Entries Tagged 'Greg Belfrage' ↓

Belfrage continues to rant about a ‘Nothing Burger’

It’s been a week today since the last city council meeting, and Belf continues to rant about how councilor Neitzert was ‘supposedly’ treated after last week’s council meeting. Now he is complaining to the mayor. I asked about this ‘incident’ since I was not there. I usually try to leave the meetings before the end so I don’t have to talk to the elected officials. I figure if they can’t talk to me during the public forum, why should I talk to them afterwards? What I was told is that a constituent, who knows Neitzert very well and has a good relationship with him ‘jokingly’ said to him he was a ‘rubber stamper puppet’. I guess he didn’t take it as a joke until this person laughed and told him they were joking. I’m not sure if this is how it played out, but I find it really hard to believe someone would ‘visciously’ get in his face and say this to him after the meeting. But since Batman didn’t die this week, Belf had to dig up some fake controversy.

The mayor, also continues to claim Stehly was ‘misleading’ the public about the $300 a month statement. It was a sarcastic figure of speech. Get over it already. The mayor also knows very little about how we have historically funded infrastructure projects, he claims we have always used enterprise funds. Not true, that change occurred during the last administration because the mayor at that time wanted to free up the 2nd penny to spend on pleasure palaces. Some have even claimed that Bowlcut & Bucktooth did more for our roads. Not true. Our roads were rated around 70% Good to Fair (which is a good rating) when he came into office. We had the same rating when he left.

TenHaken also claimed that our city employees (mostly directors) do things with the highest integrity. I have often argued their integrity is only matched by those who lead them. When the former mayor was lying about the siding settlement with the help of Fiddle-Faddle, why didn’t any of these city directors come forward and blow the whistle? Wouldn’t this be considered having integrity? I have said all along, it is very similar to the movie ‘A Few Good Men’. The city employees and mostly directors follow the orders of their leader, whether it is right or wrong. That is why I have had very little faith in how this sewer plant was ‘planned’.

Mayor Huether has paid off debt by taxing us to death

Hizzoner was on the B-N-B show this morning spreading his own special kind of love. He started telling his victory lap story he has been telling over the past month that he will be on to bigger and better things right after taking a break, because as he put it, his daughter wants him to be ‘fun again’. I don’t even want to know what that all entails but I’m picturing a speedo and a couple of empty Coors Light Silos.

Either way, besides serving up his own special brand of BS this morning, now claiming people hate him, or hate progress, or hate something, not sure where he was going with it since he always prefaces these kind of statements with ‘I better be careful about who I am talking about’. He made another one of his Half-Truth statements;

There is NOW less debt than when I became mayor.

Well folks, that is absolutely true. In fact I think when MMM leaves office there will be around $10 million less debt then when he rolled in in 2010. So you ask, how is this so? First off, the obvious; many of the debts that were incurred during the Hanson and Munson administrations have come to fruition. This has nothing to do with Huether, just the way the repayment was set up. In fact, if we wouldn’t have borrowed ANY money during the Huether administration our debt now would probably be around $100 million instead of 3x that.

So you ask, what about all the debt MMM incurred? That still exists, and will for about 20-30 years.

But this is where Huether gets even more dim on his great debt payoff. Many of the infrastructure debts were re-financed and paid down due to the increase of fees in the enterprise funds, front end property tax assessments, property taxes, building and platting, and the list goes on. In fact the Mayor’s office with the help of the rubberstamp council has increased fees and taxes over 50 times since 2010.

So while the mayor may brag about not increasing the debt on the city over the past 8 years, he has certainly put that burden on property owners in Sioux Falls in higher fees and taxes. Don’t believe me? If you still live in the same home you lived in 2010, pull your property taxes from that year and compare them to 2017. Tell me what you figure out?

It’s too bad wages haven’t increased by that much in 8 years?

He also finally admitted that you essentially can’t get things done in government unless you make the decisions behind closed doors with a minority of support from the council and key business players in town. He said that open meetings and forums with the public just drag out the conversation and nothing gets accomplished. While his statements might piss you off, I was happy to finally hear him say publicly that he never gave a rat’s ass what the public thought.

Full steam ahead.

I hope when the mayor decides to be fun again, it will be on another continent.

I agree with Belfrage, endorsements don’t matter, they may even hurt

Maybe on a National level, but in local politics, I don’t know. Sometimes I wonder if certain endorsements might hurt you if someone has already made up their mind to vote for you and see someone they don’t like politically endorse you.

For instance let’s look at both candidates;

TenHaken

 • Family Heritage Alliance, an organization known for it’s ultra conservative right-wing partisan stances. They opposed gay marriage and gay rights and host of other freedom issues that are unconstitutional. I heard Loetscher didn’t even bother responding to them. If that is true, good for her.

• Greg Jamison, while this certainly doesn’t hurt, he did come in 4th place, and Paul could garner his votes, the same could be said about the Anderson endorsement of Loetscher.

• Dave Munson, Not sure how much this helps either. Munson started the downward spiral of transparency at City Hall and Huether perfected it. Dave actually got in trouble for signing a 100% cost overrun on Phillips to the Falls without Council approval. He almost didn’t run for a 2nd term because of it.

Loetscher

• Rick Knobe, not sure a mayor from 34 years ago has much weight, but it certainly won’t hurt her.

• Andy Howes, a one-term city councilor that most voters probably don’t remember, but props to Andy for promoting some great rock shows in town 🙂

• Pat Starr, no doubt Pat has been doing a great job on the city council. He spearheaded the Glory House land deal and has held firm on many issues on the council when it comes to transparency. While I don’t think his endorsement hurts or helps Jo, it could hurt his relationship with a new mayor, especially if they are NOT Jolene. Hey Pat, I guess were in the same boat on that one 🙂

• Michelle Erpenbach, while I believe Jo when she says she will improve transparency in city hall, this is the LAST person you want endorsing you when it comes to transparency. Michelle supported the secretive operations committee and assisted in terminating Debra Owen, which was a violation of Open Meetings Laws.

As Belfrage points out, and as I do, not sure if the endorsement game is really that big of a deal.

UPDATE: Greg Belfrage Nails it!

The Great Oz of Sioux Falls?

While Greg and I don’t see eye to eye on a myriad of topics, I feel sometimes Greg and I share a common belief; if you lie to me, and I catch you, there will be Hell to pay.

Greg discovered something (finally) that I have known about the mayor before he was even elected; he’s a carnival barker snakeoil salesman. He proved this with his time as VP of Marketing for one of the most infamous subprime credit cards in the world. So horrible was their marketing scams the FEDS changed credit card laws to reign them in. THE FEDS! I mean wow! When DC thinks you are corrupt, that is a whole new level. And make no mistake, while Mike likes to call himself a ‘banker’ he was really just the chief huckster. He took his experience (business acumen) straight with him to city hall.

I’m glad Greg has finally seen the light;

The big lie was actually a lie of omission. Not once did the mayor make it clear that the one million dollars was in VALUE. He never even hinted at it.

And that’s the game he has always played. You wait, on Tuesday, you will probably see him in the wings at Carnegie (if he even has the balls to show up) watching his pitiful administration team fall on the sword for this guy. I just hope at least one of them has the integrity to point the finger at the man behind the curtain.

The Argus Leader also weighs in on the matter;

According to the Supreme Court’s ruling, such negotiated government secrecy violates state open record laws. That’s a huge victory for the citizens of Sioux Falls, whose tax dollars underwrote the most expensive project in city history.

I know it has been easy over the past week to get in the weeds on this, especially with all the confusing numbers. But remember, most importantly this is about transparency, and can be summed up with one sentence; The mayor lied to us about the settlement amount.