On 3-1-07 the Anoka Union reported City Manager Tim Cruikshank saying, "I'm getting the message we're not going to have any consultants anymore without the council's approval."
On 3-19-04 the Anoka Union had reported turmoil over another unauthorized survey expenditure. No pre-approval.
The earlier issue involved an unbudgeted, unauthorized expenditure of $8,000.
The bogus "Mayor's Task Force on Housing" was ready to spend this money without council pre-approval.
That's a problem for our form of government. No due process. No public oversight. But it really helps with those tightly managed, politically crafted outcomes. If you can get away with it. It really keeps any democratic scrutiny to a minimum.
In fact, this same article reported Councilmember Dori Schumacher, who was on the Task Force with Skogquist, saying: "The Task Force is well on its way toward submitting its recommendations to the council."
That's a problem for our form of government. Charter member Zilla Way once stated, "The Charter forbids council members from serving on any advisory boards or commissions." (Early 2007 Union). So self-advising is not advisable and even unlawful. "The Mayor's Task Force on Housing" was unlawful. It concentrates political power to the few, rather than the whole council.
If you break the rules early and often. . . eventually anything goes.
The keeper of the charter, City Manager Tim Cruikshank, assists the dysfunction with his stated policy: "The mayor can do whatever he wants."
Pierce/Skogquist/Schumacher actually voted for the survey and then went against the survey's findings.
The survey found 80% of Anokans thought rental licensing was desirable. The triplet ticket on the council disregarded citizens and supported outsider special interests, referred to as predatory landlords by the Tribune. (Pierce buddy/Skogquist supporter Mr.Fischer of Main & Ferry got his railings ASAP as well. . .Wonder what's on his wish list this time if his boys Aaron Barr and Erik Skogquist are installed).
Now, Bjorn Skogquist-campaigning-for-commissioner decries that sort of thing. He says we should listen to the citizens, not special interest lobbyists.
It's more likely he will do what he has already done, only it would involve even bigger issues and more money.
Anoka County, be afraid, be very afraid.