Entries Tagged 'Mayor TenHaken' ↓

Mayor TenHanken’s Latest Interview

I guess I missed this interview from a couple of days ago;

In the past four years, his city department head leadership team has changed considerably. There are new police and fire chiefs, new faces leading public health, planning and innovation. He has a new finance director and city attorney.

“So I spent four years building that team, and now for the next four years, we’ve got the team together, and I think we can do a lot.”

He has really spent the past four years dealing with a revolving door. Many people he chose after being elected to his first term have left. He has had to appoint a new city attorney, a new planning director, a new health director and police chief. He has also had to appoint 2 different Fire Chiefs. He is on his 2nd IT and technology director. He has also lost a deputy chief of staff, a housing director and his chief cultural officer. I am unclear what he means by building a team?

Often times whether it is in the private sector or public sector many times directors and department heads leave an organization because of (lack of) leadership. Sure, retirements do occur, but with this much turnover in just 4 years you have to question the relationship he has with his city directors? This may explain why his administration is so busy fiddling with the legislative process instead of running the city (his duties under the charter).

“Everyone wants to know what are we doing about housing, and I can tell you it’s just so challenging right now, with land costs and with attitudes about infill development,” TenHaken said. “If we can move two or three houses or create small programs to give developers a little bit of cost savings, we’re just hitting singles. There’s no home runs to be found.”

That’s because the housing crisis will not be solved in Sioux Falls until we solve the wage problem. We also can’t be constantly cramming affordable housing into certain neighborhoods, it has to be spread throughout the community. I know it is NOT an easy thing to fix overnight, but what groundwork has been laid over the past 10-15 years or even past 4 years on this issue? I will continue to cross my fingers that the city will implement real programs to fix up our core, build density and create more housing, but I don’t have a lot of confidence in this current city government makeup that they have any long term solutions.

There also will be a project to complement the downtown parking ramp on the north side of 10th Street east of Phillips Avenue, TenHaken said.

“I’m excited about it,” he said. “We’re going to soon be announcing the timeline and process for interested parties to begin expressing interest in the site, so I think it will be good in the second term to get that underway.”

So the ink has barely dried on the check we sent to the defunk developer of the Bunker Ramp and we are already going to send out an RFP on what to do with the site? Which says to me, someone has already pitched the city an idea (we can make our guesses who this developer will be). Not sure what you could do with the site, but I have often suggested a multiple story studio apartment building.

Trying to solve the issue of child care is a bit like tackling housing, he said.

“There’s no silver bullet solution, but the discussions we’re having and the work and partnership we’re forming with the school district is something that’s never been done in the city before … kids and families is something we’re going to lay overtop of almost every decision we’re making.”

I often shake my head when community leaders across the country think they have some simple, unique solution to fixing the child care issues in their communities. Two things that could drastically change that situation in Sioux Falls would be higher wages and Federally funding for Pre-K education. Government is NOT always the solution, but in this situation non-profits, churches and private schools can’t solve this by themselves, there needs to be a government safety net for the kids that fall thru those cracks. So what is standing in our way? Partisanship, which brings us to his final thoughts;

“I think the next political cycle is going to be very ugly, so how do I as a mayor try to maintain a spirit of unity and a One Sioux Falls mindset when national news and all these forces tell us there are constant things we need to fight about, and that’s why (I focus) on the 95 percent of where we’re alike to keep moving forward.”

He is correct, politics have become ugly and getting worse. Why? Because Republicans like TenHaken have made local traditionally non-partisan politics into partisan. Everything has become about one-party rule, even on a supposed non-partisan branch of government like city council. I saw this rear its head during TenHaken’s first campaign, it got worse in ousting councilor Stehly and recently Brekke. It has become an all out death match to the end. And I’m not talking about a difference between Republican or Democratic philosophies, those are easy to break down. It is a devision between the elite, authoritarian Republicans and the traditional fiscal conservative Republicans and social conscious Democrats. The authoritarians like Noem and TenHaken are in charge and they will do anything in their power to squash a dissenting view on how to tackle an issue. Solutions come from bringing every view to the table. This is why they had to eliminate Theresa and Janet, they asked too many questions, and you never question the King.

I would like to think that things will be different in Sioux Falls in next 2-4 years, but with cruise control government, a lack of transparency, a rubber stamp council and very little planning or vision, I think we will still be talking about the same challenges in the Spring of 2026, just more exacerbated.

NEWLY ELECTED SIOUX FALLS CITY COUNCILOR SARAH COLE ALSO DOES AN INTERVIEW

It is such an honor to be elected to this seat on the City Council. I always encourage my kids about being the change that we want to see in the world. There are things that happen in our world that we have no control over, but we can control ourselves and our response to those issues. 

Yeah, it’s called voting in local elections. I still find it incredibly ironic and hypocritical that the first vote Cole cast in a Sioux Falls city election was a vote for herself 🙂 and the media has yet to touch that with a ten foot pole. Her absence in participating in local elections tells us all we will need to know about what her performance will be on the city council. Thank goodness the Mayor already setup a team of fellow rubber stampers for her so she doesn’t have to fart around for 4 years setting up that groundwork.

Tornado Sirens are not just for Tornados

Just read the history of tornado sirens or better known as Civil defense siren;

civil defense siren (also known as an air-raid siren or tornado siren) is a siren used to provide an emergency population warning to the general population of approaching danger. It is sometimes sounded again to indicate the danger has passed. Some sirens (especially within small towns) are also used to call the volunteer fire department when needed. Initially designed to warn city dwellers of air raids in World War II, they were later used to warn of nuclear attack and natural destructive weather patterns such as tornadoes. The generalized nature of sirens led to many of them being replaced with more specific warnings, such as the broadcast-based Emergency Alert System and the Cell Broadcast-based Wireless Emergency Alerts and EU-Alert mobile technologies.

Well if that wasn’t a natural destructive weather pattern Thursday night I don’t know what it was? I did get alerts on my phone (which was good because my electricity went out) but does it really hurt to sound them even if it is not a tornado? That’s crying wolf according to Mayor TenHaken;

When asked Friday by reporters if the city should re-evaluate its policy, TenHaken, responded: “Will we look at the policy? Sure. But you can see where they start to lose their effectiveness when you cry wolf too often and use the sirens for multiple purposes,” he said.

That is probably why they don’t plow the streets much anymore, they wouldn’t want citizens to expect safe streets in the winter 🙂

Let’s be clear, the sirens ARE for weather and other emergencies. I don’t think anyone would have been upset if they sounded the alarm. They act like turning them on is like launching a nuclear weapon. They act like every time the train blows its whistle while crossing an intersection is just crying wolf, wonder why people haven’t just stopped ignoring them? This is what happens when you have cruise control government.

Besides, who is in charge of flipping the switch? Sounds like this guy, who had an excuse also;

Sioux Falls Emergency Manager Regan Smith said activating the sirens too often could lead to complacency and confusion, adding that the policy not to sound them during non-tornado weather events is supported by commonly-supported best practices in the emergency management and meteorology industries.

Uh, no it is NOT, it varies from community to community;

1. What does it mean when I hear the outdoor warning sirens? 

In short, it means that something life-threatening is happening and you should go indoors and get more information.   The specific guidelines (tornado, hail ,wind, etc.) for sounding sirens varies by jurisdiction, so check with your local community to find out the specifics if you are interested.

In other words, more excuses.

With a wink and a Nod

Mayor ‘Hottie Pants’ garners the Hot Mess Mom Vote

Well, some nicknames can’t last forever, and now with a new term, we may have to drop Poops and replace it with Mayor Hottie Pants (see below).

People continue to vote for image NOT substance.

This exchange on Argus 911 FB page says all you need to know about how the desperate housewives of Taupeville vote. Ironically, I told a friend the other night while watching the debates, Ms. Islam isn’t too hard on the eyes either, but I still voted for the hippie.

If you go to the thread (April 12) you will also see several blatant racist comments about Muslims. But the comparisons to Trump and how much Captain Hottie Pants has accomplished really had me laughing. I wonder what city some of these people have been living in the past 4 years? I wonder if they realize the SE District is just a district and not the entire city?

Mayor TenHaken may have violated FCC Committee Member Rules

Mayor TenHaken currently is the chair of the FCC Intergovernmental Advisory Committee, as a committee member they have to follow certain rules and guidelines in that position. According to the FCC they are only allowed to provide opinions to the FCC Commission. I was unable to find the specific rule that prohibits committee members from making accusations or pronouncements about other fellow lawmakers, like a city councilor he serves with, but I do know that Federal boards have to meet a much higher bar when it comes to conduct. I would think if Councilor Brekke made an inquiry to the FCC about his accusations they would look into the rules he must follow as a committee member.

Here is the video of Brekke’s press conference. I like how she compared Paul to a singer of a rock band and the council is the musicians in the band;

Here is the dust up between Starr and Jensen;

UPDATE: City of Sioux Falls Employees are also voters

UPDATE: Notice in Trevor Mitchell’s story;

Asked for comment, TenHaken’s campaign responded with several links to the Federal Communication Commission’s rules on political campaign texts, as well as to the Sioux Falls Code of Ordinances. The city’s code states:


“No city employee shall, directly or indirectly, contribute money or anything of value to or render service in behalf of the candidacy of any candidate for nomination or election to any city office.” 


Notice that either Mitchell or TenHaken conveniently left out the last two sentences of the complete ordinance, which gives city employees the right to privately support candidates, just NOT financially.


§ 39.038 POLITICAL ACTIVITY.
No officer or employee under the civil service or appointive officers shall, directly or indirectly, contribute money or anything of value to or render service in behalf of the candidacy of any candidate for nomination or election to any city office. The expression in private of personal views concerning candidates for political office is not prohibited hereby. Violation of this section shall be grounds for discharge or other disciplinary action.

This of course is no surprise how low they will go to try to make it look like they have the law on their sides. Ironically, it seems Poops is the one who may have violated city charter when it comes ethics and employee bonuses;


§ 39.041 UNLAWFUL INFLUENCE.
No person while holding any office in the government of the city or any nomination for or while seeking a nomination for appointment to any office shall corruptly use or promise to use, either directly or indirectly, any official authority or influence in the way of conferring upon any person, or in order to secure or aid any person in securing any office or public employment or any nomination, confirmation, promotion or increase in salary, upon the consideration or condition that the vote or political influence or action of the last named person or any other person shall be given or used in behalf of any candidate, officer or party, or upon any other corrupt condition or consideration.

It seems Paul is trying to deflect from his own ethical challenges trying to play the victim after he attacked a city councilor;

These are baseless allegations and honestly, way beneath what we should expect from our leaders. Those who know me can see through them for what they are  — false, misleading and a desperate attempt for headlines a week before an election. I look forward to continuing to discuss issues like housing, public safety and infrastructure rather than publicity stunts like this.”

Baseless? Who sent the private text with a made up controversy? You did. It is unfortunate that Brekke had to respond to your political stunt. You are such a small petty person. I know hungry toddlers with more grace. You played the same game with Jolene. These are the games of a political hack who has no basic understanding of ethics or running government.

It continued at the informational meeting where Chair Alex Jensen decided to dig on Councilor Starr who had to attend a personal matter so he was late to the meeting saying, “Where is Pat Starr, thought he wanted to ask questions? (about Forward Sioux Falls funding). Starr showed up shortly later and at the end of the meeting he tore into Jensen saying he wasn’t ‘Man enough to say it to his face.’ Jensen tried to deny it and Pat said, ‘We can replay the tape.’ As the gavel was flying the video producer shut the video off, essentially censoring the exchange. That’s open government folks.

This is what it has come to, a bunch of partisan hack rubber stampers who are angry about getting called out for their immense stupidity, arrogance and incompetence.

Previous Post

Unfortunately, Mayor Doxxing has decided to threaten a city councilor that is up for re-election with a made-up crisis. Councilor Brekke is contacting voters with her text messages and some of those voters are city employees. It is completely legal, as she explains. Janet is not offering any kind of compensation to the city employees for posting her signs, and further more, according to city charter, city councilors have NO direct influence over a majority of city employees, only council staff.

This of course is a response from the mayor because Brekke pointed out it being unethical to vote for city employee bonuses before an election, something that directly impacts their employment and compensation. She took the high road and Paul is taking the low road.

I could say more, but I will let Janet explain instead;

UPDATE II: Brian Allen shows his bias towards Mayor TenHaken before and during the Sioux Falls Mayoral debate

Before the debate starts, moderators Brian Allen and Trevor Mitchell have a hot mic conversation on how they will do the debate. I found this exchange interesting and thought I would document it if it gets edited from video;

UPDATE II: During the KELO TV debate they addressed Paul as Mr. TenHaken, the correct protocol.

UPDATE: They did edit it out of the DakotaNews and Argus FB videos, so luckily I caught it;

Brian Allen, “I’ve done this a time or two, I know where the quicksand is.”

Mitchell asks Allen, “How do you plan on addressing them? First name?”

Allen then asks who I assume is his producer, and there is a quiet conversation and it is decided to call him Mayor TenHaken.

Allen, “So we are giving him the power of the incumbency during the debate? That makes sense, so it will be Mr. Zokaites, Ms. Islam and Mayor TenHaken.”

Actually, they all should have been addressed the same way, as this handy little guidance points out.

Also during the debate Allen made sure he thanked Paul for his response every time, “Thank You Mayor TenHaken.” That did not happen with the other candidates as often.

Trevor and Allen also had a discussion about the candidates in attendance before debate, and Trevor said, “I see Brekke and Pam Cole.” and Allen perks up and says, “Is Sarah Cole here?” Not sure what that meant?

I will give props to David (who I voted for and have been endorsing) I think he gave common sense answers to big issues. I think Islam has a lot of passion when it comes to the vulnerable and she is well studied on the issues and she took Poops to task several times. TenHaken was on the defense most of the night, and seemed frustrated at the beginning and a little agitated. That is because he is NOT cut out for the job and never has been.

I guess Stormland TV is having another debate tomorrow night at 8 PM, hopefully the council meeting will be done by then.

Downtown Rotary hosted a forum with the At-Large A Candidates today;

Poops Puzzling Postcard

In the 2nd installment of Mayor TenHaken’s mail campaign he continues to make up fake crises;

flooding, tornadoes, civil unrest, divisive politics, and a worldwide pandemic.

I am still trying to figure out the ‘civil unrest’. The BLM rally was 99.9% peaceful. I participated in it. It didn’t get weird until some latch key kids decided to throw some rocks at the police at the mall that had NOTHING to do with the day’s activities.

I also really don’t know what he means by ‘divisive politics’. The city council has pretty much been a rubber stamp council. Even councilor Starr who puts up a fight on occasion has voted the line most of the time. City government in Sioux Falls has been anything but divisive. There is very little discussion or debate. I hate to say it, but Paul has gotten every thing he has wanted.

But the most concerning thing about his postcard is the mask he is wearing, he admits in this interview he broke the tie for the mask mandate voting it down. So which is it?

Mayor TenHaken is a politician full of contradictions.

Mayor TenHaken’s April Fool’s Joke

During Poops regularly scheduled monthly appearance* on the Belfrage show he said that just because your appraised value of your home may go up 18% that doesn’t mean your taxes will go up that much. This is true. But what he said next must have been his sad attempt at an April’s Fool’s joke. He proceeded to say that some people’s taxes may go down. Hilarious stuff. The only case where this could even be true is if you move into a special category next year that would qualify you for a tax reduction (senior, disabled veteran, etc.). The only entities in Sioux Falls that are getting (massive) tax breaks are the welfare queen Tifilicious developers and we are all paying higher taxes because of it. My taxes going down . . . my ass!


*This was Greg’s BS excuse to not make it sound like a FREE campaign advert.

Even if Amendment A fails the Sioux Falls mayor will still get a $10K raise next year

While most people have been chuckling behind the scenes about Poops endorsement of a NO vote on Amendment A (A $165K salary) he would still get a significant raise next year. If you base it on inflation of 7.5% his raise would be $10,312 which would bring him to $148,112 for 2023.

This is why we have consistently kept the inflation/deflation index for the mayor and council’s salaries, because it works.