On Tuesday the Burnsville City Councilmembers were confronted by an upset citizen during the citizen comments portion of the meeting (you can see the video here beginning at about the 14:00 mark). He disputed the work of a surveyor hired by the city over a culvert apparently on his property. But instead of doing what any sane elected official would do, you know, attempt to get City Staff to work out a compromise with the angry resident and find an amiable solution instead of just telling the person how it was going to be, the mayor did something I found absolutely astounding, she said to the man:
…and the best course is for you to take us to court. Please do that.
If I were a taxpayer in Burnsville I’d be up in arms over what Mayor Kautz said. Lawsuits cost the city much more than a meeting to find a solution. Not only is an immense amount of staff time lost supporting the case but so are tax dollars to fund legal teams, days in court, and even possible fines if the city is found in violation of the law by the court system. It just does not make any sense.
Now, I’m not here to argue the merits of the guy’s claims (I honestly think he was a little off-kilter based on what I saw at the meeting). I don’t know what the city has nor do I know what the resident has as far as surveys go. What I am interested in here is the suggestion by the Mayor of Burnsville to go to court over what seems like something that could easily be determined by an additional neutral surveying party.
What do you think about Mayor Kautz’s suggestion that citizens who are unhappy with City of Burnsville decisions should sue instead of solutions which do not involve the courts? Do you think that this is the best course of action or do you too believe that it’s a bigger waste of time and money than the alternatives? Whatever you think about this subject go ahead and comment on as I’d love to hear what you have to say.