2014 Annual Conference

City officials from throughout Minnesota gathered in St. Cloud in June for the League's 2014 Annual Conference. Handouts and related resources from the sessions are posted below, as available and as permitted by the presenters.

View materials from these sessions types:
Concurrent Sessions 1
Concurrent Sessions 2
Concurrent Sessions 3
Concurrent Sessions 4

Concurrent Sessions 1

Spreading the Love in Your City
What makes a city lovable? Peter Kageyama will explore the emotional connections that we have with certain places—and the benefits that accrue to communities that can tap into that emotional wellspring. Find out how engaging in a relationship with your citizens can open up new possibilities in community, social, and economic development by including the most powerful of motivators—the human heart—in our toolkit of city-making.

No materials are available for this session.

Managing personnel Issues: The Elected Officials Role
Can the mayor suspend or fire a city employee? Can a councilmember review confidential personnel files? What can happen when you overstep your legal role? Learn five common employment mistakes made by city councils and how to avoid them. Explore the risks to the city and you personally—as well as the potential impacts on your city’s reputation—if things aren’t handled appropriately.

Things Really Can Get So Uncivilized
Local officials everywhere seem to agree that doing the public’s business is becoming ever more difficult, with personal behavior that ranges from rude to downright abusive. In the first of four sessions on the topic, learn about the findings of the League of Minnesota Cities/Minnesota City County Management Association Joint Task Force on Civility, including the causes, costs, and possible solutions surrounding incivility.

Growing Local Economies: How Minnesota Cities Can Work with Foreign Investors
Foreign companies have invested billions of dollars in Minnesota companies—investments which help grow local companies and create more jobs. Find out how your city can attract foreign investment, including what services and resources are available from the state, how to work with foreign counselors’ offices, and tips for developing a business plan. Finally, learn what to watch out for to protect your city’s interests.

Tax Increment Financing (TIF) Oversight
TIF is the primary financing tool used in community development and redevelopment projects across Minnesota. Hear from the new director of the Office of the State Auditor’s Tax Increment Financing Division about his vision and approach to TIF oversight, including plans for new training. Learn about notable issues—such as lease and sale proceeds, interfund loans, and the Six-Year Rule—that have garnered attention over the past year.

A How-To Guide for Funding Infrastructure Projects
Hear from Widseth Smith Nolting about funding sources—federal, state, and private—available for various types of projects, including streets, underground, public buildings, and more. Gain insights into factors that influence funders’ decisions, how to position your project to greatest advantage, and why it is usually easier to fund a large, all-encompassing project rather than trying to do it in phases.

No materials are available for this session.

Concurrent Sessions 2

What’s Next? Boomer Generation Housing
Learn about the Boomer generation and what they might want in terms of housing going forward. Hear from Ecumen about their partnership with the City of Apple Valley to develop Seasons Apple Valley—an independent, assisted memory care facility—and gain insight into these types of facilities that you can apply in your community.

Is Your City Ready for Gen Y?
Maybe you think you’ve heard it all about Gen Y, but Emerging Advantage co-owners Terese and Judy come at the issue differently. By understanding the path to adulthood being taken by most Gen Y’ers, your city can become an employer that harnesses this generation’s energy and their desire to contribute. Terese and Judy will give you the background information you need—but also spend some time talking about real-life tactics your city can use to make Gen Y’ers happy and productive employees.

City Officials: They Can Be Oh So Good and Oh So Bad
This second session in the civility track will explore the respective roles of mayors, councilmembers, and city staff. What legal authority does each have? What should they be doing? How can they support one another to become an effective city team? And what options are available when one is just being a trouble-making stinker?

Governing in the Information Age: Data Practices, Security, and New Media
Collecting and managing a growing volume of data can be challenging for cities—especially in the electronic age. Hear about effective and not-so-effective approaches for storing and accessing electronic data. Learn how getting a grip on data management can help your city be more efficient, increase responsiveness, and provide better service.

ICMA: Center for Management Strategies
Are you ready to really think and act differently? ICMA, the professional association of local government managers and administrators, has created the Center for Management Strategies to provide research, education, and technical support around how to implement leading-edge, tested-and-validated practices in key management strategies that can improve a local government’s efficiency and effectiveness. Learn how the center’s services might help your city meet the challenges of the 21st century.

Shaping the Future of Municipal Debt After the Financial Crisis
New federal regulations effective in 2014 directly impact who can advise cities on financial matters involving debt, including loans, bonds, and refundings. Ehlers’ senior financial advisor will share how these rules and changes to both Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s rating criteria will likely affect your city—including what your city should understand to explain your audits and forecast future financial performance to rating analysts.

Concurrent Sessions 3

LED Street Lights: Better Light, More Savings
Is your city in the dark about LED street lighting retrofits? Learn how the technology works, as well as the benefits to your city’s operational budget. Hear from a panel of city representatives about their experiences and lessons learned, and get tips for picking the right kind of light and selecting a lighting contractor for your project.

No Plan? Then No Destination!
Conducting an annual goal-setting retreat and developing a strategic plan is a great way to get the city team on the same page and moving together toward community success. But every city doesn’t have to do it the same. Compare and contrast the very different approaches used by two otherwise similar suburbs.

Personal Coping Skills in High Stress Times
Have you encountered rude, selfish, jealous, manipulative, or frustrating people in your city work? These kinds of behaviors can create situations of incivility that adversely affect the personal health and well-being of local elected officials and staff. Physiologists have pretty well documented what happens in our bodies and in our brains when we’re under stress, especially when we feel attacked. Fortunately, psychologists have come up with some pretty effective strategies for learning how to cope—and even thrive—in a high-stress environment. End your conference day learning how to enhance your interpersonal coping skills, model civilized behaviors, stay calm, and keep your emotions in check.

Achieving Safety and Mobility Through Sustainable Decision-Making
Implementation of roadway system improvements are often impeded due to lack of informed consent from the public, property owners, key stakeholders, partnering agencies, and regulatory agencies. In this session, participants will learn proven techniques to implementing needed public safety and mobility improvements such as roundabouts, road diets, channelization and access management, and alternatives to traditionally expensive transportation fixes.

Ukraine Leadership Exchanges
The last three years, additional visits with Ukraine officials and a large youth delegation visit to Minnesota have taken place. Learn about these exchanges and the creation of a new organization dedicated to community development and leadership engagement. Hear about future prospects for local government and local government leaders in Ukraine given recent events, and discuss what lessons we can learn about the roles and relationships of local, state and federal governments here in the United States.

No materials available for this presentation.

Concurrent Sessions 4

The Next Generation: Here They Come – Why the Same Old Ways Won’t Be Enough
For years, we’ve been talking about the next generation joining our city councils and staff. Well, they’re here, and (surprise!) they don’t necessarily see things the same way. Hamline University will be moderating a panel of city elected and appointed officials—all under age 40—who will talk about how their generation views city government, what they expect, how they want to be engaged, and even how to get them to vote for you.

No materials available for this presentation.

Health Care Reform: What’s Next?
Federal health care reform has already made some ripples, but the tidal wave of change is still to come. What will smart city leaders be doing to prepare for that next wave? This session will discuss some higher-level issues to think about, and highlight strategies to help you figure out what’s going to work best for your city and your employees into the future.

Resolving Issues to Move Projects Forward
Certain projects are sure to ignite strong passions among your citizens and can make life very uncomfortable. Learn from WSB & Associates how using collaborative decision-making processes can help prioritize resources and projects internally, and explore how to communicate about touchy community risks while keeping your stakeholder meetings productive. Discover a proven public engagement strategy that can help replace unproductive meetings with a common vision and commitment to move the community forward.

City Hall Safety: Preparing for the Unthinkable
You may think that it will never happen—not in your city. But workplace violence happens in cities both big and small all over the country. Find out what you should be doing now to protect your employees and citizens if confronted with a high-impact situation like an active shooter. Learn about the latest procedures and response options to keep your city hall safe.

Strategies for Meeting the New MS4 Stormwater Requirements
Does your city have a Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) permit? If so, you should know that Minnesota has a new MS4 General Permit, and your city will be facing new stormwater management challenges. Attend this session to learn how volume control, treatment accountability, pond effectiveness analyses, and good housekeeping requirements will impact how your city develops and operates. Learn how other Minnesota cities are responding to these new stormwater regulations.

A How-to Guide for Cleaning Up Problem Properties
Every city has its share of buildings or properties that—because of inadequate maintenance, dilapidation, physical damage, unsanitary condition, or abandonment— constitute a fire hazard or a hazard to public safety or health. Kennedy & Graven will share how to address these problem properties through legal action or condemnation and collect the city’s costs.