The School district’s $109 million bond referendum failed but the Operating Levy passed. In a very tight vote, question one, the Operating levy, passed with 51.6% (4085 votes to 3831) of the vote, question two, the bond, which included 2 new schools, failed with 43.87% (3467 to 4436) of the vote. There were over 7900 votes cast. Superintendent Dr. Matt Hillmann commented this morning, “a school referendum is a question to the community and it’s our job as school leaders to put together what we think is the best situation for the students”. They made their case to the community and “the community answers the question”. In this case the community said
yes to the Operating Levy (which adds another $471 per student) and no to the bond. Hillmann said, “and that’s okay. What we’ll do next is we’ll take a look at the election data and learn what we can and we’ll look at what are the appropriate next steps to address our facilities needs”. Hillmann’s full interview is on kymnradio.net.
Colby to fill out 2018
Greg Colby was elected to complete the last year of the Northfield Councilor at large position vacated by Rhonda Pownell when she became Mayor. He garnered 2,806 votes, Don McGee received 953, Jon Denison 674 and there were 102 write-ins.
Career criminal to serve stiff sentence
A career criminal is served up a stiff sentence. 38 year old Demarcus Lemaine Barker will spend the next 26 and 1/3 years in prison. He was sentenced yesterday for Importing Controlled Substance Across State Borders. Barker has a long criminal history with drug and violent offenses stretching over 20 years. “Barker has rarely gone a year without being in prison or committing a new crime” according to Rice County Attorney John Fossum who prosecuted the case. Judge Christine Long found Barkerto be a danger to public safety and showed a pattern of criminal conduct. The long sentence is double the presumed guidelines. Barker was twice convicted of being a felon in possession of a firearm, felony assaults in Goodhue and Rice County, and assaults on police officers in Chicago. Under career offender sentencing, he will not earn good time and must serve the entire 316 months in prison. Fossum said it’s the equivalent of a 40 year sentence had he received reduction for good time. The sentencing stems from a 2016 drug incident where he was charged with 9 felonies including drug dealing and a police chase. Fossum added, “Task force agents and the rest of Rice County law enforcement cooperated to make and build this case. The judge was clearly persuaded that it was time to end the criminal conduct of Mr. Barker”. Barker Demarcus
Hunter slips and shoots his thumb off
Rice County Sheriff Troy Dunn said the man involved in the deer hunting accident last weekend north of Medford remained hospitalized as of yesterday. 44 year old Troy Noble was standing on a log, holding his gun, when he slipped. The gun fell. He picked up the nozzle end. Dunn said the gun was inches from his face when it went off. Noble has lost his thumb, but saved his face.