by Grand Forks Herald
September 24, 2012 at 4:50 pm in Grand Forks Herald
Heated reaction to a raise received by a Grand Forks city employee this year will advance a review of city policy to next week’s City Council meeting for discussion. Continue Reading
Tags: city council, employees, Grand Forks, salaries, updates 26 Comments »
First they tax you, then they spend it.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 51 4
This should have been dealt with on the FIRST READING of the budget.
CANCEL the outrageous tax-funded pay raise to the mayor’s campaign manager; and INVESTIGATE the Mayor for illegal use of City resources.
Can’t be that hard.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 58 8
Some cities use an outside service to tweak job descriptions. I never knew why. It almost feels like two or three people can change job values through a buddy system. Maybe job descriptions are reviewed annually by a committee and dozens have been fine-tuned over the years. If not, this is a little odd.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 27 3
I failed to see any “heated reaction” evidenced in the article. Although in North Dakota, anything not passive-aggressive is often interpreted as “heated.”
Like or Dislike: 11 4
This story is yet another reason a free press – and the whistleblowers who feed it – is so essential to our survival. While the Harald may never win any awards for investigative journalism (behave Gene), if they had not published this story no one would have noticed.
I would remind everyone that the council’s concern did not take wing until AFTER the story broke.
All of the breast beating and calls for change are a little disingenuous considering the timing.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 19 2
“if they had not published this story no one would have noticed.”
Every once in a while even the Herald foregoes a restaurant review in favor of publishing and actual news story. But don’t blink, it doesn’t happen often.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 21 3
Not exactly true. Terry Bjerke on the City Council noticed.
He’s a good man.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 20 5
It’s pretty clear from the surprise they expressed, Gershman and others never bothered to even read the budget.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 30 1
“I know I caught them (the council) off guard,” said Mayor Mike Brown. “We just want to move forward.”
“We?’” Who else was involved ? I say start a recall against this arrogant jerk. He knew exactly what he was doing. Crony ism in City Hall should not be tolerated.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 31 1
Brown believes he’s the Pope.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 21 4
You start the recall procedure…I’ll help you collect signatures. I’ll even throw down some dinero to fund it.
I was NEVER enthusiastic about Brown. I said the election was a choice between “the frying pan and the fire”; meaning Brown and Grandstrand respectively.
I am beginning to re-consider which of them is the fire. I may have been mistaken. It may be that Brown will do MORE damage than Grandstrand would have. Of course, there’s no real way to know unless we turn back time.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 20 3
Spend spend spend. Don’t worry the people working at Walmart for $8 an hour will pay for it. Not enough people working at Walmart you say. Its okay we will build another so the
city can get paid.
City job 100k a year, city benefits, city pension. The city has over paid these dept heads and now the dept heads have the city by the balls. They have the threat Haga made of pay me more or I’m gone.
Time to stand up to these bullies that feel they are entitled to inflated salaries when the economy is horrible and people were/are taking pay cuts to keep their jobs.
To be honest no department head in the city of grand forks should make over 75k a year plain and simple the benefits they receive make up for the lower wages.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 28 3
Does anyone know the cost to the taxpayers of putting all the incompetent former VenuWorks employees on the city payroll?
Like or Dislike: 15 4
You might want to tone it down some if you’re going to use your real name….it’s one thing to anger the reporters, but who knows who that crew consists of?
Like or Dislike: 11 0
incompetent? really? do you even know the people that work there? They’re no differ then you and i, minus the negativity you seem to always have. You can thank Venuworks for putting that place in the gutter they are the incompetent ones.. look at their track record they were the reason Alerus went to h3ll… bet you in a few months if not in the new year Bemidji will realize how venuworks works.. as of now Alerus is in the positive and in the 6 digits. so get off ur “White Elephant” propaganda.
And you can thank the city for taking their payroll..
Like or Dislike: 5 10
Do you think your propaganda speak might be just a tad overblown? One successful quarter does not a revival make. Come back to me next year at this time with 6 figures in the black and I will gladly eat crow.
Remember: Cher had her largest North American audience here. That does not mean GF has suddenly become the new concert capital of the upper midwest.
The Alerus sits empty more often than not. Except for peak times throughout the year the Canad Inn is averaging 60% occupancy.
It is and always will be a white elephant unless something drastically changes.
Like or Dislike: 14 2
An successful quarter may ever have, and I doubt there will be one, would come from their penchant for calling taxpayer subsidies from restaurants and liquor sales as “revenue.” Looks like their next concert will be in February. Meanwhile, they compete with the private sector for catering, while those private sector companies pay into support them. Their former head honcho insulted critics of the place, suffered no consequences, and then had to resign for what was tantamount to embezzlement. That the VenuWorks people now receive a city paycheck is simply due to the fact Hal Gershman and others refuse to consider putting it on the auction block.
Like or Dislike: 11 3
A little creative booking can make anyone venture into the black. Putting off paying a few bills until the next quarter is the standard practice.
Like or Dislike: 1 0
Gene, I do not see any pricing advantage that the alerus center holds for catering and ballroom rentals over the “private sector”. In fact they are one of the highest priced in the industry for grand forks. They offer nice facilities that are very convinent for wedding receptions and buisness conferences and priced correctly. If you don’t believe me call them and than call other ballrooms in the city and you will see they fit in exactly where they should and are priced correctly!
Like or Dislike: 1 1
Ron, it has a huge advantage in that it is not required to be profitable. Also, it is a fabulous facility, excellent parking, a more than adequate kitchen, and full-time maintenance staff that far exceed what a private facility could afford to pay for through catering events. If the private sector tried to build the same facility the rates it would have to charge would be ten times what the Alerus charges. The advantage is that the Alerus operates in a taxpayer funded facility that the private sector could not even dream of building, Having a pricing advantage doesn’t necessarily mean cheaper; for example, if you can rent a Chevy Impala for $20 per day or a Mercedes for $20.50 per day, many people would choose the Mercedes. What the City has done is put Mercedes in a market were the private sector can only afford to rent Impalas; while Impalas are just fine and are more than adequate for the job, some people now have decided to rent the Mercedes. The same is true about the new Wellness Center; how many people are going to decide to leave private facilities so that they can have the newest and shiniest? There were plenty of private facilities that were adequate for weddings before the Alerus Center. Those businesses have now lost customers to the Alerus. Private business should not have to compete with a City. And, the only way the Alerus will ever see black ink is if the City continues to count tax subsidies as “revenue”.
Like or Dislike: 5 0
And yes the alerus will be full and in the black for february. It is clint freaking black! When you market the correct concerts for your market you will have success. The previous regime brought in and spent a fortune on washed up britney spears for a north dakota audience! I rest my case.
Like or Dislike: 1 2
What is the alerus centers primary function? A facility to host und football games! A publicly funded institution. It is also used as a convention hall. The ballrooms were added to add functionality to the expos and conferences. They are only marketing facilities that can be used by the public. The comunity benefits from all of it’s functions. Should we leave these rooms empty when a convention is not going on? Hell no! Fill it up with weddings and conferences. This is no different than the publicly funded minneapolis convention center or metrodome or target field. If you want to be considered a metropolitan area you have to have facilities other metroplitan areas have. As I have stated earlier it is a facility that was not promoted well in the past and is doing better under it’s new promoting group. The “private sector” is doing just fine, go ahead and try to book a reception hall anywhere in the city from june through october
Like or Dislike: 0 2
And no the alerus center is still mercedes prices!
Like or Dislike: 0 3
The man deserved a raise and was underpaid. Instead of letting a valued employee leave mayor brown paid him at market value. Something “private sector” buisnesses do on a regular basis.
Like or Dislike: 0 6
Clint Black?? I thought it was George Strait. And Haga gets no raise if policies are followed above board. This is a reward for being a campaign manager. Good old fashioned Chicago politics in Grand Forks.
Like or Dislike: 2 0
My mistake, your right even better george straight. Either way it will draw a huge crowd.
Like or Dislike: 0 1
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