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Community Solutions Podcast

Jul 8, 2019 City government is where our elected leaders are supposed to be closest to the people, yet sometimes they act as far away as those in St. Paul or Washington. They act completely removed from the people and act according to their own misguided intentions with no regard as to the wishes of those that put them there.

Case study one brings us to Big Lake, MN, where after the mayor (Reanne Danielowski) was elected to be Sherburne County Commissioner, the lame duck council decided to promote from within the current council to make council member Mike Wallin the new Mayor. Of course that left a vacancy where Mike Wallin sat, and so Rose Johnson (the third highest vote-getter in the election) was appointed in a very closed and non-transparent process. Not too much time has passed, and council member Dick Backlund has resigned. This leaves a third vacancy on this council. That's three out of five. They would never try to appoint a majority of council members to their positions... would they? Wrong! In a three-to-one vote (Knier dissenting), they chose to appoint yet again. This is a bad idea. MN statutes allow it, but that doesn't make it the right choice for your community.

Case study two centers around St. Louis Park, MN, where they just voted to stop saying the Pledge of Allegiance at their council meetings, citing diversity and saving time (a whopping 13 seconds). These are ridiculous assumptions. This proposal was floated by council member Anne Mavity, but mayor Jake Spano wasn't even there to vote on it. It's one thing if you don't want to say the pledge. It's another when you need to have so much control that you don't allow others to say it. It's also saying quite a lot if you want to be elected to be a representative of the people in the system of government for the United States, but you refuse to pledge allegiance to 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!

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