2018 Election Recap


voting

Today we have the much anticipated 2018 election recap. As is always true, we tell you how we feel about the outcomes from the national level down to the local. It’s no secret that the results were a mixed bag at the national level, and that Minnesota’s DFL came out strong and voted. How did things fare at at the local level?

We’ve always said we need to build a farm team at the local level. It is only by winning local races that we will have a bench of candidates to pull from for state-wide races in the future. Who’s going to run in CD2 or CD 3 in two years? There’s a chance that leaves a hole in the MN Senate or House. Who runs to fill that hole? Do you have the best candidate or just take the person that shows up? We have to start paying attention to local races if we ever hope to be consistently competitive in the other elections. We need a culture change in MN politics, and we just happen to be the group with the plan to do it.

Also, it just wouldn’t be an election report without sour grapes from a former mayor in Crystal.

Have you checked out our Spotify playlist? At the beginning of each episode Jason quotes some song lyrics that have to do with the subject matter of the podcast. Andrew never knows what they are, but now he can… and so can you! We’ve launched the Spotify playlist: “Community Solutions Music From the Podcast“! You can listen to Roundabout from Yes after listing to Episode 30 on Roundabouts… or kick back and enjoy a rocking playlist just for the thrill of it. We add a new song every week. Subscribe and enjoy!

Don’t forget that you can also subscribe to our podcast on iTunes, Google Play, and Spotify, or go out to the PodBabble Podcast Network!

 

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November 15, 2018 at 12:08 am Leave a comment

Is Your City’s Budget Costing You?


business-calculator-calculation-insurance-finance-2

I know, we just had an election and everyone wants to hear our take on it. We will definitely have our breakdown for you very soon. Since it’s now budget season, we thought we’d help you shift gears while we pull together our expert analysis.

Creating a budget is one of the main responsibilities of any city, county, or school board. Most of them all do their budgeting the same way. Baseline budgeting is a concept where you start figuring out your budget for next year, using your last year’s budget as a starting point, or a baseline. You have to use your entire budget, in order to make a case that you deserve that money next year.

The alternative is called zero based budgeting. It’s where you figure out your next year’s budget from (gasp) zero, making a case for only what you need to spend. Why doesn’t government use this method? What are the advantages of each method? To know what is best for your county, city, or school district, you’ve got to understand each approach. We break them down here so that you can start the discussion back home… and maybe keep some of your own money in the process.

Have you checked out our Spotify playlist? At the beginning of each episode Jason quotes some song lyrics that have to do with the subject matter of the podcast. Andrew never knows what they are, but now he can… and so can you! We’ve launched the Spotify playlist: “Community Solutions Music From the Podcast“! You can listen to Roundabout from Yes after listing to Episode 30 on Roundabouts… or kick back and enjoy a rocking playlist just for the thrill of it. We add a new song every week. Subscribe and enjoy!

Don’t forget that you can also subscribe to our podcast on iTunes, Google Play, and Spotify, or go out to the PodBabble Podcast Network!

November 8, 2018 at 11:15 am Leave a comment

Crystal, We Have A Problem


Brendan for Crystal

by Jason Bradley

Wow. There’s not much more that I can say. That post speaks for itself. Our former mayor either has no idea how offensive this is, or just doesn’t care. I mean, she does understand that the KKK threatened and murdered African Americans in this country, right? Am I the only one that can see how racist this statement is? Ms Bowman goes on to quote MLK, while showing the absolute worst in character. Her Facebook feed is filled with posts that are full of misandry, name calling, and lewd jokes.

That should tell you all you need to know about Bowman as a person. It should also tell you something about the people that associate with her. I mean… birds of a feather flock together, isn’t that what they say? ReNae has found a like-minded soul in Julia Hill, and has had a hand in her running for the Ward 2 seat. I’m not saying Julia is a racist. I have no idea. I can tell you that she’s not too fond of people in general… or police. She certainly seems to have the same temperament as Ms Bowman. See below:

Brendan for Crystal(1)

Is this the kind of person we need on the city council? Is this someone that reflects our values? Six years ago, Crystal was very divided. We were upset about a lack of government transparency around County Road 81, Bottineau Light Rail, removal of homes and businesses for development, large bonding projects, annual property tax increases, condescending attitudes from elected leaders, slipping MN Green Step Cities in under the radar, dishonesty about whether to redevelop the airport, placing council people in the citizen spot on the West Metro Fire Board, forced footing drain and sump pump inspections, increased vitriol and denigrating residents with opposing viewpoints, and an unwarranted attack on the sitting chief of West Metro Fire. That’s just some of it. ReNae and Julia sound like they’re cut from the same cloth. Is this what we want? Clotheslining kids, calling minorities “Republikkkans”, tearing down our police, saying vile things about others (look at ReNae’s Facebook page), and more division? This isn’t the Crystal we’ve developed. It’s certainly not the one I want. We’ve come a long way in a few short years.

Most of us in this city agree on a lot of things, despite party. We don’t want a lot of debt. We don’t want high taxes. We don’t want excessive regulation over our property or how we earn a living. We’ve got a city that is paying off debt, has silenced train horns, has commissioned residents to review and clean up our list of city codes, removed duplicative taxes, used social media to communicate to residents exactly what the council will be and has been discussing, expanded housing options for home owners, saved money by contracting appropriate positions out through attrition, and so many more things. We have three candidates that have aligned themselves with ReNae and a single party along with its best interests (Kiser, Hill, Cummings). We have three that have remained nonpartisan, so that they can represent Crystal and its best interests (Seffren, Banks, Parsons). You have a decision to make today. Don’t despise the local races. Treat them all with importance and choose well.

November 6, 2018 at 1:44 pm Leave a comment

Outside Money Buying Crystal Elections


by Jason Bradley

David Cummings is running in Section Two of Crystal against Olga Parsons on the same platform that Olga has been actually accomplishing as a member of the Crystal City Council. You can see an article we wrote on everything that Olga has accomplished here. Only one of David’s donations comes from a Crystal resident. Check out David’s campaign finance report. He received the maximum contribution allowed by law from both the Minneapolis Federation of Teachers and the Minneapolis Regional Labor Federation, which is not a labor union at all, but in fact a special PAC set up for Minneapolis activists to get their fingers into local government out in the suburbs. They also are pushing party politics into nonpartisan elections. David also received $300 from Education Minnesota Osseo. Why are activist organizations from Minneapolis and Osseo trying to get control of the Crystal City Council? He also received contributions from Maple Grove and Brooklyn, NY. We should be concerned that organizations are pouring a ton of money into a local race and local people are not. What Crystal really needs will get shelved for the agenda of out of town activists.

David Cummings Contributions 1

 

Therese Kiser (running against David Seffren) has no money at all coming in from Crystal residents. 100% of her campaign is funded by sources outside of Crystal. You can see her entire campaign finance report here. She got $600 (the full amount allowed by law) from the Minneapolis Labor Federation (the same activist PAC mentioned above). She has two related people from Iowa that contributed to her campaign, but what does that do for Crystal? Again, we have another candidate that represents special interests outside of Crystal, but wants to make the rules that you are supposed to live by.

Therese Kiser Contributions 1

 

Julia Hill (running against Brendan Banks) who is tied to both David and Therese (you can see portions of Therese’s and Julia’s signs at a Minneapolis Labor Federation event here), has either not been able to raise any money, or she has not filed a campaign finance report (we will post that if it changes). It may be because of her statements to threaten violence against children, or disparaging the local police. Where you find these three, former mayor ReNae Bowman is not far behind. Her husband (former ousted city council member) Joe Selton is on the board of the Minneapolis Labor Federation.

Crystal… do you really want to be “Little Minneapolis”? Elect these three and that’s exactly what you’re going to get: high debt, higher taxes, and less accountability. We’ve tried that and that’s why we made a change in the first place.

November 1, 2018 at 7:50 am Leave a comment

Is Sustainability Sustainable?


MN Sustainability Document

Why do groups like the MN Pollution Control Agency push speculative environmental policies on cities and counties? Where does that come from? Back in 1993, our super conservative, Republican governor, Arne Carlson mandated that the Environmental Quality Board come up with a plan to address sustainable behavior in Minnesota, based on Bill Clinton’s Council on Sustainability. They came up with the primer, Sustainable Environment- The Very Idea. The Environmental Quality Board is an arm of the MN Pollution Control Agency that uses programs like MN Green Step Cities to convince local governments to implement “green” policies in development, roads, transportation, housing, and anything else they can get their grubby little mitts on. Wait until you see what is inside this document!

We also discuss the whole early voting phenomena, looking at how close early voting begins to the primaries, and whether that gives us enough time to really get to know the candidates. It certainly doesn’t give us enough time to get to know local candidates. Local races always get overshadowed by the larger races. Nonpartisan candidates deserve to have the opportunity to be fully vetted before someone casts a ballot. Once a vote is given, it can not be changed. Candidate forums often don’t occur until well after early votes come rolling in. Early voting isn’t going away, so how do we change the structure of an election cycle to fit it? Give us your $o.o2 on this topic!

Have you checked out our Spotify playlist? At the beginning of each episode Jason quotes some song lyrics that have to do with the subject matter of the podcast. Andrew never knows what they are, but now he can… and so can you! We’ve launched the Spotify playlist: “Community Solutions Music From the Podcast“! You can listen to Roundabout from Yes after listing to Episode 30 on Roundabouts… or kick back and enjoy a rocking playlist just for the thrill of it. We add a new song every week. Subscribe and enjoy!

Don’t forget that you can also subscribe to our podcast on iTunes, Google Play, and Spotify, or go out to the PodBabble Podcast Network!

October 31, 2018 at 2:12 pm Leave a comment

A Lone Voice In The Wilderness


Brad Aho

It must be getting close to the election as things get a little heated in the Community Solutions MN studios. This one went a little longer than normal, because we’ve got a lot to say. You can listen to it all (and frankly, we think you’ll be entertained), but if you want to hear our guest specifically, you can skip ahead to the 58:54 mark.

In the main event… Brad Aho is running for mayor of Eden Prairie against fellow council member, Ron Case. In Eden Prairie, you have a clear choice to make. You’ve heard us talk about Eden Prairie’s firearms moratorium, and how Brad was the lone voice of reason, but there’s more than one reason you should take a look at Brad if you live in Eden Prairie. We talk all about the Paris accords, debt, taxes, and helping traffic get moving on 494. If you agree with Brad, he’s your guy (as his opponent holds very opposite views of most issues). If you live somewhere other than Eden Prairie, Brad tells you how to be in the minority and still affect change.

We also discuss the Ward 2 race in Crystal, where (former mayor ReNae Bowman’s appointed candidate) Julia Hill threatens to clothesline kids and disparages local police. ReNae then goes on to fabricate what the current city council has accomplished and makes a racial attack on Julia’s opponent, Brendan Banks. One side of this election is unhinged. You’ve got to hear it to believe it.

Have you checked out our Spotify playlist? At the beginning of each episode Jason quotes some song lyrics that have to do with the subject matter of the podcast. Andrew never knows what they are, but now he can… and so can you! We’ve launched the Spotify playlist: “Community Solutions Music From the Podcast“! You can listen to Roundabout from Yes after listing to Episode 30 on Roundabouts… or kick back and enjoy a rocking playlist just for the thrill of it. We add a new song every week. Subscribe and enjoy!

Don’t forget that you can also subscribe to our podcast on iTunes, Google Play, and Spotify, or go out to the PodBabble Podcast Network!

October 25, 2018 at 4:36 pm 1 comment

DFL Wants Crystal! It’s Up to You to Stop it!


By Andrew Richter

The local SD45 DFL has become obsessed with getting their power back in Crystal. This unfortunate politicizing of local races is exactly everything that is wrong about politics. If you want local problems fixed, local solutions, and a council that listens you can’t elect pure ideologues with an allegiance to party over people. The three DFL candidates in Crystal; David Cummings, Julia “Clothesline” Hill, and Therese Kiser are shamelessly partisan, unconcerned about what the citizens want.

Here are some photos from a recent DFL event;

Notice whose signs are there?

Now look at this lively bunch!

Wow look out for that blue wave! Anybody awake there? They sure look inspired lol

 

October 18, 2018 at 8:35 am Leave a comment

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