Letter: Deputies Association Backs Callison for Commissioner

The chairwoman of the association praised the incumbent’s commitment to public safety.


Editor’s Note: The following letter to the editor was submitted to Patch. To submit a letter to the editor, e-mail your local Patch editor.


The Hennepin County Sheriff's Deputies Association's Political Action
is proud to unanimously endorse Hennepin County Commissioner Jan Callison for re-election.

Over the last four years we have communicated with Commissioner Callison
regarding the need to prioritize adequate public safety funding and to meet
long term goals. Her commitments to courthouse security and the new 911
Communications Center demonstrate that she listened to our concerns.

We have found our conversations to be meaningful and productive relative to
employee labor issues. We understand the financial constraints of the county, and she has been honest in our discussions and provided useful direction to help us work to find solutions to long standing issues.

We cannot thank her enough for her presence during annual Law Enforcement
Memorial events. As we remember our fallen and the sacrifices that have been
made, we appreciate her show of support.

We appreciate Commissioner Callison for the frank dialogue and her attention
to the public safety needs of Hennepin County.  She is open, honest, respectful, and thoughtful as she makes important policy decisions.  We want to let voters know that Jan Callison is upholding her commitment to them.

Sheri M. Bukkila, Chair

Hennepin County Sheriff's Deputies Association Political Action Committee

James Warden October 09, 2012 at 09:20 PM
I'm not saying taxes are too high or too low, but I would like to point out that property taxes aren't the entirety of a local government's revenue stream. Counties (and cities, for that matter) also get money from the federal government, state, usage fees and other sources. On page 202 of the same document Dave Lloyd cited, it lists per capita revenues and expenses for multiple revenue and expenditure streams. Some areas to note: - Intergovernmental revenues (ie. money from the state, federal and other governments) have fallen from $382 per person in 2002 to $341 in 2011. - The property tax levy has grown from $449 to $622 per person. - Expenditures have grown from $1,013 to $1,149 per person. I think that chart is more informative because a) it's adjusted for population and b) it includes more than a single source of revenue. Still, it doesn't answer the policy questions that are up to voters to decide: - Are the increases in expenditures excessive? - To what extent should the county use the property tax levy to fill in shortfalls from other funding sources? - What economies of scale should taxpayers demand as population grows? - What, if anything, is an appropriate inflationary increase? I'm curious how readers (and the candidates, of course) would answer those questions.
Dave Lloyd October 09, 2012 at 11:04 PM
General obligation debt has doubled from $329 per person to $662...from page 178-179. Captial projects $84 to $125. So, good to get a better overall cash inflow picture. Labor force has declined in numbers past 10 years-page 169. Population for the county is fairly flat over 9 years, page 168. And, we are being told we need a train for 60,000 new jobs coming regarding SW Ltr. Who will be doing that hiring by 2030? From page 168 income is up over 10 years in the county $49B to $63.3B. 29%. Yet, levy is up 38.5 % per person. I don't pay my property taxes per person. Expenditures have outpaced income growth, population growth is small, FED tells us there is about 1.7% inflation-means levy per person should be about $531 per person adjusted for inflation....why would there be any shortfalls of revenue?
ghoweey October 09, 2012 at 11:43 PM
For James Warden, I think you are missing the overall point. It is the PHILOSOPHY of Ms Callision! When I attended the forum at Mtka City Chambers. Callision was asked a question "If the budget had to be cut, what 3 areas would you address" Her answer was none. She said " we will cover it by another means". You know that Callison's remarks means TAXATION. I am a Sr Citizen who has known Jan for 20 yrs includimg that 43% tax hike while on the Mtka City Council. Dave Wahlstedt offered where he would cut. Suggest, you go on the Mtka Public channel to view. VOTE DAVE WAHLSTEDT and like his signs say, "he will cut taxes Seriously!"
James Warden October 10, 2012 at 02:40 AM
No, I got the point. I just saw a good opportunity to direct readers to some information that was multi-variable instead of single-variable. As Dave Lloyd showed in his second post, the numbers don't exonerate Callison's stance. In fact, I'd argue the data is actually policy neutral. But looking at multiple variables together allows us to better understand the trade-offs involved — and every policy has trade-offs. It all comes down to the policy decisions voters want: What are we willing to pay for? What are we not willing to pay for? Personally, one of my great frustrations with politics on both sides is the frequent portrayal of positions as either good and bad. The reality often comes down to a personal preference for one balance of options over another or a willingness to accept risk in one area instead of another. That's cool in my mind. We all have different priorities and vote accordingly.
Dave Lloyd October 10, 2012 at 12:03 PM
Good discussion. My second post really shows, though, a lack of balance. The property tax levy is pushed well beyond income and population growth and then debt fills in whatever outside funding doesn't. And outside funding from the feds is coming from $1 trillion plus deficits. Unstable. I'd say Hennepin County has been pedal to the metal on gathering cash levies and debt the past 10 years. Just my observation based on the the data James pointed it out. But, it also shows other posters like ghoweey have a sense of what's happening. Unfortunately, and maybe unwittingly, the public safety folks are used to boost spending in other areas. I personally support public safety. But, I ask, since I have Minnetonka police, MN Patrol, and Hennepin Deputies, how can I be sure I don't need a strong Navy too? Do I need less local and more national safety? These discussions should be on the table. I know the local people are trained for some serious circumstances. But, Hennepin County is spending for more than the Deputies. So, safety is a good tree to focus on, but don't let it cloud your view of the forest.


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