Budgets

  • Between 2012 ~2016 the Dakota County budget increased more than 24%
  • The Debt and Capital Improvements Budget CIB increased more than 57%
  • The operations budget increased more than 14%
  • How much more income are you making and spending in your household?
  • ​Are you adding onto, or expanding, your house at the expense of not maintaining your existing property?
  • Tax money comes from many sources, not just your property taxes.  Sound fiscal management requires overall good budgeting and planning to keep them low.  Ask your friends what they pay in the Metro!

What is planning, prioritizing, and protecting?

  • Good financial managers make 'What If' scenarios about current and future needs and expenses.  This should include both needs and wants for Dakota County into the next several decades.
  • From this planning process, the Board of Commissioners should prioritize these projections and plan the needs and wants budget accordingly with what we can afford, without leaving our children in debt nor destroying the character, charm, and history of Dakota County.
  • Protecting the character of Dakota County is a priority.  We are not, nor do we want to become, a large dense urban, tall buildings, inner city type of county like Hennepin and Ramsey.  Any building projects we embark upon must be maintained and protected before we spend more money on new construction.  Smart growth is desirable. Change for the sake of change, or to absorb another county's financial problems is not smart.​​

Transparency

  • Government must be transparent.  It must be open to all citizens to observe, participate, and be a part of decisions affecting their lives.
  • Too many decisions are made in closed sessions out of the public eye in the guise of confidentiality.
  • Meetings should be conducted when they are convenient to the general public to attend.
  • Closed door sessions should respect the public's time and be limited to a known time frame so people are not kept waiting for hours in the lobby.

What is a Taxpayer?

  • A taxpayer is you, me, and our neighbors who work hard to support a family and make meaningful contributions to the community in which we live.
  • Taxes come in many forms: income, property, license fees, fines, sales...and many more.  But they all come from one place.  You, me, and our neighbor's work efforts.  Not the government, not the money tree, but from our neighbors.
  • Before spending one American cent of my neighbor's money, I will always ask the question: Is this the best way to spend their money that we (you, me, and our neighbors) have taken away from them by force?  Will this money be spent on something that will enhance our Dakota County way of life, or is it merely a transfer of funds from someone who earned it to another who did not?


 Welfare, Housing, Social Services

  • Policies, systems, and services must be designed to move people to self-sufficiency and not generational government dependency.  We must take care of our disabled, sick, and the elderly without question.  However, those who can work...should get a plan to become self-sufficient and not live off their neighbors.
  • Regulations and taxation should be designed to enhance, entice, and create quality jobs, business, and protect our quality way of life.
  • The recent CDA Affordable Housing project in Hastings to "attract 35 low income artists" is the wrong direction.  Bringing in 35 new low income families from another county does nothing to enhance the lives of hardworking, taxpaying, self-sufficient Dakota County residents in the long term.  It only creates generational welfare, healthcare, food, transportation and other expensive issues.

Transportation

  • Light Rail trains are expensive to build, operate, and maintain.  When compared to the cost of a quality highway system, no reasonable thinking person can say with a straight face that this is a good idea for Dakota County.
  • A more fiscally responsible approach is plan a high capacity highway system that will serve the vast majority of the citizens needs and wants for getting around the area.  As a culture Minnesotan's are automobile travelers, we are not train riders or dense urban high rise apartment dwellers.
  • When Public Transportation is needed, buses are more cost effective.  They are cheaper to purchase, operate and maintain.  They are also portable and can be moved when needed to a new location or special event.  Buses come in many sizes from small to large to double length. 
  • We are projected to be a billion dollars short in the coming decade or so for roads.  Why are we wasting money on paved bike trails and trains?

Forever Wild - Dakota County Parks

  • Dakota County has a parks system that is unmatched in the United States.
  • Diverse terrain, woods, open spaces, lakes and ecosystems provide citizens with the opportunity to escape and enjoy nature close to their suburban home.
  • Hiking on natural turf, walking on paved access areas, cross country skiing, horseback riding, water sports, education programs and more.
  • I know of no other metropolitan region in America that has such unique access to the cities core, transportation, airports and more yet can boast that we retain a unique wilderness in the city.
  • In recent years our County Board has gone on a spending spree nearing 100 million dollars in NEW construction (rather... destruction) of these rural parks.
  • In the face of massive public opposition, using Eminent Domain confiscation of private property, hills are being blasted away in Spring Lake Park on the Mississippi river bluffs to create high speed bicycle highways from Hastings to Saint Paul.
  • Former natural turf walking trails in Lebanon Hills are being bulldozed into 150 foot wide, flat grade, paved trails against citizen wishes in many parks.
  • Duplicate paved trails and bridges to nowhere are being built into the MN Zoo and along Johnny Cake Ridge Road and Mc Andrews Road.
  • Very little money is being allocated to maintain existing trails, or this new construction, and will create a financial cliff for our future generations.  It is time to stop this reckless destruction of our neighbors blood, treasure, and legacy.