Wayzata is a premier suburb located 11 miles west of downtown Minneapolis. With a population of 4,500 people, Wayzata is a tight-knit community which is known for its vibrant downtown and picturesque setting on Lake Minnetonka. A popular destination for visitors, Wayzata’s downtown is home to a number of specialty shops, boutiques, professional services, and restaurants.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Open letter to Hennepin County from Sheriff Stanek

From Sheriff Rich Stanek October 28, 2011

Law Enforcement Agencies across the country face challenges due to economic change. In 2008, the U.S. had 250 officers per 100,000 residents; in 2011 that number dropped to 184. According to a recent study, 30,000 law enforcement positions will go unfilled in 2012 due to cutbacks. The Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office already has eliminated 64 positions; we will have to reduce by 25 more full time employees, to meet the 2012 Budget proposed by Hennepin County Administration.

 Families, businesses, and other government agencies all are adjusting to limited resources. Staffing reductions also are the new reality for the Sheriff’s Office, and they will have a serious impact on the way we operate for years to come. Volunteers, technology, and collaborative and community‐ oriented policing are all strategies we’ve employed to minimize impacts due to staff reductions. But the current model for police service delivery is changing, and we will have to do things differently.

The 2012 reductions will most likely have the greatest impact on our Criminal Justice partners. Reductions in jail staffing may require closing a Housing Unit, leaving fewer beds for housing inmates arrested by our Police Department partners, and also may mean longer waits for fingerprinting and booking times for arrestees. Arresting officers may have to wait in line as we work to assist with fewer staff—keeping them from patrolling their cities. Reductions will mean longer turn‐around times when deputies are ordered by the courts to transport and guard inmates and patients in courtrooms and hospitals‐‐ which also means a slow‐down for court proceedings, increased lengths of stay for inmates, and longer times to trial. The loss of several Crime Lab Scientists mid‐year, when 2009 Stimulus Funds run out, will likely mean longer turn‐around times for evidence processing. Our Finance Division will no longer have staff to post foreclosures to the website.

Since mid‐year 2009, the Sheriff’s Office has activated new strategies to leverage taxpayer‐funded resources into force‐multipliers for our reduced staff. We have 125 trained Special Deputies that volunteer to work under the supervision of sworn officers, in 5 areas: Emergency Squad, Water Patrol, Mounted Patrol, Explorers and Mobile Amateur Radio Corps, and we have another 165 volunteers that work to provide community‐based assistance and counseling to Jail inmates. Volunteers contribute thousands of hours each year, and we rely upon them more and more as we make reductions in paid staff. We’ve implemented strategic management solutions: improving scheduling to reduce overtime, eliminating and consolidating some service areas, and cutting back on training and vehicle and equipment replacement schedules.

We’ve invested in cost‐conscious ways to be more effective in criminal investigations, through intelligence‐led policing, improved information sharing, and coordinating crimefighting collaboratives with our state, federal and local Police Department and County Attorney partners. Our investigators partner with Hopkins, Brooklyn Center, Richfield, Golden Valley, and Brooklyn Park investigators (just to name a few), to fight violent crime, detect and arrest drug traffickers, seize illegal weapons, and investigate gang shootings, and homicides and officer‐involved shootings.

We’re targeting resources to areas with the greatest need. Our deputies had 7500 contacts with residents and visitors as we provided 1400 hours of supplemental patrolling in the Downtown Safezones District during busy evening hours this summer. 25 HCSO Deputies responded to the Minneapolis Tornado in May. Deputies have responded to a record number of drownings, and the Crime Lab has responded to 206 death investigations in 2011. Throughout the year we worked to raise awareness and collect unwanted medicines to target prescription drug abuse, the second leading cause of accidental death in the nation (the first is traffic accident), and also more prevalent than cocaine and heroin use among our kids. And right now our Deputies must provide 24 hour security at the OccupyMN protests on the government plaza (at a cost of $200,000 for the first two weeks).

The Sheriff’s Office is leaner, smarter and more effective ‐‐in part due to reductions that prompted these improvements.

Yet, personnel, pensions, and health insurance costs, fuel and equipment costs, and food, mandated medical and prescription costs for inmates all continue to increase, and have more than absorbed the efficiencies and reductions we adopted so deliberately. And now we recognize that we can’t solve the problems in our 2012 Budget by ourselves, we need to engage the broader community and work in partnership.

The Sheriff’s Office will continue to work to find smarter and more effective ways to fulfill our responsibilities, and also meet the fair expectation of residents that we do all in our power to keep them safe. As the Sheriff’s Office is asked by the County Board of Commissioners to make even further cuts in 2012‐‐ and we shift and adapt the way we do our jobs‐‐it’s also important to be mindful: ensuring public safety and protecting the adults and children that live, visit or work in Hennepin County must always be the first duty of government.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Meet the Candidates for Wayzata School Board

Seven candidates filed during the August 2-16 filing period for four open seats on the Wayzata Public School board. asked the candidates a series of questions so you could make an informed decision.  A link below indicates that the candidate answered the questionnaire.

Candidate Roehl did not respond by the deadline.

Stay tuned to, your Wayzata School Board candidate leader.

School Board Voter Guide: Carter Peterson

What previous educational experiences do you have? Where did you go to high school and college? What kind of degrees have you obtained?
  • Tobe-Coburn School of Retail Management, New York, NY
  • Williams College, Williamstown, MA, B.A. in Psychology
  • Catlin Gabel High School, Portland, OR

I was fortunate to attend excellent schools and the advantages of that education motivated me to be actively involved in the schools as a volunteer when my own children’s K-12 years and long after they all graduated from Wayzata HS. I am used to high standards and high expectations and have always advocated for policies and programs that create opportunities for Wayzata students to excel at the highest levels.

What professional experience do you have?
  • Buyer and Group Sales Manager, Macy’s California, San Francisco, CA
  • Assistant Buyer and Dept. Manager, Woodward & Lothrop, Washington, D.C.
My professional business training in retailing has been helpful in board-level budgeting and financial matters, making results measurable, and also in simply evaluating trends.

What do you see as the greatest strengths in our district?
  1. People: Our students, parents & other family members, our faculty and staff, other community leaders and the taxpayers who support us financially. Everyone plays a role in making this a great district and I look forward to working with all of our stakeholders just as I have for the last 9-1/2 years.
  2. Sound financial management: Since the district emerged from its financial problems in the early 1990’s, the board and the administration have taken great care in planning and managing the district’s finances on both a short and long-term basis. I believe that we need to continue this culture of conservative financial management in order to preserve our operating flexibility in the face of future funding variability.
  3. High expectations: I have always advocated that we set the bar high with our curriculum and graduation standards, with our personnel and our financial management which stretches everyone to improve.
What do you see as the most pressing problem in our district?

Short-term, it is enrollment management and capacity planning.  We are closed to Open Enrollment which is a credit to the district’s quality and popularity but which presents other challenges.  In lieu of building another new elementary school to handle what might be a short-term surge, I favor adding some classroom capacity more broadly throughout the district.

Long-term, it is the evolving role of technology in K-12 education. I believe that balancing the costs and effectiveness of new technology in our curriculum and classrooms will be a major challenge. The decisions will require both financial prudence and boldness by the board, staff, students and our community. We need to get this right if we want to provide our students with a 21st century education. As Steve Jobs said at the end of his speech introducing the IPAD 2 in March of this year: “Technology alone is not enough. It’s technology married with liberal arts, married with humanities, that yields the results that make our hearts sing.”

What specials strengths do you believe you would bring to the School Board?
  • I’ve been privileged to serve on the School Board for 9 ½ years and during my tenure, I have served as Chair, Vice- Chair, Treasurer and Clerk. I have also chaired various board committees such as Citizen Financial Advisory Committee (CFAC), Facilities, Curriculum and Instruction and others.  My experience as a parent of three WHS graduates and as PTA/PTSO president for Gleason Lake, West Middle School and Wayzata High School has also aided my service on the board as I’ve watched how their academic experience at Wayzata have served them well in their young adult lives.
  • My early business training in retailing is also helpful in board-level budgeting and financial matters and also in simply evaluating trends. I was a strong supporter of the Board decision to require one of the highest course credits needed for graduation both in Minnesota and the nation. Those high standards were based on our long-term view of what students would need to be successful in the 21st century. 
What do you see as the School Board member's role and responsibility in the effective administration of schools?

Board service is a collaborative effort among all seven members.  Broadly-speaking, our job is to help the administration review and approve the long-term academic, administrative and financial objectives for the district and to monitor the results over time.  This process also includes listening closely to all stakeholders who have questions or suggestions for improving our schools.

My view is that school boards should set long-term goals and monitor the results rather than try to become an operating committee that supplants the proper day-to-day work of the administrative staff.  It’s a fine line and the Wayzata board has done a good job at this sort of governance in recent years thanks in great measure to our highly competent and award-winning staff.

Along the way, we deal with all of the more detailed financial, legal and other regulatory matters that by law require board oversight.  We represent the community’s overall interests to ensure that current and future students have the staff and facilities to prepare them with 21st century skills so that they can succeed in higher education, careers and life in a global economy.

If elected, what is the first issue you plan to address?

The Board’s first priority will be the finalization and implementation of our new Strategic Plan.

Anything else you would like to volunteer?

 I am proud of the quality of Wayzata schools and the many board-approved initiatives of the past decade.  It has been a privilege to serve for the past 9-1/2 years with other dedicated board members. I have also enjoyed working with our talented students, staff, parents, guardians and many community members. They are all partners in the success of Wayzata schools.  I would be honored to be re-elected to the Wayzata School Board on Tuesday, November 8th.

What is your website address?

School Board Voter Guide: Cheryl Polzin

What previous educational experiences do you have? Where did you go to high school and college? What kind of degrees have you obtained?

I graduated from F.J. Turner High School in Beloit Wisconsin and earned a Bachelor of Science Degree from the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point.  After earning my degree, my educational experiences have been through community education classes and by participating in community events, attending speaker events throughout the metro area and participating as a parent and volunteer with our school district, church and greater community.  I believe that lifelong learning is an opportunity and a necessity for an individual and for our society as a whole.  I have always regarded a strong public education system as the critical link in providing a stable and civil society governed by democracy.

What professional experience do you have?

Through high school, college and until I landed a "job within my field of study", I worked as a restaurant server, employing all the necessary organizational and "people" skills to succeed working with kitchen and restaurant staff as well as the general public, starting at an IHOP and working my way up to being a tableside Flambé server.

Before becoming a stay-at-home mom, I worked in purchasing at a contract design firm. Here I researched and specified product and suppliers, negotiated pricing packages and helped projects stay on schedule and within budget. Prior to this position, I was the Office Manager at a retail/contract lighting showroom in Minneapolis where I was responsible for all office staff, helped implement software to manage our business systems and was responsible for all office functions.

Of course my most difficult, yet most important and rewarding job is being a good Mom. For the last 15+ years I’ve been the COO and CFO of our household and have acted as liaison between our family and the school district and community. Technically, this doesn’t qualify as “professional experience” as suggested in the question, but I believe that this experience has taught me many skills while highlighting how imperative it is that our school district remains a model of excellence bringing a world class education to all learners progressing through our programs.

My wide range of professional skills, dedication to success of students and the district and commitment to work hard at whatever task is before me, provides a combination of attributes that will serve our community well as it is applied to the position of school board member.

What do you see as the greatest strengths in our district?

The Wayzata School district is fortunate to be experiencing steady or slightly growing student population.  Steady or growing student numbers, combined with careful and skillful financial planning keeps our district in good fiscal condition.  I believe that our schools are in high demand because of the stellar overall quality of the educational experience that our district provides to students and their families.  This comes from having a talented and dedicated staff, administration and board.  Parents and the community in general are also committed to supporting this district with financial support through local levies and by donating personal time and talents to myriad programs and volunteer opportunities.  As a board member, I will work tirelessly to maintain and build upon this combination of strong people, strong programs and keeping our fiscal house in order.

What do you see as the most pressing problem in our district?

Our most immediate need is to relieve over crowding in some elementary sites.  Our programs and staff cannot function at optimum levels if the current number of students remains too high in some buildings.  A forward-thinking, long-term solution must be agreed upon and implemented as quickly as possible without sacrificing quality decisions.  The other pressing issue is not necessarily a “problem” but is a constant concern that must be consistently considered: responsible fiscal management, especially in these challenging economic times.  Our district has excellent Financial Administrators as well as a committed Citizen Financial Advisory Committee who work diligently to keep our fiscal house in order.  I will support the continuation of our approach to solid, smart financial management.

What specials strengths do you believe you would bring to the School Board?

I have a strong combination of skills and experience:
  1. Three children in Wayzata schools (6th, 8th & 10th grades)
  2. Varied and sustained district leadership and committee membership experience (please visit my website for a complete list).
  3. Strong, collaborative relationships with administration, staff, parents, community members, district legislators and other members of committees upon which I serve.
  4. Solid understanding of legislative issues/process and how State action/policy affects our district.  
What do you see as the School Board member's role and responsibility in the effective administration of schools?

A strong board will work together to get and keep the right, great people in administrative positions and let them do their jobs.  Problems and concerns should be openly discussed and an agreed upon plan of action should be implemented by administration and staff.  A collaborative atmosphere of idea sharing and good communication between board, administration and staff is critical.  This “working hard together to improve our endeavor” approach is what I do.  I’ve forged many strong relationships with parents, staff, administration and district legislators over the years and I intend to continue to work hard to continue and strengthen those relationships. 

If elected, what is the first issue you plan to address?

I will first learn how I can best help to implement our district’s new Strategic Road Map which I believe is a guide to bringing our district to an even higher level of educational excellence.  I will also work hard to address the facilities use issue so that student population in our buildings is better distributed.  

Anything else you would like to volunteer?

My experience as citizen co-chair of the District Legislative Action Committee has allowed me to participate in and carefully observe the legislative process in St. Paul.  I have good working relationships with legislators who represent our district and understand how the many issues tacked at the State level are interconnected.  Having a solid understanding of the process and knowing how seemingly unrelated legislative decisions filter down and affect our schools is important.  I can bring this pragmatic and reasoned approach to the table and would be honored to serve as a board member of this excellent school district.

What is your website address?

School Board Voter Guide: Joan Curtiss

What previous educational experiences do you have? Where did you go to high school and college? What kind of degrees have you obtained?

I graduated from Edina West High School, and have a Bachelors of Science, Business Adminstration from University of Minnesota business school.

This educational background will be utilized as a foundation of my knowledge for the Wayzata School Board.

What professional experience do you have?

I have over 20 years of experience working at four different companies in the Twin Cities including work at General Mills and I am currently the Vice President, Human Resources at Waycrosse, Inc.  Waycrosse is located in Wayzata and at the Cargill Office Center.

My skills and experience working in a leadership role in the business community will be instrumental in the work necessary on the Wayzata School Board, from reviewing budgets, consensus building and driving solutions to difficult problems.

What do you see as the greatest strengths in our district?

The greatest strength are the collection of people in the district from the students, parents, staff, Superintendent and his administrative team, to other community members.

The key will be building and growing the effective partnership withing and between each of these groups for the best interest of all students and the community at large.

What do you see as the most pressing problem in our district?

The most pressing problem in our district is to finalize and implement the strategic road map so that future decisions are aligned with it.

The current Board may get this implemented, but the most difficult work is to make it an effective roadmap for future decisions. There will continue to be change in the district and to provide a world-class education to all students in the district there will have to be laser-focused and there will tough decisions ahead.

What specials strengths do you believe you would bring to the School Board?

I am bring a collection of strengths to the Wayzata School Board including:

  1. My 20 years of experience in a leadership role in business
  2. My role as a parent to 4 daughters who have successfully graduated from Wayzata schools including participating in 4 varsity sports (soccer, hockey, golf and tennis) and have been fortunate to go to 8 state tournaments and be part of a team that has won 2 state titles.
  3. My involvement in the community as a Site Council member, PTA Vice President and President, Senior Party Co-chair, Sunday school teacher and Confirmation Guide, Guardian ad litem
What do you see as the School Board member's role and responsibility in the effective administration of schools?

The Wayzata School Board member works for all members of the community and needs to work with each group effectively.  Specifcially, the Board makes policy and oversees the district's budget, curriculum, personnel and physical facilities.

With my experience in the community, as a parent and as a leader in the business community, I can be an effective listener and consensus builder to help bring the best ideas forward for the district.

If elected, what is the first issue you plan to address?

The first issue is to address the most pressing issue.  For now, I see that as the strategic roadmap implementation.  But as I talk more with parents, staff and other community members, there may be other pressing issues that emerge between now and January 2012.

Anything else you would like to volunteer?

I encourage everyone to vote November 8, 2011.  It is important to our community and school district to have the best School Board members.

I ask for your vote - it will be an honor to serve as a Wayzata School Board member.

What is your website address?

School Board Voter Guide: Gregory D. Baufield

What previous educational experiences do you have? Where did you go to high school and college? What kind of degrees have you obtained?

Graduated from Wayzata in 1975. Attended Augsburg College - Completed majors in Finance and Economics.

What professional experience do you have?

•Board member – International Education Center
•Former board member – Wayzata Public School District (11 years)
•Former head of Wayzata Youth Football (19 years)

During my years on the Board, I served in the positions of Chair, Vice Chair, Treasurer and Director. The board committees I served on were Finance, Superintendent Evaluation, Curriculum, Facilities, and several negotiation teams with the bargaining units. I also helped to create the original Citizens Technology Advisory Group.

I am employed as the Director of Business Development at TIES - an education technology collaborative located in St. Paul. I am in contact with school districts on a daily basis, and I am in school district buildings every day. My days are focused on what the future of education, and more specifically, technology in education, will look like particularly in the areas of Curriculum and Instruction and Operational Systems.

Currently, there are no board members that visit school districts throughout the state of Minnesota on an daily basis. Through my job, I see wonderful things going on in districts around the state that we should be doing here in Wayzata.

What do you see as the greatest strengths in our district?

We have a good school district. It is known statewide as being a district with high performing students and high achieving parents.

Good is the enemy of Great.

We need to move from Good to Great....some of the work we will be doing will be disruptive if we are going to create to proper instruction for 21st Century Learners.

We can wait for change to happen to the district or we can initiate it and lead. I believe we should lead.

What do you see as the most pressing problem in our district?

We need an effective Strategic Plan that will focus on students, their families and the needs of the citizens of Wayzata Independent School District #284.  The plan must focus on what we want the district to look like in 10 or 20 years.

The Board will craft a plan that provides for moving the district's instruction into the 21st Century.

What specials strengths do you believe you would bring to the School Board?

I have passion for education

I have Perspective - My mother graduated from Wayzata in 1953. I graduated from Wayzata in 1975. Three or our children have now graduated from this district. I understand the history but I know that we must now begin to reform our instructional and operational systems to meet the needs of 21st Century Learners.

I have Balance –The best board representation comes from a balance of talented men and women, from various backgrounds, that have a passion for education. The current board needs more balance.

What do you see as the School Board member's role and responsibility in the effective administration of schools?

1) Hire and Fire the Superintendent
2) Set policy that will guide the conduct of the district
3) Direct and Approve the District Budget
4) Approve the curriculum as required by state statue
5) Communicate with parents and other interested citizens on ho to work with district staff.
6) Represent community issues to the superintendent

I have performed in the school board role for 11 years....

If elected, what is the first issue you plan to address?

The district needs to begin to move forward.  We have been stuck in “neutral” for several years now.  We must reform the current industrial age education model.

I would like to see the district focused on building a Framework for 21st Century Learning (as outlined by the Partnership for 21st Century Skills) namely:
•Life and Career Skills
•Learning and Innovation Skills
•Information, Media and Technology Skills
•Core Subjects – Rigor

To do this we will need reform in the areas of:
•Standards and Assessments
•Curriculum and Instruction
•Professional Development
•And we will need to reform our learning environments
I short order, I would like to see every student in our district enjoy the benefits of a Personal Learning Plan. Other districts in the metropolitan area have already started to move in this direction.

Anything else you would like to volunteer?

I think that this district needs more men to serve on the school board that have an interest in community service and a particular interest in education.

What is your website address?

School Board Voter Guide: Linda A.Cohen

What previous educational experiences do you have? Where did you go to high school and college? What kind of degrees have you obtained?

Washburn High School, co-valedictorian; Wellesley College, graduated Phi Beta Kappa with a chemistry major; Master's degree in the History of Science from Harvard University; Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from the University of Minnesota. I think education can be life changing for young people--mine was--and I want to make sure that each Wayzata student has options and possibilities, based on a superb education.

What professional experience do you have?

I have been a teacher, administrator, chair of an extensive business-education partnership and then switching careers a psychologist--both therapist and working on organization development. I believe my extensinve experience in both education and psychology can bring expertise to the district and to the functioning of the board. I have first-hand knowledge of how important an effective teacher can be--and so will continue to encourage the outstanding professional develpment that our district already has.

What do you see as the greatest strengths in our district?

The greatest strength is perhaps the cooperation and collaborative approach of all the constituent groups:  parents and guardians, faculty and staff, administration and board, students--I will work tirelessly to see that those relationships continue.   Another great strength is our financial  stability despite difficult times, because of very prudent financial management by the board and administration--I'll work to continue that.

What do you see as the most pressing problem in our district?

Our greatest strength can become a weakness if we don't attend to it--so paying attention to all our constituents is very important.  We also need to address some facility issues, some buildings our at capacity.  We are looking at facilities now.

What specials strengths do you believe you would bring to the School Board?

I believe because of my life long interest in education--serving for close to 12 years on the Wayzata School Board and now also serving on the University of Minnesota Board of Regents, currently as Chair of the Board of Regents--that I bring a lot of experience, expertise, and a somewhat unique perspective around education--in combination with my professional background in education and psychology --and that I would add a broad and deep understanding of many aspects of education.  I would utilize them in my deliberations to make the Wayzata school district even stronger and more excellent than it already is.

What do you see as the School Board member's role and responsibility in the effective administration of schools?

It is a Board member's role to "govern" and not manange the district.  That means to set policy, strategic direction and emphasis, approve budget items and be financially responsible, to hire and evaluate the Superintendent.  It does not mean to run the operations of the district, but to encourage the very able leadership team to do that.  I think because of my experience on many boards that I clearly see the distinction between governance and management.

If elected, what is the first issue you plan to address?

Ways to make an excellent district even stronger.

Anything else you would like to volunteer?

It would be my great pleasure to continue to serve the Wayzata Schools and our community for another term and to utilize a lot of my educational knowledge. It is my goal to have each and every student in the Wayzata schools have an excellent education.

What is your website address?

School Board Voter Guide: Jay Hesby

What previous educational experiences do you have? Where did you go to high school and college? What kind of degrees have you obtained?

Attended Blake High School (class of 1976) and the University of Minnesota's Carlson School of Management (undergraduate accounting degree in 1981 and finance MBA in 1992). Educational experiences prepared me for successful career in the financial services industry and included both public and private exposure that uniquely shape my perspectives and ability to serve on the Wayzata School Board.
I was fortunate to attend excellent schools and the advantages of that education motivated me to be actively involved in the schools as a volunteer when my own children’s K-12 years and long after they all graduated from Wayzata HS. I am used to high standards and high expectations and have always advocated for policies and programs that create opportunities for Wayzata students to excel at the highest levels.

What professional experience do you have?

30 years of business experience in various finance and leadership roles. These experiences enabled me to provide financial, negotiation, and general and organizational management expertise to the district and community, while serving on the school board since 2008, and will continue if I'm re-elected in 2011.

What do you see as the greatest strengths in our district?

Outstanding student achievement, incredible parent and community support, passionate teachers and administrators, and prudent fiscal management. We enjoy positive momentum because of these areas of strength. If re-elected, I will help build upon these strengths and encourage our continuous improvement towards becoming one of the world's great primary and secondary learning communities.

What do you see as the most pressing problem in our district?

Avoiding complacency, managing capacity (i.e. strong enrollment demand with dynamic resident student and open enrollment flows) and aging facilities, and maintaining best practices in financial management. I will ensure that we adress these problems by recommending that we continue prudent finance management practices (e.g. conservative fund balance, CFAC), strategically invest in facilities/capacity, and remain focused on our core values and mission.

What specials strengths do you believe you would bring to the School Board?

Business experience, finance acumen,  willingness to collaborate, and deep-seated care for the Wayzata area community and schools. I will continue to use these strengths by giving time and energy to our work and expressing myself clearly and openly.

What do you see as the School Board member's role and responsibility in the effective administration of schools?

Board role is one of governance. It is the board's responsibility to hire the superintendent (empowering him/her to function as a the district's chief executive) and set policy and direction so administration can take appropriate actions to accomplish the mission.

If elected, what is the first issue you plan to address?

Prioritize facilities improvements.

Anything else you would like to volunteer?

Our district is currently in great shape. We enjoy unprecedented community support, have outstanding administrators and teachers, are as well positioned financially as any district in the state, and see remakable achievement and college outcomes from our students. My reason for seeking re-election is to build upon our current position of stength and press us forward into a new era of success and achievement at Wayzata Schools!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Wayzata Football 2011: Trojans 9, Eden Prairie 0

Trojan kicker Tyler Scott had 3 field goals on the evening. Wayzata Photography.
Your Wayzata Trojans Football team defeated the Eden Prairie Eagles at Wayzata Stadium Wednesday evening.  The Trojans moved up and down the field, in contrast to the Eagles who had almost no offensive success throughout the contest.  Read more about the Lake Conference Champion Wayzata Trojans and the march to State here: 3 field goals lift Trojans over Eden Prairie for Lake Conference Title

Monday, October 17, 2011

Trojans defeat Hopkins, up next Eden Prairie

Your Wayzata Trojans football team defeated the Hopkins Royals by a scored of 40-20 on Friday evening. Watch an interview with Head Coach Brad Anderson, and then watch the game in 25 minutes. Also, see all the photos of the game here.

Chris Pierson intercepts a Hopkins Royals pass. Wayzata Photography.

Dick Osgood: Time to Downsize Milfoil Harvesting

The Lake Minnetonka Conservation District (LMCD) is contemplating replacing a damaged harvester (the LMCD’s harvester fleet totals three harvesters).  The Lake Minnetonka Association, representing the interests of our members, believes replacing the third harvester is ill advised and asks the LMCD to not replace the harvester.

Over the past 12 years in this job, complaints from our members about the harvesting program have outnumbered all other concerns combined.  In addition, 93% of those involved in the five bay milfoil control project prefer the herbicide program over the harvesting program.  According to one commenter, “No comparison. Harvesting was a waste of money. The chemical treatment is superior in every way. St. Albans, is in all practical aspects, milfoil free.”

The Lake Minnetonka Association believes the harvesting program should be downsized because the need is diminished and other less costly, more effective options are available.

Harvesting had its day.  Initiated in 1989, harvesting was the most feasible option for controlling milfoil impacts.  But at its best, harvesting has limitations.  For example, the harvesting operation commences in mid- to late-June and ends in mid-August.  However, the boating season peaks around the Fourth of July, then declines – this offset is problematic because many areas do not receive relief until too late in the season.  In addition, the harvesters generate milfoil fragments, which wash to shore and become a maintenance headache for lakeshore owners (we know milfoil fragments are generated in other ways, but the harvesters add significantly to this).

The need for the harvesters has diminished substantially.  The five bays involved in the bay-wide herbicide treatments were selected because they were the worst milfoil bays.  As the harvesters do not now work in these areas, there is substantially less milfoil remaining to be harvested in the lake.  The total treated area in the five bays is over 600 acres, compared to the typical harvesting totals of 300 to 350 acres.

Less costly, more effective options are available.  For example, contact herbicides (different from those being used in the five bay program, but the same as are being used by hundreds of lakeshore owners under permit from the MN DNR) would cost about $250 per acre (harvesting is about $300 per acre, excluding depreciation) and have these advantages: a) they can be applied early in the season and last the entire season (in June, before milfoil surfaces), b) they are applied by professional, licensed commercial applicators, c) the program is flexible and scalable – if the need is lower, the costs are lower and d) they can be targeted to the precise areas in the lake to facilitate navigation.  Has contracting been explored?

Lake Minnetonka also has another invasive plant, Flowering rush, which can be spread by harvesters.  There is no plan in place to control Flowering rush, indeed there is not even a monitoring program in place.  We must get serious about managing these invasive plants.  Lake Minnetonka lacks a comprehensive management plan for milfoil, Flowering rush and other nuisance plants.

Harvesting in some form probably has a place on Lake Minnetonka.  However, milfoil is now being controlled in many of the areas previously requiring harvesting, so the need is greatly diminished.  Until Lake Minnetonka has a comprehensive management plan for invasive plants, replacing the harvester is premature and ill advised.

The LMCD’s role in milfoil management has evolved incidentally to their original purchase and operation of the harvesters 23 years ago.  Now, we question the LMCD’s ability to address the challenges of additional invasive plants as they lack staff expertise and sufficient financial resources.  We have supported an increased role for the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District (MCWD) and we hope they rise to this need.

The members of the Lake Minnetonka Association do not support the continuation of the harvesting program in it current form and we do support the comprehensive and aggressive management of milfoil and other invasive plants consistent with sound environmental science and management.

We ask the communities around Lake Minnetonka to get together and provide direction to the LMCD and the MCWD to coordinate the most effective management program for Lake Minnetonka.

OBITUARY: James Graner

Graner, James Andreas age 36, of Minnetrista, passed away unexpectedly on Oct. 14, 2011.

James is survived by loving wife, Corinna and daughter Emma; parents, James and Judy of Minnetrista; and sister, Melissa (Rhys) of Minnetrista; along with many other family members and friends.

Funeral service to be held Tuesday October 18 2 PM with visitation starting a 1 PM, at Calvary Lutheran Church of Golden Valley, 7520 Golden Valley Road.

Visitation to be held Monday (TONIGHT), October 17 5 PM - 8 PM at David Lee Funeral Home, 1220 E Wayzata Blvd in Wayzata. Private interment.

David Lee Funeral Home

Wayzata 952-473-5577

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

EDITORIAL: Municipalities should not promote businesses, regardless of cause

Recently, and to the dismay of many in the Wayzata community, some City Staff and and a few Council Members began promotion of a Facebook contest to benefit Partners in Preservation in exchange for $5,000 and the opportunity to win more funds if it helped to guide our behavior by 'liking' an American Express funded charity.  Regretfully, also promoted the contest at the request of City Staff.

Official newsletter from City of Wayzata
promoting American Express, Partners
in Preservation, and Facebook.
The promotional message featuring American Express and their corporate do-gooding was placed on the City of Wayzata's official website, and forwarded as a press release on two separate occasions on official City of Wayzata letterhead.  The most outrageous infraction in my opinion was the banner hung on the Wayzata Depot advertising the contest on Facebook, Partners in Preservation, and American Express.

Municipalities are in the business of sanitation, utilities, land usage, housing, and transportation.  Accepting funds in exchange for advertising dollars is not the business that the City of Wayzata should be engaged in, because the tax payers should not have to bear any expense to promote businesses.  No staff time, no email resources, no letterhead / graphic design expense, no television time, etc.  There are those who will say that this is no big deal, and that this kind of thing should be tolerated.  Or, that business pay higher taxes and should therefore receive greater benefit than the citizens.  I don't agree.

City of Wayzata's website as of 10/11/2011.
You see, the problem is that this is part of an overall trend for government and educational systems to promote business via advertising to help fund themselves.  Wayzata's football team played at Edina last Thursday evening and on one end of the field was a giant LCD screen advertising sports apparel and higher learning opportunities, with a happy go lucky reminder that ad dollars help to support Edina Public Schools.

Ad dollars that are spent on government and educational channels are taken out of the private market, and not spent on print, mail, broadcast, or internet mediums that are controlled by private enterprise. Further, there is a conflict of interest by the City as it takes money in exchange for influence over it's own citizens.

At this time, on the home page of the City of Wayzata's website and in it's current edition of the Portal (two total pages of communication), there are no less than 15 businesses / non-profits / charities or programs outside of City services mentioned by name:

  • Park Nicollet
  • Breast Cancer awareness
  • Facebook
  • American Express
  • National Trust for Historic Preservation
  • Partners in Preservation
  • Wayzata Chamber of Commerce
  • IOCP
  • Wayzata Wine & Spirits
  • Wayzata Bar & Grill
  • Minnesota Municipal Beverage Association
  • Wayzata Weekends
  • Boo Blast
  • Twitter
  • Memorial Blood Center
  • United States Post Office
  • Randy's Sanitation
Some of these organizations claim to have influence and indeed lobby for preferential treatment from the City.  Others are City run monopolies and it could therefore be argued that mentioning them on the City's website is unnecessary.  While one could argue the merits of each and explain away all mentions of non-profits, businesses, and programs, collectively it is difficult to ignore.  

Press release from City of
Wayzata featuring Partners
in Preservation, Facebook,
and American Express.
The message coming from City Hall is our citizens, our government website, and our government buildings are available for advertisements to the highest bidder, so long as we can get a new roof for the Depot.  Will we see City Hall plastered with McDonald's banners to fix our plumbing?  Motor vehicle department with Village Chevrolet ads to pay the electric bill?  Pizza delivery ads on Wayzata squad cars to help pay for routine maintenance? 

Contrast this to the mentions of businesses and non-profits on the City of Minnetonka's website and eight page newsletter, (United Health Group, Minnehaha Creek Watershed District, and Gotta Go Gotta Throw) and the comparison is plain for all to see.  Promotion of Facebook and non-profits or businesses needs to be toned down substantially in the City of Wayzata's communications.  Organizations that lobby the City should not be promoted by the City in it's communications.  That is as big a conflict of interest as there is--and the equivalent of seeing an ad for Halliburton on the White House letterhead, website, and lawn while the President promotes the benefit of offset expenses to the American taxpayer.

If we take away the money component from the equation, how does a business get promoted by the City of Wayzata on it's website and newsletter?  Business owners all over town would like to receive a free plug at taxpayer expense.  

Have a different take?  Let the Wayzata community know in the comment box below.

Monday, October 10, 2011

WMS teacher wins 2011 Milken Award for Minnesota

Eighth grade teach Seth Brown wins the 2011
Milken Award. Submitted photo.

Seth Brown, an eighth grade math teacher at West Middle School, was presented with the 2011 Milken Award for the state of Minnesota at a surprise ceremony on October 10.

Brown is one of a select few teachers honored nationally with the award, which includes a $25,000 prize. The award was presented by Milken Family Foundation Senior Vice President Dr. Jane Foley, who traveledfrom Santa Monica, California to present the award October 10. Often called the Oscars of teaching, the Milken Awards was developed in 1987 to recognize outstanding teachers and encourage young people to enter the profession.

Thursday, October 06, 2011

Wayzata Football 2011: Trojans 28, Edina 6

Your Wayzata Trojans (6-0, 2-0) rolled over the Edina Hornets (3-3, 1-2) tonight in Lake Conference action.  Trojans QB Nick Martin ran for passed for two and ran for a third touchdown in the effort.  Wide receiver Ethan Zeidler caught two passes during the game.

For video highlights, interviews, photos and more, visit

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

OBITUARY: Barbara Jean Anderson

Anderson, Barbara J. Barbara has finished the final chapter of her life. She passed away on October 4th at the age of 72.

She was predeceased by her husband, Jerry and her son, Steven, her parents, Bill and Betty Meyer and very special twin sister, Beverley.

She is survived by her son, Jerry "Snoop" and Liz Anderson; her grandchildren, Jerry "the King" and Marin Anderson, Keri (Anderson) and Jeremy Pollock and Chase Anderson. She also had 5 great grandchildren, Cole, Sadie, Carter, Floyd and Leo; and many lifelong friends.

She touched many people's lives and was blessed with an incredible circle of friends and family. Born and lived in Minnesota for much of her life. She graduated from Robbinsdale High School in 1957 and married Jerry in 1959. She raised 2 boys, worked full time and still made time for friends, functions with her husband at the Shrine Temple, the Ladies Auxilliary of the Courage Center plus the Guthrie Theater.

After the untimely passing of her husband and son in 1992 she started a new chapter in her life and moved to the Phoenix valley of Arizona. During that period in her life she enjoyed the warmth of the Arizona sun and the continual visits from family and friends. She had recently come home to see family and friends and finished the final chapter here in Minnesota.

A memorial service will be 4:00 PM, with visitation starting at 3:00 PM on Friday, October 7th at the David Lee Funeral Home, 1220 East Wayzata Blvd in Wayzata.

Memorials can be made to the Animal Humane Society, the Courage Center or donor's choice.

David Lee Funeral Home
Wayzata 952-473-5577

Discover Freemasonry event scheduled for October 15, 2011

The Wayzata Masons are holding an open house for interested parties to learn more about the organization.  The event is scheduled for Saturday October 15th, 2011, from 10AM - 3PM  at the Wayzata Masonic Lodge located at 407 East Lake Street.


Robert Miller indicated via an email, "October 15th is Lodge Open House Date in the state of MN and lodges around the state will be conducting open houses.  The public are invited in to see the lodges, meet the members, enjoy lunch and learn about the world’s oldest and largest fraternity."

Information and activities will include:

- What is Freemasonry?
- Minnesota Masonic Charities
- Family and kids events
- Picnic lunch
- Tours of the Lodge

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Public Safety Open House scheduled for October 10, 2011

Wayzata Police and Fire will hold a Public Safety Open House on Monday, October, 10, 2011 in front of the Wayzata Fire Station from 4:00 to 7:00 pm.

  • Fire Trucks on Display
  • Police Car on Display
  • Fire Safety House
  • McGruff the Crime Dog
  • Fire Hats
  • Police Canine 5:30 – 6:00 pm
  • Fire /TetraKO Demo - 6:30 pm.
  • Hennepin County Water Patrol
  • Hot Dogs and Chips
  • Lake Minnetonka Emergency Response (S.W.A.T.)
  • Face Painter
  • North Ambulance

Wayzata Police & Fire
Public Safety
Open House
Monday October 10, 2011
4:00 pm – 7:00 pm
600 Rice Street East

Saturday, October 01, 2011

Wayzata Football 2011: Trojans 35, Minnetonka Skippers 7

It was a tale of two halves of football tonight as your Wayzata Trojans (5-0) defeated the Minnetonka Skippers (4-1) by scoring 22 unanswered points in the third quarter.  Read the whole write-up and watch our videos here:

Stay tuned to your Wayzata retains the Bay Bell 7 out of the last 8 year leader.