Metropolitan Council

Elections - City Councils and Commissions - Policies
RailBaronYarr
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Re: Metropolitan Council

Postby RailBaronYarr » April 8th, 2015, 7:08 am

Really? You only have to go, like, 4-5 miles from the city core in almost every major European city to hit farmland.

twincitizen
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Re: Metropolitan Council

Postby twincitizen » October 8th, 2015, 8:13 am

I didn't know the Citizens League was doing a whole task force thing on Met Council reform: http://citizensleague.org/the-citizens- ... ask-force/

Sounds like it's already underway. This did not receive the promotion it should have.

EDIT: It appears MinnPost did a write-up, but I missed this a few weeks ago: https://www.minnpost.com/political-agen ... et-council

There was even an editorial in the Strib, "In Defense of the Met Council": http://www.startribune.com/in-defense-o ... 324010211/

EDIT 2: Minutes from the first meeting http://citizensleague.org/wp-content/up ... 5.2015.pdf

SteveXC500
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Re: Metropolitan Council

Postby SteveXC500 » October 19th, 2015, 10:53 am

I did not know they had a task force either. I recognize many of the names on the TF. Quite the list for sure.

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Anondson
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Metropolitan Council

Postby Anondson » October 21st, 2015, 6:04 pm

The Met Council's Transportation Advisory Board is seeking new members. Applications must be made by October 28. I applied for a seat two years ago.

http://www.metrocouncil.org/Council-Mee ... ncies.aspx

Looks like the Land Use Advisory Committee is also seeking some members, too.

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Re: Metropolitan Council

Postby twincitizen » October 22nd, 2015, 8:07 am

Huh...now that I moved to the west side of Lyndale, I'm in a different Met Council district and TAB district (each TAB district is two Met Council districts, so 8 total citizen members on TAB)

Positions open
Citizens A, B, C and D
Two transit reps
Non-motorized rep

Here's who currently fills those seats: http://www.metrocouncil.org/Transportat ... mbers.aspx

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Anondson
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Re: Metropolitan Council

Postby Anondson » October 22nd, 2015, 8:16 am

I wish it was clear which seats have incumbents seeking reappointment and which seats don't.

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Re: Metropolitan Council

Postby seanrichardryan » April 11th, 2016, 6:09 pm

How the Met Council is keeping small businesses from expanding

Ruhel Islam, co-owner of Longfellow restaurant Gandhi Mahal, nearly shat himself. The letter said he owed the Met Council for something called a "Sewer Availability Charge."

Weeks earlier, Islam had basked in delight as the restaurant opened a 24-seat expansion. Now the Council, which operates the sewer and water lines in the seven-county metro area, had sent him a $24,000 bill for this added burden to the infrastructure.
http://www.citypages.com/news/how-the-m ... ng-8185893
Q. What, what? A. In da butt.

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Anondson
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Re: Metropolitan Council

Postby Anondson » April 11th, 2016, 6:16 pm

Small Minneapolis businesses bailing out East Bethel. It's the system exurbia hates so much, hmmm?

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Re: Metropolitan Council

Postby seanrichardryan » April 11th, 2016, 6:39 pm

Q. What, what? A. In da butt.

Didier
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Re: Metropolitan Council

Postby Didier » April 11th, 2016, 8:52 pm

Hard to take any article seriously when it says someone "nearly shat himself."

MNdible
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Re: Metropolitan Council

Postby MNdible » April 12th, 2016, 10:58 am

True.

I'd be interested to know if there are parts of Minneapolis where the added growth/demand is actually taxing the existing infrastructure. I know Xcel upgraded their distribution lines along the Greenway, and there have been some ongoing stormwater upgrades (although I think this is more based on historic flooding than on new demand). And obviously some of Minneapolis's infrastructure needs to be replaced based on age. But can we think of any instances where the water or sanitary sewer service has needed to be beefed up based on demand?

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Nick
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Re: Metropolitan Council

Postby Nick » April 12th, 2016, 3:57 pm

I did a juice cleanse a couple months ago

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FISHMANPET
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Re: Metropolitan Council

Postby FISHMANPET » April 12th, 2016, 4:07 pm

That's gotta be like one sewer unit right there.

RailBaronYarr
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Re: Metropolitan Council

Postby RailBaronYarr » April 13th, 2016, 7:56 am

To MNdibles point, I have no doubt there are growing places that have (or will) required beefing up the system. But every new unit in those buildings are paying the same amount as some single family home in Anoka or wherever (unless they don't have in-unit laundry and therefore qualify for a 20% reduction). I wrote some dumb post about this a while back, but the MCES annual budget is nearly 50% debt repayment for capital projects. The SAC charges paid by urban infill projects definitely cross-subsidize the SAC charges in new development, and neither of them are covering the repayment for extending/expanding the system. So we're drawing on wastewater charges (more or less flat rate per gallon regardless of how much it cost to serve you in the first place) to help cover that gap.

Anyway, to answer your actual question: I have no idea for sure. They definitely dug up and replaced some sewer lines near my house on 36th St and Dupont (plus over between Harriet and Calhoun), but I don't know if that was due to age, expansion, or both. It's pretty odd how tuned in people are to roads and bridges and transit (even the relatively uneducated could tell you the SWLRT budget), but basically nobody knows much about MCES.

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Anondson
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Re: Metropolitan Council

Postby Anondson » April 13th, 2016, 8:13 am

It seems insulting to make a growing businesses need to pay to expand to serve a few more/employ more in a city that is over 100,000 fewer people living in it now than when it was originally built out decades ago.

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Re: Metropolitan Council

Postby MNdible » April 13th, 2016, 9:07 am

It's not clear to me how much of the SAC charges go towards new pipes vs. new treatment capacity, but it's worth noting that back when Minneapolis was a city of a half million residents, the poop went into the same pipe as the rain and it all went straight into the Mississippi River.

RailBaronYarr
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Re: Metropolitan Council

Postby RailBaronYarr » April 13th, 2016, 9:46 am

Well, according to this, which lays out 6 years worth of capital spending (still a window in time and not necessarily indicative of all capital spending over maybe a 30-40 year period), 23% is on treatment plant and the rest on the interceptor system.

Within the interceptor capital total, 17% of spend is within Minneapolis, 8% in St Paul, 7% general regionwide spend (things like meter upgrades, odor control, lift stations). I don't really have the energy to dig into the capital plans by district to understand how much of each project is regular replacement vs expansion/extension.

I think your point about dumping to the Mississippi is maybe misleading. In 1938 the Pigs Eye facility began treating diverted waste from interceptors along the river. The combined sewers (wastewater and stormwater) would indeed dump a decent amount of mixed water into the river during storms (but even then not all of it). Separate storm/sewer had been built starting in the 20s, but older streets didn't get this until the massive street reconstructions of the 60s/70s. I'd say that Anondson's point is mostly true, that our peak population (40s-50s) sent the vast majority if its shit to a treatment plant and not the river.

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FISHMANPET
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Re: Metropolitan Council

Postby FISHMANPET » April 13th, 2016, 10:46 am

Seperating storm and sewer water isn't about constantly dumping sewage into the river, it's about storm water getting mixed in with sewage and overwhelming the treatment system during a storm, causing the excess waste to get dumped into the river.

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Re: Metropolitan Council

Postby MNdible » April 13th, 2016, 11:35 am

That's what it's about now, but the reason it's like that now is because it all used to get dumped into the river together.

Anyway, to the extent that I'm trying to make a point here, my point is that increasing the demands on the existing infrastructure in a place like Minneapolis does have real costs. I can't begin to quantify for you how much the guy with the Indian restaurant is or is not getting hosed, but him expanding his restaurant does in fact mean that he's creating greater demands on the existing infrastructure, and it's not crazy to ask him to pay for those costs.

RailBaronYarr
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Re: Metropolitan Council

Postby RailBaronYarr » April 13th, 2016, 12:03 pm

No, it's not crazy at all. But would you agree that, given it's likely given existing pipe sizes that once served a city with higher population (and, commercial/industrial users) and aside from extreme cases like Uptown's growth, paying the same amount per residential unit (likely for 1-2 people) for infill as some family (potentially 3-4 people) on a 0.75 acre lot in the exurbs is fair? And that considering areas like Minneapolis are already planning/spending on interceptors and regulators as part of regular maintenance/replacement, that the marginal cost of a larger pump or wider pipe when doing so to handle infill makes things even easier relative to new infrastructure in the ground? I dunno.

I guess, the nature of this whole thing is that the finances are less transparent than a suburban family of four who knows exactly 40% of their MVST went to transit they don't use and hears the state government need to explicitly fund things like SWLRT or Bottineau construction out of the general fund. But that's kinda been the whole problem with regionalism as we defined it. A quick look at the comparison to other regions shows that some do actually charge less (or nothing!) for infill projects. Maybe I (or we, whatever) are making a bigger deal about this than necessary. But as a person who wants to see residential and commercial infill in Minneapolis and St Paul, and make it cheap and easy for small businesses, this certainly seems like something to talk about.


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