Posts tagged ‘Andrew Richter’

Community Solutions Podcast- Who Are the North Metro Mayors?


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In this episode, Jason and Andrew introduce you to an organization that you’ve probably never heard of: The North Metro Mayors Association. Mayors… from the north Metro… associating? You may ask what’s wrong with that. Well, it is yet another organization whose members pay dues with your tax dollars for lobbying power in St. Paul to drive a predetermined set of the same old policies that we rail against on this blog. In many ways this group isn’t a lot different than The League of MN Cities. Heck, it’s hardly a group for mayors as much as its a group for City Managers. It’s also a place where these City Managers can work hand-in-hand with select member businesses. At least there’s a clear accounting of our tax dollars… not so fast. This week’s podcast is sure to open your eyes.

Just launched!!! 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 just 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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February 22, 2018 at 10:26 am Leave a comment

Community Solutions Podcast- Crony Capitalism in Our Cities


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In this episode, Jason and Andrew start with a Local Lowdown segment that highlights the aspirations of New Hope to become a Step 4 MN Green Step City, with all its costs and regulations. You can read a more in-depth article here to find out why you must keep your city out of the club. We also discuss an issue in Robbinsdale, where they are excited about the Blue Line Extension… until they find out they don’t want the strings that go along with the “free money”. Sounds like something we’ve talked about before…

In the main event, we discuss the trend of many cities to give preference to certain businesses over others. It may come in the form of tax abatements,  Tax Increment Financing (TIF) Districts, loans (sometimes interest free), major transit projects, or other gifts that favor one business over another. While we want to assure businesses think that our city is a great place to do business, giving out corporate welfare isn’t the answer. Yet, many businesses have come to expect it. Do companies like Target really need special breaks? We talk all that and more this week!

Just launched!!! 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 just 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!

February 15, 2018 at 12:30 am Leave a comment

Community Solutions Podcast- Guest: Olga Parsons


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In this episode, Jason and Andrew welcome Crystal City Council Member, Olga Parsons. No matter where you live in MN, this is podcast is for you. Over the past three years (since 2015), there has been a group of newly elected city council members that have been willing to break the mold. Their innovation has caused Crystal to implement policies not straight out of the latest American Planning Association trade journals, but to craft ordinances and draft planning that represents Crystal. Some of what they have done is starting to be discussed in other cities, but there is a long way to go. So, pull up a chair and listen to all that has been accomplished in three short years, and dream about what is possible where you live. Where are all the other people with the skills and intellect to do these kinds of things where you live? Stand up and be counted!

Just launched!!! 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 just 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!

February 7, 2018 at 2:21 pm Leave a comment

Community Solutions Podcast- The Truth About Complete Streets


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In this episode, Jason and Andrew discuss Complete Streets. Maybe you’ve heard of them and maybe you haven’t, but I can guarantee that you’ve most likely seen them. No matter where you live in the United States: big city or small town, rural or urban area… cities and counties are passing complete street policies. What does this mean? What are they really? Are they as fantastic as advertised? We discuss it all here so you can talk to your community all about it.

Just launched!!! 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 just 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!

February 1, 2018 at 12:59 pm Leave a comment

Community Solutions Podcast- Do Levy Limits Work?


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In this episode, Jason and Andrew discuss the idea of placing levy limits over local governments. It sounds like a good concept, right? Set the maximum for property tax increases and spending is held in check… unless it’s not. Do levy limits work, or do they cause local governments to get creative in new types of taxes and fees, raise other existing taxes and fees, or a combination of both? We’ve had them before. What happened? Is there a better way to cap tax increases? I hope that this conversation helps you to think about levy limits in all of its pros and cons to make an educated decision on where you stand.

January 24, 2018 at 2:27 pm Leave a comment

Community Solutions Podcast- Why We Need Caucus


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In this episode, Jason and Andrew discuss the importance of caucus to the cause of local politics (and as a result state and national politics, as well). We get so lost in the idea of a straw poll mattering one way or another. State and federal politicians (and politician hopefuls) use caucuses one way, but as voters on the local level, we need to look at caucus in a completely different way. Some folks are calling for an end to this practice in favor of a pure primary. We argue that if we lose the caucus system, we lose the battle for local control. Find out why, and then get involved at your caucus this year!

January 17, 2018 at 5:06 pm Leave a comment

Community Solutions Podcast- History of the Met Council


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In this episode, Jason and Andrew discuss the history of the Metropolitan (or Met) Council. The Met Council was created in 1967, pursuant to federal legislation. It gave the organization the power to manage wastewater treatment networks. It’s powers have grown incrementally by state statute to include transportation, land use, housing, and parks. Do you know if its creation was at the hands of republicans or democrats? Are you sure of that answer? This organization wants to grow from seven counties to eleven. It’s never enough power. This podcast is not only useful if you live in that eleven county area. It is also useful if you live in out-state MN, as you have the Minnesota Association of Development Organizations (MADO) and its ten member regional development organizations doing much of the same work. The legislature must limit its power at the very least, or at the very most #endthemet!

January 11, 2018 at 1:23 am Leave a comment

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