Moderator John Hansen’s notes:
Next Saturday is a 2nd Saturday so there will be no meeting of the Dexter Forum which means that you all can attend the grand opening of the new, improved Dexter United Methodist Church. There are events from 9 to 4 with the ceremonial ribbon cutting scheduled for 12:30. Pastor Matt Hook personally delivered the invitation.
Our first topic was a continuation of the discussion about the challenges our local units of government face as they deal with the regulation of marijuana businesses under the new law. A majority of the voters want the use of marijuana to be legal (that doesn’t mean that a majority want to use it – they just don’t want it to be a crime- but the same majority doesn’t necessarily want to live next door to a dispensary. This is why we are grateful for the thoughtful people we have elected to struggle with these decisions.
Pedestrian safety was our next topic. Sometimes issues just pile up on top of one another. We are grateful for our newly improved roads and better traffic flow. We are encouraging our kids to walk to school when practical. The kids need to cross the roads where folks are going faster and faster. Crossing guards, lights and signage are needed. Bridges and tunnels were discussed. The responsibility is shared by the schools, the city and the road commission – all of whom were represented in the room today. We also had concerned parents and pediatricians. We don’t necessarily try to solve problems at the Forum but we do attempt to develop a better understanding. We all did agree that the drivers of the cars hold primary responsibility and none of the proposed remedies will work if drivers ignore them. (Check out the recent articles in We Love Dexter.com and the Sun Times News for more information on this topic.)
There was some moaning and groaning about the impact of a lame duck legislature in it’s dying hours. There was nothing like this two years ago because the state remained under one party rule but with the impending change brought on by our new governor there were (by one count) 340 bills considered in the lame duck session. Not all reached the governor and he did veto 55 of them but some things got through without much of a dose of sunshine. Yes, the other side would have if they could have but not all states have lame duck periods. In some states new folks just take over the day after the election.
The next meeting of the Dexter Forum will be on Saturday, January 19, 2019 at 8:30 AM at the Dexter Wellness Center on Baker Road. Topics, as usual, will be determined by those in attendance.
The Dexter Forum is supported by the Dexter Wellness Coalition as part of the 5 Healthy Towns initiative to “help connect with others in healthy ways”. The purpose of the Forum is to create an opportunity for interested women and men to gather to discuss important issues facing our community. All are welcome on a drop-in basis. The group meets on the first and third Saturdays of the month.
The group is moderated by Karl Fink and John Hansen.