situations where you need to turn the other cheek, or you just might get punched in the face. It’s your choice I guess, like I said, the 1st Amendment guarantees us the right to pretty much say what we want as private citizens. It is clear though that employers can’t discriminate in this manner, and assaulting your spouse or bystanders is not included in this right. Please, let’s all stop punching each other over ‘words’. What an incredible waste of time and energy, and also, let’s stop crying over spilt milk.

This is where I disagree with mayor Huether on bullying. He seems to think this is about school kids, minorities, domestic assaults or gays, it is much more encompassing then that.

He lacks to mention peer bullying (most people think of this kind of bullying going on in school between classmates). It is also an issue in the workplace. In fact I believe it is an issue at Carnegie Hall.

I have seen city councilors, the mayor, city directors, city employees and citizens all bully each other at the meetings. In fact on one occasion, which still irks me to this day (the mayor says it is okay to get mad about bullying) is when Councilor Erpenbach bullied the snowgate petitioners and shut down public comment in support of an early election. Each week I have also watched several city councilors bully citizens when they say something they don’t like in public testimony. The mayor on several occasions has cut off councilors during discussions and asked for a roll call vote. They are all guilty, including myself, when I offer ultimatums during public testimony. I apologize.

I have also witnessed bullying by code enforcement officers, police officers and the city attorney’s office. In fact, a former city attorney bullied one of my friends for seven years which cost him over $40K.

Like I said, I am all for free speech, citizens have a right to address their government about concerns, but public officials don’t have a right to bully citizens when we bring up these concerns. I saw this recently when the city refused to pay for damages the SFPD SWAT team created. In another incident a guy is being taken to small claims court over not building a dumpster enclosure fast enough. So if city officials are going to hold press conferences to tackle the problem of bullying, they must first look in the mirror and get their own house in order.  I’m glad the mayor brought this issue to light, and I hope he looks at the bullying going on by the employees he manages. If Huether believes in leading by example it is imperative he sets a good example to city employees and directors. The same goes for the council (None of them attended the press conference yesterday).

BTW, Huether mentioned bullying that goes on on blogs. So I thought it would only be appropriate to comment on his press conference, on my blog.

*LMFAO. Which means ‘Laugh my funny arm off’

UPDATE: We could have had the opening EC concert at the Arena

Our first concert at the EC, at $10 a ticket is only expecting about a 3rd of capacity;

Huffman said he expects a crowd of about 4,000.

Makes you wonder how many empty seats will be at the other ‘sold out’ concerts, or if most of those seats have been scooped up by scalpers.

UPDATE:

If I had to make a rough estimate of how many people were at the show last night, I would say between 2,500-3,500. Maybe the EC and SMG will release how many attended. In the AL today they estimated 4-5,000, but didn’t have hard numbers ‘available’. They must have had the Lifelight counters present.

Parking will be an issue for the sold out concerts. Let’s say there was 5,000 people there last night. When we arrived most of the Arena and EC parking lot was full, there were people parked on the street also. We parked in the South Canaries lot which had very few cars in it. For your typical concert that is at that 5,000 range, parking should be fine. But when there is a sold-out show or multiple events, it is going to be a major problem.

The sound was pretty decent for Joan Jett, but not as good for Starship. I was not too impressed by the light show.

As for drink prices they run about $6 for a 16 OZ tap and $6 for a well drink. You are allowed to tip the bar and beertenders, but cash only. If you run your card they do not give you an opportunity to leave a tip on it, and I got the feeling they are not allowed to. So I asked why they could not have a tip jar in view. An SMG employee said this, “We were told by management (SMG) that since it is a city owned facility we are not allowed to put out tip jars.”

I’m just shooting in the wind on this one, but I think that is a complete line of BS from SMG. I can’t imagine a city ordinance existing that prevents ‘tip jars’. Besides, when I have been to concerts at the Pavilion, I have seen tip jars by the bars, and that is a city owned facility.

So what would be the reasoning behind SMG not wanting to encourage tipping their employees? The more money people spend on tips, the less they spend on buying product.

SIDING UPDATE:

I also noticed in the AL today that the siding mockups have not been started. The excuse the city attorney gave; they were working on touch ups to other parts of the building. Then when asked about when they would start the mockups, the city attorney said that Mortenson has up to a year to come up with a solution. In other words, we better get used to the siding we have now, because it will probably never get fixed.

Hey Mike, Rock & Roll isn’t noise pollution

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The nice little shrine to Denny in the Lobby of the EC.
“Because of the good that he has done, millions of individuals will continue to benefit for generations to come . . . and even millions more will be in debt to his CC company for decades to come.”
Kyle Austin

This past weekend in Sioux Falls, SD, the brand new Denny Sanford Premier Center opened its doors with a two day open house featuring local music. The local support had to submit an online application in August to be reviewed and possibly chosen to participate in this unique event. When I had received the call stating that my band, The Glyph, had been chosen, we were all excited for the good opportunity. The Glyph is a Sioux Falls based Rock Band, with songs and videos of us performing all over Facebook, YouTube, and other Internet sources. We arrived at the Sanford Center on Saturday afternoon, about an hour and a half early to our performance time. This event was promoted as an all ages family event to display the new Arena and its amenities. The act before us was a hip hop group that featured extremely explicit lyrics, booming bass, and a no f***s given mentality while groups of children under the age of ten watched and walked by. We set up our gear and prepared to bring our A-game, to show off our straight forward clean rock and roll. The Mayor of Sioux Falls, Mike Huether, personally introduced us expressing great interest in our brand of rock. Our first song went off great, but when it came time for our next song, the Mayor and Arena officials ran over and stated we needed to turn down. We adjusted our volumes accordingly and before we could get into our next track, we were instructed to turn down and cut the distortion or we were done. The Mayor himself went farther to add insult to injury by stating to us and I quote, “You need to play quieter, do you even know how to do that?” I turned my amp all the way down and went direct, Jeff barely played and sung, and Johnny went to a smooth simplistic drumming style. After a few songs we decided to call it, because we were no where near our actual performance level. We went home embarrassed, Humiliated, and defeated. We took the effort of moving gear, getting the time off work, planning and practicing, getting merch ready, etc. We were not paid like other acts were as well. So on behalf of Jeff and myself, we want to say we are appaled by the actions of The Denny Sanford Premier Center as well as the Mayor of Sioux Falls. I write this note to bring light to this matter, and hope that other local musicians, fans, citizens, and concert goers will feel our dissatisfaction and frustration with this. I ask you to share this note, so that people can see how the Denny Sanford Center and the City of Sioux Falls truly sees its local musicians, and the major amount of disrespect they have for us and what we do.

I actually talked to Kyle about this Saturday night, and hoped he would post something to FB about it. Can’t wait until the SlipKnot concert, I was actually thinking about going so I can watch the audience destroy the place.

On another NOTE about our mayor, the city’s chief bully is having a press conference about bullying. Would telling un-paid musicians to turn down their music qualify as bullying?

Why Aren’t We More Upset About This? Mayor Huether to Discuss September 14 Assault, Bullying, and Domestic Abuse

What: News conference to discuss Mayor Mike Huether’s views on bullying, domestic assault, prejudice, and how Sioux Falls residents can make a difference

When: Wednesday, September 24, 2014 1:30 p.m.

Where: City Hall Commission Room, 224 West Ninth Street

Who: Mayor Mike Huether

 Why: Recent headlines have focused on domestic violence and child abuse across the country. Also, a Sioux Falls man recently was assaulted outside of a local bar after asking another person to not use a derogatory term referring to homosexuals. Bullying, domestic assault, and prejudice are realities in Sioux Falls and across the nation. Mayor Mike Huether would like to let the victims know that help is available and that violence like this should not be tolerated.

Mike always talks about how he was bullied as a kid, because he was ‘small’, well, he learned from the best.

 

Another wealthy developer and land owner in SF looking for a handout?

So the Friessen family has owned the Lake Lorraine property for over 35 years and has kept it a very PRIVATE place. A 22 acre lake that the public was strictly not allowed to use. But that all may change, with the help of your tax dollars of course;

Developers are hoping to form a public/private partnership with the city of Sioux Falls to maintain and program the park and train system around the lake.  They’re visiting similar communities in Minneapolis to see how it’s been done there.

“We’re also exploring opportunities with the city’s Live Well program, which the city is promoting right now and they’d like to make this the pilot program,” Van Buskirk said.

This is the first I have heard of this proposal, but like most plans the Parks and Planning department makes, they keep it top secret until they can spring it on the uninformed council. I see they have even used our tax dollars already going to Minneapolis doing ‘research’.

Don’t get me wrong, I think having a public lake in the center of the city is a great idea, in fact I have suggested that Spellerberg be turned into a natural filtration pool. And a trail around the lake would be great. But how is this going to work? Are the Friessens going to give the lake to the city? Will they cease paying property taxes on 22 acres of water? How much will it cost taxpayers to maintain this lake? Remember the Soukup family’s ‘gift’ a few years ago?

This private development will do very well for itself, I think they should maintain the lake themselves and continue to pay the taxes on it. If they want to open it to the public, great, but I think the city needs to get out of the business of taking these supposed ‘gifts’.

Besides, if the family chooses to maintain the lake themselves, they can profit from having different rental activities on the lake.

So where does Grant Patterson get all of his money

I don’t usually post about crime related things, I believe everyone deserves their day in court. But I found an interesting little tidbit about Joey Patterson’s dad the other night. Some people are scratching there heads wondering where someone can dig up a $2 million dollar bond.

Seems Joey’s dad has been sucking from the Federal government tit for quite awhile. Since 1995 he has received over $1 million in farm subsidies. Nice to see he is spending the money wisely.

My name is Ozymandias, King of Kings

No Huether Press conference or ribbon cutting isn’t complete without a few tears. Hey, Mike, it’s concrete and steel, nothing worth crying about, well maybe the botched siding job.

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A South DaCola sent me this fitting poem last night about the grand opening

I met a traveler from an antique land
Who said: “Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown
And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed.
And on the pedestal these words appear:
`My name is Ozymandias, King of Kings:
Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair!’
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,
The lone and level sands stretch far away”.