Meet Jeff Salovich: Bloomington School Board Candidate

Jeff_Salovich_Bloomington_School_Board_Candidate.jpgBloomington voters will be electing four school board members from a list of 10 candidates this year. Voters may select up to four of the candidates on their ballots. For additional information on some of the other school board candidates as well as city council candidates, CLICK HERE.

Here are some highlights of candidate Jeff Salovich.

Jeff Salovich graduated from Washburn High School in Minneapolis and is a long-time resident of Bloomington. He graduated from Dunwoody Institute’s HVAC Associates Program and completed the 5-year Pipefitter’s Local 539 HVAC Service Apprenticeship. Jeff has worked over 19 years as Pipefitter Foreman at the Minneapolis City Hall. He and his wife Amanda have four children who are either graduates of or currently attending Jefferson High School. Amanda is a paraprofessional  with the special needs program, working at Jefferson this year.

Volunteer Experience
• Youth sports coach 2004-20013
• Bloomington Athletic Association soccer coach, starting in 2017
• Leader of Hillside Church’s 3rd-4th grade Wednesday night youth group, with wife Amanda
• Co-leader Hillside Church;s 5th-6th grade Sunday School Class
• Buddy Break volunteer, working with special needs kids for a Saturday morning every month

Why is Jeff Salovich running?
• To be a School Board member unencumbered by endorsements from special interest groups or politicians
• To speak up for ALL children based on my life experiences
• To bring fundamental education back for the benefit of our kids first and then for our community and then the larger world of their future
• To be a proponent of civilized adult conversations about what is needed to improve public educational outcomes

Jeff Salovich’s priorities are
• Bring my 24-year experience as a parent to School Board decisions on educational matters
• Advocate for trades work and their integration into public schools
• Ensure that school classes stay neutral and on subject, not drift into things that cause division
• Emphasize success in class to help children grow into responsible adults
• Stand against any policies that cause divisions, and support those that promote common sense fixes

You may find more information about his campaign at his website jeffreysalovich.com.


Meet Stacy Cranbrook: Minnetonka City Council Candidate

Stacy_Cranbrook_Minnetonka_Council_Candidate.jpgMinnetonka voters will be electing a mayor and two city council members this year. All will be running at-large. Stacy Cranbrook is a candidate for Minnetonka City Council Seat B. For a listing of the Minnetonka City Council and School Board candidates and links to more information, CLICK HERE.

Stacy Cranbrook is running “to be the voice of common sense and reason to encourage positive change and growth within our city, while preserving and protecting what we have already created and love about Minnetonka.”

Background and Experience:
• Minnetonka resident for 23 years
• Two daughters who have attended Minnetonka schools
• Licensed Real Estate Broker, nominated as a “Super Real Estate Agent” by Minneapolis St. Paul Magazine
• Served on the Minnesota Association of Realtors Professional Standards Committee
• President of the Minnetonka High School Booster Club

Priorities
• Use Real Estate experience to make smart decisions regarding development
• Promote the features of the city that enhance quality of life
• Sustain the city’s park and trail system
• Support the people that live, and the businesses that thrive, in Minnetonka.

You may find more information about her candidacy at her website, votestacycranbrook.com.


Voting in Your Local Elections is Very Important

Blue_vote_box.jpgElections for School Boards and, in many locations, city council members, are underway. Sadly, these local elections garner less attention and interest than they warrant. The people that are elected this year will decide on municipal spending, property tax rates and utility fees, local ordinances, education policies, and school budgets.

The election this year is especially important because the pandemic has had a significant impact on tax revenues and pupil engagement.  What are your future city council and school board members going to prioritize in this new environment?  Is minimizing increases to taxes and fees important to them? 

On the other hand, if you choose not to pay attention and not to vote, you are allowing a committed minority of your neighbors to decide these elections for you.  Is that what you want?

There are good commonsense conservative candidates running for city council and school board in many of our local districts. We have listed several good Bloomington candidates on our website, as well as a short example ballot. If you want our recommendations, contact us ([email protected]) and we will be happy to help.

A note on the process of voting itself: up until November 2, voting may be done at city hall using absentee ballots. In Hennepin County, through the end of this week (Oct 23), those ballots will be sent to and stored by Hennepin County until Election Day. It is not clear to us at this point if Republican election judges will be present when Hennepin County counts these absentee ballots.

Starting October 25, the week leading up to Election Day, you may actually vote at city halls and feed your ballots into voting machines, just as you would if you voted at a polling place on Election Day. On Election Day itself, we hope that most polling places will have Republican election judges in place.


Bloomington, Minnetonka: Ready for Ranked Choice?

Ranked_Choice_Voting.jpgFor the first time this year, those voting for city council members in Bloomington and Minnetonka will use Ranked Choice Voting. Promoted as being a simple process, in fact it can be confusing, even overwhelming to some.

Unlike November municipal ballots in the past, Bloomington and Minnetonka voters will be presented with more candidates from which to choose and be asked to rank them in order of preference. Voters need to understand that they do not need to rank all of the candidates. You should only rank the ones that you actually might want to see in office. If you do not favor a candidate, always leave the oval by that candidate blank. In fact, you can vote for a single candidate for each office and leave all the other preferences blank, if that one is the only one you want. But, CAUTION – rank your chosen candidate(s) only once; do not fill in one candidate’s oval across all the columns.

Understand that if none of the candidates for an office get 50% plus one vote, the candidate with the least votes will be eliminated. If you voted for that candidate, the candidate that was your second-choice will get your vote. If none of the remaining candidates in this second round exceed 50%, the process of elimination and examination of lower-preference votes will continue. It is possible that if you indicated a third preference on the ballot, that candidate could be elected based on your vote.

To see an illustration of how a Bloomington voter could vote using Ranked Choice Voting, CLICK HERE and scroll down.


MN GOP Appoints New Deputy Chair, Treasurer

The top executive team under recently elected Republican Party of Minnesota Chair David Hann is taking shape.

Donna_Bergstrom_Deputy_Chair.jpgDonna Bergstrom was named by Chair Hann to be the Deputy Chair of the party at the conclusion of the recent State Central Committee meeting on October 2. Residing near Duluth, Bergstrom has been active in conservative politics in Minnesota. She was tapped by Jeff Johnson to be the Lt Governor candidate in his gubernatorial campaign in 2018. She brings a wealth of experience as a retired Marine Corps officer, a government relations consultant, a guardian ad litem for the 6th Judicial Court in Minnesota, and an affiliate with the MN Federation of Republican Women and American Indians.

Lee_Prinkkila_Treasurer.jpgLee Prinkkila is the new Treasurer of the Republican Party of Minnesota. Prinkkila is a Certified Public Account and has been a Chief Financial Officer for a number of companies in Minneapolis, St. Paul, and the surrounding area as well as in St Cloud and Virginia, MN.  Lee is a strategic finance leader with experience in both private and public companies. His work with several data analysis tools will help the party in decision-making by leveraging pertinent data and metrics. An active CPA, Prinkkila has a broad knowledge of accounting rules and regulations. He has been a GOP Committee member with Senate District 5 in St. Louis County and then with Senate District 42 in Eden Prairie and Minnetonka.

Donna Bergstrom was officially ratified as Deputy Chair by the State Executive Committee on October 13. Among other duties, Bergstrom will take the lead on Election Integrity initiatives for the Republican Party of Minnesota. Lee Prinkkila’s appointment as Treasurer was confirmed during the same State Executive Committee meeting. Both assumed their duties immediately.


Two Charities Receive MN GOP Donation

Charitable_Donations_Completed.jpgThe money donated to the Republican Party of Minnesota by Anton Lazzaro, $47,000, has been dispersed to two in-state organizations that do important work on behalf of victims of juvenile and adult trafficking: A.C.T United (https://www.actunited.org), and Terebinth Refuge (https://terebinthrefuge.org).

The MN GOP Executive Committee, meeting on September 16, identified the two charities. After more fully vetting them, the Executive Committee voted to authorize sending $23,500 to each. Checks were sent out on September 30.

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Elkins Law Will Charge You For Low Income Housing In Your Neighborhood

Zoning_Buildings_image_MPLS_Sign.jpgThis article is a continuation of our opinion piece published in September

 Rep. Elkins, House District 49B, is proposing a new state law pre-empting cities’ ability to zone single-family residences.   The  Elkins bill is over 23 pages long. You can see the a shorter legislative summary CLICK HERE

The bill has a lot of moving parts, and it is not easy to determine exactly what all the impacts on single-family neighborhoods would be.  Elkins hid many of the consequences of his bill in different provisions whose impact can only be seen by considering their effect when taken together. Here are a few of the ways the Elkins bill will affect your neighborhood if it passes. Contact us if you’d like to know the specific articles/sections of the bill for any of these.

GENERAL ISSUES

The Elkins bill’s most sweeping change requires all cities to allow ‘multi-family’ dwellings in neighborhoods currently zoned for single-family housesThat includes demolition and rebuilding on existing lots. Under Elkins’ bill a developer could buy a large suburban lot and put up a triplex (or buy two or three such lots and put up apartments) and make a lot more money than would be possible by building single-family homes on those lots. The Elkins bill enlists the profit motive to redevelop and drastically change existing single-family neighborhoods.

Typically, city zoning laws are intended to protect landowners from incompatible uses in the same area, especially residential areas.  Elkins’ bill aims instead to implement social changes he wants.  His bill not only has the state preempt city zoning for single-family neighborhoods, it inserts the Met Council into city zoning.   Elkins’ bill indirectly calls for ‘inclusionary housing’ (what most of us call low-income housing) by referring to state law governing how Met Council money is used.   In government-speak: City proposals get priority for Met Council ‘inclusionary’ money if “…at least 15 percent of the owner-occupied units are affordable to households at or below 60 percent of the area annual median income and at least ten percent of the rental units are affordable to households at or below 30 percent of area annual median income".

Elkins’ bill also charges the Met Council with developing a ‘model impact fee ordinance’ which presumably would be ‘offered’ to local cities to use.  Undefined ‘Stakeholders’ would help develop the model ordinance.  Anyone who could possibly benefit from “affordable housing” may be considered a ‘Stakeholder’.  The new model ordinance would have to be finished by the end of next year (2022).

Elkin’s bill appears to allow new development to tear down trees on neighbors’ existing lots.  The Elkins bill says that city regulations can mandate properties have access to solar energy.  Government-Speak translation:  Your neighbors can demand you cut your trees so their roof gets sun.   The same part of the bill also says cities can mandate “protection of ecologic features” but does not define ‘ecologic features’.

The bill defines who pays for providing city services to new or redeveloped property. Cities would be allowed to pay for costs of new development mostly through impact fees (for brand-new developments) and through street improvement districts for redevelopment of existing parcels of land.

 

 

 

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Republican National Committee Squarely Behind MN GOP as We Move Forward

National_Committee_Logo.jpgThis report was given at the October 2 State Central Committee meeting by Barb Sutter, National Committeewoman.

As your National Committeewoman I’ve now attended three RNC meetings, and one mid-west regional workshop.  What I’ve determined, is that this is truly all about learning, making connections, and then translating those into benefiting us here in Minnesota. 

I’m a member of the RNC Rules Committee, and I was one of 28 people selected to serve on the Election Integrity Committee.  (That report was released at the end of August, and I’ll be covering some highlights for you.)  I work with our Faith Group, and I’m most interested in pursuing contacts with our Strategic Initiatives Program, which deals with the RNC Coalitions — a term I really like — and which we refer to as ‘Affiliates’ in Minnesota.  The RNC learned from President Trump, that we need to broaden our base, and make those contacts ongoing and lasting ones, as well as make them meaningful.  Just 2 weeks ago Chair Ronna McDaniel opened yet another Hispanic Community Center in Wisconsin. 

These efforts cannot just be made at election time.  Nationally, we now have Asian Pacific and Black American Groups, along with GOP Latinos, RNC Women, Veterans & Military Families, Young Leaders, and our Faith Group.  And the list is growing!  As I always like to point out, we may not win the Metro areas, but we have to be about being a presence, and we must move the needle a few more percentage points in every cycle.  I continue to believe that these groups can make a significant difference.  With that, in Minnesota I look forward to welcoming back the College Republicans, bringing back our Hispanic Assembly, and renewing our efforts with other groups, as well!  Let’s let the leaders of these various groups become some of the spokespeople for our Party, as they are at the national level.  Let’s prove, that when we talk about outreach, we mean it!

Election Integrity: The RNC spent $40 million on election integrity in the 2020 cycle. This investment funded lawsuits protecting ballot security, recounts, and poll watching. While these efforts were unprecedented, Chairwoman McDaniel recognized the need to evaluate and to recommend policies to avoid a repeat of the election administration failures in 2020. So she established the temporary Committee on Election Integrity, which as I indicated, adopted an exhaustive report covering these issues. Chief among these recommendations is that the Republican Party transform its integrity operations from a temporary ad hoc structure to a permanent and year-round operation covering all aspects of the elections process.

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Meet Marquisha Fulford: Bloomington School Board Candidate

Marquisha_Fulford_School_Board_Candidate.jpgBloomington voters will be electing four school board members from a list of 10 candidates this year. Voters may select up to four of the candidates on their ballots. Here are some highlights of candidate Marquisha Fulford.

Marquisha Fulford is a graduate of Washburn High School in Minneapolis,  She has raised three children with her husband Ronald, with one still in Middle School, and has one grandson. She has over 25 years of administrative experience, 20 of which are as a Medical Administration Secretary.  Marquisha is a Certified Professional Life Coach. She is a community leader with Victory in Praise Ministries, and is the founder of Anointed Women of Empowerment Women’s Ministry.  She is an Advocate-Coordinator for Zoe Childcare Center

Volunteer Experience

  • “Shifting Forward” with the Bloomington Police Department
  • “Unity in the Community” event
  • Inspirational Speaker with several church organizations
  • “Policy Multicultural Advisor Committee” in Richfield
  • “Community First Organization” in Richfield

Why is Marquisha Fulford running?

  • To be an advocate for Bloomington children
  • To ensure safe places for our children
  • To focus on academic achievement
  • To engage with the schools and the community, to seek inputs, and to support the work being done in the classrooms, sports, and beyond.

Marquisha Fulford’s priorities are:

  • Build a strong foundation based on Equality, Educators, Academic Excellence, Family, and Community Support
  • Advocate for All Students, provide them with every resource to ensure their future
  • Encourage our young students of master Reading, Math, Writing, History, and Science
  • Strive for Equality by ensuring that evey learner has the resources, supports, and opportunities to successful, academically and socially
  • Champion the involvement of parents in the academic lives of their children
  • Strongly support educators that uplift and encourage each child in all diversities

You may find more information about her campaign at her website quisha4equality.com and on her campaign Facebook page


Volunteer Now to Help Local Candidates

Volunteers_for_Candidates.jpgThe candidates running this year for Bloomington City Council and for School Board need your help!

There are several outstanding candidates who want to make a difference in the governance of Bloomington and its school system.  Respecting the nonpartisan nature of these races, they have not sought our endorsement.  However, we have highlighted several of them on our website.  We encourage your individual support with your time and/or your contributions.

If you would like to help one or more of these municipal candidates, they need people willing to stuff literature bags starting this week.  Work can be done as a group or individually at home.  Volunteers will also be needed to get out and distribute the bags in Bloomington neighborhoods.  Please contact Michael Barg at (952) 210-3810 or [email protected] for more details. 

Early voting is already underway.  These candidates are working hard, but they cannot do it all by themselves.  Show them that you appreciate what they’re doing and want to help.



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