Our view: Opportunity knocks. Will you answer?

April 12, 2019

How often do you complain to friends and neighbors about the types of music acts being brought to Rochester by the city’s official music department? Let’s say you want to see more country, or more rock, at the Down by the Riverside series.

Well, here’s your chance to stop complaining and actually do something about it: Three seats are open on the city’s Music Board, and applicants are being sought.

Get selected for one of those spots and you might find out why certain types of acts are brought here. Or, you might be able to influence choices or advocate for more creative bookings.

The same goes for any number of Rochester city boards and commissions for which there are currently openings.

For example, perhaps you don’t like the way the city’s park system does this or doesn’t do that. Maybe you’ve got some ideas for making better use of the parks.

If you live in Ward 4, step right up; that seat on the Park Board happens to be vacant and applicants are being sought.

The same goes for the following openings: five seats on the Board of Appeals, two seats on the Energy Commission, one seat on the Fire Civil Service Commission, one seat on the Planning and Zoning Commission, one seat on the Police Civil Service Commission and one seat on the Zoning Board of Appeals.

To apply, you simply have to be a City of Rochester resident, be 18 years of age, and be willing to put in the necessary work reading reports, studying issues, gathering input, making decisions and, we might add, thinking outside the box.

We didn’t mean to imply earlier that only chronic complainers need apply. Of course, seeing your city government from the inside is bound to be enlightening. But good service involves keeping in mind the needs and desires of the community at large.

By the way, if you’re not sure what all of these various boards and commissions are responsible for, a handy guide is available on the city’s website at www.rochestermn.gov/government/boards-and-commissions.

Along with that, there is an online orientation for new board and commission members.

You can apply online or at the mayor’s office. Mayor Kim Norton will interview applicants and make recommendations to the city council for approval.

This is an exciting time to be involved in a growing, vibrant city facing numerous challenges. How can you pass up this opportunity to lend your time and talents?

And who knows, we might all be enjoying that favorite rock band of yours in a future city-sponsored concert.