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Community Solutions Podcast

Aug 22, 2019 This week we have a big Local Lowdown episode. This is not a ""fast-forward" episode if you don't live in the cities we discuss. As we have always said, the same issues find their way into cities and towns across the state and, really, the nation. Studying how these issues are handled from city to city not only helps you (as an informed resident) to understand the issues, but also to see how they spread, how to fight them, and why it is important for you to be on point in your community.

First, we discuss some local odd-year elections. After the debacle with the pledge in St. Louis Park, every single race is contested. In Golden Valley, council member Steve Schmidgall is going after Mayor Shep Harris, despite the fact that they seem to agree on most left-of center positions. We will have to see how these races shake out, but we also discuss our frustration with odd-year elections, and low voter turnout.

Brooklyn Center is imposing a one-year moratorium on a designated 81 acre opportunity zone. The city already owns 35 acres, and may soon own another 9 on the site of the former Target store. The moratorium was placed because the master plan for the area is not yet completed and they wanted to stall development until they could control all of it. The moratorium expires right after the master plan is due to be completed. Move along... nothing to see here.

Sherburne County has been discussing implementing Tobacco21 at a county-wide level. They don't seem to have the votes, but look for the special interest group to go to the cities (they already are). This is a ridiculous policy, as it doesn't accomplish anything but to hurt local businesses. It has spread from city to city, like a bad disease.

Minneapolis has officially outlawed all new drive-thrus from being built. They site concerns over greenhouse gas emissions and danger to pedestrians. Don't you think for a second that this won't affect any existing building that has a drive-thru and wants to remodel. 

Lastly, ISD #281 (Robbinsdale Public Schools) issued a summary of Superintendent Carleton Jenkins recent evaluation. They accentuated all of the positives and downplayed all of the ways he has missed the mark. He did a great job in "Central Office Capacity" (what?), but stunk in "Kindergarten Readiness" and "3rd Grade Proficiency", but hey... he's doing an exemplary job!

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!