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Progressive Politics in Minnesota, the Nation, and the World

Ladies & Gents, Zellers Will Now Fix The Sex Offender Program

Category: Kurt Zellers
Posted: 11/14/13 01:09, Edited: 11/14/13 01:10

by Dave Mindeman

Good news everybody! Rep. Kurt Zellers will now be able to fix the Minnesota Sex Offender Program. Governor Dayton has halted all releases and procedures until the legislature can review and recommend on how to proceed.

Lashing out at what he called the "political circus" surrounding the proposed release of a violent serial rapist from the Minnesota Sex Offender Program, Gov. Mark Dayton ordered state officials to suspend future discharges until the Legislature reviews the issue.

There you go, Rep. Zellers. Take the reins. Show us that leadership that has been so sorely lacking.

Take this problem and show us how it is done.

I expect that you will make your recommendations to the full legislature when the next session starts. After all, you are the answer man, are you not?

Rep. Zellers, the ball is in your court. The state is awaiting your wealth of knowledge and expertise.
comments (1) permalink

Kurt Zellers: Leader? No. Cheap Shot Artist? You Betcha

Category: Kurt Zellers
Posted: 11/11/13 00:50

by Dave Mindeman

Kurt Zellers criticized Governor Dayton for a "lack of leadership" in the proposed release of a sex offender.

Trouble is...it is Zellers' lack of leadership that has put Minnesota into this fix.

We have a problem with procedures on sex offenders. We have jail cells filling up with people involved in this type of criminal behavior and we have no logical plan to resolve their sentencing.

We don't have a fool proof system that tells us when they can return to society (if at all) but we can't keep them locked up forever -- it is not an offense designated for a lifetime sentence. How we resolve this is going to be a long term issue and it will require leadership.

Zellers isn't providing it.

Sure, its easy to say keep them locked up. Nobody is comfortable with releasing a known sex offender back to society. But if they have served the designated sentence, how can we continue to hold them indefinitely?

Zellers didn't offer any solutions - he just took the easy politically expedient method of criticizing the system. A system that he accepted and did not change with when he had the chance as Speaker of the House.

Governor Dayton called him on it when Zellers made his oh so public announcement of how Dayton was going to let this person back on the street. Dayton's chief of staff stated it this way in a letter:

The law also specifies procedures and criteria for the consideration of his eventual release into a controlled and carefully supervised setting. This law and its procedures were also left untouched by then-Speaker Zellers. In fact, after both DFL and Republican Senators voted last spring to make changes recommended by an expert panel, and the House DFL Caucus indicated its willingness to proceed with bi-partisan support, Rep. Zellers' Republican Caucus adamantly refused to support any of those changes.

Yes, Attorney General Lori Swanson can challenge that release. She has the legal authority and probably should make certain that all avenues have been properly vetted.

But Dayton is not arguing with the Attorney General.....he is only letting the recommendations of the review board move ahead. That is not a "lack of leadership"....that is following the law which the legislature put on the books. A law that Speaker Zellers wouldn't touch or "lead" on when he had the chance.

Zellers likes to use the "cheap shot". It's his style. He wouldn't lead on the Vikings Stadium and he wouldn't lead on the sex offender issue. All Zellers can do, I guess, is stand aside and criticize others when they make the tough decisions.

He doesn't seem to be able to make any of those tough ones himself.
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Zellers ="Contract Overstepped the Bounds" -That's A Laugh

Category: Kurt Zellers
Posted: 08/13/12 22:48, Edited: 08/13/12 22:49

by Dave Mindeman

Speaker of the House Kurt Zellers thinks that the contract that Governor Dayton negotiated with state employees "overstepped the bounds".

Overstepped the bounds. Hmmmmmm....

The real cost factor come from MMB:

An official with Minnesota Management and Budget says Zellers is incorrect when it comes to the cost of the contracts. He said the expected increases were already factored into the current state budget. He said agencies would have to cover any added costs within their existing budgets. MMB says it will cost the state $13 million more if the new contracts are approved.

Now I am sure that Kurt Zellers will have a higher figure because House Republicans have their own type of math not taught in any known form of education; but no matter....Zellers has to make his cost comparisons against his responsibility for these items.....

1) State Shutdown. The shutdown of State Government was the Republican legislature's fault. Granted, the costs that resulted were much lower than expected, but I think it is safe to assume that when all the construction lawsuits are finished, it will be north of that $13 million figure.

2) Voter ID. Republicans put this crazy amendment on the ballot to fix a phantom problem and when all is said and done, the Minnesota taxpayers will pay more. Ramsey County estimates were put at $1.7 million per cycle. Hard to calculate those costs statewide...but I think we can safely put it past $13 million.

3) Vikings Stadium. Zellers will try to pass this off on the Democrats (who did bring most of the votes), but Zellers is equally culpable because he allowed it to come to the floor. It is becoming more evident that the gambling revenue source is not going to be adequate for payment and we may end up directly paying taxpayer general fund money to make up the difference. And if that happens it will surpass the $13 million figure.

4) Interest on School District Borrowing. Zellers and his legislative cohorts shifted the school payments and the delay has caused school districts to borrow money to keep budgets current. Which also means they pay interest on that borrowing. Judging by the multi-million dollar numbers required, I think we can safely assume that again, we will be north of $13 million.

And I have to mention.... although it has not gotten close to $13 million (yet), the Senate has also tacked on a bill to the taxpayer for the Brodkorb lawsuit.

So you can understand my skepticism about Zellers crying foul over a contract with state employees that give them a mere 2% raise with increased out of pocket health care expenses.

Come to think of it....it's laughable.
comments (1) permalink
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