Cogwheel Archive

Northfield Rotary Cogwheel | Thursday | 5.14.09

May 14, 2009

Today’s Program: John Crippen, Minnesota Historical Society (Crippen)

Birthdays: Pablo Maldonado (5/14) and Kurt Larson (5/16)

Next Week: Rick Esse and Ed Lufkin – Web Updates and Membership; Rick Estenson – Committee Self-Selection

Last Week:

Constitutional protections may become a casualty of state government’s wrangling to resolve a $6 billion budget deficit.dsc_0013

Judge William Johnson, chief judge of the Third Judicial District, said the proposed cuts to the judicial system currently on the table could cause court administrators to further reduce services and deny a number of criminal cases their day in court. Contested speeding tickets, truancy interventions and a myriad of low-level criminal cases would no longer have the option of a court appearance, according to Judge Johnson.

“We can’t stay on top of the caseload without making these kinds of compromises,” he said.

In the face of current budget shortfalls, the court has already cut services and reduced staff. Despite efforts to become more efficient with new technology, the cuts being considered for 2010-2011 will only exacerbate the problem, Judge Johnson said.

All of these developments trouble the judge. The justice system is not an option; it is an obligation, he said. And if we don’t fund the justice system, we are weakening society’s fabric.

“The problem is very real,” the judge said. “It’s the solution that is escaping us.”

New Members: Missy Arens, an executive with the Girl Scouts, was inducted into the club. Laurie Williams was her sponsor.dsc_0008

Guests: exchange students – Elisa, Ryota, Matheus and Pablo (Williams), Vera Belazelkoska (Weber), Michelle Lasswell (Frago), David Rodd (Lawlor).

Scholarship Enhancement: Bob Will

Announcements:

Jane Fenton and Vicki Dilley presented scholarship awards to Northfield High School seniors at the recent Awards Day. One thousand dollar scholarships were awarded to Rachel Dahlen and Karl Modor. Five hundred dollar scholarships went to Cassandra Paramore and DesiRae Dyrssen.
President Williams reported that the board accepted Dan Springman’s resignation. His place of employment has moved to St. Paul.

Coming Up:

May 28 – Mancel Mitchell, The 25th Anniversary of the Second Great Northfield Bank Raid (Davis);
June 4 – Capitol Wrap-up – David Bly and Kevin Dahle (Crane)
June 11 – Virginia Kaczmarek, Classification (Cashman)