This last couple of weekends I have been reintroduced to Winter. Last Saturday morning while running errands the streets were a pure sheet of black ice that was undetectable unless you tapped your brakes. After sliding thru almost two intersections I wondered where the sanders were? Yesterday while riding my bike down East 10th street I hit a patch of ice and almost dumped my bike. I am not expecting our street department to sand every residential street in this town, but at least the busy streets and intersections.

The rumor coming from city hall is that the snow budget for 2023 was already eaten up and they are trying to get by without a supplemental appropriation until January 1st. Which is ridiculous since tax dollars main objective is to fund taxpayer services like street maintenance.

I found it funny that a city that has a tennis court on every corner of this town wants to build pickleball courts. You can play pickleball on a tennis court, you just have to lower the net by 2 inches. We seem to have money for a fad (I call pickleball the rollerblading of the 2000’s) but no money to throw a little sand on the streets so people can safely navigate? BTW, I also saw a gigantic 4-door super max truck slide thru an intersection, so when it comes to ice, size doesn’t matter.

This ‘cheating’ us on snow removal started with Munson and progressively got worse towards the end of Huether’s term. TenHaken acts like when it snows he has to make some weighty decision. It’s simple, money is in a fund for this, you call the Street Director and tell him, get to work. Nobody will criticize you for doing ‘too much’.

I have spoken to former street department managers and workers (retired) and they all tell me they have no idea why it is being run the way it is now. I think I have the answer, it’s not being run, it’s being ignored. On purpose.

And Marsh got a little help from his friend Mr. Zylstra on the CRC dais to support his claims.

Sorry folks, but you don’t understand the term ‘narrow’. Alex Jensen beating Stehly by less then a 100 votes is a ‘narrow’ margin, but this was not. I couldn’t find the exact results because the new city website has blocked all previous election information and a lot of other stuff, not bad for a site that cost us $400K+ 🙁

But I did find a news article that was reporting on the results after the polls closed and this is about as close as I could get;

Yes: 13,466

No: 15,369

As you can see, it wasn’t a ‘narrow’ defeat.

I’m not sure who is pushing the buttons of the CRC members but I can guarantee if this makes the ballot again, I think voters will vote by an even wider margin to reject this. Remember the minimum wage fiasco?

Pay isn’t what is deterring candidates from running, it’s time commitments. I think if we paid the councilors as full-time members (after removing the mayor as a councilor) you would get better candidates. Just look at the current crop of incumbents. Jensen has already bailed on a 2nd term, and I have also heard that Cole and Merkouris are probably not going to seek 2nd terms.

Besides the time commitments, I’m sure that chasing their tails when trying to get assistance from the administration hasn’t been a lot of fun.

The CRC had every change they needed in front of them. Add another council seat, remove mayor as chair and hire a city manager, etc. and while they rejected all of these wonderful ideas they were hellbent on pushing for this back door way of getting raises.

It’s the council’s duties that need to change, not their pay.