Why is the city switching consultants on naming rights for the EC?

And what happened to the $60,000 we gave to the Superlative Group (FF to 54:00)? PDF of Presentation: naming

And still, the grand mystery of naming rights;

The city council will also have to make a multi-million dollar decision involving naming rights for the facility.

The city isn’t saying much about that process, only that progress to secure a sponsor is being made.  They hope to have something in place by August, ahead of the groundbreaking.

Like I said above, what happened to Superlative, why are we using Legends now? Kermit asked about the Superlative agreement, and Smith said that they were similiar, but all Superlative did was ‘evaluate’ if our opportunities for naming rights was there – then Legends moves forward on the naming rights.

Huh? As Kermit said, Why not just use Superlative to do the naming rights since they did the evaluation? Darrin said they changed their minds and chose another firm. Then Erpenbach accused Staggers of ‘asking too many questions.’ WTH? Then she said he asked four questions and no one else asked any questions, then nobody does, except Rolfing making a statement and Jamison making a few comments.

I guess someone overheard Erpenbach telling Staggers after the meeting there is a procedural rule that limits them to two questions. I hope Staggers looks into this, because that is a load of crap.

The best part of the meeting was when Huether came up and told Staggers that he basically needed to play catchup and he could question any of the directors anytime he wanted to (in other words, not in a public meeting). Kermit responded that he felt it was a very good meeting with lots of interaction (in other words, we need to ask these questions in public.)


#1 D.E. Bishop on 06.13.12 at 6:31 pm

I just read an article about Putin’s tactics to stifle dissent in Russia. I got mixed up for a minute and thought I was still reading more of the same article.

#2 Joan on 06.13.12 at 7:37 pm

I have always felt the city council is hiding a lot. Unless I didn’t read your post right, I didn’t see that Kermit asked four questions. However, I do have a headache, and might not be seeing right.

#3 Detroit Lewis on 06.13.12 at 10:40 pm

Doesn’t matter, he can ask 5,000 questions. I got into this with Munson one time in public testimony. Robert’s Rules are a shiny turd, but still a turd. The First Amendment trumps that shiny turd.

I guess he was also told after the meeting that he needed to ‘Listen More.’ Seriously?! He is listening, to citizens, and that is why he asks questions. I am still baffled anytime I drive down a shitty street, or my rates are increased, yet we have money to spend on sprinklers in front of private hotels. Has the council gone completely bonkers or are they that corrupt?

Don’t answer that question.

#4 GregN on 06.13.12 at 10:55 pm

The arbitrary limits that have been imposed in the last few years by current council leadership annoys me. Since when is there a limit to the number of questions a councilor is allowed to ask? And why would such a rule be in place? Then as you note after Kermit is shut down no one else really asks any questions, which kind of belies the idea that councilors were anxiously waiting to ask their own questions. I’m also reminded of the Walmart rezoning hearing weeks back when there was an arbitrary time limit set for both sides to speak (20 mins for each side). Why was there a time limit – because council leadership decided before the meeting on the arbitrary time limit – that’s why. I found the Mayor’s ‘helpful’ suggestions to Councilor Staggers to be condescending – it seemed to me he was implying Councilor Staggers is/was ignorant. Maybe it wasn’t meant to come off that way, but that’s how I read it, right or wrong. In just the first few weeks its pretty obvious to me council leadership (i.e. Erpenbach) and Staggers are going to butt heads, a lot. They just disagree philosophically. If its a ‘quality of life’ project, Councilor Erpenbach is going to vote for it and doesn’t want to hear any dissent about it, regardless of the cost. I can see the annoyance on her face when Councilor Staggers is asking questions or criticizing things like steps into dirty rivers and such. I don’t mind disagreement, I do mind suppression of dissent.

#5 GregN on 06.13.12 at 11:03 pm

I was also very confused about Legends taking the place of Superlative to go after the naming rights, after Superlative did the study about the possibility of getting sponsorship deals. Maybe Legends is much better, I have no idea. My bigger concern actually is that apparently the city (Darrin Smith etc) are going it alone to find the entity that will put the name on the building, and only then we will use the services of Legends to do the contractual negotiations? Am I understanding that right? Why would we go it alone when we don’t know what we’re doing on the big prize? It doesn’t make any sense, why would you hire a consultant to go get the deals for the little stuff, but then go it alone on the big one (at least finding the entity)?? I may be confused, but if so its because this process isn’t transparent at all.

#6 Detroit Lewis on 06.13.12 at 11:20 pm

Greg, I am pressing on the naming rights, story, let’s just say for right now, it has many facets.

As for Erpenbach and 1st Amendment rights, she has no clue. Her and Kermit are equals, she can’t tell him what to do, and quite frankly, neither of them can tell citizens what to do. Time limits are BS, and they throw them out there to scare citizens. I have often wanted to ask, “If I go over the 5 minute time limit can you arrest me, and if so, on what grounds?’

#7 anominous on 06.14.12 at 12:22 am

The Mayor keeps order like he’s Nurse Ratched.

#8 Testor15 on 06.14.12 at 8:01 am

Sub-Prime Mike is a salesman running a sham organization. Salesmen do not want their marks to ask questions they do not have answers for. So when Erpenbach or Sub-Prime try to shutdown Staggers or citizens it most likely means they do not know what they think they know. All dissent must be punished.

#9 Anooner on 06.14.12 at 8:12 am

Kerm should ask Erp for the citation to that rule. If she cites Robert’s Rules, I would bet if anything is in there about 4 quest, it is a suggestion. Plus, those things are not codified into law. She is going to look like she is stifling discourse if she tries that again.

#10 Testor15 on 06.14.12 at 8:55 am

Are rules of order adopted at the beginning of each term of office as other government bodies do? Rules are adopted every two years or at each term of the Congress or the state legislature. These rules are the “Roberts Rules” for how the body works.

If Erp and Sub-Prime have not pushed something like Roberts through, than Kermit can ask all the questions he wants until the majority of the legislative body votes to stop question period.

This is not the PTA.

#11 Pathloss on 06.14.12 at 10:50 am

Superlative was a ghost to bleed more money from the Goldman Sachs bonds. Somebody did an assumed name (dba Superlative) to receive non-performance funds. Their actual name is probably a Huether relative. Huether is so obvious and boring. The mafia is at least secretive and interesting. By 2016, Sioux Falls will have a special city holiday called ‘Huether Perp Walk Day’.

#12 Pathloss on 06.14.12 at 11:01 am

Huether has all the power in this anarchy. He also has all the blame and criminal charges. Sideline people know he’s going to come down hard on federal charges for public funds fraud. Councilors have no authority or influence. A better word for councilor is federal witness. Rich contracts developer types will make millions and be fined 10,000. That’s business. Huether will get life in prison. He’s petite with nice hair and will make convicts a good girlfriend.

#13 matt70 on 06.14.12 at 11:34 am

Pathloss you are hilarious. Good stuff.

#14 Detroit Lewis on 06.14.12 at 2:40 pm

PL – He would make a horrible GF. He cries too much!

#15 Dukembe on 06.14.12 at 3:09 pm

And in completely unrelated news (okay, not completely unrelated, it’s more city silliness and blowing money), now the parking meter patrols are not just on segways — I saw one today patrolling in a scooter chair!

#16 Detroit Lewis on 06.14.12 at 4:21 pm

They had the scooter chair before the segway.

#17 Detroit Lewis on 06.14.12 at 4:22 pm

KELO-TV is doing a story tonight about the naming rights contract changing.

#18 Detroit Lewis on 06.14.12 at 4:23 pm

I tipped off Dunsmoor this morning about it.


#19 Shrimp Taco on 06.14.12 at 4:29 pm

Did you catch this on page 15 of Tuesday’s EC presentation: Total Expended – $ 2,345,686.

And they haven’t broken ground yet!!

#20 Pathloss on 06.14.12 at 5:47 pm

It’s Goldman Sachs scandal for 30 midsized cities. Next failure will be munis. See ‘How EC will bankrupt city’ archive. With rigged election & Huether letting contracts there’s a 100 million hole with no EC & serious infrastructure collapse. Sad for what could have been a top 10 city. Feds will come in and take out Huether with public funds fraud and RICO. They want pipeline & refinery at Elk Point. State republicans & Huether are in the way.

#21 l3wis on 06.14.12 at 9:41 pm

$65,000 for ‘What if?’


I could tell you for $1.00 you could sell naming rights to the new EC. Duh. Watch the video, love all the back peddling. Notice Erpenbach looking down several times while being interviewed about the Superlative Contract, this is a sign she is misleading you and not telling the whole story. And where was king shit Darrin Smith to explain all the Fck-Ups he has performed during this process? Someone needs to tell Michelle and Darrin that public meetings are recorded and accessible, maybe that is why she wants to stop Kermit from asking questions?

#22 Alice15 on 06.14.12 at 10:14 pm

I thought the same thing – we are going to pay $22,000 for finalizing the naming rights – but we paid $65,000 for “what ifs”? You have to be flippin’ kidding me. Erpenbach is digging a hole she is going to have a tough time getting out of. “We knew we were going to spend money.” Yes – we know this Michelle – but what is the limit of spending on we have no idea what the hell we are doing?” This has been a clusterf _ _ _ since the beginning and the end result will be mountains of debt and a building crammed up a gnat’s ass in an induustrial park. Completely nauseating.

#23 Shrimp Taco on 06.14.12 at 10:18 pm

I heard from an insider recently that a local bank that does NOT have Premier in its name requested a meeting with MMM but got Smitty instead. This family-owned bank, with deep pockets, was very interested in putting together an RFP for primary naming rights.

I say “was” because by the time they were done meeting with Smitty they were so mad and insulted that they swear they’ll have nothing to do with this project.

What I don’t get is why The Erp is getting in the middle of this. All this backdoor stuff is being orchestrated from the corner office at 9th & Dakota – the Council is clearly being kept in the dark

#24 Detroit Lewis on 06.14.12 at 10:25 pm

Old news, ST, First Dakota was interested and backed out because Smith was rude and condescending, kinda like his boss.

#25 Alice15 on 06.15.12 at 8:06 am

It may be old news to some, but this was the first I had heard of it. The reason people are insulted after meeting with Smith is he thinks he knows what he is doing, but in all reality – he doesn’t. I feel sorry for people that were snowed and in the end voted for this horrific plan and the crap for information they relied on from this administration.

Erpenbach is spinning out of control and now has gotten herself in a position to save her own ass from the information that is spewing out of her mouth.

Has everyone seen all of the new economic development out by the arena in anticipation of the new EC? Nope – me neither.

#26 scott on 06.15.12 at 8:09 am

So if I’m guessing correctly, the naming rights were probably a done deal to begin with, and MMM and Perm Boy are spending on consultants to make it look like they bid it. Would it also be safe to guess that the bids are to be kept confidential so that we won’t find out that hospital A or bank B paid less than others were offering?

#27 scott on 06.15.12 at 8:12 am

Alice, you must have missed the KELO story on the burrito place that opened in half of the old crappy chef. The guy said he opened there because of the event center. Things are starting to happen!

#28 Testor15 on 06.15.12 at 9:23 am

Erp is so under-qualified, overwhelmed and utterly ignorant of her responsibilities. She is lashing out at Kermit and anyone else who would be going against her wishes because she evidently does not understand the basic responsibilities of her job.

Erp reminds me a current council member who stated his responsibility to his constituents was to only vote on budget matters and not question the city managers about their jobs. According to him, he could not intercede on behalf of a citizen when a problem arose with city employees.

Of what value are council members if they do not represent us? Oh yea, I forgot, I don’t have enough money in my bank account to really be classified as a full citizen in these Citizen’s United days.

#29 rufusx on 06.15.12 at 4:17 pm

Burrito Place will do good with the construction crews. After that – not so much.

#30 Detroit Lewis on 06.15.12 at 10:37 pm

Testor – There is a story in the AL tomorrow about the question asking.

Ruf – Yeah, and they are awful tippers.

BTW, working on another post about the Superlative/Legends contract deal. I received a very informative call today, but I have to tread lightly.