Tag Archives: Mark Taylor

Should the City wait till March to begin the process for hiring a police chief?

Northfield Safety CenterWith the Jan. 4th departure of Northfield Public Safety Director/Police Chief Mark Taylor (see the Dec. 28 rehash of the Dec. 6 story in the Nfld News), the Northfield City Council needs to decide if it should wait till the results of a fire services study by Emergency Service Consulting International (ESCI) are delivered in March. (See the Nov. 30 Nfld News Study will look at consolidating Northfield area fire services; also the June 12 2012 City Council meeting packet for background.)

The Dec. 18 Fbo Daily News editorial urges the City to wait:  Let’s see the results of the fire study before acting on Northfield Public Safety director

Fast forward two years and now the opportunity of further collaboration and sharing of services may be available, depending upon the result of the fire services study. If the study indicates consolidation/collaboration is not only possible, but recommended, maybe a regional fire services director versus a public safety director is the answer. With an open position as yet undefined, that’s a possibility. Perhaps the study will suggest such collaboration would not work. The new city council will then have the opportunity to review the post, especially considering the strides the fire department has made in improving its bookkeeping and operations.

Or is having the best possible police chief more important to the City than whatever secondary fire-related role might be included with the position? Are there downsides to waiting 4 months or longer to having a permanent police chief?

Attorney and Parks board member David Hvistendahl: 3-minute mashup of trash-talking Northfield City Hall

David Hvistendahl David Hvistendahl David Hvistendahl David Hvistendahl Roger Schroder and David Hvistendahl
While listening to archived Law Review radio shows on KYMN recently, I noticed that Attorney David Hvistendahl, a member of the Northfield Park & Rec Advisory Board (PRAB), was particularly disparaging of the Northfield City Council, Northfield City Administrator Tim Madigan, and Northfield Safety Center Director and Police Chief Mark Taylor.

Here is a compilation of some of these remarks, all rolled together into a single 3-minute audio clip.

If you have trouble with the above audio player, try playing and/or downloading this MP3.

Northfield Fire Department under fire: Consultant issues critical report

In the packet for next week’s Council Work Session is a Northfield Fire Department Operations Review and Risk Management Assessment (PDF) of the Northfield Fire Department by a consultant hired by the City earlier this year after an OSHA inspection raised issues. Public Safety Chief Mark Taylor wrote in his intro to the Council:

Northfield Fire Department Operations Review and Risk Management AssessmentThe City Council is being asked to receive the attached report that is a result of an in depth overview of city fire department operations.

There will be some future action items where the council will be requested to make fire department operational changes. That formal request will come at a future city council meeting.

The Nfld News has this story in today’s paper:  Report: Fire Department not complying with state, federal regs:

A report issued this week could forever change the Northfield Fire Department. In the 21-page document, consultant Michelle Soldo found that the department failed to meet federal Occupational Health & Safety Administration standards regarding the establishment of a fire department, its structure as well as its training schedule.

Soldo found 19 other areas of concern dealing with a lack of Standard Operating Procedures, governance, selection of the fire chief and departmental leadership, physical agility, hiring, performance reviews, compensation, discipline, record-keeping, facility maintenance and use, space needs and equipment maintenance.

City of Northfield has no plan to make flood information flow

I discovered over the weekend that the Northfield News did file a story about the Feb. 28 flood preparedness public  meeting.  For some reason, it’s not on their website.

NFld News: City hears calls for more information during floodsWhile city leaders want residents to take precautions now, property owners want the city to give them more information before and during future flood events. "Where can we get accurate information?" asked Alex Beeby, who works at the Just Food Co-op on South Water Street.

Others who attended the meeting were critical of what the saw as the city’s inability to share necessary information with property owners along the river during last September’s flood.

And while city leaders, including Public Safety Director Mark Taylor and Tim Madigan understood residents concerns, disseminating real-time information during a crisis, they said, can be a challenge. The city will connect with local media outlets, said Taylor, and update its website as time allows.

City of Northfield spring flood preparedness public meetingI spoke at the meeting, too, pointing out that the City’s new flood preparedness information site is not set up for facilitating near-real time information flow. There’s no RSS feed, no email signup list, no blog. They don’t plan to use Twitter or Facebook. It’s a 1999 style web site, chock full of information and links but not set up at all to allow residents and local media to help new information flow virally through the social media landscape. City mothers and fathers don’t seem to understand that 1) the City is its own information channel; and 2) that its audience has audiences. It was more than a little ironic that the notice for that Feb. 28 public meeting was NOT posted to the City’s own flood preparedness page.

Straight River at Faribault 03.21.11It doesn’t appear that we’ll experience severe flooding this spring. But who knows?

After the rain this weekend, the Straight River was near 10 feet in Faribault at midnight, the second highest level in the past decade, according to the Sunday Faribault Daily News.  (See the U.S. Geological Survey real-time data site for the Straight River.)

A winter storm is a possibility this week.  Heavy thunderstorms in April could change things in a hurry.

Why not prepare now to make rear real-time flood information flow?

Police Association golf tournament has career impact

Sheena Basness, Community Service Officer with the Northfield Police Department, alerted me about this year’s Police Association Golf Tournament (4-person best-ball scramble), held on Monday at the Northfield Golf Club.

I arrived just in time to watch Northfield Police Chief Mark Taylor (blue shirt) compete in the putting contest.  He pretty much sucked and is reportedly considering keeping his day job.

Northfield Police Chief Mark Taylor, about to miss again Sheena Basness, Northfield Community Service Officer Sheena Basness, Northfield Community Service Officer Northfield Police Association golf tournament Roster, Northfield Police Association golf tournament

A new strategy on the search for Brittney Landsverk

Workers opening a bypass at the Ames Mill Dam Workers opening a bypass at the Ames Mill Dam Workers opening a bypass at the Ames Mill Dam
City of Northfield workers opened a bypass at the Ames Mill Dam this morning, lowering the level of the Cannon River by two feet.  Police Chief Mark Taylor indicated that the dam in Faribault will then be used to block the water there, all in an attempt to lower the river level between the two cities in preparation for a weekend search for the body of Brittney Landsverk.

Brittney Landsverk memorial at Hwy 3 and Cty Rd. 29 Brittney Landsverk memorial at Hwy 3 and Cty Rd. 29
I drove by the intersection of Hw3 and Cty Rd. 29 yesterday, near where the accident happened.

Take it to the Box: Rice County’s Medication Safety Program launches

In last week’s Friday Memo, Northfield Police Chief Mark Taylor announced the new Rice County Medication Safety Program named Take it to the Box.

Griff Wigley takes a bottle of Oxycodone to the Box; Nothfield Police Chief Mark Taylor approves Northfield Safety Center Take it to the Box poster   
I had a bottle of Oxycodone from my 2008 rotator cuff surgery that I never used so I was eager to get rid of it today, given the prevalence of theft from household medicine cabinets that contribute to the drug abuse problem. (Note that any pharmaceuticals can be placed in the Box. See, for example, last week’s environmental news about the problem of feminized male fish in the Mississippi River, "a problem linked to women’s birth control pills and other hormone treatments.")

Mary Nelson, member of the Mayor’s Task Force on Youth and Alcohol and Drug Use Chief Taylor cited the efforts of Mary Nelson, a member of the Mayor’s Task Force on Youth and Alcohol and Drug Use, for her work on this program.

Take it to the box- A prescription drug disposal program will start on Tuesday September 22, 2009. This program will feature two drop boxes in Rice County. One will be at the Northfield Police Department and the other at F aribault P.D. The public will be able to come to the police station and place their unused, unneeded prescription drugs in a drop box in the police station lobby. This is an anonymous program encouraging person(s)  to remove their name from labels, leaving the drug name to aid us in safe disposal. Two of the main goals of this program are; safe disposal will impact/reduce opportunities for drugs falling into the wrong hands, leading to drug abuse. Secondly, safe disposal ensures drugs do not end up in landfills, city water, etc. having an environmental impact. The box will be available during all hours.

This project was a large undertaking that took the cooperation and hard work of many organizations. They include: Rice County Chemical Health Coalition, Northfield Healthy Community Initiative (HCI), Northfield Hospital, Faribault Police, Northfield Police, Northfield Mayor’s Youth Task Force on Alcohol and Drug Abuse, and the Rice County Drug Task Force. A special thank you to Northfield resident Mary Nelson, who contributed countless hours on this project.

MTF joins the blogosphere; co-sponsors tonight’s event on the impact of drugs on athletic performance

mtf-sshot The Northfield Mayor’s Task Force on Youth Alcohol and Drug Use (MTF) has a new website and it features a blog with an RSS feed, natch.

John Underwood MTF is a co-sponsor of tonight’s presentation at the Northfield High School auditorium titled Pure Performance: The impact of alcohol or drug use on athletic performance by John Underwood, President and Founder of the American Athletic Institute.

Listen to the audio of KYMN’s Jeff Johnson interviewing Northfield High School Activities Director Tom Graupmann and Northfield Police Chief Mark Taylor last week about the program. Graupmann and Taylor also had a commentary in the Aug. 14 Nfld News titled Pure performance: A message for Northfield.

Brent Setterstrom The Brent Setterstrom Memorial Fund is providing financial support for the event.  Brent graduated from Northfield High School in 1994 and died last December. His obituary Guest Book is still online where "You may leave your condolences or share memories…"