According to radio program, Sen. Jeff Hayden did not author SF 1214 appropriating $350,000 for a grant to the Minneapolis School District for CSI
The first rule in knowing a friend is being investigated is to keep your damn mouth shut. Unfortunately, some people get stars in their eyes and stupidity in their mouths.
According to the complaint filed by the Subcommittee on Ethical Conduct in regards to the filing on Sen. Jeff Hayden, item #1 says the following:
- On March 11,2013, Sen. Jeff Hayden authored SF 1214, a bill appropriating $350,000 for a grant to the Minneapolis School District for a community engagement and empowerment project with Community Standards Initiative (CSI) to reduce the achievement gap.
On Sunday, Sept. 28, a local radio station aired a program that featured special guest Teachers Federation union president Lynn Norgen. At the end of the program, the co-host, who is also the sister of embattled community activist Al Flowers made the following statements (Please play the video below posted by The Mpls Mirror on YouTube):
Say for a minute some community members believe Mr. Flowers authored and delivered to Senator Hayden a bill where he (Mr. Flowers) would be in direct benefit to receive financial compensation, this will surely destroy and compromises the legislative integrity of Senator Jeff Hayden, who at this point has not been found in violation of anything.
Mr. Flowers, and his guest and co-host might need to be compelled in testify on the meaning of this conversation broadcast live on federal airwaves.
So now the question becomes, who really authored SF 1214? A Minnesota senator or Mr. Flowers?
It didn’t take EF Hutton to speak so people listened. When Minnesota Department of Education Commissioner Brenda Cassellius spoke the people in the room listened. What can I say; people that do education right are cool. #dropthemic
By Don Allen, Founder – The Independent Business News Network
St. Paul, Minn. – On Saturday (9/27), the state Council on Black Minnesotans held a State Department Commissioners meeting that included Commissioner Kevin Lindsay-Minn. Department of Human Rights, Commissioner Mary Tingerthal-Minn. Housing and Finance Agency and a representative from the Department of Employment and Economic Development, affectionately know as DEED. The commissioners discussed plans to address disparities and outcomes within Minnesota’s African American and African Heritage communities. The meeting was lead by COBM board chairman the honorable Patwin Lawrence, a three-term elected board chair that has exceeded all expectations with his commitment to community with the assistance of the “clean up man,” COBM executive director Mr. Edward McDonald. Both men form what I consider the best team of community-to-state collaborators in Minnesota.
The elegant, stylish and always informative Minnesota Department of Education Commissioner Brenda Cassellius spoke candidly about Minnesota’s educational challenges with a firm statement, “We are moving forward.” Cassellius’ concern, guidance and wisdom are to be respected and commended. Her commitment to closing the achievement gap, making sure there are teachers of color in all schools and collaborating with local graduate schools of education place her at the top in the Dayton administration truly concerned about outcomes and futures.
When Jeff Johnson wins in November, I have made a personal request that he keeps Commissioner Cassellius because of her experience and professional motivation to bring Minnesota’s educational system back to the best in the United States. Cassellius is a true patriot.
The Council on Black Minnesotans has been one of the only “consistent African American agencies” in Minnesota, meaning they talk-the-talk and also walk-the-walk.
One of the questions to the commissioners was on the issue of homeless veterans. Minnesota Housing Finance Agency commissioner Mary Tingerthal said her agency is “committed to ending veterans homelessness in Minnesota.” Both commissioners Lindsay and Cassellius agreed.
The Council on Black Minnesotans has grown in the last couple of years. If you remember, there was a plan to “sunset” the agency. The work of McDonald and Lawrence has reset the agency making it an invaluable part Minnesota’s history and infrastructure. Any greenhorn politician wanting to disband any of the ethnic councils has no experience collaborating and problem-solving with community members.
Again, thank you Commissioner Brenda Cassellius. Your words are like notes in music; always pleasing to hear.
Statement from Doug Daggett – candidate Fifth Congressional District (MN) on Community Action Minneapolis and opponent Congressman Keith Ellison
Editors note: Congressman Keith Ellison is schedule to be the keynote speaker at Hamline University’s Commitment to Community (C2C) event on October 2 at 7:15 pm at Hamline United Methodist Church, Englewood Avenue in St. Paul. Is Congressman Ellison committed to the community?
By Doug Daggett – Candidate for Congress in Minnesota’s 5th Congressional District
Many Minneapolis residents are appalled after learning an audit of the non-profit Community Action of Minneapolis found corruption and misuse of hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars by leaders on luxurious trips to Palm Beach, spa treatments, bonuses, and even a personal car loan. (Star Tribune, September 22, 2014)
I am appalled not only that the Chief Executive of Community Action, Bill Davis, spent money meant for the needy on themselves, but also that no members of Community Action’s Board of Directors claimed to have been aware of this — or if they were, did not take action or bring it to the public’s attention.
My opponent, Representative Keith Ellison, should not think that his claim to have never actually attended a Board meeting, or his abrupt resignation from the Board just yesterday (only after the news became public), in any way exonerates him from the responsibility that taxpayer funds were used fraudulently.
Instead of working on behalf of low-income constituents in the Fifth Congressional District, Rep. Ellison continues to focus his attention elsewhere. I challenge him to divulge who he appointed to serve as “alternate” on the Community Action board, and if that person benefitted in any way with taxpayer dollars promised to serve the poor. This isn’t about party affiliation, it’s about responsibility and accountability. Minneapolis residents deserve answers immediately.
If elected officials of the Republican Party of Minnesota have allegedly done what members of the DFL have done, many would ask for their heads on a platter. Now, lets be fair and balanced.
We have a problem in the black community that many do not want to address. While I would like to see new black business owners, millionaires and leaders who actually can do the right thing, it seems in Minnesota we let people from other states come here and take the lead as we sit back in a subservient manor not willing to challenge the people who use our people like a cash crop. Many of our so called self-appointed leaders have sold out to a political party that has now you can see, takes our only power (our vote) for granted. In 2014, if you can vote and your a black person or other person of color, for this upcoming election, do not vote for anyone associated with the Minnesota Democratic Farm Labor party. I know this will create a challenge for you because I’m not telling you to vote for a Republican candidate either. Do your homework and use one of the only powers you have to change the course of history for you, your family and friends in Minnesota.
by Donald Allen, Founder - The Independent Business News Network
Minneapolis, Minn. – There is something to be said about organizations, politicians and community spokespersons who become ingrained in a process of using humans as a way to gain access for funding and dismissing the notion of helping their cash crop to become stable and acquire some type of standardized normalcy.
In the Twin Cities some are “told” what they are, where to go and who they can be. This is a sad documentary on defining humanity, culture and identity in 2014.
Residents of the Twin Cities, especially those residing in areas with large populations of blacks, Asians, Hispanics, Somali, whites and the poor have seen a down-tick in proactive engagement and services. In most cases the right process would lift service-dependent clients up from current norms into an abnormal hemisphere of self-sufficiency while stabilizing their foundations into a station of strength, solidarity and forward progress. For that to happen, poverty in the Twin Cities would need to have an expiration date – an elimination of life-disrupting incidents brought on by circumstance, environments and the political infrastructure.
The protagonist blocking the success of the lower one-third and middle-class in the Twin Cities are those who operated in the areas of non-profit organizations whose life’s-blood depends on the next grant; number of poor, homeless, unhealthy, unemployed, untrained, uneducated and of course poor children. I need to make it very clear; there is a need for these agencies, but not at the current levels. A consolidation of repeat programing could form a cohesive tracking of those in need to the next level of personal success versus the multi-facetted referral system, which in most cases has too many interconnected loopholes that leads to missing those who really need the assistance.
Designer Poverty in the Twin Cities is a multi-billion dollar business. The people who benefit, for the most part don’t live within the boarders of the Twin Cities. To stay in business, successful measurable outcomes must be limited; focus must be narrow and the usual suspects must develop a secret agenda absent of the mainstream.
The ideology of non-profit social service agencies have been replaced with a “bank-like” operation that in most cases only helps itself.
Sometimes you do not have to mention any names. It all comes out in the mix by asking the salient questions about an organizations makeup and the fact someone had no business dealing with education for black youth. There is but one question that needs to be asked: “What academic background and experience do you have to assist in closing the achievement gap?” Let the fur fly.
By Don Allen, Founder OurBlackNews.com
Minneapolis, Minn. – Minnesota republicans are playing a strategic role, meticulous and brilliantly carried out. They want answers and so does the black community. This is a tipping point in the gubernatorial race as Minnesotans from all cultures are concerned about the interactions between Gov. Mark Dayton and a few black community members set to present a budget of $10 million for some kind of cockamamie GED scheme. Minnesota’s black community leadership organizations have not called a press conference in support of DFL Sen. Jeff Hayden being the target of a senate ethics inquiry. There are two complaints in question in response to the recent alleged incident of bullying and playing favors for family and friends. The “throwing under the bus” by black freelancers (leadership) has never been so eloquent.
It goes like this per Fox News:
- That Sen. Hayden used his influence as a state senator to push the Minneapolis School Board into approving a $375,000 no-bid contract to the Community Standards Initiative, “an organization that financially benefited his friends and family members.”
- That Sen. Hayden participated in the misuse of state grant money as a board member of Community Action of Minneapolis. A state audit found Community Action of Minneapolis spent more than $871,000 in grants on lavish trips, golf outings and a personal car loan for CEO Bill Davis. Hayden resigned from the board, but it was actually his wife, Terri, who served in his place. In a statement Tuesday, Hayden said he “was not aware of any of the questionable spending detailed in the audit.” He also added, “neither Terri or I accepted compensation for any cruises, spas, vacations to the Bahamas, or any other inappropriate, non-board activities.” He did say he and his wife attended the organization’s retreat at Arrowwood Resort in Alexandria, but he contends he paid his own way.
Anyone in the community that had dealing with the organizations involved, specifically CSI, knows that something terrible was going on for Sup. Johnson to even looks that direction and consider putting money for what we can call today a “failed attempt” to close the Achievement Gap.
It is this blogs perspective that senate republicans only need to call three people, not including Senator Jeff Hayden to find out what really happened and why approving a $375,000 no-bid contract to the Community Standards Initiative was an alleged bad “forced” idea. Soon the community will find out the organization that financially benefited and friends and family members who played the system while our black youth continue to fail in the Minneapolis Public Schools.
UPDATE (Sept. 22 0426): Star Tribune accurately reports on wasteful nonprofit spending and political bullying by state senators
UPDATE: Senator Bobby Joe Champion must answer how he pushed through the state legislature $50,000 for the Minn. Department of Human Rights for an “event planner” without having formal hearings.
Don Allen and Ron Edwards are waiting (with popcorn) for the “race card” to be played at any point now. Can’t wait to read the StairStep Foundation investigation. There is something to be said when black people trained in 2005 are the same black people unemployed in 2014. #waste
By Don Allen, Founder – OurBlackNews.com
Minneapolis, Minn. – Since 2005, the team of Ronald A. Edwards (historian and the most quoted African American in the Star Tribune), and award winning journalist Donald Allen (OurBlackNews.com, USA Radical Black and Black Politics in Minneapolis) have reporting about the wasteful spending and mismanaged politically driven funds to nonprofits across the Twin Cities, especially in north Minneapolis. We were called, “Hackle and Jackal,” told by a north Minneapolis nonprofit leader we both needed to take our medication; and a former police officer turned Facebook activist said in a post, “Don hates black men and loves to bash them.” Of course this is untrue but the fact of the matter is none of these people will answer questions about money mismanagement, lack of process and how someone can do outreach with no platform and spend money with people that cannot read or write and call it successful.
The story in the Star Tribune is something I’ve been reporting on since 2005. Maybe not specifically about Minneapolis Community Action – but always asking the question on how MCA could sponsor a sports program on KMOJ-FM and leaders of nonprofit use taxpayer money to pay for a celebrity cruise and trips to Palm Beach and the Bahamas, according to a recently completed state audit as reported by the Star Tribune. We need to check on the StarStep Foundation and their recent grant from the fledgling MNSure. What happened to that money? Why are 18 out of 20 African Americans IBNN has talked to not signed up?
For Minneapolis Community Action to never be on a “real” mission for people in poverty can be seen in current levels of poverty in the Twin Cities today. The same people that were in poverty in 2005 are more than likely (increased), the same 2014. It is shameful to say, this is part of a local political plantation that squashes new leadership, keeps people poor and most importantly takes for granted the votes from this caste of people. Do I need to say their name? It ain’t the Republicans.
The second item that needs to be address shows what happens when someone without a college degree and a lawyer join forces to write a public response (should have called me), (LOL!).
The guilt ridden story, “Contrary to report, Minneapolis school officials weren’t bullied to back program,” in the Star Tribune, authored by Senators Jeff Hayden and Bobby Joe Champion are bad examples of when something goes wrong, “ass-covering” is the name of the game. I believe the Minneapolis Public School district; I believe that state senators went in on a mission of intimidation and bullying. A long-standing political activist wrote:
“I believe that Champion definitely bullied officials. What you may not know is Champion has a history of bullying people by either going directly after their jobs or trying to block what they want to get through the legislature. You should talk to some of his colleagues up at the Capitol; they will give you an ear full about Champion. In addition, you may feel that the first article about the MPLS School Board considering denying funds to CSI, was an attack on your Al Flowers, and it might be. However, I’m concerned with the lack of process when it came to granting CSI the funds in the first place. I will say it again: one, there should have been an open bid process; and two, the representatives of CSI do NOT have the expertise needed to close the achievement gap: let’s be real here. I hold the MPLS Public Schools accountable as they are the one’s who initiated the funds/contract in the first place. This current school board is a joke. Come on. Let’s get real. As a resident of north Minneapolis and a taxpayer this needs to STOP! The poverty pimping of this community (north Minneapolis) needs to STOP! And you of all people some of us know that poverty pimping is going on over here. Let’s wake up here folks and face the truth!”
There should be an investigation by the County Attorney to see if the senators did try and use coercion to get what you wanted. If they find evidence that they did, a Grand Jury should be impaneled to present evidence.
It looks like after ten-years people are starting to wake up about what’s really happening in our community. There is a movement working to move-out this old guard of money-hungry poverty pimps, politicians and clergy to be replaced by an effective “team” of black men and women who will regain the trust of the mainstream black community once again.
Remember, this is not about “bashing” black men and women who get caught with their hands too deep in the cookie jar. This is about accountability. Anyone who misdirects this fact is one of those involved in receiving gains from keeping black people in poverty. Remember, the poor minority community in the Twin Cities is a cash crop for a handful of nonprofit poverty pimps who for the most part don’t live within five-miles of north Minneapolis who take up residence in Woodbury, Edina, Minnetonka, Bloomington, Eagan, Apple Valley and Rosemount.
In a city full of spins, lies, sex and video tape the chief’s statement is nothing but smoke without the mirrors.
In a statement released to KSTP-TV, Minneapolis Police Chief Janee Harteau said, “The Minneapolis Police Department received creditable information from a long-standing community leader there were threats made against her and Minneapolis Police officers.” This was the reason Chief Harteau did not show up Thursday night at Sabathani Community Center in south Minneapolis for a candid town hall discussion.
Of course you guessed correct, “It’s all bullshit.” It’s obvious that Chief Harteau and some of her officers forgot they have the weapons and the power to control any situation in a crowd no bigger than 150 people who attended Thursday’s event. I’m sure the police chief’s thinking was along the lines of Joseph Conrad’s “Heart of Darkness” and she not wanting to be in a room full of “savages.”
Who is this, “long-standing community leader?” Why didn’t this person(s) stand next to the chief in support of her decision to cancel the appearance? Minneapolis Police Chief Janee Harteau is receiving bad intelligence form some asshat that wants to make a name; or get some money for some Poverty-Pimpin’ program.
One hundred and thirty-two years later, there is still no public monument for Charles Thurber, a Black man lynched in Grand Forks, North Dakota
By Johnny Northside – Guest Columnist – IBNN NEWS
On October 24, 1882, a Black man named Charles Thurber was hauled out of the jail in Grand Forks, North Dakota, and lynched by a mob. It was a brutal and messy affair, even by the standards of a lynch mob. Two competing groups both tried to put a rope on Thurber’s neck at the same time while he was being dragged through the streets, and he was probably already dead by the time his body dangled from a railroad bridge on the border between North Dakota and Minnesota. By a few feet, Thurber’s body was on the Minnesota side of the river, which I say makes it our business to say something.
Thurber was accused of raping the wife of a prominent railroad employee and a “Norwegian serving girl.” At least one source says the servant girl recanted her story, throwing a lot of doubt upon whether Thurber did anything to those women or was simply a Black man in the wrong place at the wrong time. In any case, Thurber was executed by a lawless mob without the benefit of a trial during an era when such racially-motivated lynchings happened all over the nation.
Why bring this up now? Well, let me tell you…
From early 2000 until 2005, I resided in Grand Forks, North Dakota where I was even a member of the city council for a brief time. As both a public official and then, later, a columnist for the local student paper, I kept trying to bring up the matter of Charles Thurber and point out no monument existed to mark the site of this grave historic injustice. Indeed, even the old railroad bridge was torn down and scrapped without ceremony around that same period of time.
In stark contrast, the city of Duluth, Minnesota erected a beautiful and prominent monument to commemorate the deaths of three African American circus workers who were killed after being falsely accused of raping a White woman. But Grand Forks has not remedied this dark, unjust chapter in its history. And there’s a good reason for such lack of introspection, besides the usual ugly and unsettling aspects of a racially-motivated mob murder.
A long trail of historic documentation can’t help but be embarrassing to the Grand Forks Herald, which is still the most prominent media entity in that part of the world. Let me draw your attention to this little bit of doggrel poetry which appeared in that publication in 1882 as part of a story on the front page. This was beneath a headline containing a racial expletive directed at Charles Thurber.
Brace yourself to be profoundly shocked and offended.
Quiet and Peace Entirely Restored
and with an Investigation no One will be Bored
Public Opinion Carefully Sifted
and Every One Rejoices that the Negro was lifted
No Investigation Required
and None Need Fear for Themselves in the Trouble being mired
Thurber, the Negro Rapest (sic) Fell off the Bridge and was Hurt
while Mr. Thomas COVERED HIM UP WITH RED RIVER DIRT.
It wouldn’t be an overstatement to say almost the entire town was implicated in the death, one way or another. The Grand Forks Herald said so in 1882.
Here are the exact words:
Mr O.M. Thomas drove the body, incased [sic] in a plain coffin, to the cemetery. No mourners or even spectators followed. It was decided that no inquest would be held. No one demanded it and nobody wanted it. Directly or indirectly, almost the entire town was implicated. There being not the slightest pretension to secrecy, no investigation as to the means of this death was necessary. It is understood the he fell of (sic) the bridge and was hurt.
Yesterday public comment over the lynching of Thurber completely subsided, and while it was the universal theme of conversation, yet it was mainly good humored comment and recitals of the amusing episodes omitted from the reports.
When I lived in Grand Forks, each October I would try to raise the profile of the issue of Charles Thurber’s murder by mob violence and the need for a fitting historical marker. I was not alone in my opinion. The vast majority of college students at the University of North Dakota, when enlightened about this issue, were inclined to quickly agree a monument for Charles Thurber would be a good thing. Of course, resounding silence was always the response by the local powers-that-be.
When I left Grand Forks in 2005 to live near my little son in the Twin Cities (my son was little back then) and I ultimately ended up in North Minneapolis, this was one of the Grand Forks issues I cared about but was forced to leave behind me, unresolved. One thing I did manage to achieve for this issue, even after leaving Grand Forks, was to start a Wikipedia page for Charles Thurber. But sadly I have left this issue untouched since about 2005 and, so far as I can determine, I was the leader on that bandwagon.
Something reminded me today. I’m not sure what, exactly. Maybe the way an autumn leaf falls a certain way and when I lived in Grand Forks and that used to trigger something in my mind:
October is approaching again. It is time to raise the issue of Charles Thurber.
With “ceasefire breaking out all over” in the NoMi Blog Wars, the issue of Charles Thurber seems like “common ground” I can share with Don Allen of IBNN.
Even people who may not always agree about how to achieve racial justice and equality in this great nation of ours can look at something that happened 132 years ago and say, in unison, “Oh, my word, that was a terrible thing and why isn’t there some kind of monument to mark the spot?”
Two voices can speak more loudly than one. And if two voices speak loudly, maybe more voices begin to speak. Maybe we begin to speak together about all those areas of common ground. (Underpaid AmeriCorps tutors, cough cough)
It is time to speak. It is time to speak about what happened to Charles Thurber 132 years ago and why there is no memorial to acknowledge a grave historical injustice.
Tune in Wednesday night for the award winning program, The Ron and Don Show on #BlogTalkRadio. Our special guest is none other than Hennepin County Sheriff Rich Stanek. To listen to the program or visit the show page, click here or copy and paste the following link: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/theronanddonshow/2014/09/18/hennepin-county-rich-stanek-on-the-ron-and-don-show-wednesday-830-pm
The City Pages wrote, “If Rich Stanek wins a third term as Hennepin County Sheriff, he’ll do so without the support of his deputies. In July, the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Deputies Association announced it’s overwhelmingly supporting the candidacy of Minneapolis Police Assistant Chief Eddie Frizell, who is running to take Stanek’s job.”
Join the team of Ronald A. Edwards and Don Allen as our special guest is Hennepin County Sheriff Rich Stanek. In an unscientific poll conducted by the Independent Business News Network in August 2014 showed Sheriff Stanek leading Frizell in double-digits. We start the show with Sheriff Stanek who is happy to tell us about what it takes to be a leader in Hennepin County.
- We also cover the Community Standards Initiative (CSI) and hope someone in that organization can find a phone number, report or mission to let us know what really happened between the school board, Director Rebecca Gagnon, Al Flowers and Clarence Hightower. Sources tell IBNN NEWS that CSI was expecting a check on this past Monday for $49,000.00 – but did not get it. (Watch R.T. Rybak closely.)
- Also in the room will be the absurd discussion about a handful of community “freelancers” putting together a budget of $10 million dollars (mostly salaries) to present to the governor for more community pimping. The two African American state senators put the STOP on that!