Posts filed under ‘Agenda 21’

A Great 21rst Century Way to Destroy a Community


By Andrew Richter

And here is how our country is being ruined…….

The Golden Valley City Council met in a work session Jan. 9, to address the need for affordable housing in the city and how local governments can protect low income renters.

The lack of affordable housing has become a worrisome housing trend throughout the city, the metro area and the entire country as a whole, according to Emily Goellner, associate planner for Golden Valley. The state of Minnesota has addressed this downward trend by requiring cities to provide affordable housing opportunities — specifically to establish plans and programs that meet the existing and projected regional housing needs and to develop strategies to promote the development of low- and moderate-income housing.

Really? So people are coming to council meetings demanding lower rent or you got a talking points memo from the APA or the Met Council?

Beyond that, the Metropolitan Council — the regional policy-making body, planning agency and provider of essential services in the Twin Cities region — has studied how much affordable housing the region needs and has allocated a portion of that need to communities throughout the region so they can incorporate needed land into their overall comprehensive plans to make affordable housing possible in Minnesota suburbs. State law, however, does not give the Met Council the ability to force cities to build affordable housing.

Not yet anyway……

Golden Valley’s action plan

The city began addressing the need for more affordable housing in January 2017. The council met to discuss the housing shortage with staff again in April and August.

“Since August, we committed to completing six items immediately,” Goellner said. “We did accomplish all six of those items.”

The city’s six goals included monitoring the housing conditions in the city and taking inventory of housing stock; including strong language in the city’s comprehensive plan to address affordable housing policies; adopting a mixed-income housing policy; attending and establishing good relationships with the Safer Tenants and Renters program; promoting the Naturally Occurring Affordable Housing program with the Greater MN Housing Fund; and expanding the legislative priority of affordable housing.

Huh? What the hell?

While affordable housing is difficult to define, conversations in Golden Valley referred to such housing as households earning less than 60 percent of the area median income. The average rent in Golden Valley is more than $1,200 monthly, according to city staff members. To address this housing shortage, the city has formed a community housing team, comprised of residents, renters, congregations, social service agencies, landlords and housing advocates, to push for the preservation of affordable housing, prevent displacement of neighbors and create access to new affordable housing.

Housing shortage? I thought the rent was too high?

Furthermore, the city has been actively participating in the Affordable Housing Preservation TOOLS work group. The city work group includes representatives from member cities like Minneapolis, St. Paul, Golden Valley, St. Louis Park, Hopkins, Edina, Richfield, Eden Prairie and Brooklyn Park; along with Hennepin County and the Minnesota Housing Finance Agency. The city work group seeks to implement initiatives to help protect low-income families by preserving affordable housing.

Let me translate that; you are going to manipulate the housing market by playing favorites and handing out subsidies and changing zoning laws.

“We’re researching four policies right now,” Goellner said. “The first is the advanced tenant notification. This policy would protect tenants once the sale of a NOAH property has occurred.” The policy, Goellner said, would give tenants and local government entities a 90-day advanced notice prior to the sale of the property.

“For 90 days, under this policy, there can be no substantial raise in the rents, no additional screening criteria and no non-renewals of those existing leases,” she said. She explained that, at the end of the 90-day period, some of those actions could be taken, but it would at least allow the tenant 90 days to make alternative housing arrangements, as opposed to only 30 days to make arrangements.

So even if a lease is up and ownership changes hands, the tenants will now get an extra 90 days? This is a breach of contract!

In conjunction with this policy, is a policy in which NOAH property owners would be required to notify the city of the sale. The intent of this policy is that it would allow the city to keep a database of NOAH properties that are for sale and potentially reach out to preservation buyers with the goal of keeping the property affordable. Goellner explained that this would prevent one of the potential causes for the shortage of affordable housing — developers buying old buildings in mixed-income areas and increasing the rent.

The other problem, she explained, is that many developers approach cities with the intent to build new, luxury apartments in mixed-income areas, contributing to the displacement of the community’s low-income households.

“Another policy that we’re still pursuing is the prohibition of the discrimination of Section 8 voucher holders in the city,” she said. The Section 8 Protection Ordinance prohibits the denial of prospective tenants simply for using Section 8 Housing Choice Vouchers or other subsidies to help pay rent. The ordinance would prohibit the denial of prospective tenants simply for being a Section 8 recipient.

So that means that they are going to make everyone take Section 8? No freedom of choice!

Currently, housing providers can refuse to rent to individuals solely because they have a housing choice voucher. Goellner explained, this voluntary approach makes it difficult for families to access housing, particularly housing in opportunity-rich communities and neighborhoods.

“This ordinance ensures that voucher recipients are assessed as any other applicant would be,” she said. “This allows families that rely on housing vouchers to have an equal opportunity to acquire housing. The last policy that we’re working on right now is that non-renewal of leases must be for cause.”

The Just Cause ordinance prohibits a NOAH property owner from terminating a tenancy without good or just cause. Just cause reasons for terminating a tenancy would include nonpayment of rent, violating the lease, damaging the apartment, disorderly behavior or disturbing the peace, hosting an unapproved holdover subtenant or having chronically late rent payments.

Currently a lease can only be terminated for a just cause, however, state law allows for no-fault, non-renewal of leases with only 30 days of written notice. Therefore, residents with positive rental histories can receive notices to vacate or non-renewal of leases for no reason, known as involuntary displacement. Extending the just cause requirement would require the same reasoning for lease non-renewal, Goellner said.

So what you are entitled to a live at a certain place? Owners can’t decide who they want as tenants?

Council’s thoughts, next steps

One of the suggestions made by Golden Valley city staff members during the meeting was to set aside a portion of the general fund budget to cover the cost to conduct housing inventory within the city every five years.

“We have the smallest staff and HRA budget of the nine cities involved in the city work group which will affect our ability to enforce and administer these policies,” Goellner said. “When you first look at these, they seem quite simple, but as you start to think about different scenarios in how we would begin to enforce and administer these programs and how they would be defended in the case of a lawsuit, there’s a lot more work that we need to conduct. While cities have a very important role to play, there are some state laws that act as barriers to some of the policy ideas that we have. There’s a lot we can do to enable and encourage affordable housing.”

Why don’t you just stay out of the free market!

The majority of the council members were in favor of having a discussion about potentially setting aside levy funds to boost HRA assistance and provide some kind of financial incentive for property owners to update or remodel affordable housing units, but the members were not prepared to have that discussion that evening.

“We simply don’t have the bandwidth as a city in terms of leading the charge on some of these issues,” Councilmember Larry Fonnest said. “We don’t have the staffing or budget to be at the forefront of this charge, but we are definitely at the table. I think it’s a discussion worth having.”

Councilmember Joanie Clausen said she would not be prepared to discuss the potential of designating tax payer money to such a cause until she’s heard from all stakeholder groups and residents.

“We have a lot of priorities in the city and we need to sit down and address those priorities,” Clausen said. “We have debt we’re really trying to tackle. We have a responsibility to hear both sides and all of the information so we can make an informed decision.”

Clausen said she wanted to hear from affected property owners and urged the council to approach the Section 8 ordinance with caution as the City of Minneapolis is currently facing a lawsuit on the issue. She reminded the council that each member has been entrusted by the residents to be fiscally responsible with taxpayer dollars and that these types of discussions can not be rushed.

“I do not want our city to be facing a lawsuit,” she said.

Mayor Shep Harris asked the council to give staff members one of two directions — to continue meeting with the work group and see what comes from it or to move forward and try to present a draft ordinance on the just cause and advanced notification pieces separate from the work group.

Councilmember Gillian Rosenquist said she would be in favor of the just cause and 90-day notification ordinances. The Section 8 piece, she said, needed more attention because of the litigation and unknowns.

Oh God…..

“In looking at Ms. Goellner’s list of possibilities of things that we could be doing, a lot of them are only possible with an HRA or some kind of financial foundation,” Rosenquist said. “If we’re not doing what comparable communities are doing in terms of an HRA, we need to be having that discussion. We’re at a turning point in this city. I’m not prepared to move forward, but I know that this is something very important to our community.”

Rosenquist concluded her comments by requesting staff members “stay the course.”

“Staying the course doesn’t mean let’s see what happens in five years; the pace has actually been impressively fast,” she said. “We are making a sea change.”

Clausen echoed Rosenquist’s comments and said she was not prepared to direct staff members to start drafting potential ordinances before gathering more information. Councilmember Steve Schmidgall and Fonnest agreed.

“What’s been critical to me all along is that I consider this more of a regional thing,” Schmidgall said. “I think it’s absolutely critical that our community move forward in step with the other eight or 10 communities involved.”

Oh Schmidgall must have been awake for this meeting…..

“This is an issue which has long-term implications, not only for our city, but also for the entire region and the state and it will affect the quality of people’s lives,” Fonnest said. “With the exception of one meeting with property managers and landlords, folks that are in those positions within our community are not at the table. We can build a castle in the sky, but if the property owners are not on board, there’s going to be a lot of push-back and a lot of effort that may not bear fruit.”

So you are going to improve Golden Valley by adding more low income housing and by forcing in more section 8 vouchers! That’s a future I can believe in!

Fonnest requested that city staff members make a concentrated effort to inform managers and property owners in the city of these discussions, explain the city’s long-term goals and present a plan illustrating how the two parties can work together.

“I’m supportive of the advance notice and the just cause ordinance, but I think we have to be practical in our pursuit and realize that there are legal hurdles out there that others are going to have to jump on our behalf,” he said.

Harris said he was in favor of beginning to draft ordinances to address the three points — Section 8, just cause, and advanced notification.

“My biggest fear is that we have another NOAH property that turns,” Harris said. “To me, one of the number one priorities as a city is to ensure people’s safety. To use a scenario, let’s say I am a victim of domestic abuse and I need to make numerous calls to the police. Fortunately, I feel comfortable calling the police because I know under state law, I’m not going to get kicked out immediately. However, I am not going to call the police because when my lease is up for renewal there’s nothing to potentially protect me from having my lease not renewed. Even though our city has ordinances when it comes to nuisance and state law does not count domestic abuse as a nuisance, there’s still little protection for individuals. Though domestic abuse does not count as a nuisance under state law, there’s nothing preventing a landlord from not renewing that lease because of the repeated police calls to their property and that puts me in a position,” he continued. “I’m being abused, my children are being abused; this is the only place I can stay right now. And now, I have to choose between picking up the phone and calling the police and possibly being kicked out of this apartment in six months when my lease is up and having to find another place for me and my kids to live or just continuing to take the abuse. Unfortunately in some cases, the decision is not to pick up the phone. Do I have any facts that this is happening in our community? No, I do not. But, is it a potential? Yes. And that concerns me.”

OK can anyone tell me what he just said?

Before moving on to the next agenda item, the council heard from Christine Hart, community developer and community action partnership.

“We are a service agency working with low income residents,” she said. “We have homeless prevention services and we do provide services around housing stability and getting people out of the shelter system and into housing. That being said, we are able to help seven families a month across the entire county and we get over 100 calls per month. This isn’t going to change without some systemic solutions.”

To learn more about Golden Valley’s housing market visit weblink.ci.golden-valley.mn.us/Public/2/doc/645176/Page1.aspx. City staff members have developed a 43-page document outlining the supply, cost and demand of housing in Golden Valley. To listen to the full audio of the council/manager work session visit: goldenvalleymn.gov/council/manager-meetings.php.

Residents are also invited to attend The Community Housing Team monthly meetings. Contact Ruth Paradise for more information at ruthparadise40@gmail.com.

Good Lord…..you poor people in Golden Valley are just going to continue to watch your city decline…..this is the way it’s done; slowly change ordinances, zoning, density requirements, and use taxes as a way to manipulate what happens. There’s no freedom of choice, no free market principles, and no personal liberty or responsibility. If you are in Golden Valley get out now!

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January 20, 2018 at 10:38 pm Leave a comment

The Coalition of Greater Minnesota Annexation


By Andrew Richter

Folks we’ve been harping on the Met Council and the League of Minnesota Cities lately, so I thought it was time to check out what is happening in Greater Minnesota by looking into what the Coalition of Greater Minnesota Cities is up to. And what did I find???? Check this out: They want Greater Minnesota to oppose Senate File 1795 because…..

SF 1749 prohibits a city from pursuing an annexation if the potential annexation area is covered by an orderly annexation agreement with another city

On paper this may sound reasonable, but what happens in practice is that a township will often put two cities against each other to get the best deal for the township, rather than what is best for the region’s development.

What? Best for the region’s development? And who is to decide that? Doesn’t a township have the right to decide for itself what is in their best interest?

Let them know that SF 1749 is harmful because:

  • It stifles economic development, particularly in Greater Minnesota.
  • It will prevent cities from having a say in how they develop, and instead gives townships disproportionate leverage in negotiating orderly annexation agreements.
  • It would be a stunning restriction of property owner rights:
    • A landowner could be denied the right to connect with city services when building a home.
    • A business owner could be denied the right to build or expand a business.
    • A city may not be able to include property purchased for public purposes—such as for wastewater treatment, water supply or an industrial park—in its own boundaries.

Yeah right! What bunch of garbage! First off, economic development is not stifled by elected local government acting in the best interests of the people who voted for them. They have no obligation to cater to regional planners. Some of these towns and townships want to stay small, they don’t want to be carved up into bike paths and bus routes.

Townships have disproportionate leverage? Shouldn’t they? Cities should have it easier to “annex them?” If townships have no leverage, then eventually they are all going to be eaten up by the nearest big city.

A property rights defense are you kidding? Cities deny permits to build or expand all the time and they deny many communities the right to privately use well water, instead forcing residents “on the system.” And wouldn’t it be terrible that a city couldn’t use eminent domain or buy land. Doesn’t the government own enough?

Read the article HERE 

There’s plenty more where that came from!

April 29, 2017 at 9:33 pm Leave a comment

More TOD Coming to Brookyln Park


By Andrew Richter

Guess what is coming to Brooklyn Park!

The Brooklyn Park Economic Development Authority unanimously voted to authorize staff to purchase surplus righ of way land leftover from Highway 610 construction. The parcel, at the northeast corner of the Highway 169 and 610 interchange, will be bought with the intention to sell it to Target Corporation for their north campus development.

The cost to purchase the approximately 23 acres of land will be $2.2 million. Currently, the land is owned by the Minnesota Department of Transportation. Target has an existing development agreement with the city stipulating that Target has a right to buy this land from the development authority when MnDOT makes it available for purchase. Moreover, the agreement stipulates that if Target buys the land from the development authority, Target will purchase the land at the same price the authority paid, and cover all of the city’s out-of-pocket costs. Target will have 180 days to purchase the parcel from the development authority. If Target does not purchase the land within this period, the city can land bank the parcel until it is needed for the later development of the Oak Grove Parkway light rail station.

Oh yippy!

Jennifer Jordan, senior project manager for the city, said the costs to hold the land would be minimal, and would primarily be for mowing and potential waste removal. Target cannot purchase the land directly from MnDOT. Councilmember Mark Mata said the city should not mow the parcel if it purchases the land. The city should lease the land to a farmer until development, if possible, he said. Jordan said an MnDOT lease on the land with a farmer has expired, so the city could explore leasing the parcel to another farmer. Councilmember Bob Mata agreed with Mark, and said the city should lease the land to a farmer.

Funding for the parcel would come from tax increment funding, Jordan said. To her knowledge, after Target purchases the parcel from the city, the funding would be returned to the tax increment fund.

Did I ever express how much I hate TIF?

By the why does Target keep getting these little sweetheart deals?

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March 7, 2017 at 9:24 pm Leave a comment

Brooklyn Park Does Not Need More Affordable Housing!


By Andrew Richter

This is totally out of the Twilight Zone:

African Career, Education and Resource Inc. and Asamblea de Derechos Civiles hosted a regional housing forum to address housing discrimination, displacement, development and otherwise undignified living conditions in the northwest metro. The meeting was held Jan. 12 at Zanewood Community Center in Brooklyn Park. The meeting attracted the attention of elected officials. District 36 Sen. John Hoffman (DFL-Champlin), Brooklyn Center Councilmember Marquita Butler, and Brooklyn Park Councilmembers Lisa Jacobson and Susan Pha were in attendance.

Wow! What a shock that a race-baiter like Susan Pha would be there.

Pha said she attended, in part, to hear feedback on affordable rent for new developments in Brooklyn Park. Jacobson said she is regularly confronted with housing issues, as she is executive director at Hope 4 Youth, an Anoka area homeless shelter for young people age 23 and younger.

Participants testified that affordable housing with livable conditions are exceedingly difficult to find, and said landlords can exercise unethical and discriminatory policies towards people of color and the impoverished. Alfreda Daniels, Brooklyn Park resident and community organizer for the Minneapolis Regional Labor Federation said she was “terribly disappointed,” after moving into The Willows apartment complex in Brooklyn Park, and that landlords take advantage of rental residents. Rents are raised yearly without making any improvements to the apartments, she said.

Oh so if rent goes up its racist! How about the price of homes? They go up too! How about the city of Brooklyn Park stop raising property taxes on landlords who just pass off the cost to their tenants.

Within two weeks of moving in, she said she had difficulty with mice. “I’ve called the city actually, twice. I called the city two days later, and there were people that came over for inspection, but to my surprise, they were checking out my smoke detectors,” she said. If a resident of the complex is paying their rent on time, they must either pay in-person at the head office in Minneapolis or mail a check, but late payments with interest can be made on-site, Daniels said. “What about my neighbors who don’t have a car … and work [late]?” she said.

If you have mice why are you calling the city? If your neighbor doesn’t have a car can’t they ride a bus? How do they get to work?

Carol LaFleur, a Brooklyn Park resident, has rented houses with mold issues that caused her child health issues resulting in hospitalization, she said. She said city officials did not step in to address the issue. She lived on a fixed income, and raisin her family to other properties in the city, she said. Antonia Alvarez, co-founder of Asamblea de Derechos Civiles (or Assembly for Civil Rights) is a resident of Lowry Grove Mobile Home Park in St. Anthony. Alvg rents forced her to movearez has been a leader in the fight to save Lowry Grove from redevelopment. The park was sold to The Village, a developer, in June 2016.

Under state law, mobile home residents have the right of first refusal in the case of a mobile home closure. That is, if 51 percent of park residents can organize and match the terms and conditions of the buyer’s offer, they can purchase the park. Lowry Grove residents worked with Aeon, a nonprofit in the housing field, to offer the same $6 million that The Village offered. Park owners sold to The Village rather than to Aeon. The legality of the park’s sale is currently being reviewed in the courts.

So then change the law if you don’t like it!

Alvarez said Lowry Grove is the only affordable housing and immigrant-friendly community in St. Anthony.
“We need affordable houses; Brooklyn Center, Brooklyn Park, Burnsville, Bloomington,” she said. “Are you ready in Brooklyn Park to fight for affordable houses?” she asked, with the crowd replying “Yes.” Application fees are used unjustly by landlords, participants said. Landlords will accept applicant fees already knowing they will not offer housing to the applicant, they said. Several residents said coded racial language is used by landlords and developers to segregate neighborhoods, or otherwise turn away potential renters of color. “It’s impactful to hear, I mean these are real life stories, this is really what’s happening,” Hoffman said. “It causes one to think, ‘Well, alright, how deep is this issue? How systemic is it?’ You have folks from different parts of the community that are all experiencing.

Unreal, now a fee is racist! What are you; entitled to housing in a certain city?

Statutory language would need to be looked at to see how to address the issue, “especially on the discrimination side,” Hoffman said. “It’s real, and it’s happening right in our backyard.” He said if statutory language already does not allow for discrimination based on factors such as race or poverty, then city housing authorities would need to look at what can be done to provide relief. The forum broke into workgroups to discuss their personal experiences and possible solutions. Tim Moriarty, an area resident, said cities should require developers to include low-cost or subsidized housing in their new development proposals. Rather than separate and stigmatize these renters by separating their housing, thVey should have low-cost or subsidized housing mixed with unsubsidized housing, he said.

So the solution is to pass of the cost of real estate on to the taxpayers!

Ugh! Take it from me folks; there’s tons of housing in Brooklyn Park. These people don’t want housing, they want to race-bait to get housing at a lower cost or on the taxpayer’s dime.

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January 30, 2017 at 6:33 pm Leave a comment

My Official Acceptance


By Andrew Richter

I am happy to accept this appointment;

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Sept. 20, 2016

CITIZENS LEAGUE ANNOUNCES NEW TRANSIT STUDY COMMITTEE
Is there a better way to govern, plan, and fund a transit system to strengthen the region?

SAINT PAUL, Minn. – The Citizens League is convening a new study committee to look at transit in the region through the lens of governance, policy, and funding. The study committee will be chaired by Peter Bell, former Met Council chair. Ann Lenczewski, former legislator and chair of the Minnesota House Tax Committee, will serve as vice-chair.

This focus on transit—defined broadly to include all modes—is the result of a more general study of the Met Council that the Citizens League completed earlier this spring with a 19-member task force of community members. In that final report, the task force reported that while experts maintained that the region’s system of transit governance, planning, operating, and funding worked well despite its seemingly fragmented and complex nature, there remained important questions related to accountability and transparency, efficiency and effectiveness, and equity. Given the limited time the previous group had to review these issues, it recommended that the Citizens League undertake a separate study.

“As our transit system continues to expand it is important to make sure that our funding structure is adequate, equitable, sustainable, and transparent,” said Peter Bell.

“Almost everyone agrees that we do not currently have a sustainable system for addressing long-term transit needs related to both workforce changes and aging,” said Sean Kershaw, Citizens League Executive Director. “In the last session, transit funding questions ultimately prevented a number of other funding and policy issues from being addressed. Instead of limping along, we want to study the current system to see if there could be a better way to plan for a stronger region now and in the future.”

Through recommendations and an open call to all Citizens League members, the new transit study committee will include the following members:

Chair and Vice-Chair
· Mr. Peter Bell, Former Metropolitan Council Chair (2003-2011) (Chair)
· Ms. Ann T. Lenczewski, State Government Relations, Lockridge Grindal Nauen and former Minnesota House of Representative, Chair of Tax Committee (Vice-Chair)

Members
1. Mr. Abou Amara, Director of Public Policy, Neighborhoods Organizing for Change
2. Mr. Michael Beard, Scott County Commissioner, District 3 and former legislator
3. Mr. Bill Blazar, Senior Vice President of Public Affairs and Business Development, Minnesota Chamber of Commerce
4. Mr. Patrick Born, former Regional Administrator, Metropolitan Council and current Citizens League Board Member
5. Mr. James Erkel, Attorney and Director of the Land Use and Transportation Program, Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy
6. Mr. Ethan Fawley, Executive Director, Minneapolis Bicycle Coalition and member of Transportation Advisory Board
7. Ms. Mary Giuliani Stephens, Mayor of Woodbury
8. Ms. Elizabeth Glidden, Vice President and Council Member (Ward 8), Minneapolis City Council.
9. Mr. Jason Grev, Director of Government Relations, Ecolab, Inc.
10. Ms. Mary Liz Holberg, Dakota County Commissioner, District 6 and former legislator
11. Ms. Nancy Tyra-Lukens, Mayor of Eden Prairie
12. Mr. Scott McBride, Transportation District Engineer, Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT)
13. Mr. Jim McDonough, Ramsey County Commissioner, District 6
14. Mr. Peter McLaughlin, Hennepin County Commissioner, District 4 and Chair, Counties Transit Improvement Board
15. Ms. Kenya McKnight, President, Black Women’s Wealth Alliance and member of the Transportation Advisory Board
16. Mr. Vayong Moua, Director, Health Equity Advocacy, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota
17. Mr. Andrew Richter, organizer for Community Solutions MN, former planning commission member for City of Crystal and former chair of the Crystal city code task force
18. Mr. William Schreiber, former legislator and retired lobbyist with Messerli and Kramer
19. Ms. Patty Thorsen, Member of the Transportation Accessibility Advisory Committee, Metropolitan Council

The transit study committee will take on this effort this month with the goal to release a report by February 1st to inform the 2017 legislative session. 

Well my friends I know some of you probably think I’m crazy for accepting this appointment but unless sceptics of transit get their feet wet at this level we will never change things. I want to thank the Citizens League for this appointment and for their willingness to bring in transit opponents. Look for my updates very soon!

September 20, 2016 at 7:44 pm 1 comment

Southwest Chaos; What it Will Cost You?


By Candace Oathout

So I have been watching the machinations that are being used to fund the Southwest Light Rail project. A project that lacks popular support. The immediate DFL fomented “crisis” is that the “evil” republican majority in the Minnesota State Legislature who passed both a bonding bill and a budget BEFORE the end of Session is that they are somehow obstructing the workings of government. Never mind that Governor Dayton vetoed the budget and the Senate threw in a last minute amendment to the bonding bill that was not even presented for consideration until the last 30 minutes of the Session. It’s not their fault, no they tried really hard, they really, really did.

And of course the socialists at Hennepin County are on board:

Hennepin County, partners bridge state’s funding gap for Southwest LRT Hennepin County will increase its funding commitment to the Southwest Light Rail Transit project, helping to bridge a funding gap left by the Minnesota Legislature. Acting as the Hennepin County Regional Railroad Authority, the Hennepin County Board voted Tuesday in a special meeting to increase its share of the project by $20.5 million, for a total funding commitment of $185 million, or 10 percent of the project’s capital costs.

The incestuous relationships that are the HCRRA and the Hennepin County Board keeps all state funding in the hands of very few decision makers neatly bypassing the voters and local community leaders.

Combined with a similar proposed increase by the Counties Transit Improvement Board and a promise by the Metropolitan Council to raise $103.5 million in Certificates of Participation – a financing tool used previously by the Met Council and the state – the county’s additional infusion is helping the project bridge the $144.5 million funding gap left by the state, and fulfilling the federally mandated local share. In previous years, the Legislature has contributed some funding to this project, about 1 percent. The Metropolitan Council has indicated it will wait until July 2017 to issue the certificates, in hope that a different session of the Legislature will be able to move the funding forward.

Isn’t it interesting that this “crisis” in funding that HAS to be settled RIGHT NOW will not actually have the Metropolitan Council’s participation until JULY 2017?

Shouldering the state’s share

Regional Railroad Authority Chair Peter McLaughlin agreed with comments from others on the board that it was unfair for the county to have to shoulder what should have been the state’s share. “This is not a perfect solution but it reflects a willingness by local government to act after legislative inaction,” he said. “Today’s vote keeps the project moving forward, it avoids costly delays, and it nails down missing pieces needed for the federal application that will bring more than $900 million to Hennepin County.”

Mr. McLaughlin seems to be suffering from the delusion that he has the authority and power to tell the elected Legislature what to do.

This action, coupled with tomorrow’s votes at CTIB and the Met Council ensure that the project can move forward to request matching funds from the Federal Transit Administration.

Bringing value to the region

The value of a well-integrated transit system – cars, buses, trains – exceeds the investment, in terms of connecting people with jobs, improving the environment and increasing economic competitiveness, said County Board Chair Jan Callison. “I don’t think the state of Minnesota can buy those advantages for $144 million with anything but transit,” she said.

Well it could repair or replace 144 miles of lanes to relieve congestion in the Twin Cities couldn’t it?

Already, 90 percent of the engineering and design is complete for Southwest Light Rail Transit, which runs from downtown Minneapolis to Eden Prairie. Construction is scheduled to begin in 2017. The project is expected to begin passenger service as an extension of the METRO Green Line in 2021.

Currently we have about $149 million “invested in SWLRT about 1/10 the of the total cost of construction and BEFORE OPERATIONAL COSTS!

The Counties Transit Improvement Board and the Metropolitan Council will vote on their increased shares later this week.

September 1, 2016 at 12:57 pm Leave a comment

When Will the Invasion From Somalia Stop?


By Andrew Richter

Take a look around folks, not only is our nation dying but so many Minnesotans are just sitting by and watching their state crumble.

Somali immigrants are flooding Minneapolis and it’s only a matter of time before they filter out to the suburbs. These immigrants or refugees are not assimilating into the United States. Many of them disrespect our laws yet of course they want all of our “free stuff.” Why else do you think they settle in Minneapolis? Here’s a recent story on what’s going on in Minneapolis;

A mob of up to 30 young Somali men paraded through one of Minneapolis’ more upscale neighborhoods last week, yelling disparaging comments and threats against homeowners.

A female resident of the neighborhood, obviously shaken in a TV interview, related how she was screamed at by a Somali man who threatened to kidnap and rape her.

“They were screaming at the house that they were going to kidnap you and they were going to rape you,” one Minneapolis resident told KSTP TV. “It was a very traumatizing experience.”

Somalis living in Minneapolis are almost all Sunni Muslims, and residents of the Lake Calhoun area say this isn’t the first time a group of Somali men has made an intimidating march through their neighborhood, which is filled with million-dollar homes.

No hate-crime charges are apparently being considered by either the Minnesota authorities or the Obama Justice Department headed by Loretta Lynch.

Yeah like those idiots would ever do that. hate crimes are reserved for white defendants.

Police were called to the scene on June 28 about 9:30 a.m. and are investigating the incident as a potential case of terroristic threats. No arrests have been made, and the Minneapolis media appear to be largely uninterested in reporting on the mob threats.

No arrests? What if the Ku Klux Klan was marching down the street making threats? I bet there would be arrests and the media would probably find a way to try and link it to Donald Trump.

According to a Minneapolis police report, between 20 and 30 young Somali men showed up in front of a woman’s house about 9:30 in the morning and started shouting insults. “The comments turned to threats,” the report said.

Nearly all Somalis living in Minnesota are either refugees or children of refugees. They form a burgeoning Muslim enclave created by the U.S. government’s long-term refugee policy.

The U.S. State Department, working with the United Nations, has permanently resettled more than 132,000 Somali ”refugees” into dozens of American cities since 1983, according to federal data collected by the State Department.

Over the last decade, the feds have resettled an average of 7,000 Somali refugees per year into the U.S., with Minneapolis-St. Paul receiving the largest number, followed by Columbus, Ohio, San Diego, Seattle and Atlanta. Maine, Texas, North Dakota, Tennessee and even Alaska have also received dozens if not hundreds of Somali refugees.

And of course we have the media indifference

The most shocking part of the incident may be the Minneapolis media’s coverage of the incident – or lack thereof. A check of the Star-Tribune website, Minneapolis’s largest newspaper, did not turn up a single story about the June 28 terror-threatening run through the Lake Calhoun neighborhood.

KSTP Channel 5, an ABC affiliate in Minneapolis, never mentions that those making the alleged terroristic threats were Somalis. The station’s video report by Brett Hoffland, however, zooms in on a police report highlighting that the suspects were “approximately 20-30 Somali males” who were making “comments” that turned to “threats.”

“Multiple young men have been harassing them,” Hoffland reported. “We couldn’t get them out,” a woman tells Hoffland from behind shadows, her voice digitally altered to protect her identity. “We didn’t know what to do.”

When the shouts of “We’re going to rape you” rang out, “it was just a very traumatizing experience,” the woman said. The Somalis were driving onto the sidewalk and onto the homeowners’ lawns, “all while shooting off bottle rockets and screaming” their threats, she said.

“It’s a scary thought especially for those who have young children.” Multiple neighbors took cell-phone videos of the roaming gang of young Somali men.

It’s not the first time they’ve showed up, but on June 28 the threats were “much more personal,” the female resident told KSTP. The Minneapolis Police Department told KSTP it has opened an active investigation, and police were taking it “very seriously.”

Yeah whatever! Look at what Minneapolis and Minnesota officials are doing and tell me there’s going to be any response;

The Somali refugee program has been among the most widely criticized of all refugee programs for the lack of assimilation that the Somalis have exhibited over the past 30 years. At least three-dozen Somali men from Minnesota have been charged since 2007 with trying to leave the U.S. and join overseas terrorist organizations including the Islamic State and al-Shabab. Others have been convicted of providing material support to terrorist organizations. That prompted the state’s U.S. Attorney Andrew Luger in April 2015 to admit that “Minnesota has a terror recruitment problem,” but he stopped short of saying the “S” word.

Minnesota politicians and media have for the most part toed the line of political correctness whenever crimes or terrorist activity surfaces involving Minnesota’s Somali community, say local activists.

The Cedar Riverside area of Minneapolis is often called “Little Mogadishu” for its swelling Somali community. The city’s mayor, Betsy Hodges, has in the past showed up for meetings with leaders of the local Somali community dressed in a hijab – the headscarf worn by Muslim women as a sign of their submission in a male-dominated society governed by Shariah law.

Last year, Ami Horowitz of the David Horowitz Freedom Center filmed a series of interviews on the streets of Minneapolis’s Cedar Riverside community, and the vast majority of Somalis he spoke with said they preferred Shariah law over U.S. law.

Yet Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton, a Democrat, has let it be known his commitment to the multicultural model, the same model followed by the European Union which is now breaking apart, is unwavering.

Last October, Dayton told those attending a town-hall meeting in St. Cloud that those Minnesotans not comfortable with the arrival of Syrian refugees and the state’s expanding Somali population “should find a new state” because Minnesota’s economy “cannot expand based on white, B+, native-born citizens. We don’t have enough.”

Nothing is going to happen with these idiots in charge! We are going to continue to be invaded by people with no respect for our country or our culture.

So what’s going to happen? With over 25,000 Somalis in Minneapolis alone how long before these incidents happen in your town? Folks, we have to protect our culture from Sharia Law and if our state and federal governments won’t act then our local governments will have to!

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August 26, 2016 at 9:47 am 1 comment

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