An opinion piece by Toby Berens     

Local government should be a democratic process where different ideas should be considered. In my opinion, people in Shakopee are not getting this process anymore. Let me explain.

Bill Reynolds, our city administrator, seems to think his way or the highway is the way things should be run. Anyone or any group should not go against his thinking. He seems to not get along too well when there is opposition to his thinking. He did not get along with past city council member Mike Luce, a veteran’s group, and a neighborhood group that simply wanted an ice rink flooded. He very unprofessionally calls out SPUC in the newspaper and goes after John Crooks. He also seems to forget SPUC gives the city roughly $2.2 million dollars every year and that SPUC gives the city free street lighting.

The other Bill is Bill Mars, our mayor. Bill Mars also does not like opposition. He basically controls all members of the city council except Matt Lehman to vote his way on everything. He also controls the SPUC board by appointing three people he wanted on this board – Jody Brennan, a current city councilperson, Kayden Fox, who wants to get rid of SPUC, and former city council member Kathi Mocol. I believe they are on the board because Bill Mars wants to disrupt what goes on at SPUC. He passed up two very qualified people instead of these three, one was an electrical engineer, and the other had a doctorate in forensic finance. In my opinion, I would have picked the more qualified people to make million-dollar decisions.

The two Bills also like to give out half-truths about what they do not like. They both think and want us to think SPUC is a poorly run entity, which it is not. What is at stake is about $52 million that the city wants. They will spend this money and pat themselves on the back that they never raised taxes. They also think developers should come into Shakopee and not have to pay their fair share in fees. Developers should pay their fair share because it should not be put on the backs of us ratepayers.

Please VOTE NO and keep SPUC.

The ratepayers and citizens of Shakopee deserve better than this.

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