Kazoua Kong-Thao answers questions for St. Paul City Council

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I have asked a standard list of questions for all the candidates of Ward 1 for St Paul City Council. I requested brief answers, no more than 300 words. Kazoua Kong-Thaoanswered the questions, all at once, in a narrative format. This is the second response.

Just a sample, so you want to read the rest:

My goal is to help Saint Paul thrive, not just survive. I will support local businesses at the completion of the Central Corridor project and I will prove that diversity partnerships help the Minnesota economy.

Here is my request:

I would like to publish an article about you on MN Progressive Project. Please also attach a picture of you that I may use. Additional campaign material may also be sent which I might include in the article. I would like you to answer the same 10 questions as the other candidate. I would like to have this info by July 1st. I will publish within 3 days of getting the info. Limit answers to 300 words – see sample below. An answer of 100 words is ideal and would be read more.

1) What do you think the job of city council person should accomplish?

2) What is your background? How does this background make you the better choice for city council person?

3) What are the unique characteristics of your city council area?

4) What three goals would you hope to accomplish as city council person?

5) Since the city council involves negotiation of competing interests, please give an example where you successfully negotiated a difficult problem among multiple parties.

6) When do you think it is alright for the city council to give special financial consideration to a single business?

7) Please provide an example where you stood up for people or for rights against a powerful organization.

8) Please tell us why your campaign is better choice (i.e. more organized, works harder, works smarter) with specifics?

9) Please tell us how you as an elected official or your campaign would help other DFL endorsed candidates get into office?

10) If you could magically fix one thing about the city of St Paul right now, what would that one thing be and why?

Kazoua Kong-Thao answered:

A city council member is a collector of community voices. My goal is to hear and value all residents so we can grow important community relationships.

I am a first generation immigrant and a resident of Saint Paul for over 30 years. I embrace the ethnic and economic diversity that Saint Paul offers and I am proud and prepared to serve.

In Ward 1 we celebrate many cultures with our neighbors. As the new immigration laws invite more families into our neighborhoods all residents should feel included, safe and prosperous.

My goal is to help Saint Paul thrive, not just survive. I will support local businesses at the completion of the Central Corridor project and I will prove that diversity partnerships help the Minnesota economy.

As the former Chair of the Board of Education I have experience as a consensus builder. I encouraged board members to maintain open lines of communication and develop cultural trust.

I rarely think it is appropriate to offer special financial consideration to a single business and I will maintain this position as a councilwoman.

I have been an advocate for woman’s rights within the city at large and in the Hmong community and I will continue to advocate for public policy that supports this position.

My campaign team is poised to help me lead collaborative communities in the city. I am the only two-time endorsed DFL party candidate and I am a hard working, community engagement professional.

I will support other elected DFL officials as a bridge to diverse communities, including the Hmong community, and I will create opportunities for community conversations that will improve our lives.

If given the opportunity, I would magically fix the education achievement gap and improve the graduation rate for all children in the state.