Archive | Governance

Winter Walking & The City of Minneapolis Maintenance Study

The long-anticipated City of Minneapolis’ Winter Maintenance Study is being presented to the City Council’s Transportation and Public Works committee on Tuesday. The Study looks far afield for solutions, analyzing municipal winter maintenance responsibility across the country, but without ever evaluating the efficacy of either our current system or the ones studied. Despite its importance […]

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Five Days Left! Apply To The Minneapolis Pedestrian Advisory Committee

Are you a joiner? Me neither! Just the same, here I am a first-year member on the Minneapolis Pedestrian Advisory Committee. Since the city is taking applications for this year’s vacancies through April 20th, I thought sharing my PAC experiences thus far could help others deciding whether to apply. What compelled this city policy novice […]

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Billboard Proposal is “Rash That Won’t Go Away”

The mysteriously persistent proposal to allow more billboards in downtown Minneapolis has Planning Commissioner John Slack feeling as if he’d like to pour a bottle of antibiotics all over it: For me this is like the rash that won’t go away. I don’t see how this supports any of the comprehensive plan goals, I don’t […]

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Hooray, Hooray, it’s Election Day

Today, November 7, 2017 is election day throughout the state. The Minneapolis and St. Paul elections are notable because they include mayoral races and a variety of other posts, such as city council and parks board in Minneapolis. You can review the streets.mn election coverage for the city elections at this handy link: https://streets.mn/category/2017-voter-guide/ You can […]

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Housing is (Not) a Human Right

One of the more popular ways for progressive candidates to excite a crowd or for pro-housing advocates to frame their arguments is to assert “Housing is a human right.” We should stop saying this, and call out candidates when they say it. It’s a lie. Housing isn’t a human right—at least not in practice. I […]

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Wyoming is Asking the Right Questions About Job Creation

It’s no longer news that business incentive programs are controversial. A landmark New York Times investigation back in 2012 found that state and local governments gave up more than $80 billion each year to companies. Further back but closer to home, a 2008 report from Minnesota’s Office of the Legislative Auditor concluded that the now-defunct […]

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We Should Have a State Parliament

Under the U.S. constitution, states are the most powerful level of government. The constitution delegates all power not explicitly reserved in it to the states. In practice, the federal government has devised ways to coerce states, such as by withholding funding, and the Supreme Court has interpreted parts of the constitution like the commerce clause […]

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Apply for the Minneapolis Pedestrian Advisory Committee!

After a friend first told me about the Minneapolis Pedestrian Advisory Committee (PAC) a few years ago, it took another two or three gentle suggestions before I was willing to seriously consider applying. Despite being car-free by choice and a Minneapolitan for my entire adult life, I saw myself as neither a pedestrian nor someone […]

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Are District Councils Really Just Homeowner’s Associations?

Recently my neighborhood had its yearly district council election here in Highland Park. I couldn’t help but notice as the newly elected grid representatives received the applause of their neighbors, who they were: five white home-owning men, three out of the five sporting white hair. Out of the seven seats in contention that night, only one seat […]

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Transit Cuts – How Bad Could It Be?

The GOP majorities in the Minnesota House and Senate have proposed budget cuts to public transit funding by as much as 40 percent, that could have catastrophic consequences for Metro Transit riders. Local advocacy groups Transportation Forward and Transit for Livable Communities are holding a rally tonight at 6pm at the Rice Street / Capitol Green Line Station.  Independent from […]

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