The League of Women Voters hosted the final debate for the 2014 election season on Thursday October 23.
I started the debate by thanking my opponent, Joe Selton, for the positive and issues-based race we have had. I am pleased this campaign has been largely free of the personal attacks and name calling that has been seen in other races this year, and I am pleased our debate kept up that tone. Joe and I are both people who care about Crystal, but just have different ideas about how to get the work done.
I believe I have the right mix of experience and fresh perspective that is required to move Crystal forward, and I believe my focus on actually listening to and engaging citizens sets me apart. I hope that you agree, and that I can earn your vote on November 4.
Time flew by, and I was really kind of bummed that I didn’t get to answer a question that was asked of the other candidates. The question was “What are your ‘out of the box’ ideas for Crystal.”
I have two, and they are patterned on the recent “un-session” in the legislature.
First I think we should have an ordinance commission, which would be focused on repealing and/or re-writing old city ordinances. We have more lines in our city code than we have residents, and we have some pretty laughable ordinances on the books. There’s a whole section on regulating fortune tellers. Really. We should modernize our city code with the help of interested citizens.
The second is based on Governor Dayton’s 2014 executive order that the government communicate with the citizens in plain language. That idea was mocked by some as unnecessary or silly, but I actually liked it. I received a letter from the city a few weeks ago that pertained to the Gaulke Pond home development. I received the letter because I live close to the proposed development, so it’s the same letter that my neighbors received. Despite the fact that I am on the planning commission, and relatively well informed about the details of the project, I had no idea what the point of the letter was. When the city communicates, we should do so in the easiest to understand way possible- and leave off the legal speak and other mumbo jumbo.