FREE SPEECH ZONE | Will informed expert opinion be set aside?

A further and compelling insight is brought to light at Minneapolis Issues, compliments of fire  fighters Local 82. One assumes this letter passed across the desk of City Council Vice-President Robert Lilligren and it is worth quoting in its entirety:August 23, 2011Free Speech ZoneThe Free Speech Zone offers a space for contributions from readers, without editing by the TC Daily Planet. This is an open forum for articles that otherwise might not find a place for publication, including news articles, opinion columns, announcements and even a few press releases. Alex Jackson, Chief, Minneapolis Fire DepartmentDear sir,I have been told that the Fire Department is looking at cutting back on Fire Companies such that at times whole stations will not have a staffed engine. I hope that this will not happen. Continue Reading

FREE SPEECH ZONE | Will Basic Health and Safety Concerns Prevail?

The Minneapolis City Council is expected to revisit the recent 8-5 vote that failed to override the Mayor’s veto of the Council President’s own proposal to keep 10 fire fighters on the City’s payroll until the end of the year. The Council Vice-President’s vote to sustain the Mayor’s veto was crucial in that tally.Free Speech ZoneThe Free Speech Zone offers a space for contributions from readers, without editing by the TC Daily Planet. This is an open forum for articles that otherwise might not find a place for publication, including news articles, opinion columns, announcements and even a few press releases. Many concerns have been raised about the wisdom of slicing away at an already understaffed Fire Department and tomorrow’s reprise by the City Council may communicate the product of some rather pointed “consciousness raising” that seeks to defend the need for retaining fire personnel as a compelling priority.Ward 6 is home to hundreds of seniors whose basic health and safety are being jeopardized by intemperate actions in city hall. We live in a delicate balance between the medical realities of increasing age and the capacity of various supportive services to keep us from needless and sometimes deadly harm.The City’s budgetary challenges are daunting and likely to grow more insistent no matter who is in charge of the official processes involved. Continue Reading

FREE SPEECH ZONE | Redistricting Changes in Minneapolis

There’s a bumpy road ahead concerning redistricting the ward boundaries in Minneapolis. Last time around (n 2002), we ended up with a really long Ward 7 that stretched from Elliot Park to to Kenwood with the “Gold Coast” along the river thrown in for good measure. This lavish award of some of the most prosperous parts of the city to one “super ward” had the effect of removing areas along the river that were of great value to an increasingly beleaguered Ward 5 in Near North, of stripping downtown areas from Ward 3 and replacing them with much less stable areas along the west bank of the Mississippi north of the Gold Coast. In Ward 2, this revision meant breaking up a coalition of East Bank neighborhood groups in the vicinity of the University of Minnesota campus who had achieved significant bargaining power with that institution. Over their strenuous objection, I must say. Continue Reading

About the Pool in Phillips: A Matter of Perspective

Some notes from my own experience.

The Whittier Neighborhood had its troubles in years gone by. No need to go into that laundry list of bad news. But we also had some determined stakeholders and the wherewithal for some creative problem-solving. IMHO, money is nice, but creativity is nicer!

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