Why does Sioux Falls struggle so much with open government?

Many in the media are wondering why Mayor Paul doesn’t hold regular press conferences where the media can ask questions. Sorry folks, have to head to my kid’s soccer game.

I have often argued that this should be one of the easiest things our local government officials do – open the books! We already have the laws in place that allow government in South Dakota to open the books as much as they want to, with only a handful of things that are not allowable (and are clearly defined).

It often baffles me when I watch the video above or hear a local official say this (Sioux Falls City Councilor Erickson is referring to a conversation she had on Wednesday with Mayor TenHaken about communication);

“Help me understand this. Where was the communication breakdown, and how can we do better for you guys (city councilors)?”

I mean, if you have to ask, you are apparently either NOT fit to lead, or acting naive on purpose to hide things. I think it is a little of both.

When leaders fail at the simplest of tasks, it clearly shows they are NOT prepared for the job and should resign.

I drive past the Mayor’s office every weekday going to work (about 7:45 AM) and again going home (about 4:45 PM) and it is always dark. Why do we need city hall security for a mayor that doesn’t show up to his office?


#1 "Very Stable Genius" on 11.07.19 at 7:01 pm

It’s merely the reality of a conservative business man, or a corporatist, trying to run a government, which is suppose to be democratic and open.

I had a boss many years ago, who after my protest over a particular company policy, told me that the constitution ends at the entrance to the company’s door.

Keep in mind too, that we hear much criticism now days about most journalists being too liberal, but we never hear about too many businessmen and businesswomen being too conservative. Journalism might be the fourth estate, but corporate America is the fifth estate; and if the fifth estate wants to politically lead at times, then it needs to be open to democratic thought, which currently is lacking.

As far as the journalists’ responsibilities, well, liberal or not: “We report. You decide.” 😉

( – and Woodstock states: “Hey, whatever happen to Shepard Smith, anyhow?”….”Was it a corporate thing?”)

#2 D@ily Spin on 11.07.19 at 11:56 pm

I voted for Jolene and Janoct. It feels good for me that the worst mayors in Sioux Falls history have been what’s his name and Huether. I didn’t tell you so but I should have. You passed on a one of a kind woman leader and a minority looking for a bafroom

#3 Plausible Deniability on 11.08.19 at 8:57 am

That video from PTH was one of the most vacuous, contrived performances I’ve ever seen by an elected official. Spin in the finest tradition of a vapid MTV pop video. He clearly doesn’t have the chops to handle an unscripted press conference – much less lead a city in an open and transparent manner.