About Me

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I have served the City of Isanti as Mayor since 2007. We have accomplished great things together and I look forward to building on our success. United, we move forward to a better future. You may contact me at 763-442-8749 or e-mail me at george@georgewimmer.com. My website is www.georgewimmer.com

Friday, June 30, 2006

Website Down

Website is down. It should be back up in a few hours. Sorry for the inconvenience.

July 5th Council Meeting

The July 5th Council meeting will have several important items for discussion.

The first item is the Cambridge Medical Center's request for Council input on placing a clinic in the City of Isanti. I have long advocated for more medical and professional services in Isanti to provide needed services and higher paying jobs.

I will however not speak on this particular request since my wife works for Alina. She is far from any decision making position on clinic placement but I believe we must maintain the highest level of integrity. I for one take Isanti's Conflict of Interest Policy seriously.

The second issue is nuisance ordinance enforcement. We will once again be discussing the priorities to enforce current ordinances on the books. Many of these trash, weed and parking ordinances are not being enforced.

The third topic that will need further investigation is joining with Cambridge on a joint industrial park. This might very well be a good idea. I am concerned about the oversight and criteria set for industrial placement. I have been advocated higher wage and job criteria for Isanti's current industrial park. One of my criteria for approving this project would be a livable wage and higher job creation goals for those businesses asking for a public subsidy.

The last item is the proposed change in sewer rates. The current proposal is a 12% reduction in the fee. I still believe that we can and need to lower the rate by 20%. We can not continue to collect more in fees than is needed. If we do this it will get spent sooner or later.

George Washington Quote

"The basis of our political system is the right of the people to make and to alter their constitutions of government."

-George Washington's Farewell Address, September 17, 1796

Declaration Of Independence

IN CONGRESS, July 4, 1776.

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America,

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.--Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them. He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only. He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures. He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people. He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within. He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers. He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance. He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.

He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:

For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:
For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences:
For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:
For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.

He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people. He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands. He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.
Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our Brittish brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

From Heartland Fields

Have you ever wondered what happened to the 56 men who signed the Declaration of Independence?

Five signers were captured by the British as traitors, and tortured before they died.Twelve had their homes ransacked and burned. Two lost their sons servingin the Revolutionary Army; another had two sons captured.

Nine of the 56 fought and died from wounds or hardships of the Revolutionary War.They signed and they pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor.What kind of men were they?

Twenty-four were lawyers and jurists.
Eleven were merchants, nine werefarmers and large plantation owners; men of means, well educated. But they signed the Declaration of Independence knowing full well that the penalty would be death if they were captured.

Carter Braxton of Virginia, a wealthy planter and trader, saw his ships swept from the seas by the British Navy. He sold his home and properties to pay his debts, and died in rags.Thomas McKeam was so hounded by the British that he was forced to move his family almost constantly. He served in the Congress without pay, and his family was kept in hiding. His possessions were taken fromhim, and poverty was his reward.

Vandals or soldiers looted the properties of Dillery, Hall, Clymer,Walton, Gwinnett, Heyward, Ruttledge, and Middleton.

At the battle of Yorktown, Thomas Nelson Jr, noted that the British General Cornwallis had taken over the Nelson home for his headquarters. He quietly urged General George Washington to open fire. The home was destroyed, and Nelson died bankrupt.

Francis Lewis had his home and properties destroyed. The enemy jailed his wife, and she died within a few months.

John Hart was driven from his wife's bedside as she was dying. Their 13 children fled for their lives. His fields and his gristmill were laid to waste. For more than a year he lived in forests and caves, returning home to find his wife dead and his children vanished. A few weeks later he died from exhaustion and a broken heart.

Norris and Livingston suffered similar fates.

Such were the stories and sacrifices of the American Revolution. These were not wild-eyed, rabble-rousing ruffians. They were soft-spoken men of means and education. They had security, but they valued liberty more.

Standing tall, straight, and unwavering, they pledged: "For the support of this declaration, with firm reliance on the protection of the divine providence, we mutually pledge to each other, our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor."

They gave you and me a free and independent America. The history books never told you a lot about what happened in the Revolutionary War.We didn't just fight the British. We were British subjects and we fought our own government! Some of us take our liberties for granted, forgetting they were won by the "militia" against an overbearing central government bent on robbing individuals of basic rights to speech, self-defense, and personal property.

Be sure to take a few minutes while enjoying your 4th of July holiday to silently thank these patriots and resolve never to give away the freedoms they died to secure. It's not too much to ask for the price they paid.Remember: freedom is never free.

Thursday, June 29, 2006

July 13th Parade

I have been asked to repost this information.


I have an entry for the July 13th Isanti Parade.
Anyone interested in walking with us please email me with your t-shirt size. george.wimmer@genesiswireless.us

You will be given a George Wimmer for Mayor t-shirt to wear.

The more the merrier. We will be handing out candy and having fun.

Any questions let me know.

Isanti City Growth

This is from the State Demographers Website. We will be gettingthe new estimate of Isanti's population in about 2 weeks. I will update you then on that number when I recieve it. Here is the 2000 to 2004 growth:

Year----- Population

2000- -----2324
2001 ------2613
2002 ------3815
2003 ------4163
2004 ------4498

Isanti's Road Projects Web Updates

Here is the link with updates for Isanti's road projects.

http://www.ci.isanti.mn.us/index.asp?Type=B_BASIC&SEC={4ADE8A01-D217-467B-93EA-467F2AB02215

Meth Arrest in Cambridge

Meth arrest in Cambridge.

http://www.isanticountynews.com/2006/June/2878grams.html

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Scuttle Butt

I do not know whether to laugh or cry at the ridiculous scuttle butt that is flowing through town on the election history information I posted.

I asked for this information which is public and is maintained by the City Clerk's Office. This is information that anyone off the street could ask for. It is the exact same as the City's Police Report.

This is all information that is public and should be shared with all, not kept for just a few to know. I believe this so firmly that I have people on my e-mailing list I know that do not support me but have asked for updates. City information is not to be kept locked away for only a privileged few to read.

The most important goal I am trying to reach for all Isanti Citizens is fair and transparent government. This can only happen if all Citizens have an equal voice and equal ability to access City information.

I have my best conversations and debates with people I know will never vote for me. If you question my motives, ask me. As I tell everyone I had 6 older brothers....There is nothing that anyone can do to me that is worse than what they did to me. I do not take criticism personally. If we all agreed there would be no need for government.

Open communication is why I do the blog and publish public information. The same election history I received was sent to each Council member and Mayor along with other City staff at the exact same time per city policy.

I hope to receive all comments from supporters and detractors alike.

Election History

I have posted the last 20 years of Isanti election history compiled by City Staff at:

http://www.georgewimmer.com/Isanti%20Election%20History.html

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

West Nile's First showing in Metro

The first two dead birds with West Nile Virus were found in the Metro area. Here is a link to the story.

http://www.kare11.com/news/news_article.aspx?storyid=127575

Here is my link for my mosquito control program.

http://georgewimmer.com/Mosquito.html

Great Quote

As a dog owner I thought this was a good quote for eveyone to keep in mind as we head into our political season.


I love a dog. He does nothing for political reasons.

Will Rogers quotes (American entertainer, famous for his pithy and homespun humour, 1879-1935)

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

June 20th Council Update

The two topics at tonight's Council meeting that drew the most discussion is the proposed public subsidy for utilities on the SE corner of 5 and 65 and the sewer rates.

The proposed subsidy for the utility improvement would set a costly precedent for future development. Isanti does not pay any public funds for such work. This has always been paid for by the developer. The developer in this situation wants the City to pay 30% of the cost. I like the proposed development but I strongly oppose any tax payer money be spent on the project. Development must pay its own way. If we offer to pay 30% of this project cost then this will be used by other developers to have the City pay portions of their cost. This project would cost Isanti at the very least according to the developers own numbers $31,000. This estimate however does not include the full cost of the project. This may not seem like a lot of money but if you add the 30% of all such projects the cost becomes staggering.

We all want this corner to be developed into a prosperous taxpaying commercial district. We must however do it the right way. This is one of the most desirable sights in Isanti. It will be developed without any type of subsidy.

The other major issue is the sewer rates. I proposed a 20% reduction in the cost but the censuses of the Council was at 12%. We also agreed to a new rate of 5,000 gallons for new home sewer. This goes a long way to ending the subsidy paid by current residents for new residents sewer cost. The request from some builders to reduce their cost for sewer on new homes that have not sold was not acted on. For more information on this please read http://georgewimmer.blogspot.com/2006/06/June-20th-2006-council-meeting.html .

We also bonded tonight for the street improvements project. Isanti has a great deal of bonds that have been floated in the last few years. I am concerned with the amount of collective debt we are accumulating as a city. According to Isanti's audit report the debt per resident has gone from roughly $400 to $1,900. This is per resident so even as Isanti's population has double the debt has increased by 5 times. This will start to limit the City's ability to borrow and curtail other future projects. As we enter into the 2007 budget cycle I will be writing more about this.

Monday, June 19, 2006

Campaign Contributions

To donate to my Campaign for Mayor please go to:

http://www.georgewimmer.com/Contribute.html

June 20th 2006 Council Meeting

We have another full agenda for the City Council. The three items I wish to discuss are new land annexed to Isanti, two new Planning Commission appointments and the sewer and water rates information. We will be holding public hearings bringing 116.87 acres into City limits and setting hearings for another 202.05 acres. This equates to hundreds of more homes in the years to come. We must be prepared to answer the transportation and infrastructure questions that will follow another leap in growth.

The second item is to welcome Cherie Sullivan and Jeff Kolb to the Planning Commission. Cherie has a law degree and Jeff is a home mortgage consultant. I did ask Jeff if he currently works with any builders or developers in the area and he said he did not. We had one opening originally but the Dave Peterson resigned. Dave is a former Councilman. When I ran in 2004 he was the only Council Member who wished me luck. He is a true gentleman.

The last item I want to discuss is the sewer/water rate structure. The City is currently collecting roughly 25% more in sewer rate fees than expected from the last rate hike. I proposed that we lower sewer rates to fall back in line with expenses. A government entity should not collect more in fees than is needed to appropriately operate.

I was happy to see agreement on my idea to raise the average sewer rate for new homes. New houses in the past were charged for 4,000 gallons of usages for the first year until a winter average could be established. Winter water usage is used to established yearly sewer rates so residents are not charged sewer cost for lawn sprinkling. This new rate of 5,000 gallons will bring greater fairness to all of Isanti. The reduction in the subsidy paid by current residents to new residents will be greatly reduced.

I will be pushing for a vote on reducing sewer rates by at least 20%. Fair fee prices are essential to a financial healthy community.

I was also surprised that there was a request by some builders to have the rate they pay on empty new homes reduced from roughly $24 to $4 per month. If they are worried about paying for empty new homes they should not build so many causing the housing market to be flooded with new homes at the detriment to existing home sales.

Monday, June 12, 2006

June 8 Greater Twin Cities Land Use Workshop

On June 8th I was a panelist for a discussion on the impact of development in the Collar Counties held in Monticello.

The Developer Representative made two key points. Developers come into a community and use the rules that are in force. This is an important point since it points out one the real problems with poor city development. It is the city's fault. A community must have a comprehensive plan and ordinances that will shape development. This is critically important for Isanti considering we have out grown our Comprehensive Plan.

The second point was in response to a question I asked him after the panel discussion. Does he think it would be appropriate to use a moratorium on development until the City Comprehensive plan is complete. He stated that many Cities do it and that it often helps developers in the long run.


I will be writing more on this topic in the days and weeks to come.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Work Session Update

The Isanti City Council had a work session on Thursday June 8th. We covered 8 issues. There are three topics I wish to discuss.

First topic that I wish to discuss is Ianti's street addressing and naming Issue. There is a 14 county wide grid system that is used. The City of Isanti does not fit in this system. This is of concern for everyone from emergency personnel trying to find an address to UPS trying to deliver packages. It becomes more important each day as the City grows.

The Council heard from several important individuals including Fire Chief Randy Polzin and 911 dispatcher Bob Shogren. All agreed that the current system is severely flawed. There were concerns off 911 calls not properly directing emergency personal to the correct location. Concerns of City liability were also raised if corrections were not made.

There was also an issue that City staff had also made a change within Isanti's system that caused further confusion.

This issue will now go to the Isanti Planning Commission to research and propose a solution to the City Council. The entire Council now sees the need to reform our street naming and addressing system.

It has been a painful process, go to http://georgewimmer.blogspot.com/2006/06/June-6th-council-meeting.html for details, but much needed. I would like to thank Fire Chief Polzin for leading the fight on this key safety problem.

The second issue is the realignment of Credit Union Drive. When this street was first put in it should have been to the west of the Credit Union. The City Council at the time directed it to the east. We are now faced with having to fix this past mistake. If Credit Union Drive is moved to the west it will then line up with East Dual Blvd. This will allow for better traffic control and street crossing.

The other problem this can help solve is the access to the property in the SW corner of 5 and 65. This is the location of the planned McDonald's and other development. If Credit Union Drive is moved then another access can be allowed onto this development and remove the access by the current gas station. This is a tremendous safety gain for all drivers. Currently the in and out at the gas station causes traffic issues. When a McDonalds is on this location the traffic will be doubled or tripled. We need to make a realignment of Credit Union Drive a priority for safety and economic development reasons.

The difficulty is in paying for this twice. This is another example of poor past city planning that we need to correct today. If we wait it will cause greater safety concerns and the cost will only escalate.

The last item I want to discuss is the sewer/water rate structure. The City is currently collecting roughly 25% more in sewer rate fees than expected from the last rate hike. I proposed that we lower sewer rates to fall back in line with expenses. A government entity should not collect more in fees than is needed to appropriately operate.

I was happy to see agreement on my idea to raise the average sewer rate for new homes. New houses in the past were charged for 4,000 gallons of usages for the first year until a winter average could be established. Winter water usage is used to established yearly sewer rates so residents are not charged sewer cost for lawn sprinkling. This new rate of 5,000 gallons will bring greater fairness to all of Isanti. The reduction in the subsidy paid by current residents to new residents will be greatly reduced.

I will be pushing for a vote on reducing sewer rates by at least 20%. Fair fee prices are essential to a financial healthy community. The sewer rate reduction and fixing Isanti's addressing system are key reforms we must work to complete.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

June 6th Council Meeting

Tonight’s City Council Meeting started with several concerned business owners along Main Street questioning the street improvement project. The main concern is business interruption partial caused by lack of proper signage. I stated the city should have signage stating that the businesses are open. The business owners wanted the no thru traffic signs to be changed to business traffic allowed.

The second major item was the request by two businesses to receive a Public Hearing for business subsidy in the industrial park. I again raised my concern of Isanti providing public subsidy to businesses providing $8 and hour jobs. I was also quite concerned that neither business filled out the forms fully. There was no information on the number of jobs and only after discussion were we able to get some dollar figures of pay rates.

It seems ridiculous that someone would come before Council asking for over $250,000 in subsidy and yet not complete all the paper work. I asked that this should be a requirement of the EDA and Council but received very little support for even filling out the forms properly.

The last item was not on the Council Agenda but I had asked for it to be placed on the Planning Commission Agenda. The item is the street and address number in Isanti. There is a 14 county wide grid system that is used. The City of Isanti does not fit in this system. This is of concern for everyone from emergency personnel trying to find an address to UPS trying to deliver packages. It becomes more important each day as the City grows.

I had proposed that this important City planning issue be on the Planning Commission agenda. Council Member’s Johnson, Larson and Mayor Apitz did not want it to go to the Planning Commission were I serve and none of them do. This was again another clear political power play by these three to halt City progress. Instead they want it discussed at a Council Work Session which would delay any correction of the problem. This has been an issue for years. I am trying to bring reform, and in this case greater public safety, to Isanti and they are playing political football. If they were truly concerned about this issue they could have worked on it the last 8 to 10 years they have served on the Council.

I hope this kind of ridiculous behavior will not stop other needed reforms.

Cambridge Police Chief Dies

Cambridge Police Chief Dies...


http://www.isanticountynews.com/

Monday, June 05, 2006

Milestones

The Blog georgewimmer.blogspot.com has hit the 15,000 page visit milestone.

The Website GeorgeWimmer.com has surpassed the 2000 page visit milestone.

I can not guarantee we will always agree but I do guarantee I will always listen. I listen and respond to all comments either verbal or written. Communication is key to solving any problem.

I would like thank all those who visit each site.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Lost lives on 65

We have lost two more lives on Highway 65 in the last few days. We all need to be careful and remember to be safe. A few extra moments of caution can save a life.

Here are the links to the two stories:

http://www.isanticountynews.com/2006/May/31MemDayCrash.html

http://www.isanticountynews.com/2006/June/265.107accident6.2.html

Friday, June 02, 2006

R1 and R2 Rentals

I have received an idea on a solution for rental properties in any zone. The idea is to have a landlord registration. This would require property landlords to register and pay a small fee. This would allow the City to be aware of the rental property within city limits.

The City could then track any issues with "problem" properties. The balance would be established between those needing or wanting to rent properties and the need of homeowner occupied houses.

The proposed solution is already in place in Minneapolis and Brooklyn Park. The final step in this process is to have vigorous enforcement if a nuisance is found.

I want to thank all those with pro and con arguments. I believe open communication is key to solving any problem.

Please let me know if you have any comments on this solution.