Northfield City Attorney Chris Hood has stated that State statute holds sway over the City’s Charter. That has long been disputed by David Ludescher, a former City Council member and now the Chair of the Charter Commission. They are the only Commission that is NOT appointed by the Mayor and Council but are approved by a District Judge. The Charter Commission has 5 members now. Ludescher has 2 names he will be submitting to the Judge for approval which would fill out the Commission. The focus now, Ludescher says, is breathing life back into the Charter as it is the City’s Constitution. It’s dead right now for 2 reasons says Ludescher, “number one is that it’s basically being ignored by the City Council and when they don’t ignore it then they interpret it according to how they want to interpret it”. They have a couple of options they’re considering, “one of the things that we could do is pick a live controversy or make there a live controversy and then actually sue”. He mentioned the LDC. There were changes made by a simple majority in which the Charter says need a supermajority and former Mayor Dana Graham never signed. Ludescher says their hope is not to do that but rather create a forum that asks “would you tell us whether or not our government is exercising power beyond the authority it’s given in the Charter”. The Commission met with Mayor Pownell. I’ll have more on that meeting tomorrow.
Faribault man facing 20 years for selling drugs to teens
A Faribault Police Detective nabs a dealer. Last Thursday, the detective pulled over a vehicle after observing a drug deal in the parking lot of the Four Seasons Apartment complex in Faribault. 19 year old Mark Joseph Johnson told the detective he sold a $10 bag of weed to a girl. He gave the girl’s facebook profile to the officer, police then notified the Schools detective who tracked down the student and were led to another who also identified Johnson as the “dealer” who she’d purchased pot from the day before. Johnson was then located at Kwik Trip and arrested. They discovered 11 grams of marijuana in the car. He’s charged with 3rd degree sale to a minor, 4th degree sale in a public housing zone, and 3 other charges, the most serious carrying a maximum 20 year prison sentence. Johnson remains in the Rice County jail. His court appearance is February 13th. Johnson complaint
Nfld Explorer Post in action
The Northfield Public Safety Explorer Post 3300 received the “Making a Difference” Award this month from the Healthy Community Initiative – for giving youth age 14-20 some cool hands-on opportunities to explore careers in Emergency Medical Service (EMS), law enforcement, and firefighting. NHS Junior, Hannah Boudreau, was named as the 2016 Explorer of the Year by the Post. She became interested when she was 14 and went on a ride-along with her 2nd cousin who is a Rice County Sheriff’s Deputy. She knew then she wanted to be in law enforcement. Part of the training so far has included handcuffing, clearing a room, search and arrest, all the small things it takes to be a police officer. The 21 explorers and 14 advisors of Post 3300 gave nearly 900 hours of volunteer service to the community in 2016 – from help with emergency training drills and teaching CPR to 500 Carleton students, to handing out bike helmets and helping with crowd control at DJJD. Northfield Police Investigator Brian Kramer and Boudreau talked with Jeff Johnson this morning. Their complete interview is online at kymnradio.net under “Morning Show”. Listen to Boudreau’s story on her fire call! [ Our programs are listed on the right side of our front page, scroll to Morning Show and click on the link. ]