Fresh Perspective for Our Neighborhoods
I am a small business owner and I’ve lived in Bloomington for 18 years. My wife, daughters, and I made our home here because of the schools, parks, and people. I am running for City Council to ensure the city has the same focus and passion for our neighborhoods as it does for its world class hospitality and shopping districts. I will work hard to build a community where we can eat, shop, and play in or near our neighborhoods.
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I believe Government can and should do good for people – residents, businesses, employees, and visitors. Local government plays an important role in managing basic civic services, ensuring opportunities for all, protecting our shared resources and environment, and expanding our economy.
NELSON FOR SENIORS
Meeting the housing, transportation, and recreation needs and desires of seniors in our community is a priority for me. I will work to enhance our city so that seniors can eat, shop, and play in our neighborhoods - gather with family and friends, stay active indoors and outdoors, have safe housing that is affordable, and participate in art and recreation programs.
HOUSING – Support those seniors that want to stay in their home with modest safety improvements that reduce fall, trip, and other hazards. Help provide senior housing options. Consider property tax freeze and deferment programs to assist those on fixed incomes.
TRANSPORTATION – Ensure transportation services that allow seniors to get to medical appointments, go shopping, and connect with friends.
RECREATION – Maintain and improve the programs and services currently offered at Creekside without interruption. Consider how to expand options for seniors in our local parks - community gardens, stretching and exercise stops, and multigenerational programs that connect seniors and kids.
Bloomington is wonderful because of the people. Many residents I know and have met during the campaign have lived in Bloomington for 40, 50, or more years - and they want to stay here in Bloomington. Meeting their needs will be a priority for me on the City Council.
NELSON FOR FAMILIES
I will work to enhance our community to ensure that it continues to be a wonderful place to live and raise a family. We can have a community where we can eat, shop, and play in our neighborhoods.
EAT, SHOP, PLAY – Attract local restaurants and welcome innovative businesses to our neighborhoods. Protect and enhance our park spaces. Support our community youth sports organizations. We can have a thriving, dynamic community.
COMMUNITY – Enhance our park and recreation areas to provide compelling options for young children, teens, and adults. Consider splash pads, parkour, exercise and stretching stops, skateboarding, wifi enabled shelters, and after school activities in addition to fields, courts, rinks, and playgrounds. Include more kids in the planning process for our community. We can provide positive, safe places for our kids to hang out, have fun, and be active.
SCHOOLS – I strongly encourage you to support the school funding referendum on the ballot to maintain that source of vital funding. Strong schools are critical to a strong community. All City Councilmembers, and senior staff, should be a mentor to a high school student. Provide internship opportunities and get students engaged in public works, parks and recs, building inspections, police and fire, and other city services. Connect the business community, city, and schools to provide college and career paths for students.We can value and help students looking to go to college and those seeking career opportunities.
I will bring a fresh perspective to our community and focus on enhancing our neighborhoods.
The city needs to have the same level of focus and passion for our existing, and aging, neighborhoods as it does for our world class hospitality and shopping districts.
Bloomington should be at the top of everyone's list of places to live. We need to attract great local restaurants and shops into our neighborhoods, support our schools, and provide community amenities our residents desire and will use.
STRONG BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT
We need to ensure that our regulatory efforts support and promote our businesses, not overburden them, while meeting our shared goals. I have over twenty years of education and experience in leading the business community, locally and nationally. I own two small businesses.
We must celebrate our diversity - religion, ethnicity, race, nationality, gender, orientation, identity, culture, ability, and opinions and ideas - and build a community that unites us based on our common humanity.
The City Council is responsible for being wise stewards of the people’s money. The first priority is to effectively manage the basic services of the city, including roads, parks, water and sewer, safety services, and others. The second priority is to ensure that investments into capital improvements for infrastructure, facilities, recreation areas, and other community assets are financially responsibility in the long term and has strong community backing.
Housing policy has to be a priority for Bloomington. We need a mix of housing options for our community. We need to plan for our boomers transitioning to smaller houses, continue to attract families, and make it possible to provide workforce housing.
The City needs to be a strong partner of our public and private schools at all levels. I believe we can help connect schools, businesses, and government to provide real world educational opportunities. I also believe that we need to encourage and celebrate different paths, including college, career, vocational training, trade school and on the job training, military service, and religious study. Worker training and retraining is also important in a dynamic economy.
Green space should be available for the use and enjoyment of residents and visitors. This should include a mix of well maintained open space, picnic areas, trails, shelters, and sports and recreation facilities. We may also consider community gardens, exercise stops, pollinator habitat where appropriate, sledding, snowshoeing, and other creative uses. Green space should serve to bring neighbors together on a regular basis.
We need to ensure our police, fire fighters, and first responders continue to have the training, support, and resources to be safe while keeping our community safe.
We enjoy high quality drinking water, great parks, clean air, and access to lakes and rivers. We need to protect these resources with cost effective sustainable management of our resources, view energy and water efficiency as competitive advantages, and reduce our long-term impact and costs.
Bloomington is fortunate to be bordered and crossed by three major highways. However, the levels of congestion on the highways and internal roads raises concerns about safety and quality of life.
HYLAND GREENS GOLF COURSE
I believe the City of Bloomington should maintain Hyland Greens Golf course and convert the vacant portion of the property next to Normandale into green space that is available for the use and enjoyment of the neighborhood and community.
I want our Parks, Arts, and Recreation Commission to develop a plan for the vacant space. I would be open to considering a portion of this space for a building that provides a community service – dome, covered picnic areas, community solar, community garden, etc – that has the support of a broad range of residents. However, I would want to ensure that concerns about a destination that increases traffic in the area could be adequately addressed.
I disagree with the current Council’s decision to move forward with an RFP without having first exhausted all options to repurpose the space as a community asset that can be enjoyed by the neighborhood and community.
If the costs and options to repurpose the vacant land as community space are impractical only then would I consider residential development at this location.
MN RIVER TRAILS
I love the trails along the MN River. I go there to walk my dog. I think we are fortunate to have a variety of trails locally – more rugged single paths, wider natural trails, and paved sections. This variety allows access for the widest range of people, from those with limited mobility to those looking for more strenuous experiences. I will protect a range of options for people in our community, including protecting the natural trail between the Bloomington Ferry Bridge to the Old Cedar Ave. Bridge.
Shawn Nelson has demonstrated his support for a strong housing market, which ties together the communities of our great state. He is a proven leader in the community who shares our goal of building safe, smart, and durable homes, at a price that families can afford.
Endorsed by the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors
Endorsed by OutFront MN
Business Education at Valparaiso University and MBA at St. Thomas
Small business owner - New Spaces and Blue Sky Skylights
Director and Board member of several local and national organizations
Daughters attend Olson Middle School and Jefferson High School
Helped write two green building programs - MN GreenStar and National Green Remodeling Guidelines
Leader in the housing industry. Worked with industry, agencies, legislature, and city to ensure safe, efficient housing that families can afford.
Volunteer at school events, Feed My Starving Children, Loaves and Fishes, youth programs at church, Bloomington Fastpitch Association, and Olson Middle School Volleyball.