St Paul Climate Justice Advisory Board, August 2021 meeting 

August 12, 2021, 6pm-7:30pm MS Teams meeting Audio only: 612-315-7905  Conference ID: 999 671 592# 

Land Acknowledgement: The city of Saint Paul is located on traditional, ancestral, and contemporary lands of Indigenous Dakota people. CJAB is committed to ongoing efforts to recognize, support, and advocate for American Indian Nations and peoples. 

Board members: 

  1. Adri Arquin * 

  1. Alice Wagner-Hemstad  

  1. Audel Shokohzadeh  

  1. Cheng Vang  

  1. Dominique Diaddigo-Cash  

  1. Janiece Watts *   ** 

  1. Kathleen Bacigalupi  

  1. Kristen Poppleton  

  1. Louis Offstein  

  1. Marlon Batres  

  1. May Yang-Lee  

  1. Melissa Wenzel *   ** 

  1. Nick Martin * 

  1. Patty Selly  

  1. Paul Barral  

  1. Robert M Blake 

  1. Vacancy: union representation 

* Executive Committee Member  

** Co-chair 

City staff: 

  • Russ Stark, Chief Resilience Officer 

  • Carlos Albornoz, Constituent Service Outreach Coordinator 


  • Samantha Henningson, Climate Advisor, American Cities Climate Challenge 

  • Shannon Crabtree, Senior Planner, HOURCAR 

  • Chelsea DeArmond, Tom Lucy, and Jean Comstock, and Sarah Alig, Saint Paul 350 

    Agenda, with notes 

  • 6pm Introductions, welcome guests & members of the public 

  • 6:10pm Updates: 

  • From city staff 

  • Russ Stark reported that the Mayor gave his budget address today, and shared a video link. Metro Transit is seeking public input on the planned B Line between the two downtowns. The Council agenda for next week includes a proposal to eliminate minimum parking requirements in new construction. 

  • From the Executive Committee  

  • Nick Martin reported that the Executive Committee has been primarily engaged in the sequencing of issues CJAB should learn about, receive presentations on, and potentially take action on over the next year. Which issues need immediate attention because of a pending deadline? Which are not immediate, but we know they will come up in the next 3-12 months so need to educate ourselves? The Executive Committee has also been discussing the draft climate justice definition, changes to the CJAB bylaws, and a potential letter on Line 3. 

  • 6:20pm Information/input: 

  • Presentation on EV Spot Network/Evie carshare Samantha Henningson & Shannon Crabtree  

  • Samantha Henningson gave a progress update on the EV Spot Network. The vision is that 90% of Saint Paul residents will be within a five-minute walk of 4 affordable low/no carbon transportation options, and in particular to enhance access to such transportation for BIPOC and low-wealth citizens. Evie is a one-way, electric and renewable energy-powered car sharing service, with 150 vehicles and 70 charging locations planned over a 35 square mile service area. It will reduce personal vehicle ownership, improve mobility, reduce vehicle miles traveled, and reduce pollution. The site selection phase for charging locations is nearly complete. Xcel Energy will provide the make-ready infrastructure for charging stations as well as renewable electricity, pending PUC approval.  

    Shannon Crabtree summarized the public engagement process for the EV Spot Network and Evie Carshare. HOURCAR conducted many focus groups, public meetings and surveys since 2019. Outreach partners included Saint Paul district councils, Minneapolis neighborhood associations, Juxtaposition Arts, and others. Community members were provided stipends to participate. Key recommendations from the community centered on increasing affordability, building awareness of car sharing, making it easier to sign up (need for an app), the need for real-time 24/7 customer service including translation services, and a desire to incorporate ridesharing (not currently part of the Evie model). While some participants asked questions about serving additional areas outside the currently planned zones, HOURCAR’s priority is on demonstrating success first in these areas before expanding.   

  • 7pm Board Discussion:  

  • Finalize definition of “climate justice”  

  • The CJAB discussed the proposed revised definition of climate justice, drafted by Audel Shokohzadeh based on the earlier drafts. Members agreed it was important to adopt a definition to post on the website, and amend in the future as needed. The definition was adopted by voice vote, with no members voting against or abstaining.  

  • Bylaws needing amendment 

  • Revisions to the CJAB bylaws have been drafted by Russ Stark in consultation with the City attorney. Most are minor clarifications and wording improvements. The only significant change is that CJAB cannot, due to City open-meeting rules, take action via e-mail between meetings, but must instead call a special meeting or wait until the next regular monthly meeting. The revised bylaws were adopted by voice vote, with no members voting against or abstaining.   

  • Line 3 discussion/action: regulatory overview (Melissa) possible resolution request (Bob/Kristen) 

  • Saint Paul 350 has drafted a resolution opposing Line 3 that they are urging the City Council to adopt. They have asked CJAB to express to the City Council its support for this resolution. 

    Melissa Wenzel provided background on MPCA’s responsibility for Line 3 permitting, how their options were limited by existing authorities, and how the Line 3 issue has improved transparency at MPCA. Bob Blake provided a Tribal perspective, noting the prior and supreme status of existing treaties over state law, and that Red Lake Nation turned down a potential $60m settlement with Enbridge. Russ Stark noted that CJAB members can decide on this issue in a personal capacity and need not see the position they take as representing the position of their organization. 

    Kristen Poppleton referenced the recent IPCC 6th Assessment Report and its attention on fossil fuel development and methane, and asked the CJAB to support the resolution. She noted that both Saint Paul and Minneapolis passed resolutions opposing the Dakota Access Pipeline, so there is precedent. Patty Selly urged CJAB to support the resolution. 

    Russ Stark explained CJAB’s options would be to draft a letter on the resolution, which would delay actually voting on that letter until the next regular or special meeting since CJAB cannot vote electronically; or simply adopt a one-sentence motion tonight urging the City Council to support SP350’s resolution. The resolution is not formally on a Council agenda as yet, since SP350 is still trying to build support for it. 

    Patty Selly moved CJAB express its support to City Council for the resolution. Bob Blake seconded. This motion was adopted by voice vote, with no members voting against or abstaining.  

    Russ Stark communicated, via email to the City Council and Mayor’s Office on August 12: “The Climate Justice Advisory Board has asked me to communicate to you immediately that they voted to support the draft resolution being circulated by Saint Paul 350 regarding Line 3 and are asking you to support it.” 

    CJAB also asked Russ Stark to draft a letter, for consideration at the next regular meeting, memorializing the CJAB’s reasons for this decision. 

    Nick Martin moved that, in the event City Council would like to hear from CJAB directly when it takes up the SP350 resolution, CJAB be represented on this issue by Bob Blake in lieu of one of the co-chairs. Bob accepted this invitation. Janiece Watts seconded. This motion was adopted by voice vote, with no members voting against or abstaining. 

  • 7:15pm New updates/developments from board members please share before/after this meeting or in chat 

  • 7:30pm Adjourn 

  • Meeting adjourned at 7:58 pm. 

Last Edited: January 12, 2022