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Statement on Budget

Aug 19, 2017

Today, Mayor Coleman outlined his final budget for the City of Saint Paul, including a property tax levy increase that will have a significant impact on families across Saint Paul.

As seniors on fixed incomes, my Mom and Dad moved out of our childhood home due to rising property taxes. Yet my parents also recognized the need to provide high quality services such as libraries, parks, and public safety. In fact, my parents were among the strongest advocates for the Saint Paul Public Library I have ever seen.

We cannot allow other families to be driven from our community. While Mayor Coleman was limited in his options and he faced difficult choices due to a required shift in financing, these types of increases are unsustainable. The right of way shift is one piece of a complicated puzzle and with the uncertainty of state and federal funding, there will be more challenges ahead.

The future cannot solely rely on the tax levy. We need to grow the tax base through strategic economic development and we need to fundamentally address how to make our City more efficient while keeping Saint Paul a great place to live and work.

Now more than ever, our Mayor needs to have the financial skills and experience in economic development that will keep our City affordable for all.

I have nearly 18 years of public finance experience in the private sector. My entire career has been about providing solutions for cities, counties, and schools across Minnesota and the nation. I am an active member of numerous professional financial organizations and I work hand-in-hand each day to improve cities.

As a City Council Member, I successfully worked to preserve and expand key city services during one of the worst financial times in U.S. history. I did it through innovation, financial leadership, and the sheer drive to keep Saint Paul moving forward. In these times and throughout my life, I have been a tireless community leader, recognizing the importance of services for ALL.

Saint Paul has an opportunity to elect a Mayor with deep financial skills, an exceptional community background, and a record of getting things done. It is what we need to move Saint Paul forward.