Ramsey County Commissioner, Tony Bennett, has been a leader in the effort to redistribute his county’s wealth to out of state Vikings franchise owner, Zygi Wilf. It turns out that not everyone in on board with Bennett’s behavior. In fact, even Bennett realizes this, since he admitted to the press that public funding for a Vikings stadium will not stand a chance if put to a vote.
Yet Bennett pushed on in his effort to forcibly extract money from Ramsey County residents for Zygi Wilf’s benefit. That is, until the state legislature said that they would not support forcible taxation, thus avoiding a Ramsey County Tea Party movement in the traditional sense.
Commissioner Bennett’s fiscal irresponsibility did not go unnoticed among Ramsey County residents, so not Bennett has some competition for his Seat. The person campaigning against him, Black Huffman, is making Bennett’s fiscal irresponsibility a major issue in his campaign:
Blake Huffman announces bid for Ramsey County Commissioner
Shoreview City Councilmember to Challenge Tony Bennett for District 1 Seat
Longtime Ramsey County resident and Shoreview City Councilmember Blake Huffman today announced his candidacy for the District 1 seat on the Ramsey County Board of Commissioners. Huffman will face Tony Bennett, a 15-year incumbent and sponsor of the Ramsey County sales tax increase to fund construction of a stadium for the Minnesota Vikings.
“My candidacy is based on belief that Ramsey County can govern smarter. Rather than spending time and tax dollars on a stadium, I’ll ensure we focus our efforts on doing the basics well. That means providing cost-effective transportation, public safety, park and recreation and human service programs and not raising taxes to subsidize corporations and highly paid professional athletes,” Huffman stated.
Huffman has a history of local government involvement as a member of the Shoreview City Council where the “govern smarter” philosophy has produced successful bipartisan collaboration. As a result, Shoreview has been nationally recognized as one of the top 10 cities in the country by Family Circle magazine and one of the top 100 places to live in America by Money magazine.
In contrast, the Bennett record is jam-packed with voting for double-digit salary increases and an arrogant approach to governing that denies public participation on key county issues.
“When Tony Bennett actually said, in response to a question about a referendum on his stadium tax, ‘we couldn’t let the people have a vote on the stadium because they would defeat it,’ it shockingly showed how out-of-touch he has become after 15 years on the county board,” stated Huffman.
“We need to govern smarter through collaboration. We need to govern smarter by being accountable. We need to govern smarter by prioritizing and understanding government can’t be all things to all people,” Huffman said.
With a broad background in business, finance and non-profit leadership, along with volunteer experience across a wide spectrum of issues, Huffman has the skills to make an immediate impact on the Ramsey County Board. He is a graduate of Mounds View High School and Bethel University and is employed as a senior strategist at a local bank.
Huffman is the Founder and Executive Director of the Shoreview Area Housing Initiative. SAHI rehabs foreclosed and vacant homes for families rebounding from destructive issues such as domestic violence. He is also a board member of Northwest Youth and Family Services, a non-profit focusing on youth development. In addition, Huffman has served as past board chair of the Lake Johanna Fire Department.
Huffman and his wife Joy have been married 26 years and have six children. The family attends Eagle Brook Church in Lino Lakes. More information can be found at www.blakehuffman.com.
I’d love to see Bennett lose his seat over his absurd efforts to extract $350,000,000 plus interest out of Ramsey County residents on Zygi Wilf’s business’ behalf.