While Minnesota is the only state to have a divided Legislature, its Legislature was able to arrive at a consensus on several issues. How did the legislature manage to do that? The Think Again Brooklyns forum on Tuesday, June 18 will explore how Minnesota has achieved considerable consensus during a time when our political parties have tended to be in strong opposition to each other. “Building Consensus: Nonpartisan and Bipartisan Approaches to Legislation” will begin at 6 p.m. in the Brooklyn Park City Council Chambers, 5200 85th Ave. N. with a free pizza and salad buffet followed by the program at 6:30 p.m.
Dave Bartholomay, program coordinator for the Office for Collaboration and Dispute Resolution, will open the discussion with “Bridging Divides: What to Do When People Disagree.” He will describe the challenges and the opportunities for reaching consensus on legislative issues. He will explain how difficult situations can be de-escalated and how people can move from conflict to effective solutions for difficult public issues by integrating the needs of everyone involved. Bartholomay has a master’s degree in political science and extensive public sector leadership experience at the federal, state, and local government level.
Minnesota Senator John Hoffman from Senate District 36 will continue the conversation with “A Start in the Right Direction - Moving from Conflict to Win-Win Solutions.” He will cover several bills that were passed with support of legislators from both parties after an extended period of discussion that allowed multiple perspectives to be included. A question-and-answer session will follow the speakers’ presentations.
All are welcome to attend the forum. If possible, please RSVP to Facebook at https://bit.ly/2EWN35p or to Carol Woehrer, 763-607-4287.