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
On the evening of July 10th, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency held a meeting at the Burnsville City Hall to obtain information for the Scoping Document for the Burnsville Landfill Expansion Request. MPCA staff and Burnsville Landfill representatives provided background on the request and the process that will be followed to respond . The MPCA had released the Draft Scoping Document on June 24 for the Burnsville Sanitary Landfill Expansion Project 2019. Verbal concerns were taken the night of the meeting. Questions included concerns about the final height of the landfill, impact on wildlife, and safety concerns.
Additional comments or concerns need to be submitted in writing. July 24 is the last day to submit comments on the draft Scoping Document.
On Friday 7-12 I interviewed with Mr. Alan Miller on Access to Democracy program which airs on Eagan-TV. Mr. Miller and I had a lively conversation about many topics.
Click below to watch:
You can watch the same on Access to Democracy here, or on YouTube here.
The Legislative Process Reform Subcommittee held its first meeting on the afternoon of July 10th. the The focus was on the budget process. Testimony was heard from the staff of the Fiscal Analysis Department and House Research who are the main resources in that area.
One comment was that it might be easier to work on budget bills if the information from the November forecast was used rather than waiting for the February forecast. Someone said that model had been used in the past.
Future meetings will be taking place in sites throughout the state.
Senator Jim Carlson and I held a Town Hall Meeting on the evening of July 8 at the Wescott Library in Eagan. Our appreciation to all who attended and participated in this event.
Ruth Grengs was our guest speaker and was kind enough to provide us some background on the activities on the Mexican border. She has lived in our community for many years. I knew she was an immigration attorney and I also knew she had been to our southern border recently. While immigration is a federal issue, the current controversy is a concern for many in our community and our state. Given the time constraints, it was suggested to have a discussion just on this topic.
The main focus was the 2019 Session. Highlights include passing a budget, preserving the provider tax to retain health care access for over a million Minnesotans, the Elder Abuse Protection Legislation, and the Hands-free Bill. Disappointments include not passing many of the insulin bills or a comprehensive transportation bill.
One of the comments was on state shut-downs. The gentleman said they are very harmful to state employees. He believes that when the governor and legislators fail to agree on a budget and shut down state services, they should not receive compensation during that period. Another constituent asked whether it was still possible to have a democracy given the partisanship that seems to make compromises almost impossible.
Members of the Legislative POCI Caucus (People of Color and Indigenous) held a hearing this morning regarding the humanitarian crisis at America’s southern border. In addition to the testimony, advocates provided resources to contact.We also need to consider the impact of this activity on people living in Minnesota. There was an audio recording of the meeting that will be available.
It seems impossible that this atrocious treatment of children is taking place in our country. Are these really the criminals and dangerous people that the President keeps telling us are trying to cross the border? I find that hard to believe. The poor leadership at the federal level is a threat to so many. It certainly is not doing the image of America any good either. This should concern us all.
Last night, I attended the Awards Ceremony for the 4th District Apprentice Contest held at Steamfitters Pipefitters Local 455. The categories were HVAC, Pipefitter, Plumber, Sprinklerfitter, and Welder. The winner in each of the categories will go on to a national competition that will be held in Ann Arbor, Michigan in August. There are eleven states that come under the 4th District.
The Robert Donatelle Award went to Carter Hagen. This award was established in 2010 to honor a member who placed great emphasis on training.
The presenters said this group represents the future. While it took years for many of the current officials to reach their leadership positions, the dynamics of our society today will mean the younger members will be advancing at a much faster pace than did their predecessors.
I attended the Burnsville Alternative High School Class of 2019 graduation on June 5th at the Mraz Center. This is one of my favorite events. These students have overcome substantial personal and family issues to be able to graduate. And the size of the class usually allows some of these stories to be told. The graduates that did share their experiences all gave thanks to the school staff for the the help they received that made this event possible. A 2017 BAHA graduate was a guest speaker and she talked about the importance of persistence and the help she received.
This is always an inspirational and joyful event.