Burnsville in Brief

Highlights for September 2021 City of Burnsville Home Page

Burnsville City Council Strategic Priorities Guide Everyday Efforts

Burnsville Council Strategic Priorities of safety, community engagement, community development, sustainability, transportation & infrastructure and organizational services
corner of neighborhood street showing several large fallen trees

A Thank You from City Manager Melanie Lee

I am always so impressed with the way the Burnsville community comes together during difficult times. Terrible, unexpected and damaging storms ripped through our streets on the morning of Sept. 16, leaving a wake of fallen trees, broken branches and storm debris.

Our community pulled together quickly to assist each other, to report critical concerns and to support City cleanup efforts. Your patience, understanding and help made all the difference in safely clearing streets and in addressing all the critical elements that surfaced.

I am proud of our Streets, Forestry and Public Safety teams for their dedicated response. Our compost site remains open during the entire month of October for free disposal of your private trees and branches. The site is located directly behind the businesses at 121st St and Pleasant Ave.

Community Development

screenshot of new Citizen Services dashboard

Introducing Citizen Services:

Online Permitting and More!

At the beginning of September, the City launched a new software program, Citizen Services, designed to make permitting applications more convenient.

City permits for your residential or commercial projects, as well as various planning, rental licensing and Fire Department applications, are now easier with our new online permit portal.

  • Apply online
  • Follow the progress of your permit from submittal to review to inspection
  • Pay your permit fee online
  • Easily communicate with staff via the comment feature
  • View records for a property

Burnsville is the only city in Minnesota to integrate with the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry for license lookup and autofill.

Residents and Contractors: Apply for your permit online!

Connecting with Community

September was filled with opportunities to connect, listen and share with the Burnsville community! Thank you to everyone who took the time to visit with us.

  • Heart of the City Design Framework: Planning and Engineering staff teamed up at the Fire Muster Block Party on Wednesday, Sept. 8. Community members shared ideas and feedback on the strengths and opportunities within the Heart of the City district. If you haven't had a chance to connect with us in person, check out our online survey, interactive map and project details at www.burnsvillemn.gov/HOC.
  • Realtor Event: Recreation and Economic Development staff recently hosted a Realtor event at Neill Park to showcase the latest construction projects, parks and amenities around the City, and innovative community concepts through our Grow Burnsville initiative. We answered questions, provided networking time and distributed Hidden Gem Boxes for Realtors to share with their clients to attract new residents to Burnsville.
  • 2021 South of the River Real Estate Summit: Elected officials from Apple Valley, Burnsville, Eagan, Lakeville, Farmington and Rosemount presented updates on commercial and residential real estate development in the southern suburbs to both an in-person and virtual audience. Mayor Elizabeth Kautz represented Burnsville by highlighting new development projects and showcased a video which included testimonials from the development community, an overview of recent projects and a preview into new developments on the horizon.

Zoning Code Update

We are currently in the process of updating the zoning and subdivision areas of the City Code including Titles 10 and 11. Zoning covers permitted uses, building setbacks to property lines, size and height requirements, parking rules and landscaping standards, to name a few. Some of our public outreach efforts include community engagement at Party on the Plaza and Fire Muster, an online residential survey, information cards provided to Night to Unite attendees, social media postings and an active website. In September, the Planning Commission had discussion on the single family and rural residential chapters of the zoning code. We have future plans for addtiional connections with the business community, check-ins with the City Council, reviews by the Planning Commission and formal public hearings.

We are currently about one third of the way through the approximate 18-month process to update the City Code. You can learn more about the zoning code update at www.burnsvillezoningupdate.com.

In other news...

Licensing and Code Enforcement Coordinator Chris Forslund was able to visit the town of Burnsville, North Carolina where we receive many mistaken calls for service. Burnsville, NC is a small town of around 2000 people, deep in the Blue Ridge mountains near Asheville. The town was very welcoming and local merchants expressed some dismay when they heard that we receive many phone calls from their community. Chris welcomed everyone to visit Burnsville, MN, but they showed apprehension about our winters!


2021 Burnsville Fire Department Badge Ceremony

The Burnsville Fire Department Badge Ceremony occurred on Sept. 14, presented in-person at the Ames Center and to a virtual audience.

Congratulations to Firefighters Leier, Diepenbrock, Kraus, Siems, Fire Inspector Knutson, Fire Captain Bigelbach and Assistant Fire Chief Dwyer.

Watch the badge ceremony livestream!

2020 Firefighter of the Year: Jared Haider

photo of Jared Haider, 2020 Burnsville Firefighter of the Year

Firefighter/Paramedic Jared Haider has been named Burnsville’s 2020 Firefighter of the Year!

Haider has been a member of the Burnsville Fire Department for four years. His fellow firefighters know him as someone who exemplifies the many quality traits that are needed to be a great firefighter and paramedic for this department. He is selfless, steps up to help the shift complete a task, brings training to the table that everyone can benefit from, works quickly and efficiently on calls and does what is best for the patient.

“Jared has logged many hours in the public education department and has put together videos that the department can be proud of for years to come,” said the firefighter/paramedic who nominated Haider for the award.

Congratulations Jared Haider!

Fire Muster Weekend Celebration

Burnsville Fire celebrated with the community during the return of the annual Fire Muster festival.

The department participated in the parade, presented kitchen fire demonstrations and displayed our emergency vehicles.

In addition, firefighters provided EMS service and fireworks standby on the grounds throughout the events.

Thank you to everyone who came out in celebration of the Burnsville community!


first year onboarding graphic including day one, values, strengths, belonging, teams

A New Approach to Employee Onboarding

Burnsville University is excited to introduce an enhanced onboarding experience for new employees. With feedback from people managers and new employees, onboarding has been redesigned to welcome new employees to Burnsville and connect them with their work, their team and the organization.

Beginning this month, new employees will be welcomed through NeoGov Onboard, an online introduction to the organization and their onboarding experience. They will also experience an enhanced Day One conversation with Human Resources to cover what they need to know to get started, and an intentional development path during their first year at Burnsville, introducing them to our values, their strengths and how we create great teams.

Interested in exploring careers with the City of Burnsville? We're interested in talking to you! We currently have a number of positions open including Finance Director, Police Officer, Ice Center Maintenance and a wide range of seasonal opportunities. Learn more at burnsvillemn.gov/jobs.

New Employee Handbook Reflects Our Commitment to Our People

cover of employee handbook with Burnsville logo and organizational services icon

A brand new employee handbook was implemented last fall, 2020. To continue to keep our handbook up-to-date, the human resources team will be reviewing the employee handbook annually to make sure all policies are in line with the law, best practices and are reflective of our efforts to become an employer of choice. The human resources team begins their annual employee handbook review this fall.

Cybersecurity Awareness Month

photo showing a smart phone, ipad and laptop computer

The City of Burnsville works closely with the State of Minnesota Security Operations Center on cybersecurity monitoring and threats. We regularly receive cybersecurity information, recommendations and tools to proactively protect City systems.

October is Cybersecurity Awareness Month in Minnesota, a reminder to Minnesotans about the importance of cybersecurity education and awareness for everyone including large corporations, small businesses, financial institutions, schools, government agencies, the home user and anyone who connects to the internet with any device. The need to identify, protect against and respond to cyber threats grows as critical infrastructure, education services and the workforce increasingly rely on the support of information systems and technology.


photo of lawn filled with tents, people and dogs on leashes

Yappy Hour Returns to Alimagnet Park

On Saturday, Sept. 25, we hosted our second annual Yappy Hour event at Alimagnet Park. This festival was organized by the City of Burnsville Parks, Recreation and Facilities Department in collaboration with the dog park advocacy group People of Alimagnet Caring for K-9s (PACK).

Attendees were able to listen to live music; interact, learn and communicate with a variety of pet-themed vendors; win door prizes and enjoy food and beverages from Lucky’s 13 (Burnsville), Rollin’ Nolen’s and HomeTown Creamery food trucks.

An estimated 450+ people attended the event with their canine friends.

Fire Muster Pickleball Tournament

On Saturday, Sept. 11, we introduced our first-ever pickleball tournament in collaboration with the Burnsville Fire Muster at Red Oak Park. It was such a hit that we plan to make this an annual event!

The 16-team tournament was compiled of four divisions allowing for teams to compete at a variety of skill levels. All participants were able to enjoy the physical and social benefits of pickleball and first and second place winners received the added benefit of a gift card to a local Burnsville restaurant.

Pickleball continues to be an extremely popular and growing activity for Burnsville residents. In 2022, the Recreation Department has plans for additional pickleball clinics, ladders, leagues and tournaments. Look for more information on these opportunities in the spring/summer Recreation Times.

photo of six pickleballs courts with players in action


Congratulations Burnsville Police

On Sept. 23, the St. Paul Area Chamber of Commerce hosted their annual Leaders in Local Government Awards ceremony. Burnsville Police Chief Schwartz was honored to attend this event with our Behavioral Health Unit team, Captain Stenger and Mayor Kautz.

Our team won the award in the Public Safety category for the creation and implementation of the Behavioral Health Unit.

Congratulations to Sergeant Max Yakovlev, Officers Erica Huston and Ben Archambault and our Dakota County Social Services partner, Amy Johnson.

Pictured from left to right: Captain Stenger, Officer Archambault, Sergeant Yakovlev, Officer Hustom, Chief Schwartz and Mayor Kautz.

photo of Burnsville Behavioral Health Unit at Local Government Awards ceremony

A Recent Email Sent to Chief Schwartz

neighborhood kids playing band instruments
Hello! I just wanted to extend my thanks on behalf of some parents and kids over here at Parkwood Lane in Burnsville. A group of neighborhood kids have taken to sometimes having a jam session in front of our drive. Yesterday they ran home with much excitement sharing that a very nice police officer stopped by and listened while they played, offered words of encouragement and even left them a tip! This was a very positive experience for them. They then asked their parents if they could take their earnings over to the nearby gas station and buy themselves a treat. This was the first time they ventured by themselves that far alone and they were thrilled at the opportunity. I couldn’t help but think that we’re fortunate you are here to help keep our streets safe – especially so our kids can grow into their independence without fear.
- email sent from a Burnsville resident

Remembering 9/11

Heart of the City Run participants and public safety check presentation

On the 20 year anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, we remember and honor the brave men and women who lost their lives saving others, and those who continue to be impacted by 9/11.

We will never forget the courageous heroes who saved so many lives that day. We also pay tribute and recognize all of you in public safety for your service, sacrifice and dedication to our community.  Thank you for serving with honor and courage each and every day!

Thank you to those who ran the Heart of the City 9/11 Public Safety Tribute 5K and those who helped with the event. Great job to everyone! Police and Fire were presented with a check for $4,000.

National Police Woman Day - Sept. 12

female Burnsville Police Officers

National Police Woman Day acknowledges and celebrates the contribution of female police officers who enforce law and order around the country.

Today, only roughly 10% of the police force in the United States is made up of women. National Police Woman Day hopes to rectify that by encouraging more women to join the service. Campaigns and events are organized to urge more women to take up law enforcement roles. Along with expressing gratitude to these officers, the day also hopes for a future where law enforcement bodies will have stronger female representation.

Pictured left to right: Officers Emily Hendrickson, Natalie Sandifer and Ashley Nacey.


city vehicles picking up and transferring tree branches

Excellence in Storm Damage Response

In the early morning hours of Sept. 16, severe weather hit our community. The City of Burnsville received at least one tornado, maybe a second, along with straight-line winds that knocked down numerous large trees and branches around town.

Our Streets and Forestry divisions jumped right in with emergency response, cleaning up the City’s boulevard trees and branches and also picking up residents’ cut up trees and branches that were placed at the curb. The City’s compost site was opened around-the-clock to residents, and contractors were hired to help with the removing of trees and branches.

The City had more than 90% of the work completed by the end of September and are mostly completed with the clean up at this time. The City is fortunate to have great staff who put together well devised and coordinated clean up plans by the supervisors and execution of the tasks by the maintenance workers.

A special thank you to residents who worked with the City and for your patience while we made the rounds.

Grow Burnsville Harvest Party

City staff shows residents native plantings

On Sept. 18, we introduced Burnsville's first Harvest Party to celebrate our Grow Burnsville Initiative.

This celebration showcased our new Food Forest and Market Garden. We also held a healthy cooking class, offered apple and tomato tastings and invited guests on a Civic Center campus sustainability walk. It was a fun day with lots of different activities that highlighted Burnsville’s efforts to fight food insecurity and obesity in a sustainable way.

Transit and Connected and Automated Vehicles Tour

Burnsville Mayor Kautz speaking to crowd along with Congresswoman Angie Craig

We are dedicated to creating safe transit options throughout the community. Recently, we hosted a Heart of the City Transit and Connected and Automated Vehicles Tour.

District 2 United States House Representative Angie Craig joined Burnsville staff and elected officials along with officials from surrounding cities and Dakota County and from Minnesota Valley Transit Authority, Metro Transitand MnDOT to view the Heart of the City district, preview the opening of the Orange Line Bus Rapid Transit line and learn about Connected and Automated Vehicles. It was a great opportunity to highlight transit amenities that are currently here and those that are on the horizon. Thanks to Representative Craig for spending the afternoon with us.

Household Hazardous Waste Day

aerial photo of vehicles and workers at a hazardous household waste disposal event

The City of Burnsville, in collaboration with Dakota County, held it’s annual Household Hazardous Waste Day on Sept. 25. During this event, Burnsville residents were able to drop off many items that are difficult to dispose of including electronics, household cleaners, appliances, tires and paint. We also offered free paper shredding.

Thank you to everyone who participated. We had a great turnout with more than 1,100 vehicles using the service.

Want to know what's coming up next in the City? Check out our Events and Meetings calendars for the latest activities.

By the Numbers...

Fire Statistics: Click through the charts below for a closer look at Burnsville Fire Department activity including types of calls, call by property type and more.

Police Statistics: Total Calls for Service in July 2021 is 4,535 (+7.8% year over year). This includes 389 traffic stops.

View additional police statistics including criminal offenses