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Letter to the editor: Nightmare in small claims court; support for joining National League of Cities

Learning more for Hudson: Let's join the National League of Cities


The newly formed Hudson Inclusion Alliance (HIA) has gathered for several months now. All of us have been meeting new Hudson neighbors who come from both Democratic and Republican parties, different faiths, and traditional and nontraditional Wisconsin origins. We are all people who support Hudson as a welcoming community for cultural diversity and inclusion.

At our very first meeting, the participants of the Hudson Inclusion Alliance asked to take stock and learn more about the things the Hudson community has done and is currently doing to become a more inclusive community. We know that there will also be challenges, but it's important to learn about the full range of perspectives that impacts a diverse welcome. We have been asking to meet with Hudson institutions that want to share their observations about how they experience inclusion. If you are a part of a Hudson organization, we hope that you will invite a pair of our HIA members to participate in an informative and helpful discussion.

The value of learning is at Hudson Inclusion Alliance's core. The HIA wants to provide resources that will increase understanding and knowledge through shared experiences across our country. We are a group that wants to take action and have studied the benefits offered by the National League of Cities. This group helps its member cities learn from one other. They provide multiple programs for fiscal advancement, including a grant acquisition program. We've also taken special notice of their Racial Equity and Leadership Program. The NLC provides staff and network to help cities struggling with diversity questions and they have a successful track record with cities of every size.

The Hudson Inclusion Alliance is committed to providing helpful resources to the City of Hudson. We stand behind the good work of the NLC ( and are willing to pay for Hudson's first year of membership with the organization. If you want learn more about us and help our group achieve diversity goals for Hudson, please visit our website at

We are planning to do good things, and we know you are too.

Tony Bol


Hudson benefits from joining National League of Cities


The Hudson Inclusion Alliance is offering to pay for membership in the National League of Cities (NLC). Our concerns are not unique and we see opportunities in learning from others. Joining the NLC is a positive step towards improving access to educational resources and learning best practices from other cities.

Some of the recent topics include: Opioid crisis response, addressing transportation issues, educational topics on the recently passed Federal Tax bill and resources to address being an inclusive community in a pro-active way.

Hudson city leaders and staff can benefit by using the resources available through the NLC and by networking with other members. For example, there is a national conference on creating effective after school programs which is being held in St. Paul this summer.

The NLC has been around since 1924. This nonpartisan group is supported by major companies.

For example, Walmart, which has a very diverse employee and customer base, recently contributed $1.5 million to NLC to aid in after school programs to aid low income families.

The annual membership for cities of our size is $1,500 and will be fully funded in the first year by small donations made by members of the Hudson Inclusion Alliance. Our members see benefit in participating in the NLC to assist our community in providing essential services to our changing city. More information on the National League of Cities, visit

You can learn more about the Hudson Inclusion Alliance and our meetings by visiting our website at You'll find information on what we stand for and inspirational, positive messages on our Facebook page. We believe that everyone in our community is essential to our success and deserves to have a safe, welcoming home in Hudson.

Kerry Geurkink


Nightmare in small claims court


If a little knowledge is a scary thing, then the St. Croix County Courthouse is one of the scariest places on the planet. The two-year nightmare I have experienced in Small Claims Court attempting to extract damages from the Hudson Town Board has lead me to rethink this justice for all thing.

The Hudson Town Board has done everything the good people of Hudson Township's money can buy to keep me from having my day in court. Chairman Johnson and the five dwarfs have spent tens of thousands of your tax dollars on legal fees defending a small claims action. Who does that? They know if I ever get a chance to tell my story they will be exposed for the toe jam they are.

Judge Vlack would not even give me a court date. In small claims, that's all there is. An initial appearance and if time a trial. Most cases are filed and determined within a month. I'm going on my 24th month. It's hard to take direction from a person who only qualifies for half the rides at Disneyland. Honestly though, I think Judge Vlack is doing the best he can.

Then there is Supervisor Foster. An anomaly that has to be experienced. No words can describe what I have come to affectionately call "The Foster Show." P.T. Barnum would crawl through a football field of Tom Thumbs dung to acquire this attraction.

Oh! And the new doggy park by the ball fields, it works. I saw my first dog there last week.

John Windolff

Town of Hudson

Ignore April elections at your own peril


My property taxes have gone up almost $1,000 in four years. And if the very liberal county and city boards have their way, taxes will continue to go up until many of us will be forced to sell our homes and move. I'm not sure what angers me more; the fact that one socialist project after another is overwhelmingly approved or the fact that you-the-taxpayers are silent.

I attended the Administration Committee meeting of the St. Croix County Board last week. Very few people showed up and nobody spoke as board members spent our money. Whether it is millions for highway maintenance, bike paths and walking trails, transportation, or the beginning of a slippery slope for a living wage for those who contract with the county, it never stops. We've already been slammed with the increase which came from the school referendum. I can only assume those who vote for tax increases are able to afford them. Am I wrong?

It is not too late to stop the living wage. Isn't that just another name for economic justice? How will the bidding process be affected with a living wage mandate? The only winner here is the employee.

According to Tom DeWeese at the American Policy Center, "These bonds between government and private [businesses] are a double-edged sword. They come armed with government's power to tax [and] the government's power to enforce policy..." Further, "the immediate losers, of course, are the property owners. But other citizens are losers too. Communities...and...voters...lose control of their government."

As Margaret Thatcher said, "The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people's money." Ignore April local elections at your own peril.

Spoiler alert: They also want to discuss climate change.

Pat Sabin


They rob the bank!


That's right folks, Trump and the Republican-controlled House and Senate just rob the National Treasury, an unconscionable theft of gigantic proportions. The hypocrisy staggers the imagination. This group of so called Conservatives who screamed about the national debt when President Obama was in charge just increase it by an estimated $1.4 trillion. Same thing is going to happen that happened after the Republican/Bush tax cuts of 2001 and 2003. Taxes which were summarized as the (biggest transfer of wealth from the middle class to the rich) until this money grab.

Here is what is going to happen.

1. Say goodbye to big infrastructure spending as Tweeted!

2. Ramp up inflation, higher cost of energy, and everything else.

3. China will continue eating our lunch on outsourcing, only Tweets!

4. There will be no significant change in the outrageous cost of healthcare, only more Tweets!

5. Cities and towns across the country will receive less and less help from the federal and state governments for maintaining roads and services. Big cut backs coming. What will we get? Only Tweets!

6. Big push coming to reduce Social Security, Medicare and every other program that helps the vast majority of Americans. Lots of Tweets! On why we must balance the budget!

Dennis Klinkhamer

Clear Lake

What is big money?


In his Jan. 25 Star-Observer letter, titled "Work works," Richard Wylie credits Patty Schachtner's win in the 10th district Senate race to hard work that overcame the "big money" that backed her opponent. On the facing page from his letter, an article ("Trump factored heavily in win ....") reported that the Democratic Party of Wisconsin pumped more than $40,000 into the campaign during the final three days alone, while the state's Republican Party had put $38,000 toward her opponent's campaign with less than a week to go.

My point is not to diminish Sen. Schachtner's win, or the efforts she and her supporters put into the campaign. She is now our Senator and I look forward to her working on behalf of all residents of the 10th district. However, it's important to recognize that both parties played the "big money" game, to use Wylie's descriptor. In this instance, however, one obviously played the game better than the other.

Bill Gnatzig

Kinnickinnic Township

Who else have we lost to abortion?


Many readers recognize the name Tim Tebow, the 20-year-old, 6'3", 235-pound quarterback from the U of Florida who won the Heisman Trophy as most outstanding player in Division I college football; do they also know he's something of a miracle?

When Tim was a 1-inch long fetus, he contracted an amoebic infection, which his doctors called a threat to his mother's health. She was informed she should abort her baby! She refused and dad agreed! Twenty years later, he's a witness to life and his happy parents thank God for their miracle!

As pro-lifers around the U.S. observed Sanctity of Life Sunday (Jan. 21), perhaps we should ask how many potential Heisman Trophy winners have been lost since Roe v. Wade legalized abortion. Dr. Brian Clowes, researcher for Human Life International, examined data from the 2007 Statistical Abstract of the U.S. and estimated the number of people from various occupations who have been eliminated by abortion since 1973; the number is 12!

Who else have we lost to abortion? According to Clowes' studies, we've lost:

Two U.S. presidents

Seven Supreme Court justices

102 senators; 589 congressmen

8,123 federal, district and local judges

32 Nobel Prize laureates

134,841 physicians / surgeons

28 Olympic medalists; 123 gold

70,669 priests, ministers and rabbis

1,102,443 teachers (K-12)

134,028 farmers

109,984 police officers / sheriffs

39,477 firefighters

The 50 million babies lost to abortion are equal to destroying every person in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Illinois, Iowa, Michigan, Missouri, Kansas, North and South Dakota and Oklahoma! What of the families without brothers, sisters and grandchildren; how many women mourn these losses decades later?

Has the freedom to choose solved problems for America or has it done immense damage to families as basic units of society? Should Americans rethink the feminists' cries of "my body, my choice?" Is it time to stop destroying America's future?

God said "thou shalt not murder." (Exodus, 20:14, NIV) Did He know what was best for us after all? Think about that when voting!

Meredith Berg