In this article, outgoing St. Cloud City Councilmember John Libert said “If you look at the city council as a job…the job description basically is making sure the city is running well. Part of your job description isn’t talking about national issues — immigration, the Mexico wall, our relationship with Canada. It may be a personal issue someone may have but it’s not part of your job description so you’ve got to focus on your job description and do your job.”

It’s sad that Councilman Libert didn’t do his homework on the subject. The Refugee Act of 1980 in 8 U.S.C 1522(2)(A) gives specific instructions to city councils on their responsibilities, saying “The Director and the Federal agency administering subsection (b)(1) of this section shall consult regularly (not less often than quarterly) with State and local governments and private nonprofit voluntary agencies concerning the sponsorship process and the intended distribution of refugees among the States and localities before their placement in those States and localities.”

It’s indisputable that city councils are part of local governments. It’s equally indisputable that federal agencies have a responsibility to “consult regularly” with city councils “before [refugees are placed] in those…localities.”

Apparently, Councilman Libert hasn’t figured it out that he had a responsibility to monitor primary resettlement in St. Cloud. Thankfully, he’s been relieved of those responsibilities.

Libert said Johnson’s “bashing of St. Cloud State” during his tenure on the council was the “dumbest thing in the world. What you’ve got to do is say, ‘St. Cloud State, we know you’ve got some enrollment issues but we’re here. What can we do to help you?’ We can hold our hands out and our hearts open,” Libert said.

Paul Brandmire defeated Libert this past election. I’m confident he’ll make smarter decisions than Libert did.

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