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Find out what's happening in the blog. Below is a list of blog items.

Dec 12

December 8, 2017

Posted to City Manager Blog by Chad Bergo


Meetings and Announcements:    

Our next City Council meeting will be held on Monday, December 11th.   Workshop will begin at 6 pm.  We will have the EEDD Presentation. 

Mayor’s State of the City Address: Mark your calendars- Thursday, January 11th from 11 am to 1 pm. You have been registered for the event. 
Updates from Staff and Council


Photo of the cooking crew from Thursday’s Employee Holiday Breakfast. Good food, fun and Christmas sweaters. Note Ron’s unique idea of a holiday head wear!
Rotary Club- Toys for Tots gift exchange- Rotary does an annual gift exchange where everyone draws a name and then tries to find a present that matches the recipients interest or work. The Rotarian who had my name selected a Playmobile Ambulance set. This is a photo of two of us who then “sell” the idea of the greatness of the match to the group. The person who bought the best “match gift” wins a prize. It is a fun way to solicit toys for the North St Paul Toys for Tots. 
Several Rotarians have indicated an interest in attending our State of the City event in January. This is a great organization and I enjoy being a member. If anyone would like to attend a meeting with me, let me know. We meet at 7 am on Friday’s at Keller Lake golf club.
2040 Comprehensive Plan Steering Committee Meeting and Next Steps
Last Thursday, November 30, the 2040 Comprehensive Plan Steering Committee held its fourth meeting and reviewed the entire draft plan. Each chapter of the plan has now been drafted and is under evaluation. The Committee had some general thoughts and requests regarding some issues with formatting and structure of the plan but is supportive of the direction of the plan and its policies.
Next week, staff will update the council on the specific dates being established in January for two public hearings and a few smaller, direct meetings regarding proposed land use changes that would affect some neighborhoods in the city.  The city council will also spend some time reviewing the draft plan at its workshop meeting on January 8, 2018. All of the city’s board and commissions will also review the draft plan at meetings in January and February.
Mancheski Property Update: Following the closing of the Mancheski property located at 2494 Harvester Avenue on November 27th, staff has removed all items from outside the house and is currently working with a company to remove items from within the house. This work will occur sometime next week. Staff has also turned off the water and gas and has secured the dwelling. Staff is working towards a goal of January 1, 2018 to begin soliciting proposals for the purchase of this property. Additional information forthcoming. Public Works and staff from EEDD deserve a big thank you!
Northland Recreation finished installing the new playground at Nebraska Park the day before Thanksgiving and residents were able to enjoy it due to the unseasonably  warm temperatures(tweet below):

 Nov 24
“Thx @MaplewoodMN for the new playground equipment at Nebraska Park. A nice surprise as we had our #optouside walk today”

Wakefield Building Design Update: Staff is inviting City Council to the December 19th CDRB meeting to review the design of the Wakefield Park Community Building. Following the meeting with the CDRB members, staff will be attending the City Manager/Council Workshop on January 8th to provide an update to council. Additional information including updated building drawings will be provided to council ahead of the CDRB meeting.


Here’s a report on the Community Assembly program in Brooklyn Park.

Also, we’re in the process of editing our Q and A with Shultz… 

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News From local sources and agencies : -  Carver School noted as a high poverty school that is beating the odds with test scores. City of Roseville Race Conversation Series

From Metro Cities Bulletin

State Budget Forecast Projects a Deficit

The state’s November Budget and Economic Forecast, released this morning, projects a $188 million deficit for Fiscal Years 2018-19 and $586 million deficit for Fiscal Years 2020-21. Information …click for full newsletter

Metro Regional Meeting and Metro Cities Policy Adoption 

Metro Cities and the League of MN Cities hosted the 2017 metro regional meeting last week at the Plymouth Crowne Plaza, and Metro Cities conducted its policy adoption meeting at that event. The meeting was …click for full newsletter

Metropolitan Council Considers Requirements for Local Fair Housing Policies

The Metropolitan Council is looking at requirements for local government to advance fair housing in the metro region. The Council issued an RFP earlier this year for the preparation of a fair housing resource …click for full newsletter

Metropolitan Council Committee Approves Transit Funding Agreements
The Metropolitan Council Transportation Committee approved Master Operations Funding and Capital agreements with Anoka, Hennepin, and Ramsey counties this week. Funds will be used for costs associated …click for full newsletter

Wishing you a great weekend. Please call or email if you have any questions or concerns with the packet or other items. Melinda


  Melinda Coleman | 651-249-2055

Mar 01

The New Guy - Bryan Smith

Posted to Council Account by Chad Bergo

When I got the assignment to write an article for this month’s Maplewood Living, I really didn’t want to write “the new guy” article. The reality is, however, that I have now been sworn in for about six weeks, I have attended 3 council meetings, and have been working hard to learn the ins and outs of Maplewood operations and how to be the best councilmember I can. It feels strange to be writing this so early; I am the new guy after all…

We have all been the new person: new kid at school, new person at work, or the new family on the block. It can be a tough time of uncertainty and anxiety, but it is also a time of opportunity for new friends, new skills, and new knowledge. I have felt all of these feelings since being sworn in. In fact, I am not only the new guy here, but also am the new guy on the Gateway Corridor Commission and a number of other groups for which I now represent the city.

As I have begun this journey, there are a number of life lessons I reflect on and hold in my heart:
1. Be grateful: I am deeply grateful for this opportunity to serve our city, and also for my colleagues on the council, the mayor, and many leaders from the city staff who have all been generous and patient while teaching me and answering all my rookie questions.

2. More elephants and fewer hippos: Picture it: elephants have huge ears and small mouths while hippos have huge mouths and small ears. I know I can tend to be more of a hippo, more apt to speak than I am to listen carefully. I am doing my best to be more of an elephant, and it takes a great deal of energy for me to slow down, shut my mouth, and listen. I am doing my best, and when I am successful, I find it serves me quite well.

3. Be kind: I have never regretted being kind to someone – I have, however, regretted being unkind almost every time. My wife and I have always expected our son to show kindness to others, and at 7 years old, he is now my role model. I hope I can grow up to be as kind and empathetic as him.

While I really didn’t want to write the new guy article, I think that I just did. One thing I have learned in my career is that people typically feel “new” a lot longer than they are seen as “new” by others. Hopefully you still see me as “new” – I know I still feel it. I am looking forward to the challenge ahead, to getting to know you all better, and to working to make our city the best it can be.

Tag(s): Bryan Smith