COMMENDATION
for Roseville City Staff & Leaders

Roseville is one of the best run and most livable communities in the entire metro area.  This is the result of the following remarkable achievements:

1.      Roseville became one of the first Twin Cities suburbs to develop a blueprint for industrial, commercial, and residential land use.  The City’s initial comprehensive plan was adopted in 1959 and this early planning has resulted in an industrial/commercial tax base that is the envy of virtually every other suburb in the area.

2.      Roseville’s early planning and foresight along with the amenities that businesses need such as improved and well-maintained roadways, storm drainage, and convenient access, has made it one of the leading retail centers in the upper Midwest and, according to a recent study, the destination of more local shoppers than any other retail area in the Twin Cities.

3.      Roseville has been able to keep its tax rate among the lowest in the metropolitan area.  Through conservative fiscal management, a balanced residential and commercial tax base, sound investments, and government and community partnerships, the City has been able to offer the people and businesses of Roseville a wide variety of amenities, while limiting taxes.

4.      Roseville adopted a policy of not increasing taxes above the rate of inflation in 1989.  This translates into City taxes accounting for only about 15% of a resident’s property tax

5.      Roseville, according to a recent Minnesota Citizens League report, ranked 84th (77th percentile) out of 108 metro area cities in residential property taxes.  In other words, 83 cities paid more than we did.

6.      Roseville has long been rated in the AA-1 credit category by Moody’s Investors Services, which places Roseville in the top 4 percent of all governmental units in North America.  Roseville is one of only ten cities in the entire state to achieve this ranking.  To achieve and maintain this rating, a city must demonstrate solid financial management and planning, a stable economic outlook, above average per capita income levels, a fast pay down of bonded debt, and substantial fund reserves.

7.      Roseville’s finance department has earned the Government Finance Officers Association Distinguished Budget Presentation Award (1 of 25 in the entire state) every year since 1997.

8.      Roseville, because of some very enlightened past leaders, has the reserves to weather the financial storms that have overtaken other cities in the area that are now struggling due to the absence of farsighted leadership in the past.  Our past leaders have not given into the temptation to squander the cities reserves for temporary political gain.  As a result, our citizens now have the advantage of retaining city services in a time of financial stress while actually seeing a tax reduction.

9.      Roseville City Councils, City Staff and citizens over the last 25 years have endorsed and encouraged a program of replacement funds (or sinking funds) to assure that city assets, once purchased or constructed, could be replaced or maintained without the necessity of additional tax levies.  These assets include fire trucks, snow removal equipment, maintenance vehicles, tools, existing buildings, and most importantly, the city's streets, sewers, and bridges.  Approximately 75% of the cities assets are protected by replacement funds - an achievement which Roseville citizens can be proud of.  That is why we don’t see assessments for street maintenance.  Past Councils made that promise to our citizens and it is the community's intention that promise be kept.

10. Roseville is among a handful of cities in the nation to have received accreditation for both its Police and Parks and Recreation Departments meaning that they have met national standards of practice and have demonstrated efficiency and effectiveness in delivering services.

11. Roseville’s fire department has been awarded a fire ISO (insurance services office) rating of "3" - a ranking equal to the highest in the State and achieved by only 6 other departments.  This means that the department is in accord with national standards for response time to fire alarms, in the amount and type of equipment it uses, and available water supply.  It also means that our fire insurance rates are low.

12. Roseville’s Fire Chief Rich Gasaway is thought so highly of amongst his professional peers that he was just appointed by President Bush to serve on an 11 member Medal of Valor Review Board.  According to a White House spokesman our chief was chosen for his dedication to fire service and commitment to Roseville.

13. Roseville’s Public Works Department pavement management program, which provides a systematic method of repaving and upgrading all City streets, is one of the first programs of its kind in the nation.

14. Roseville’s Community Development Department received a national award for innovation and collaboration as part of the I-35W Coalition with a cash award of $100,000.  They have also received national acclaim for brownfields redevelopment.  The aggressive economic development program brings in an average of about $60M in new development annually

15. Roseville citizens gave the city a 98% approval rating in a 1998 survey.

The above facts prove that the cities past practices have served its citizens very well.  We hereby express our congratulations and appreciation to the Roseville city staff and citizen leaders responsible for those practices.  We commend them for these remarkable achievements and the seemingly contradictory benefits of outstanding city services and low taxes.  We further ask that they be allowed to continue their excellent work.  We appreciate the outstanding services we have and the dedication of those who provide them for us in spite of the shabby way many of you, especially Neal Beets and Rich Gasaway have been treated by Mr. Kysylyczyn

The Roseville Citizens Council for Fair and Open Government

December 16, 2002