Public Safety – Christian believes that with the right training, encouragement, support, and resources that our law enforcement officers can both enforce the law, and be among our greatest advocates for human rights at the same time that they are enforcing our laws. Sadly there are some communities for whom there are, with good reason, issues of trust related to law enforcement. Christian would like to see, and contribute to, growing relationships of reconciliation, accountability, trust, and health between all of our law enforcement officers and all of the communities present in our city. He would like to support our police and fire services in building the most physically, emotionally, spiritually, and intellectually healthy staff possible.
Development – Obvious development opportunities continue to exist along the 610 and 169 corridors. We have seen much growth and energy along those corridors already and we should expect that will continue due to the clear desirability of those locations. Christian would like to see the city invest the same energy in the redevelopment of our southern commercial and retail corridors, especially on the large parcels of empty land between the Brooklyn Center border and Zane Ave. This will obviously take a different kind of investment, and a different kind of energy but Christian feels it is vitally important to the future of our city.
Youth – Brooklyn Park has engaged youth through several successful programs and partnerships such as the Zanewood Community Center, Brooklyn Bridge Alliance for Youth, Brooklyn Avenues Youth Shelter. Needs remain. The Brooklyn Park City Council and City Administrators should continue to look for opportunities and partnerships with the schools, faith communities, and others to support our youth in their success.
Parents in Brooklyn Park, especially those in the Osseo School District are voicing concern and frustration their voices are unrepresented on their school board. The city government cannot fix this, but we can find ways to support parents in their goals of having representation on the board.
Affordable Housing – The root causes of the affordable housing shortage in Minnesota, and nationally, are complex. Low unemployment and strong stock market performance contribute to high demand. Rigorous building codes in Minnesota contribute to higher prices for new construction. Developers have little support or motivation to built affordable housing units. Many of these things are out of the control of a municipal government. However, municipalities do have choices to make. In Brooklyn Park one of the primary questions we need to ask is how will the Blue Line Extension and related development impact taxable property values and rents? Are there city policies to protect the housing we do have from growing even further out of reach of median income, or low income, individuals and families?
Parks – We have some great parks. We have some others that are full of potential. We have some that have yet to be imagined. Discussions have begun around the development of outdoor performance spaces, indoor aquatic facilities, nature areas, and new recreation facilities. Christian is supportive of the work that has been done so far, and believes that the community and the city should work together to determine needs, desires, solutions, and available resources for the development and redevelopment of these important amenities.
Good Government – Important work has been done in the past year related to addressing the conduct and effectiveness of the city council, commissions, and city staff. This work should continue. In Christian’s short time of formal engagement in city government he has overheard countless statements from a variety of constituents related to outright conflict and passive mistrust between various persons who serve on the council, commissions, boards, and in city departments. As a person trained to help build healthy and functional relationships, Christian would like to be a part of the restoration of good working relationships at all levels of the city government.