On Thursday , I attended the School District 196 PreLegislative Session Forum at Echo Park Elementary School. The focus was on literacy. It was impressive to see how many different programs are available to help students learn. We had the opportunity to see students engaged in some of the programs.
Afterwards, we discussed some of their priorities for the upcoming session.
The House Transportation Committee did a tour of some of the north metro communities today, that included Ramsey, Fridley, New Brighton, and Blaine. Highways that need improvements are 10, 47, and 65. They have a high number of accidents, with significant fatality rates.
On Tuesday, I went on a tour of some of the construction sites for the Southwest Light Rail project. We started at the Southwest Bus Station and went along the line to the end in Minneapolis near Target Field. I was told there are fifteen construction sites currently and they are using about thirty cranes.
Of particular interest in the equipment being used for digging near the buildings in Minneapolis that were the topic of many meetings because the underground wall was going to be so close to the buildings. A special piece of equipment was brought in from Japan to use in this area. With this equipment, there is literally no noise or feeling of ground movement even when you stand fairly close. You can see the blades moving and the dirt accumulating at the top of the hole, but that is all. My understanding is that this is the first time this equipment has been used in Minnesota.
In addition to the construction jobs being created by the Southwest LRT project, one of the major outcomes at the end of the project will be better access to nine of the region’s 17 Fortune 500 companies that are headquartered along the route. It will also provide service to all the region’s sport venues. This project is an example of major partnerships, both public and private.
Representative Diane Loeffler died on Saturday. She was elected in 2004 and and has represented District 60A in Minneapolis. She was chairing the Property and Local Tax Division this session. Diane was extremely knowledgeable in numerous areas and was always willing to help when needed. She worked so hard for the people in her district and the people of Minnesota. She will be greatly missed.
I visited the Family Justice Center in Minneapolis yesterday. That is quite a resource. I viewed several court hearings as well as talked to several judges, court staff, and others involved in the process. I also obtained information on the Family Court Services. My main objective was to see how the custody process is working.
Yesterday, I attended the Celebration of Jerri Neddermeyer as the recipient of Eagan Foundation ‘s 2019 Extraordinary Board Member Award. Jerri is incredibly active in the art world. She is truly deserving of such recognition and we are so fortunate to have her in our community.
On October 1, a program was held at Easter Lutheran Church to discuss youth experiencing homelessness in Dakota County. Heading Home Dakota is working on a host program as an an efficient and safe way to provide shelter for young adults, mainly ages 18-24, in our community. There is a shortage of of shelters in Dakota County, especially for our youth.
The Host Home would provide a furnished separate bedroom or space with privacy for the young person and food during the stay. The length of time might vary, but it typically would be short term. The Host Home would provide a safe and supportive place to stay while the youth is working on goals and securing housing.
Volunteers would be needed to help support the Host Homes in various ways, such as food/meals, gift cards for the young person, transportation, etc.
For further information on the Host Home Action team, contact Rebecca Bowers, Dakota County Resource Developer, at Rebecca.Bowers@co.dakota.mn.us or (651) 554-6029.
On September 12, there was a celebration to commemorate the 20th Anniversary of Access to Democracy, a program on Eagan-TV started by Alan Miller. First, there was a taping of the 20th Anniversary Special that was hosted by Don Shelby.
Afterwards, there was a reception in which there were lots of congratulations to Alan Miller. Then Alan and Sharon Miller presented certificates and mugs to the volunteers, ETV staff, sponsors, and others who had participated in the program over the years. This is quite a record for local programming and our community has benefited from having access to this information. We are very fortunate to have people in our community who are willing to make this type of programming happen.
The League of Women Voters, along with a host of others, put on a great program this afternoon to commemorate the efforts of the women who made it possible for women to vote. In the audience were relatives whose ancestors were considered primary movers for that movement. Joan Growe and Josie Johnson were two of the speakers on the programs and they talked about their experiences. Chief Justice Lorie Gildea paid tribute to Rosalie Wahl, the first woman appointed to the Minnesota Supreme Court, and went on to talk about the increasing number of women in the court system. I hope a taping of the program will be available because all the speakers provided interesting information on the history of voting. And there still remains much to do.
Knowing how much some of the suffragettes endured to achieve the right for women to vote, I find it hard to understand how some women today still don’t take advantage of this opportunity.
Great to see everyone at the Burnsville Fire Muster Parade on Saturday. The comfortable weather made it easy to enjoy the parade as well as all the other festivities. Thanks to all who participated in this signature community event.
Click on the thumbnails to enlarge the images.
The Parade Crew
This the ecological behicle we use in parades
Three people fit in this vehicle