Sunday, January 27, 2013

2013 State of the City

January 4, 2013
First, let me thank the citizens for their confidence and support this last election cycle. I am humbled and honored by the trust you have placed in me. The New Year brings both several opportunities as well as challenges for both Mantorville and Minnesota. I look forward to leveraging my problem solving skills and the combined skills of each of our city council members to meet the challenges and take advantage of the opportunities.
The city has been presented several challenges by the Minnesota Legislature, with the elimination of the Market Value Credit and the continued reduced levels of LGA(Local Government Aid). The council will need to continue addressing these challenges by means of cost saving and spending reduction.
The city staff, council members and myself welcome your ideas and suggestion and encourage each of you to bring your comments, concerns and ideas to us individually or at a city council meeting which are held every second and fourth Monday of the month starting at 6:30 pm at city hall.

What do you see as the most pressing issues/needs for 2013?
The new city council will have to focus on the wastewater treatment plant during 2013 while continuing to meet the needs of the city including setting responsible taxation policy. In the New Year the city council will need to make a decision on upgrading our existing plant, building a new plant or working on a joint venture with the city of Kasson. This decision will need to focus on the financial impact for the citizens of Mantorville, the impact for the future of Mantorville and regulatory constraints enacted by the State Legislature.

Any big/special projects coming up this year?
The city recently received notice that Mantorville will receive a portion of the Rochester Sales tax and this will be available in 2013 in two distributions. These funds will need to be spent on legitimate Economic Development activity. The Mantorville EDA(Economic Development Authority) will need to examine the needs the city has in the area of economic development, plan projects that will promote economic vitality and promote Mantorville as a destination.

What would you like to see happen?
The city will need to strengthen it’s efforts to attract new business’ that complement the nature and character of the city. These efforts must take into consideration providing a conducive business environment, and working with the business community to remove barriers to their growth and success. Along with promoting business opportunities the city will need to look for new opportunities to promote education and tourism. The city council will need to continue to promote the historic nature of the city, while planning and promoting growth throughout the city.

Do you feel the city is going in the right direction?
The past councils have made sound decisions on controlling spending, however and more aggressive approach needs to be examined for controlling tax growth, limiting the breadth of government’s reach and providing for individuals freedoms.

Any other comments/concerns?
Mantorville already has a rich volunteer base; however, I would encourage citizens and families to get involved or to take an active role in supporting our community. Just a few of the ways to get involved are: adopt a park program, several advisory committees, volunteer groups and local events such marigold days throughout the year.

Thank you again for your confidence and I look forward to working with each of you to continue making Mantorville the outstanding Minnesota community it is.

I would also like to thank Mayor Nash for his dedication and service to the community of Mantorville as well as for his assistance during the transition and I look forward to his continued involvement.