Robbinsdale Mayor’s Minutes: Bills for New Investment Money and Hubbard Ave. Construction
Robbinsdale Mayor Bill Blonigan recapped the final results of the city council election, before discussing plans for road construction in the city and some ideas to develop new investment money in this Robbinsdale Mayor’s Minutes.
City Council Elections
As a reminder, Mia Parisian and Aaron Wagner were elected to the Ward 3 and 4 council seats, respectively, in the November election. Council Member Tyler Kline’s resignation from the council after pleading guilty to drunken driving created a vacancy in the Ward 1 seat. Consequently, Robbinsdale held a special election February 14 to fill that vacancy. Former Robbinsdale Mayor Regan Murphy won over Raymond Blackledge. Murphy will fill the remainder of the term which ends Dec. 31, 2024.
Hubbard Avenue Construction
Soon the city embarks on a new street construction project. Residents should prepare for construction affecting Hubbard Ave. Some parts of cross streets, including Grimes Ave., France Ave., 36th Ave., and 38th Ave. will also be affected.
Eventually the streets will be heavily dug up and entirely reconstructed. Underground improvements include new water mains, storm sewers, and sanitary sewers. At street level, new curbs, gutters, and sidewalks will be installed.
“Significantly, we’re also going to have…a 10-foot-wide bike trail,” Blonigan said. “That’ll provide more safety, [and move] things away from West Broadway. And we’re also going to make Hubbard Ave. meander a little bit so the traffic slows down, and it’s more safe.”
Construction is anticipated to start in spring 2023.
Blonigan said he explored how investment monies operate and the reason why Robbinsdale doesn’t have better investment options. He’s continuing to pursue the issue. He went on to explain that cities that have a AAA bond rating or a population of at least 100,000 can invest up to 15 percent of certain kinds of reserves with the Minnesota State Board of Investment.
“They control $124 billion of assets, and their investment returns have kind of kicked the tail of investment returns of the [Treasury Bills] that we have to do,” Blonigan said.
Blonigan worked with Minnesota State Representative Mike Freiberg (DFL-43B), State Senator Ann Rest (DFL-43), and State Senator Bonnie Westlin (DFL-42) on bills in each house that would make it easier for cities like Robbinsdale to access those investments. The bills would allow cities with a AA+ and AA bond ratings to use those monies through the Minnesota State Board of Investment.
“We could get $300,000 per year more in returns with just those little bits of extra investment authority,” said Blonigan.
“Cities all over the state could get millions, hundreds of millions, of extra dollars if this can go through,” Blonigan added.
More to come on this on this issue as the bills move through the legislature.
Lastly, celebrate Easter at the annual Eggstravaganza on Saturday, Apr. 1 at 1 p.m. at Lakeview Terrace Park in Robbinsdale.
The Robbinsdale Chamber of Commerce sponsors the event and provides free prizes, treats, and fun. The event is open to children ages nine and under.
More from Robbinsdale: Apply Now for a Robbinsdale Community Garden Plot