Submitted by resident Joel Stegner:

This week there is a public hearing about passenger rail. A public hearing is at best going to only attract 1% of Edina resident (500 is 1% of 50,000) and the focus will always be Not in My Back Yard opposition. In other the words the people who live close to the line who don't want it developed will show up at the meeting. Others like me who are more positive but not angry won't show up and won't be heard. I believe this is the reason the earlier attempt to do this was blocked and that no consideration given to bring the SW Light Rail through Edina.

These public meetings are always at night and during the week, times when young adults and families are busy. So the tiny sample is skewed toward empty nesters and seniors, who are less open to do new things.

Frankly, a big topic like this deserves to be in the Quality of Life survey, or covered by a well designed survey, but lacking that the city should always give residents two clear options - encourage them to write a letter to the Council and have it as a topic on Speak Out Edina.

If you only provide a convenient forum to those who have an ax to grind, you will continue to run the city not based on broad public opinion, but the loudest, angriest voices.

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