Carver County Board
‘I have the
to carry on the good work’
From the Minneapolis Labor Review, October 16, 2020
By Steve Share, Minneapolis Labor Review editor
CHASKA — “Carver County is number one in the nation in seven different areas,” says Randy Maluchnik. “I’m running to carry on the good work.”
First elected in 2006, Maluchnik is seeking re-election as Carver County Commissioner for District 3, which includes Chaska’s Ward 1 and Ward 2 and Victoria’s Precinct 2 and Precinct 3.
Maluchnik is running with the endorsement of the Minneapolis Regional Labor Federation, AFL-CIO.
Maluchnik’s other labor endorsements include: Carpenters Local 322, Chaska Education Association, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 292, Iron Workers Local 512, Operating Engineers Local 49, Laborers District Council, Minneapolis Building and Construction Trades Council, Pipefitters Local 539, and Sheet Metal Workers Local 10.
“Randy has been a great friend of the Building Trades for many years,” says Andy Snope, legislative and political director for IBEW Local 292. “He would specifically go out of his way to assure the paying of high area standard wages and benefits on Carver County-funded projects.” Snope added: “Randy has our back and we have always supported him.”
“I’ve got 18 years in public service,” says Maluchnik, who previously served from 2003-2007 on the Chaska City Council and was a longtime appointed member and chair of the Carver County Planning Commission.
“I grew up in the kind of union house where you’re supposed to make life better for the next generation through your efforts,” Maluchnik says.
“In my family, it was always considered important that working men and women in this country are represented,” he says. On his mother’s side of the family, Maluchnik reports, four or five generations of union railroad workers also served as elected local public officials.
Over the years, Maluchnik has been a member of three unions: the American Federation of Government Employees, the Teamsters and the United Steelworkers of America, serving in positions including local vice president and shop steward.
“I’m honored to work with the union employees of Carver County,” Maluchnik says. “They do an amazing job for the taxpayers of Carver County.”
Maluchnik’s work on the Carver County board has included leadership, advocacy —and results — for job-producing infrastructure, social services, and education, among other concerns.
In the case of the new County Road 101 bridge, which opened in 2015, “the County had to take the tough vote,” Maluchnik says. “We actually loaned the state the money to get it built.” Building support for the project included partnerships with Scott County and the City of Shakopee. “We all worked together to get it done,” Maluchnik says.
Originally, he adds, the Minnesota Department of Transportation wanted only a two-lane bridge. “Thanks to the Governor and our advocacy at the legislature, we made sure that was a four-lane bridge.”
The next big roads project will be completing the reconstruction of Highway 212 from Carver to Cologne to make it four lanes all the way. “There’s a bunch of union jobs,” Maluchnik says.
These projects don’t happen on their own, Maluchnik notes. In 2017, he led in advocating that his fellow Carver County board members pass a local half-cent sales tax for transportation. “I worked with my members on the board to convince them it was needed.” The measure passed 3-2. The result: the County now can put money on the table when seeking additional funding from the state and federal government for roads and bridges. “Now we’ve got MNDOT putting money in and the feds listening to us,” he says. The federal government share of the Highway 212 project: $30 million.
Maluchnik also has led county efforts to build a new mental health center, to support food security programs, and to partner with local schools. He’s also supporting the Carver County sheriff in seeking body cameras for his officers.
In running for a fifth term, Maluchnik says, “there’s work left to be done. I have the skills, the relationships, to continue that work.”