News: Wild Turkey Fatigue Spreading as Urban Nuisance Claims Rise

Here in Minot, an ad hoc committee appointed by City Council is tackling the issue of how to better manage the populations of Minot’s in-town wildlife. Turkeys have been part of the conversation. And based on this article from the NY Times, it would seem as if Minot isn’t only community dealing with the challenge.  summary by: Josh Wolsky

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Public servants to go on blind coffee dates for innovation

News: Public servants to go on blind coffee dates for innovation

What does innovation in government look like? In Victoria, Australia, it’s as simple as going for coffee. What matters is who is doing the going, and when it’s two public servants who typically live in separate silos, the results can be transformative. The exciting part for those living in Victoria is this is just one part of a larger effort by local governments to push innovation. The website...  summary by: Josh Wolsky

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Flood Protection Bids Opened, Low Bid Far Below Engineer’s Estimate

News: Flood Protection Bids Opened, Low Bid Far Below Engineer’s Estimate

Construction bids for Phase 1 one of Minot’s flood protection plan were opened Wednesday morning. Phase 1 runs from approximately Broadway to 3rd Street NE and includes a combination of floodwalls and levies. A large pump station to the West of the Broadway bridge is also a significant portion of Phase 1 designs. Engineer estimates for the work were approximately $59 million. There were multiple low bids for the...

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News: Backyard chicken trend linked to spike in salmonella cases

The discussion about allowing backyard hens in Minot is taking place right now. One of the factors being considered is whether these animals a risk to public health? And how do we balance that against the benefits of fresh, locally sourced food? On the public health side of the equation, this story out of Des Moines is worth reading.  summary by: Josh Wolsky

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So, you’re pissed about your City taxes going up? Me too

Commentary: So, you’re pissed about your City taxes going up? Me too

Sometimes, maybe the best you can do is to make everyone angry. With three months on the job as a member of City Council and now a budget under my belt, that’s my ‘lesson learned’ at this point. And boy was that budget a doozy. If you’re not familiar with what’s coming your way, I won’t interpret your failure to contact me with your thoughts as tacit approval;...

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Cold Feet on the Eve of Budgeting for Recycling

Commentary: Cold Feet on the Eve of Budgeting for Recycling

I wonder what would happen if those of us in government made a deal with the taxpayers and citizens; here’s the framework: as our part of the deal, we in government offer to be smart and resourceful with our dollars and spend them as an investment in a worthwhile outcome. In return, we the taxpayers and citizens agree to be more conscientious of our behavior and willing to...

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Commentary, News: Help Grand Forks streets pass ‘Coffee Cup Test’

Grand Forks Mayor Mike Brown has taken up the general mission of ‘doing it better’, and one of the first places he’s starting is on the roads in Grand Forks. And an accidentally created litmus test is his newest tool. It’s one part of a larger commentary where Mayor Brown provides a little direct communication to the Grand Forks citizens on his efforts as Mayor.  summary by: Josh Wolsky

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Community Facility Funds Split Seven Ways

News: Community Facility Funds Split Seven Ways

Minot’s Community Development committee met today to discuss how to award $4.8 million in sales tax dollars allocated to community facilities. That recommendation will now be advanced to Minot’s full City Council. The City of Minot’s news release on the meeting and awarded projects follows below. — Official News Release, City of Minot — The Minot City Council’s Community Development Committee on Wednesday recommended awarding approximately $4.8 million...

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News: New Orleans artists meet, speak on resilience with floodwall project

The project is ambitious, a 1.5-mile long mural painted on a flood wall with the hopes of educating and empowering the local kids. The article is relevant here in Minot for two reasons. First, we’ve got a lot of flood wall going up, what we’ve seen thus far is aesthetically attractive, but perhaps there is more we can do to enhance it. Second, the organization responsible for administering...  summary by: Josh Wolsky

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