The day after the bridge funding was approved by city council a foot soldier told me that the price overrun was odd to him considering this is just a deck replacement. I asked him what he meant. It was his understanding that since the bridge isn’t that old (I think constructed in the 70’s) that the piers would remain and they are simply replacing the deck like they did with the 8th street bridge.

I didn’t want to jump the gun on that prediction so I have been watching the demolition and noticed the preservation of the piers and according to this media report, that is the case;

That’s to build cofferdams to protect parts of the piers in the river that will be reused

So for a $10 million cost overrun we are not even getting a total bridge replacement? The taxpayers are certainly going down a certain creek without a paddle.


Speaking of speculative book keeping, the city finance department has yet to release it’s audited or even unaudited 2022 financials. Usually there is a report to city council and the public by March of the following year.

Another foot soldier speculated to me that maybe the reason we haven’t seen it is because the mayor’s office is trying to figure out how they are going to explain the massive reserves the city coffers are nesting on.

Maybe we should institute the 1st Annual Sioux Falls Pothole Day Saturday April 1st and any citizen that volunteers for 8 hours on that day to fill potholes will receive $100 cash and a Sioux Falls ONE pin. That would be a quick way to spend some of that moldy money.

I am not opposed to different city departments cross training. I have often said that cross training between two departments would be beneficial to taxpayers;

With the increased workload, Public Works has put out the call for additional assistance. One who answered that call is Sioux Falls Master Firefighter Tim Schons.

“We received notice from Public Works that they were in need of individuals to help out their crews, just man-power wise,” Schons said. He chose to sign up to lend a hand.

Besides the obvious question, ‘If a firefighter has time to fill potholes you wonder if they have enough to do?’ OR ‘Why haven’t we been using the fire department for extra street work to begin with?’

But what I found interesting is this;

The main reason for Schons’ decision to sign up was a feeling of civic duty. “We are paid of course for working, but it is volunteer,” he said. “Public Works and the rest of the entities in the city help us during emergencies — well now they are in need of help and this gives us the opportunity to kind of return the favor — the ultimate goal is to help out the citizens.”

Yes they are, if you look at the city salary data for 2023 you will see that temporary service employees for the street department make around $20 an hour which is decent pay if you are pulling 40 hours a week. Mr. Schon makes around $75K a year which equals about $36 a hour. If I were Mr. Schon I wouldn’t mention that to the other guys at coffee break.

I also wonder what the Firefighters Union thinks of this?

Maybe the city should recruit some engineers to fill potholes, I heard they are not really busy these days.

Gee, where have we seen this before? (FF: 1:25:00)

In March of 2019 councilors Stehly and Starr proposed the same ordinance and 5 councilors voted against it. Fast forward to next Tuesday and they are proposing the exact same ordinance (Item #10);

The supplemental appropriation provides up to $500,000 to the highways and streets budget for pothole remediation.

I support the ordinance, just like I did in 2019. But you wonder what is different today then in 2019? For one, I think the city is struggling with labor NOT costs. I guess the public works snow removal crew is being moved into doing pothole repair.

It will be interesting to see the council’s argument for this after they nixed the exact same resolution just 4 years ago.

I actually took this picture a week ago and found it on my desktop today. There is this low spot by my house in the road, it has been there ever since I have lived in the neighborhood for almost 20 years. I think it has been torn up and fixed ONE time, but it has been filled in several different ways over the years, here is the latest attempt. I am not sure if this was a serious attempt to fix it or if the pothole crew has been taken over by a group of abstract sculptors.

Prophet Paul was at the Rotary meeting on Monday with his Director of Innovation and Technology.

After complaining about his back problems (which is starting to be a reoccurring theme which reminds me of the last mayor who would cry about his alcoholic father at every presser) he started to tell us we are so fortunate to have this new department that he created by rearranging some cool edgy words.

He wanted to give credit to our do nothing Senator Thune for helping to bring 5G here. I am sure it had little to do with the fact that John has gotten around a million in donations and reach arounds from the telecommunications industry. Mayor Stoneless also told us the reason 5G is going up so fast and furious in Sioux Falls is because we are not gouging them on rental and permitting fees. You know, because the cell phone companies can barely afford to stay above water.

He said he was tired of the misinformation spread about the negative health effects about 5G and blamed other countries spreading these lies because they are competing with us. He also said our FCC concluded that there were no negative health effects (you know, the studies conducted by the very industry insiders due to benefit from 5G – that’s not corrupt â˜¹ While I’m not sold there is massive negative health effects from 5G, I will say one thing for certain, it doesn’t work very well. That is why you have to stack these towers on top of each other, and if it is raining, good luck. The technology just isn’t that great. I think Thune-Bag and Prophet Stoneless are pushing 5G because they may be investing in it but we will never know because getting financial disclosure from these folks isn’t that easy since they love transparency so much.

One of Paul’s arguments for 5G is so potholes could detect themselves. No lie, he said that. How about making roads more innovative by building them better like they do in Germany?

Ironically, Paul likes to rave about innovation in his administration but still hasn’t figured out trickle down economics to welfare programs in tax rebates to wealthy developers doesn’t really trickle down to the rest of us in higher wages and better jobs, just higher property taxes. The only thing ‘innovative’ about Paul’s administration so far is that he possibly has helped himself and his friends get very rich by exploiting the city’s coffers for his wild eyed ideas about innovation and lack of transparency and public input. I guess any dictatorship can call themselves innovative, who is going to argue with them?

Sorry, I have to cut this post short, a pothole is calling me.