To the editor,
I am writing this letter in response to the article written in the March 11 edition of the Laker Newspaper regarding the issue of a much needed water tower for the west side of Minnetrista, St. Bonifacius and more specifically, the Hunters Crest Neighborhood.
I am not a resident of the Hunter’s Crest Neighborhood but take great issue with the fact that at that time, rather than executing procedures to procure suitable property to construct a tower that has the capacity to protect our citizens homes and families, Our current mayor, Lisa Whalen, was involved in the decision to build a new Police Department structure similar to the size of Eden Prairie’s, without allowing taxpayers to vote on the structure in a referendum.
In the article, a question arose why a suitable property referred to as The Thurck Property wasn’t purchased by the city back in 2006, which the city council knew would take eight years to rezone, Mayor Lisa Whalen said that she was with the city then and explained what was going on at that time.
“The thought back in 2006 and 2007 was that pretty soon, we’re going to have this go through development and then we can take this property. Of course then the market crumbled and that never happened so the city said, we don’t need it yet, and so at some future point it will still happen. We need it now because there are more homes. That’s making it more necessary now.”
Articles taken from that period of time report what was really going on with our City Council at that time.
In March 2009, media reports showed Minnetrista was set to move ahead with its $7.3 million plan to build a new police and public work facility despite residents’ concerns. A group of residents opposing the construction organized a group called Save Minnetrista. The group wanted residents to vote on the project in a referendum and maintained that a recession wasn’t a good time to build.
In May of 2009 the media reported that the Minnetrista City Council gave final approval to the details of its $6.1 million police and public works building project during a May 11 meeting, in a 4-1 vote.
In January 2010, local media reported the Minnetrista Police Department moved into a new building a stone’s throw away from city hall, at 7651 County Road 110 W. The department left behind the 5,000 square feet it had worked in for the last 10 years and moved into 23,000 square feet of space designed to improve the department’s readiness and safety. The space was built to meet the needs of the department for the next 20 years.
I believe that many of our city’s residents have either forgotten about or are unaware of the great turmoil our city was in at that time. There was great opposition to the building of such a monstrosity of a Police Department when there were other more pertinent issues of our community at that time.
In conclusion ,I would like to urge residents to keep abreast of what’s happening up at city hall and remember that the future of our families truly is impacted by your vote at election time.