Burnsville in Brief

Highlights for October 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
headline reads thank you community builders with a photo of all recipients

Greetings from City Manager Melanie Lee

Every year, City Council and staff join in celebrating those who help build a brighter future for Burnsville. Our City Council was thrilled to recognize 13 community members and organizations during the Community Builder Awards presentation on Oct. 19. We thank this year’s honorees:

  • Buck Hill Ski Patrol volunteers
  • Dee Petersen, International Festival of Burnsville
  • Debbie Beck, Free Book Buggie
  • Jim and Nancy Norlen
  • Joe Albackten
  • Laurie Thulien, Burnsville Rotary
  • Maryan Ali, ISD 191
  • Miranda Noll, Dakota Child and Family Clinic
  • Molly Gerhke
  • Pastor John Gordon, Spirit of Truth Church
  • Sandra Schlaefer, Kids ‘n Kinship volunteer
  • Ted Redmond, paleBLUEdot, LLC
  • Dakota County Library, Burnhaven staff

Also, a special thank you to those community members who took the time to submit nominations.

Learn more about our 2021 Community Builder Award recipients.

Community Development

Burnsville Celebrates Manufacturing Month

Innovation belongs in Burnsville and we celebrated Manufacturing Month by showcasing three Burnsville businesses and the Burnsville-Eagan-Savage School District (ISD191) Pathways Program.

We collaborated with the Burnsville Chamber of Commerce and local manufacturing businesses to highlight Burnsville's booming industry. A special thank you to Permac Industries, Showcraft and Landmark Creations for their participation. We also featured ISD191's Pathways Program, which provides real life skills and insights into manufacturing career paths for students.

We premiered the video at the Burnsville Chamber of Commerce AM Coffee Break event at City Hall at on October 13, followed by social media outreach. The City Council also put the spotlight on manufacturing by signing a Proclamation declaring the month of October Manufacturing Month in Burnsville. Manufacturing is the second largest industry in the Twin Cities with more than 4,090 manufacturing employers. In Dakota County in 2020, manufacturing jobs paid an average annual salary of more than $70,000.

Homeowner Resources and Education

residents watching a presentation at a homeowner workshop

We continued our homeowner outreach by providing helpful tips, resources and guidance during a complimentary Homeowners Workshop in October. This popular event included a presentation from Kim Douglas in our Inspections department followed by break out sessions and the opportunity for residents to ask questions about their current and upcoming projects to field experts including Sarah Madden with planning, Randy Harris with electrical inspections, Meghan Suba with permits, and Jo Burr and Chris Faste with building inspections. Our goal is to provide educational outreach and ongoing customer service to foster maintenance and enhancement of the city’s housing community.

If you are looking to start a home improvement project, updates or remodeling, we offer a number of resources and information on our website at burnsvillemn.gov/homeowner.

Home Energy Squad Visits

illustration of person speaking to representative through digital device outside home in winter

In our efforts to continually provide resources and education to homeowners, we've partnered with the Center for Energy and Environment (CEE) for home energy consultations. The CEE developed this program to promote sustainable and environmentally-friendly approaches to energy conservation. Through their Home Energy Squad program, the City pays half the cost of audits for participating residents.

Since this new offering began in March 2021, 63 home energy audits have been conducted in the city. As temperatures start to cool, now is the perfect time to stay ahead of rising heating costs with a Home Energy Squad visit.

Visit the CEE website for program details and to sign up.


firefighter being lowered in ropes training

Training for Excellence

Rescue scenarios for Firefighters can be challenging and unique. Therefore, our training is continuous and vast in design so our team can be ready for any situation. Burnsville Fire is a member of the Dakota County Special Operations Team (DCSOT). DCSOT is a cooperative team of public safety agencies and part of the Minnesota Structural Collapse Team.

Specialized instructors from Toronto and Ottawa led a Rope Rescue class at the Ames Center in Burnsville. DCSOT members South Metro, Inver Grove, Burnsville and Hastings Fire Departments, along with firefighters from Bloomington and Rochester Fire collaborated at this training.

Fire Prevention Open House

firefighter talking to kids

Thank you to everyone who came out for our Fire Prevention Open House on Oct. 9. The community spent their Saturday morning touring fire engines, ambulances, and police vehicles, and interacted with Public Safety personnel through kitchen safety demonstrations and discussions.

We took this opportunity to share a final farewell to the current Fire Station 1 located at 911 West 140th Street. Watch for an announcement in late spring 2022 for our public open house introducting the new station located at 14275 Newton Avenue.

Thank You for Your Support

thank you artwork from daycare kids with hand prints and messages

It is an honor for our firefighters and EMS team to provide service to such a caring, generous and supportive community.

Recently, The Grammercy Club at Greenhaven donated an airfryer to the new fire station, and the kids at Pumpkin Patch Daycare (our current Fire Station No. 1 neighbor) created a “We Will Miss You” poster. For all the well wishes, cards, notes and donated treats and lunches, we sincerely thank you!

Online Fire Permits

QR code that directs to online fire permits

Burnsville Fire permits are now completely online and only a quick click or scan away.

You can access our online permits through our website at burnsvillemn.gov/firepermits, and now access is only one QR photo away. A QR code (quick response code) is a type of two dimensional (2D) bar code that is used to provide easy access to online information through the digital camera on a smartphone or tablet.


greeters at all employee meeting

Employee Engagement Matters

This fall, employees had the opportunity to respond to the second annual Gallup Employee Engagement Survey. Employee engagement is about connecting people with their work and our organization. We measure engagement periodically to help us understand how employees experience work at Burnsville so that we can best support them and their team.

After reviewing feedback this year, our percentage of engaged employees increased from 34% in 2020 to 40% in 2021. We use feedback to continue to pose more intentional open-ended questions through pulse surveys and to continue to support people managers with simple tools to engage their teams throughout the year. Teams will take part in State of the Teams conversations, where they will focus on setting a team goal and using their survey results to help inform their success.

Our New Approach to Management Training

Management staff working together at tables during a training exercise

All people managers in Burnsville have attended Burnsville University’s People Manager Academy, a two-session course designed to provide managers with everything they need to know about engaging and managing people. Built around Gallup’s Twelve Elements of Great Managing, this comprehensive course helps managers create great experiences in their teams.

Toward Community and Organizational Health

tree with branches for community and priority budgeting, community visioning, personnel strategic planning, code review task force and facilities plan

The Finance Department continues to refine the proposed 2022 budget for adoption by the City Council. Through a theme of “Toward Community and Organizational Health,” the proposed 2022 budget makes important investments in both the organization and broader community, while also further aligning existing resources, consistent with the vision, values and strategic priorities of the City Council.

On Dec. 7, the City Council will consider adoption of the proposed 2022 budget following the completion of the Truth–in–Taxation Public Hearing. Generally, the public may comment during the hearing on the proposed 2022 budget and property tax levy. Assuming adoption by the City Council, the proposed 2022 budget takes effect on January 1, 2022.

Learn more about the City of Burnsville Budget

View the 2022 Budget Planning Dashboard


collage of photos from Halloween events including cars, dogs, guests and decor

October Fun for the Whole Family... even Fido!

  • Drive In Movie: On Oct. 15, we hosted a free drive-in movie night at North River Hills Park. Families could register online for a parking spot and neighbors who lived nearby the park were invited to bring chairs or blankets to watch Toy Story 4. The event also included a partnership with Dakota County Recycling with short public service announcements about recycling.
  • Howl-o-Ween: We partnered with People of Alimagnet Caring for K9’s for a Howl-o-Ween party at Alimgnet dog park on Saturday, Oct. 30. This free event offered participants (people and dogs) a chance to dress up in their favorite costumes, take photos in a fall-themed photo booth, join a puppy parade through the haunted forest and perform dog tricks for treats. The Mik Cart Ice Cream truck handed out free pup cups for dogs and offered ice cream treats for humans. More than 200 people and dogs had a howling good time!
  • Halloween Fest: This popular annual event returned on Oct. 29 to Lac Lavon Park. This sold-out event offered the 200 registered cars an opportunity to drive through an illuminated trick-or-treat trail, complete with candy stations. A special thank you to our partners, including the Burnsville Lions Club, Minnesota Volunteer Network, Dakota County Library, Buck Hill, Northern Life Wellness and Ebenezer Ridges.
  • Halloween Skate: The Burnsville Ice Center’s 12th annual Halloween Skate Party was held on Oct. 31. More than 250 guests enjoyed a fun, safe Halloween-themed event. The Ice Center collaborated with the Burnsville Hockey Club, the Burnsville Minnesota Valley Figure Skating Club and local businesses to create the festive atmosphere.

Working Toward a Sustainable Burnsville

We work to improve quality of life for our residents and sustainability actions that are fiscally responsible and ensure future generations are able to survive and thrive. As part of these efforts, we continue to aggressively implement improvements in the areas of building maintenance and energy consumption to accomplish these goals. In 2021, staff efforts in the areas of facility improvements, energy audits, rebates and grants have saved the city tens of thousands of dollars while helping the environment and reducing our carbon footprint. These actions have included, but are not limited to:

  • Installation of equipment that allow for the participation in the load management rate program (Rate 70)
  • Repurposing the generator from the fire station
  • Converting lights to LED at multiple facilities
  • Adjusting systems to maximize efficiencies identified in the B3 Benchmarking system
  • Participation in community solar gardens and more

These are a few of the many ways we are working toward a sustainable Burnsville. We look forward to our continued collaboration and innovation with the community, businesses and other levels of government to enhance Burnsville resilience.


Blazing Commitment Award Program

October introduced our new Burnsville Police Blazing Commitment Award program. School Resource Officers will recognize staff for doing amazing work with and for the Burnsville High School students. Our newest SRO, Neil Stansky, stated that it didn’t take long for him to truly understand how much work the staff does day in and day out.

At the end of each month, the Blazing Commitment Award will be presented to a school staff member that does something awesome when it comes to a student’s well-being, a student in crisis, school safety or just overall amazing work.

Congratulations to our first two recipients, Deb and Charlene.

Burnsville school resource officers with Blazing Commitment award recipients

Badging, Promotions and Awards

3 photos: award of valor recipients, promotions and new officers

On Oct. 14, we took a long awaited opportunity to recognize those officers who could not formally be introduced as new staff due to COVID-19. Welcome to Brandon Rodriguez, Rob Wilkins, Joshua Rosenberry, Matthew Ruge, Peter Mueller, Kelly Roy (Gillet), Jay Seiler and Matthew Twaroski.

We also celebrated the promotions of Sergeant Chris Wicklund and Sergeant Brian Beckstrom; as well as Award of Valor recipients Sgt. Dan Anderson, Adam Medlicott, Peter Mueller, Kyle Posthumus and Sgt. Steve Stoler.

It was so nice to be together and share these milestones with family and coworkers once again.

Pink Patch Project Fundraiser

Burnsville Police pink patch, community engagement icon and photo of check presentation

We would like to thank everyone who donated to our first-year involvement in the Burnsville Police Department Pink Patch Project.

This year we raised $3,000 to donate to the American Cancer Society!

Pictured: Check presentation with representatives from various law enforcement agencies and the American Cancer Association.

Meritorious Service Award

formal photo of Officer Medlicott

The Minnesota Chiefs of Police Association announced 14 recipients of its annual statement awards. The awardees are being recognized for their compassion for the citizens they serve and their commitment to keeping their communities safe. The 2021 recipients were formally recognized at the MCPA’s Annual Statewide Awards Banquet on Nov. 2.

Congratulations to Officer Adam Medlicott for receiving a Meritorious Service Award. This award is given for exceptional achievement and extraordinary valor, service, professionalism and leadership.


cover of multi-modal plan with bike rider crossing a street

The Future of Burnsville Alternative Transportation

The Burnsville City Council approved three new items related to creating as safe and equitable transportation network as possible for all users. Thank you to everyone who contributed thoughts, ideas and feedback throughout this process.

  • The Multi-Modal Plan lays out the blueprint for how and where improvements to the transportation system can be made for people using modes other than a vehicle.
  • The Complete Streets Policy describes best practices that staff shall follow when developing transportation system projects and making sure that these considerations are thought of early on in project development.
  • The Traffic Calming Policy lays out a clear and concise set of actions and alternatives to guide a process when a concern is brought forth to provide a consistent and effective method of providing the safest streets possible.

Conservationist of the Year

four recipients for the Conservationist of the Year Award

We are honored to be named the Dakota County Soil and Water Conservationist of the Year in recognition for our long track record of working with the Dakota County Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) and other organizations to install native prairie for pollinator habitat, bioretention basins and raingardens, and restoring shorelines on community lakes. Our Natural Resources team also partners on workshops that offer local residents the opportunity to learn more about conservation activities that can be implemented on their own property to enhance our natural environment.

Some recent work examples include:

  • 2020 – Lake Park turf to prairie conversion project (2.3 acres, SWCD grant received)
  • 2021 – North River Hills turf to prairie and natural areas enhancement – (project in progress, 8 acres, SWCD grant received)
  • 2021 – Crystal Lake Shoreline Stabilization Project – Crystal West/Tyacke Park Area (project in progress, SWCD grant received)
  • 2020 and 2021 – Landscaping for Clean Water Workshops
  • 2020 and 2021 (planned) – Pollinator Lawn/Turf to Prairie Workshop

Pictured left to right: Bruce Johnson, SWCD; Caleb Ashling, Natural Resources Specialist; Daryl Jacobson, Natural Resources Manager; Laura Zanmiller, SWCD.

I-35W MN River Bridge Opening

city staff and officials in front of the I-35 Minnesota River Bridge

The end of October brought about a reason to celebrate with the completion of the I-35W Minnesota River Bridge replacement project.

MnDOT, Ames Construction, the City of Bloomington and the City of Burnsville all gathered to celebrate this success. Representatives from each organization spoke, including Mayor Kautz for Burnsville, to recognize the great collaboration between all these organizations in working to provide the best experience for bridge users during construction. In fact, the contractor was able to keep three lanes in each direction open at almost all times allowing traffic to flow while still completing the work ahead of schedule.

Some very noticeable enhancements with the finished project include an additional northbound lane from Cliff Road to 106th Street reducing weaving, much improved shoulders on the bridge and a new multi-use trail providing a bike/pedestrian crossing of the river connecting existing trails on the Bloomington and Burnsville sides while also allowing bicycle commuting between Hennepin and Dakota Counties.

Pictured left to right: Jen Desrude, Engineering; Melanie Lee, City Manager, Vince Workman, City Council; Mayor Elizabeth Kautz; Robert Timmerman, Planning Commission.

Bringing the Project to You

visits talking with project team in a park setting

We're partnering with Dakota County on completing another segment of the Lake Marion Regional Greenway in Burnsville, a project to complete the trail gap between the Rose Bluff trail north of Williams Drive and the Lake Marion – Kelleher Park segment south of Sunset Pond Park. We are currently evaluating a preferred trail location and are preparing a federal grant application in April of 2022.

In order to best determine the location, the project team provided an interactive online map for comments on the proposed trail and held two pop-up open houses in Sunset Pond Park in October. Your feedback has been very helpful and the project team will be working to find the best design that disturbs the least amount of natural area, keeps the existing trail as safe as possible now and into the future for bikers and pedestrians, and provides the best trail experience for the regional Lake Marion Trail that will go through Burnsville.

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 August 2021 is 4,435 (+7.8% year over year). This includes 389 traffic stops.

View additional police statistics including criminal offenses