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  Thursday January 29th, 2015    

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Who is he working for? (10/31/2012)
From: Thomas Jaszewski

Once Borzyskowski has met a ward resident, rest assured George will remember your name. He seems to like being on the city council. George tells us he gets things done. Got a tree you don’t like or needs trimming and are you a business person living in his ward? The city will get it done. A tree 10 feet away with the dead branch hanging over the sidewalk? Another day. Poor tree practices and hazards on the lake walk don’t count either. Nor does implementing procedures adopted by the council. But we did get a sign to discourage left turns from Mankato onto Tenth Street after a train. It’s just too small for most to see.

George demonstrated his commitment to business as usual when I contacted him about the poor management of city employee resources. He and Keith Nelson assured me the poor practice was being addressed. Sixteen months later, it still takes three employees to haul brush to the recycling center in an underloaded dump truck. You know, one of those trucks where you pull the handle and it dumps. Tree removal is subbed out while employees get windshield time. Winona needs business leaders and forward-thinking representation to hold city department heads to the same standards you and I must meet in our jobs.

Mr. Borzyskowski told us in the first mayoral forum he’d first look at staffing if he needed to find money in the city budget. I found that odd, especially after seeing his campaign signs in city employee yards. So, I called AFSCME, the city workers union, state office. I asked if they realized that George had them in his sights for any budget reduction. They responded, “Mr. Borzyskowski has been a longstanding union member…he is pro labor” and they wouldn’t expect any such move. A council person protecting department heads does the unions a disservice by not providing them the tools and training to promote accountability and better services.

Is this leadership style worth the thousands of dollars that will be spent on a special election? If George should win, he saddles Winona with the special election out-of-cycle and at significant expense. Time to put out the the old and bring in the new, new with a clearer understanding of their role as elected city officials. New with the skills needed to take responsibility and lead the council forward. Enough “circling the wagons” as an approach to better government. The mayor has a job to do, he works for the voters. Not city staffers. 


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