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Photo credit: Joan Loesch

The League of Women Voters of Dakota County is a nonpartisan political organization that encourages informed participation in government, works to increase understanding of major public policy issues, and influences policy through education and advocacy. We meet monthly and also host candidate forums, issue forums, and other events of interest to the community. Please attend one of our meetings or contact us for more information!


Observer Corps reports are submitted by LWV Dakota County members that volunteer their time to observe and take notes at government meetings of interest to Dakota County residents. While we strive for accuracy, these observations may be incomplete or inaccurate in some respects.

Meeting Agenda Meeting Minutes

Meeting Materials

Meeting Summary: Meeting did not start until about 11:00 a.m. due to the preceding Board meeting. Some community members left out of frustration that agenda items of interest were not started within a reasonable time. Picture taking and other festivities and announcements may have delayed the start time. This tends to happen during the first Board meeting of the year.

When the meeting began, items of interest were the County's 2019 Legislative Platform and other plans for 2019. Housing and CDA needs were discussed along with partnerships that are effective for the County and 2019 bonding priorities. Issues regarding housing and economic stability, natural resources stewardship, transportation, and environmental protection were presented by department chairs. Further discussion will occur throughout 2019.

Item 7 related to a multi-county survey of residents that was discussed by key departments and the County Manager. Surveys appear to take place every 2 to 3 years. Item 8 related to authorization for the library to hold a fine amnesty event, which garnered plenty of discussion. Topics of discussion included how often such events should be offered, why now, and the impact on budget. An article in the Star Tribune spoke about the popularity of such events.

Since National Library Week takes place from April 6-13, more information will be gathered regarding when the event will be held. Commissioners expressed concerns related to not having this be an expected annual event. Kelly Harder spoke after Margaret Stone to advocate for this event.

Updated: Jun 16, 2019

Our January meeting consisted of a panel discussion about homelessness in Dakota County. Panelists included Beth Bromen (Dakota Woodlands), Renee Levesque (Guild Incorporated), and Madeline Kastler (Dakota County Social Services). We also collected donations of personal care items for residents of the Dakota Woodlands homeless shelter, including 1,910 diapers! Special thanks to one of our members, Emily Carlson, for organizing the donation drive! Because of the number of slides, the presentation below is broken up into two sections.

Dakota County is seeking applications from those wishing to serve on a citizen advisory committee. The Dakota County Board relies on several citizen advisory committees that provide information and input to the Board. Applications are accepted until all openings are filled. Information about the application process and the specific committees is available here and in this press release. To apply, fill out the application in PDF format or Word format then email it to

Extension Committee: assists in approving programs, establishing the budget and evaluating staff to enhance University of Minnesota Extension programs. The committee meets four times a year in Farmington.

Library Advisory Committee: reviews and makes decisions on disputed material, advises the Library director in the development of public programming for library services, develops recommended annual work plans, reviews and makes recommendations on long-range plans, and accepts gifts of up to $500 for public library purposes. The committee meets bimonthly at various library locations.

Personnel Board of Appeals: provides the County Board with impartial analysis concerning appeals filed by employees or job applicants. Board members must have 10 or more years of managerial experience or comparable qualifications. Board members may not have a contractual, commercial or professional relationship with Dakota County. The board meets for full-day or half-day hearings as needed in Hastings.

Planning Commission: reviews plans and proposals and makes policy recommendations to the County Board in the following areas: transportation, transit, parks, trails and greenways, land conservation, water resources and environmental management. The Planning Commission may review capital projects or be asked by the County Board to address emerging issues that impact the physical or natural infrastructure of Dakota County. The committee meets monthly or as necessary in Apple Valley.

Public Art Citizen Advisory Committee: recommends art projects for county buildings to the County Board. The committee meets monthly in Apple Valley.

Special Board of Appeal and Equalization: hears appeals from property owners regarding property valuation or classification of properties. One member must be a real estate appraiser or be familiar with county property valuation. The board meets in Apple Valley annually in June.

Zoning Board of Adjustment: evaluates and makes decisions on variance requests and appeals pertaining to the shoreland and floodplain management regulations in township areas; its decisions are the final administrative decision by the County. The Board meets as needed in Apple Valley.

News and Events

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