Budziszewski Should Step Aside

November 29, 2013 at 2:11 pm 3 comments

By Andrew Richter

So do we have “citizen representation” on the west Metro Fire Board or don’t we? It looks as though Crystal Section 2 Councilman John Budziszewski has decided that he wants to remain on the west Metro Fire Board. You recall that Budziszewski was appointed to fill out ReNae Bowman’s term on the board as Crystal’s “citizen representative.” Since that time it appeared that the Crystal city council had agreed to appoint a citizen to that role when the councilman’s term expired (which is December 31 of 2013).

Now, however, Budziszeski wants his own term despite the fact that two residents have now come forward to apply for the position. The council seems to be wavering now on whether to appoint a citizen or continue to game the system by appointing a council member.

Now here’s another disturbing piece of news; the word from my city sources is also that Budziszeski intends to VOTE on the appointment rather than recuse himself. While I don’t don;t know the legal ramifications, I think it is highly unethical to vote for yourself for an appointment when there are others who want the job. Is that right?

In fact when Budziszewski was appointed back at the march 19 council meeting he actually recused himself from voting even though there wasn’t another candidate running! Why did he recuse himself then, but he is reportedly refusing to now? Could it be to guarantee that won’t represent Crystal on the Board?

Video of March 19 Meeting

Call or email the councilman and the entire council and tell them to appoint a citizen to the citizen representative position and that if Budziszewski wants to be considered he must abstain from voting!

Name Title/Representing Voicemail E-mail
Jim Adams Mayor (612) 805-5101 jim.adams@crystalmn.gov
Laura Libby Section I; Wards 1 & 2 (763) 670-2721 laura.libby@crystalmn.gov
Mark Hoffmann Ward 1 (763) 531-1006 MrkHoffmann@aol.com
Joe Selton Ward 2 (763) 535-3564 iamjcsjr@aol.com
John Budziszewski Section II; Wards 3 & 4 (763) 531-1003 john.m.budziszewski@gmail.com
Casey Peak Ward 3 (763) 531-1008 casey.peak@crystalmn.gov
Julie Deshler Ward 4 (612) 306-5808 uuijad@aol.com

Entry filed under: City Government, Crystal, Mayor, Safety.

America in the Age of Post-Progressivism Would You Pay This Much?

3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. michaelclibby  |  December 6, 2013 at 1:29 pm

    So, let me make sure I understand. When it’s the unelected Met Council pushing plans you don’t like, then having appointees making decisions is a problem. But when it’s a possibility for an unelected conservative to be on the board of a joint powers unit like WMFRD, then it’s imperative that *elected* officials step aside?

  • 2. communitysolutionsmn  |  December 6, 2013 at 1:54 pm

    You have to be joking right? do you really not understand the difference between the Met council and the fire board. OK I’ll explain it;

    The Met Council has power over cities and counties.
    The City Council has power over the Fire Board

    The Met Council is unelected
    The Fire Board HAS an elected member of each city and both city managers who outnumber citizens 4-3 in a best case scenario

    How many elected people are on the Met Council again?

    The Met Council is lord and master over transportation, transit, housing, sewer, water, parks, trails etc
    Does the FIre Board have power over the city?

    The state imposes the Met Council authority.
    the Fire Boards authority is up to the Crystal and New Hope. They have to approve the joint powers agreement and any changes to it. They also have to approve the fire budget and can end the agreement if they want to.

    It’s like serving on a commission, they make recommendations, and the council have the ultimate yes or no power.

    I fail to see how the two have anything at all in common. The idiotic idea that I’m some sort of hypocrite if i favor a citizen to be put in a “citizen representative” position is absurd. We all have a role to play and an obligation to serve. Elected officials though should have final say, the exact opposite of how the Met Council works.

  • 3. wants2know  |  December 6, 2013 at 2:02 pm

    The join powers agreement as originally established called for the appointment of a citizen representative from Crystal and one from New Hope. Past leadership decided that citizen involvement in the inner workings and negotiations of the Fire District was not wanted. Former Mayor ReNae Bowman was appointed, while holding office was appointed the citizen representative from Crystal which apparently led New Hope to appoint Councilman John Elder. This effectively thwarts any opportunity for the taxpayers to have any significant oversight of West Metro Fire Department.

    We had a full blown display of bureaucratic mis-use of power in 2012 which called this situation into public view. Now that the public in both cities is aware of their loss of oversight, many are choosing to insist that these two seats be returned to extremely well qualified volunteers who have applied and restored to their original function.

    Taxpayers deserve and insist that they have the ability and need to be involved in administration of an agency that directly affects their daily safety and is a major expense to their respective cities. The issue is not whether the appointee is conservative or liberal. It is a position that is included on the board to provide non- bureaucratic perspective for the organization.

    There was a fair and open posting of this appointment and a qualified citizen has applied. That citizen, when appointed, will represent the folks who who are directly affected by the WMFRD’s administration and operations.


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