Not only is the City of Northfield making money off selling a drug to its citizens that’s “proven to be highly addictive, as well as a cause of multiple types of cancer, heart disease, respiratory disease, circulatory disease and birth defects.”
The names and ages of those cited are listed in the police report published by the Northfield News.
Cashiers failed to follow state law in one third of the 21 businesses Northfield and Dundas police checked last week to ensure they selling weren’t tobacco to minors. Five Northfield and two Dundas cashiers were cited May 21 for selling tobacco products to someone under 18. Northfield Police Chief Gary Smith said officers from both departments cooperated in the effort, which checked 16 business in Northfield, five in Dundas.
In what Smith termed compliance checks, volunteer teens were supervised by plain-clothes police officers. Teens were instructed to go into the business and ask to purchase tobacco. If asked their age or for identification, Smith said, the teens provided accurate information. In Northfield, the chief said, most cashiers cited either failed to ask for identification or didn’t look at it when it was provided. In one instance, the cashier looked at the ID, but typed inaccurate information into the cashier, overriding the system. Smith declined to name that cashier.
Penalties for selling tobacco to a minor are 90 days in jail, $1,000 or both. A second violation in five years is considered a gross misdemeanor and can bring penalties of one year in jail, $3,000 or both. But the cashiers aren’t the only ones facing consequences. Smith said those holding the licenses at offending establishments could face civil penalties or revocation of their license.
The hypocrisy of the City of Northfield profiting from the sale (albeit a paltry $5,000 per year) of an addictive, disease-causing drug to its citizens bothers me.
I wish those in a leadership position in Northfield who care about the health of its citizens, especially our youth, would pressure the City Council to stop.
- Members of the Mayor’s Youth Task Force (Pat Allen, Katherine Cooper, Ken Engstrom, Patty Gallivan, Luke Hasskamp, Sharon Henry, Joan Janusz, Mary Nelson, Susan Sanderson, Zach Pruitt, Kathy Sandberg.)
- Board members from the Healthy Community Initiative (Anne Meyer Ruppel, Barb Farmer, Beth Berry, Cathy Berger , Clarita Kell, Eric Lundin, Gary Smith, Hannah Puczko, Jim Blaha, Joe McGowan, Joy Riggs, Julie Bubser, Kathy Sandberg, Linda Oto, Lynn Vincent, Marnie Thompson, Mary Nelson, Scott Richardson, Shari Schreck, Tim Halverson, Zach Pruitt.)
- Youth members on the Mayor’s Youth Council (Ruth Amerman, Claire Carlson, Sam Dunnewold, Daniella Espinoza, Chris Frost, Josh Goettl, Ryan Hattie, Adrian Lazaro, Lindsay Marosi, Tom Pokorney, Sam Ruby, Brianna Spittle, Siri Thompsons, Yojin Yoon.)
- Members of the City of Northfield’s Hospital Board (Curt Swenson, Mike Allen, Dixon Bond, Terry Gilbertson, Peggy Hoffman, John Lundblad, Brett Reese, James Schlichting, Gina Washburn.)
- Youth board members of the Union of Youth (Scotty Barvir, Jena Fredrick, Ruth Amerman, Addy Payne, Zane Anway, Mike Kleve, Joey McGowan, Schuyler Huber, Kellen Kirchberg, Marie Fischer, Gerrit Duys, Andi Sison, Gus DeMann, Abe Henson, Andrea Lovoll.)
- Adult board members of the Union of Youth (Michael Blaha, David Bly, Jim Evans, Sarah Kaul, Mark Madson, Peter Prenzel-Guthrie, Zach Pruitt, Kiffi Summa, Ted Tuel, Alex Beeby.)
- Members of the Northfield School Board (Kari Nelson, Noel Stratmoen, Kathryn M. Hargis, Wendy Smith, Diane Cirksena, Paul Hager, Mike Berthelsen.)