Is it a fair debate?
Elwyn Tinklenberg has stated on numerous occasion's that he does not lobby on the federal level.
Is it true?
Does the city of Albertville think Elwyn is a lobbyist?
ENGAGEMENT OF I-94 LOBBYIST
City Administrator Kruse addressed the Council asking what their wishes were after they had a chance to hear what Mr. Tinklenberg had to share with them. Does the Council wish to go ahead with hiring Mr. Tinklenberg as a Lobbyist to represent Albertville?
Mayor Peterson feels Albertville needs to go ahead with hiring a lobbyist. Council member Fay was in favor of hiring a lobbyist but has hopes of getting some funds in return. Council member Berning was not much in favor of hiring a lobbyist at this point. Council member Vetsch was new and was hesitant on hiring a lobbyist. Council member Klecker agreed with Peterson and Fay to go ahead with hiring a lobbyist.
Council understood the need to action now because Congress is back in session if the City wants to get any financial assistance from the federal and state levels.
City Administrator Kruse wanted to clarify with City Attorney Couri how would the City draft the contract between the City of Albertville and Mr. Tinklenberg. Some discussion ensued about how to structure an agreement.
MOTION BY Mayor Peterson, seconded by Council member Fay to have staff work with Mr. Tinklenberg to outline a work plan and an agreement for Tinklenberg to Lobby for I-94 funding and report back to the January 18, 2005 Council meeting. Mayor Peterson, Council members Fay, Klecker, and Vetsch voted aye. Council member Berning voted nay. Motion carried.
The motion made to confirm Tinklenberg's hiring as a federal lobbyist.
Item E. Move to pass Resolution Number 2006-XX entitled “A Resolution Requesting Federal Transportation Funding for Interstate 94 Access and Safety Improvements at CSAH 19 and CSAH 37 in the City of Albertville. Move to authorize the Mayor and City Clerk to sign a one year contract with the Tinklenberg Group to lobby for I-94 Federal Funding in the amount not to exceed $36,000 to be paid on a monthly basis, with funds expended to the I-94 Interstate Project account. Al Tinklenberg brought to the Council’s attention the fact that as you may know, Federal Transportation dollars are very limited and very competitive. It is difficult, in reviewing the MnDOT Report, in obtaining funding from the Feds. It may take several years to accumulate enough funds to begin construction. The majority of the $800,000 we have received will go towards acquisition of the right-of-way from Mr. Knechtl.
Mr. Tinklenberg informed the Council, that should he become elected for office, the contract for service would be terminated. Another representative would be available to continue lobbying for the City. As far as the Contract for Service goes, it would be on a month-to-month basis.
Mr. Tinklenberg also reported that the City of Albertville has determined that additional effort is warranted to secure federal support for the construction of traffic management alternatives along I-94 in the City. Work necessary to accomplish this goal has been identified in the 2005 consulting Services Proposal. The Consulting Service Agreement Amendment No. 1 maintains those tasks through the balance of 2006 with particular emphasis on tasks associated with project funding strategies and activities.
MOTION BY Mayor Peterson, seconded by Council member Klecker to approve Move to pass Resolution Number 2006-XX entitled “A Resolution requesting Federal
Transportation Funding for Interstate 94 Access and Safety Improvements at CSAH 19 and CSAH 37 in the City of Albertville. Mayor Peterson, Council members Klecker, Fay and Berning voted aye. Council member Vetsch voted nay. Motion carried.
MOTION BY Mayor Peterson, seconded by Council member Berning to approve Move to Authorize the Mayor and City Clerk to sign a one year contract with the Tinklenberg Group to lobby for I-94 Federal Funding in the amount not to exceed $36,000. Mayor Peterson, Council member Berning, Fay, and Klecker voted aye. Council member Vetsch voted nay. Motion carried.
After $840,000 has been dumped into Elwyn Tinklenberg's lobbying group from the city of Ramsey since 2003, it would appear to me (and to many others out there), that he is indeed a lobbyist.
Being a lobbyist is not a bad thing. I have friends that are registered to lobby at both the state and federal levels. They do important work.
Elwyn does important work. However, if he's not properly registered to do said work, and subsequently denies his lobby work, something is wrong. Somethings fishy about it.
Is it fair?
Why the strong denial on Tinklenberg's end? No response from his campaign at all!
Ultimately, the delegates and voters will decide if it's important.