I am mad as hell, and I’m not going to take it anymore! I want all of you citizens of Northfield to throw open your windows and yell at the top of your lungs, I’m mad as hell, and I’m not going to take it anymore!
Yes, I am running for mayor, and I have a serious and defined agenda. A few of the highlights–
1. CLEAN HOUSE AT CITY HALL. When you want to reform a totally dysfunctional organization, you need to start at the top–the city administrator is our highest appointed official. The buck stops with him. Whether he is charged with criminal offenses or not, he should not a free pass for allowing our city government to wallow in mediocrity. The administration needs to reveal under whose watch the millions disappeared, and how are systems failed us.
2. PRIORITIZE THE CITY BUILDING PROJECTS, RECYCLE AND REUSE. The highest priority should be given to building a new police/fire complex on the MnDOT site between Woodley and Ninth Street. The municipal liquor store should go into the present fire station, with the basement used as a warehouse. A freight elevator can move the product to the first floor, where it can be high stacked. The police offices should be recycled for use by the Chamber, the Convention and Visitors Bureau, and the NDDC. The present Muni could be recycled as a home for the youth groups, such as the Union of Youth, and youth service organizations.
The hockey arena is an embarrasment to the city, and spending $1.4 million on it will not make it any less of an embarrasment. We need a convention center large enough to hold two sheets of ice. The project can be made affordable by negotiating with one of the colleges a land lease in exchange for ice time and use and by expanding our tax base.
3. CHANGE LOCATION OF THE SKATEBOARD PARK AND ESTABLISH PRIORITIES FOR THE PARK BOARD. Next to considering the mayor’s property for the location of Muni, the most dimwitted decision of this council has been to put the skateboard park at the busiest intersection in the city. Ames Park has no bathrooms and no parking. The fact that is farther away from the park board members’ homes than the Memorial Park location should not be the deciding factor.
4. INCREASE THE CITY’S TAX BASE. In order to accomplish the projects mentioned in 2 and 3, the city needs to pursue an aggressive policy of annexation to the north and west to accommodate commercial and industrial growth. At the present rate of annexation, the signs for Exit 69 will read, “Faribault, first of six exits; also Northfield.” Just drive south from Highway 19 exit and count the miles to large industrial properties that mark Faribault’s northern most boundary.
We do not have an orderly annexation agreement with Waterford Township, so we should annex the township to give us industrial and commercial sites on Highway 3, Dakota Co. 47, and Highway 19. Our present annexation ordinance directly conflicts with the state statute, which preempts any contrary local ordinances. We need to bring our ordinance into conformance with the state law, which does allow annexation without the township’s permission.
More to come. . . .