Candidate Questionnaire — Ward 5 — Amy Brendmoen
Ward 5 contains the neighborhoods of Como, North End, Payne-Phalen and Railroad Island. It is currently represented by Councilmember and City Council President Amy Brendmoen. There are four candidates running: Councilmember Amy Brendmoen, Bob Blake, Jamie Hendricks, and Suyapa Miranda. We have received responses from Amy Brendmoen and Suyapa Miranda.
1. How do you plan to increase housing affordability in St. Paul?
Housing is and always has been a top priority for me. In 2017 I established the Fair Housing Task Force, which proposed the Fair Housing Action Plan in 2018. I worked with Mayor Carter to secure $71 million dollars over the next three years to fund this plan, which includes more construction jobs, expanded affordability levels, a tenants bill of rights, establishment of a housing manager for the city, and requests for zoning changes to allow more density. Housing affordability continues to be one of my top priorities, and I’m always willing to hear ideas from community members and organizations for ways to reach our shared goals.
2. What do you see as the main cause for the shortage of affordable housing in St. Paul?
There are lots of contributing factors, but leading the pack I’d say the economy is strong, folks are moving back into urban areas and the demand for housing exceeds the supply.
3. How can the city eliminate homelessness?
Homelessness is a serious regional problem that goes hand in hand with housing affordability. I represent Saint Paul on Minnesota’s task force for ending homelessness, and she is committed to partnering with the state, the county, and community organizations to address this issue head on. There is no reason any person should go without basic needs like shelter, and I will continue the fight for our all of our community members’ safety and dignity.
4. Do you support changing the city’s zoning to allow quadplexes everywhere in the city? If not, please explain why.
I believe single family zoning may be too restrictive in many areas of the city, and I look forward to the results of the Planning Commission’s study on this topic. I want to be sure there are opportunities to add density in areas where it makes sense.
5. Do you support eliminating minimum parking requirements? If not, please explain why.
6. Do you support funding the city’s 4(d) affordable housing program? If not, how will you preserve at-risk Naturally Occurring Affordable Housing (NOAH)?