I think a good start would be to elect people to the met council instead of having them appointed!
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The Twin Cities are a great destination for foreign tourists. It sometimes is hard to think it's anything special when you are in the Cities, but we take it all for granted. There is so much to see and enjoy in the Cities that seem almost impossible to find in most large cities in the U.S., and we need to make sure that as we continue developing our infrastructure we don't forget that trains and easy-to-read maps make everything all the more attractive and accessible to foreigners.
I hope that we can realize that we have a treasure of a city and don't only focus on the nearby community as we grow larger but keep in mind the others that will (and have started to) come in growing numbers will be heading home talking about their experiences there. Will they find the people friendly and it easy to get around without a car?
Part of the same idea, then, is just to make sure we are not just focusing on attracting tourism from the regional upper-midwest. Would it pay to have some brochures available in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou or Tokyo? Absolutely. The Twin Cities, with the trains and infrastructure development over the last decade, are truly becoming world-class cities, regardless of what the average person from say, Apple Valley, or Robbinsdale, might think.
The ridership is very low at the state capitol area because of subsidized parking.Too mnay buildings were torn down for parking lots ,they are even using parkland for parkingThe city and state are losing revenue that private businesses could be paying taxes for the lost bldgs
The taxpayer are paying twice for free/cheap parking for Govt employees while the bus riders get no tax break and cannot deduct bus passes .
Restructure the public financing of infrastructure expansions so that beneficiaries pay for the incremental costs in proportion to their benefit. Protect and continue the Fiscal Disparities Program but prohibit net FD transfers to high wealth communities, i.e., those with above-average property tax capacities from all property classes, including residential. Restrict the use of TIF to in-fill development and redevelopment, only, not fringe expansion. Maintain and stabilize a reasonable level of LGA; reduce complexity and depoliticize the LGA program. Reduce Met Council sewer connection charges or differentially charge for infill development where interceptors and lift stations already exist. Example, where interceptors and lift stations of adequate capacity exist, inside a reasonable Metro "service area", charge X dollars; where infrastructure (interceptor and lift station) extensions are required, charge 2X or more--sufficient to cover the costs of the extension. Differential charges would not necesssarily apply to plant expansions. For arterial highway extensions and bridges, use combination of special assessments to benefitting properties and user tolls.
Establish infrastructure for high-speed affordable broadband access in the Twin Cities by 2018, with a goal of making available ubiquitous high-speed broadband at a cost and speed at least equal to those in Paris, France (100 Mbps download and 50 Mbps upload for $35 a month). See The Cost of Connectivity, New American Foundation, July 19, 2012; "How communities are banding together to create high-speed, affordable broadband access", Slate.com, August 1, 2012. Paris has a triple play bundle so the $35 covers high-speed interenet, HD televsion and phone. Every household in the Twin Cities would benefit with lower costs for these basic services. Every business, small or large, would benefit equally.
We need fewer unelected government bureaucrats creating lists and plans that stifle our creativity. Scarce resources are being wasted paying for needless regulations intended to force us to live in "smart" communities that don't work. Less money should be invested in planning groups who create rules and regulations that hamper economic growth in the private sector. If we let our elected local officials do their jobs, we will have a freer nation and more opportunities.
This will slow sprawl and increase property values in the areas that are already developed.