The next time that the budget is being put together, I hope Republicans will tell airheaded liberals like Betsy Hodges and Chris Coleman to stick it where the sun doesn’t shine when they ask for their LGA increases. I wrote this post to highlight the fact that Chris Coleman was upset that he’d have to cut firefighters or police officers because evil Republicans didn’t give him an additional $3,000,000 in LGA. Because Coleman spent money he wasn’t owed and didn’t have, St. Paul suddenly had a $3,000,000 deficit.

As stupid as that sounds, Coleman’s in the minor leagues compared with Betsy Hodges. Betsy Hodges wants to spend $11,000,000 “beautifying the Convention Center plaza.” She wants to do that because, in Hodges’ estimation, the Minneapolis Convention Center plaza’s “lush grass, huge, funky animal sculptures, and fine trees” aren’t good enough. She wants to “plant more trees, level its tilted slope, and install electricity hookups and tent anchors so NFL VIPS might hob-knob inside party tents when Super Bowl LII comes to town in 2018.”

This is classic DFL spin:

Hodges’ spokesperson David Prestwood says it’s needed to “maximize the space.” And it “makes sense to do it now” because the city is slated to also host the X Games and the 2019 Final Four.

That sounds good but it isn’t wise when you consider this:

The job of the 33-member, citizen-led Capital Long-Range Improvement Committee is to review spending requests. Most recently, it scrutinized 97 projects, the plaza among them. The others included construction of a new fire station and sidewalk and intersection improvements so that kids can safely walk and bicycle to school.

The panel graded the proposals on various criteria such as level of need, cost, and public benefit. They were competing for a funding pool totaling about $150 million.

After all that, the citizens committee essentially flunked the Convention Center project:

But the committee ranked the plaza 95th out of 97.

Let’s get serious for a moment. This isn’t the exception for Minneapolis. It’s worth checking this post out:

We’ve been staking out the four fabled city-financed artistic drinking fountains in Minneapolis recently. We wanted to see what the nearly $50,000 per fountain from our property taxes and water fees buys. You can judge for yourself from the photos.

That’s right. Minneapolis spent $200,000 on “artistic drinking fountains.” Comparing R.T. Rybak with Betsy Hodges in terms of foolish spending is foolish. Rybak is a conservative compared with Hodges. Here’s the bad news:

Thus, the only ones standing between spending $11 million on lights, grading, and trees at the convention center plaza is the Minneapolis City Council.

It isn’t surprising that people are leaving Minneapolis as fast as their feet will fly.

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4 Responses to “Let’s spend $11,000,000 foolishly”

  • Nick says:

    The only cities that people flee more in the Midwest are Detroit and Chicago. Detroit may be coming back, but only in the Downtown and Midtown areas. Everywhere else in Detroit, it’s trashy.

  • eric z says:

    Starting by looking at your headline, I thought it was going to be about another dumb military adventure; or raising pay grades for senior officers.

  • Gary Gross says:

    Sorry to disappoint. It’s just more proof that progressives like Betsy Hodges spend money more foolishly than anyone. Spending $11,000,000 on a plaza is stupid enough. Spending it on a plaza that’s already nicely decorated is disgusting.

  • Nick says:

    I used to live in Kansas City, MO and when I was working there, I had to pay city income taxes. Some of those tax $$$ were used to subsidize a loss-making entertainment district called the Power and Light district. Ex-Mayor Kay Barnes wanted the district so that KCMO could be more like Chicago. Detroit recently emerged from bankruptcy and soon after, all the Detroit city council members wanted a pay raise, but they are already making $70,000/yr.

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