UPDATE: New Sioux Falls City Council already has tricks up their sleeves

At last night’s 1st meeting of the new council the games have already started. I would have suspected they at least waited for a couple of weeks since they haven’t even updated the council web page yet (As of 7 AM, 5/18). Maybe they didn’t want to change the website until later today, because if they changed it yesterday before they even had their first meeting it may appear the council was crying wolf 🙂

The one thing I noticed is that the roll call changed. Normally in alphabetical order it now seems to be random, the roll went like this last night; Jensen, Merkouris, Neitzert, Selberg, Soehl, Starr, Barranco, Cole. While I am not sure why it was changed, I found it interesting they put the Jensen first and Barranco and Cole last. I think in the past I have noticed they will reverse the alphabetical order, but I have never seen it just be random. I guess if I was going to be a rubber stamp puppet I would want to be last also.

UPDATE: I inquired about the roll call to the city clerk, Tom Greco, he had a reasonable response;

Thanks for your e-mail.  The roll call/vote order is rotated each meeting and Council Member Jensen was the next sitting member up on the rotation.  It’s in alphabetical order only once every 8 meetings — the first person to vote at a meeting is moved to the end of the rotation for the next regular meeting. On June 7th, Council Member Merkouris will be first with Jensen at the end. It hasn’t been done in reverse order. Roll call and vote order for special and joint meetings stays the same as the Council Meeting held immediately prior to the special or joint meeting (e.g. the same roll call used last night will be used for next Tuesday’s joint meeting with Lincoln County.)

They also decided to re-elect Curt Soehl as chair and Jensen as vice-chair. While it is not unusual for boards to re-elect the same leadership from year to year (Minnehaha County Commission has done it several times) it is unusual for the this city council. I can’t remember when this council has ever re-elected leadership? The sad part was they passed up Pat Starr who has been on the council for 6 years and never served in leadership. They should have elected Jensen as Chair and Pat as vice-chair. As you can tell from watching the vote last night, this was all pre-determined probably through individual phone calls. You are going to see a lot of that moving forward.

The probable reason they kept leadership the same is to install Jensen as chair next year so that going into his re-election bid he can say he is the chair of the council. These folks are so predictable.

After watching the meeting last night I noticed a little frustration out of councilor Merkouris (when asking questions) and Barranco seemed bored to death. I also noticed our mayor had a smirk most of the meeting except when he said OMG into the microphone when someone came up for public input.


#1 Fear & Loathing in Sioux Falls on 05.18.22 at 7:49 pm

When I think of a smirk, I think of that cocky high school quarterback that we all once knew, or knew of….

#2 "Woodstock" on 05.20.22 at 4:39 pm

“That’s why they like to wear sleeveless vests”…. “It’s an ill attempt to claim transparency”….