Tonight I had the pleasure of attending the Burnsville City Council’s special work session which decided the fate of a little boy’s chickens and whether or not one of the City Council’s own (along with many others) will have to pay the city money to be legally permitted to own more than two dogs.
I have covered the chicken issue before and there is even a poll up for this week which asks if your animals are properly licensed unlike one of the Burnsville City Council members who should have to back pay the city for the entire time he’s owned more than two regardless of tonight’s decision.
The main highlights of the meeting were:
1. Burnsville wants to invade people’s privacy and overstep the bounds of the Constitution by urging the legislators in attendance to allow the city to utilize “Automated Citation Technology” (Red Light Cameras). The Burnsville City Council openly admits that a major reason for doing this is to save personnel resources which, in addition to the citations themselves, makes them more money. At least one of the legislators in attendance had the balls to tell them he wouldn’t support that.
If you are a citizen of Burnsville, I suggest you get in to your city council meetings and start raising hell. Red light cameras are bullshit and any and all attempts at using them should be stopped before anyone realizes the benefits of how much money they can make from them.
2. Burnsville doesn’t want to lose the ability to track pawn shop customer information easily to aid in their recovery of stolen goods. While I don’t use pawn shops (and never will) I don’t agree that any local municipality should have access to customer information of any kind unless they have a warrant.
3. A free event, which will require tickets and there are only 1000 of them (with at least 41 out to city council members and their special guest) for the new Performing Arts Center ribbon cutting. There will be some sort of South Metro advertisement in tomorrow’s Star Tribune but if you’re interested in attending it’s apparently on the 31st of January and you can get tickets through the ticket office. If I didn’t have something better to do, I would have been in attendance just to point and laugh.
Let’s see if they can actually get rid of all the free tickets without having to shove them down people’s throats like they are going to have to for the $40 Bite of Burnsville tickets.
4. The Burnsville City Council will likely recommend that three dogs or less are ok with anyone owning four or more will be required to apply for a kennel permit. This is how nearly every other surrounding community does it and the majority of them feel that would be the best way to go.
5. In a fairly surprising move, at least in my opinion, the Board unanimously approved the chicken ordinance and after some wording changes are made, it will be officially adopted (along with the dog ordinance update) at a future city council meeting. Many of the other cities contacted by Burnsville who allow chickens require that permission be received by homeowners (and renters) surrounding the property where the chickens will be raised. The majority (if not all) didn’t believe that it should be required to obtain that permission especially when they didn’t believe that any other city ordinance required such a move.
Some in attendance (like me) were shocked that the curmudgeonly Charlie Crichton didn’t have more to say against it being that he argued almost every inane bullet point in the sustainability draft guide earlier — even when it was obvious he didn’t have the first clue what he was talking about. Anyway, a great outcome for Stefan, his chickens and the people of Burnsville who will be able to live closer to the sustainability guidelines that the Burnsville City Council is drafting for its residents. Now, if they only would take their own advice and not keep coffee heated on hot plates for 3.5 hours, print up numerous copies of PowerPoint presentations that are shown on the big screen, and plan to disseminate educational information to their residents about sustainability by mailing more paper to them (requiring not only paper but also the gas to drive it around), they’d be all set. Someday these communities will understand what being truly green means.
Are you a Burnsville resident? What do you think of the outcomes of tonight’s city council meeting? Are you surprised by the chicken ordinance? How about the free tickets to the ribbon cutting for the Burnsville Performing Arts Center, are you planning on going? Maybe you have issues with the Burnsville City Council’s desire to lobby state legislators to allow automated ticketing and revenue generation without human interaction? Whatever it is, comment on, I’m interested in hearing what you have to say!