Vote Today for St Paul City Council!

[Image fm Brendmoen Facebook page.]
Today is election today, and it's a chance to change St Paul's City Council for the better. The Capitol City has long been a bit more conservative than its Western neighbor. People here are a more traditional, a bit more resistant to change, a bit less likely to do something progressive or trendy or flashy. The common term for this is "neighborhoody."

In some cases, that's a great quality. It means that people keep going back to the same diner for year after year, ordering the same pancakes or hamburger, supporting the same kinds of institutions and traditions and non-municipal garbage collectors

In other ways, though, this is a highly frustrating quality. City budgets are under tremendous strain right now, and conservative "business as usual" approaches to transportation and budget decisions isn't going to be enough in the next few years.

That's why, in my ward, I'm endorsing Amy Brendmoen for City Council. When it comes to things like bike lanes, good urban planning, and creative ideas about how to organize local government, Amy is far more likely to be willing to try something new than the incumbent Lee Helgen. With a lot of experience outside government, and a broad interest in cities, she is the kind of person we need in local government.

Other city races are a bit less clear to me. Jim Ivey seems like a great choice in Ward 2, but the incumbent Dave Thune has also been good supporter of alternative transportation, mixed use, and supporting density and diveristy in St Paul.

Meanwhile, there are seemingly no decent choices in the open seat in Ward 3, where impervious surface Pat Harris is retiring.

With Brendmoen on the council, she would join CMs Carter, Stark and whoever wins in Ward 2 to form a core of strong urban leaders. I think St Paul would have a great future in their hands.   

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