Minutes 

6:00-6:10: Introductions, welcome members of the public   

6:10-6:15: Review January 2022 meeting minutes, approve this month’s agenda  

6:20-6:30 Youth Commission meeting discussion 

  • Adri opened by speaking about his meeting with the Saint Paul youth commission and some ideas they brainstormed. Such as solar power at schools, composting and recycling at schools, and different ideas for an event to create.  

  • Nick asked a clarifying question related to solar power at schools which Adri clarified that any action on this would be to urge the school district to get solar panels. 

  • Russ also chimed in clarifying that only two schools have the infrastructure required for solar power, those being Washington and Como Park.  

  • Adri suggested that once the youth commission gets back to him, CJAB create a subcommittee to work together with the youth commission. 

 

 6:30-6:35 Annual Report Updates 

  • Subcommittee in charge of creating annual report will meet separately to create report and will conduct dry run of report during April CJAB meeting. 

  • Subcommittee is made up of board members Audel, Melissa, Dominique & Kristen. Supported by Russ & Carlos 

 

 

 

6:35-7:00 CJAB Future Topics Planning Discussion 

 

  • Nick opened the discussion by discussing how CJAB can frame its goals. Nick then presented a Venn diagram with three circles those being emissions, equity, and action opportunity, highlighting that CJAB will be most effective by tackling issues which include all three of these areas. 

  • The Venn diagram was broken down as follows: 

  • Emissions: Based on Saint Paul’s GHG inventory, what are the biggest sources of emissions that CJAB should try to address 

  • Equity: What are the biggest areas of work in the CARP that CJAB could change/help create a program to reduce existing inequities 

  • Action Opportunity: Where do we know that there is an opportunity for CJAB to engage with what the city is doing within a 12-month window. 

  • Kristen suggested as opposed to focusing on equity going beyond that and framing it from an environmental justice point of view. Nick Agreed. 

  • Russ then followed up with a presentation on five areas which are specifically discussed in the CARP that CJAB is well suited to work on 

  • Relieving energy burden, that being reducing the percentage of people’s income that is spent on energy. 

  • Job career and wealth building opportunities related to climate action.  

  • Reducing emissions from transportation and walking, transit, and biking safety. 

  • Hazard mitigation (urban heat island, flooding air pollution) and how to combat this 

  • Community emergency preparedness 

  • Nick and Russ suggested everyone reread CARP and brainstorm possible ideas for March’s meeting. 

7:00-7:45 Metro Transit Presentation 

  •  Russ opened by highlighting how transportation is a key component of the CARP and how the CARP has some highly ambitious goals regarding transportation in Saint Paul. Scott followed up by introducing the presentation and highlighting 3 key components of presentation. Routes, COVID related challenges and improvements/new initiatives.   

  • Overview of fixed route service in Saint Paul 

  • Saint Paul has 43 routes, 26 local routes and 15 commuter express routes. 

  • Two Park and Rides and 1700 stops 

  • Challenges of COVID  

  • Transit service heavily decreased during COVID but has now returned to over 80% pre-COVID ridership. 

  • Local services are at or near pre-COVID levels 

  • Metro Transit has had to reduce routes to staffing issues 

  • Improvements and initiatives 

  • Metro Transit is transporting high school students. Over 225,000 trips and 6,100 bus cards 

  • Pass can be used for more than transportation to and from school. 

  • Zero-Emission Bus Transition Plan (ZEB) is planning to reduce emissions by buses to net zero ghg emissions.  

  • Transit Assistance Program (TAP) program created that gives 1$ rides to low-income individuals. 

  • 6,000 cards given out of a possible pool of 600,000 individuals in the Twin Cities who are eligible 

  • Patty asked how accessible it is to get a TAP card 

  • Cyndi responded explaining that Metro transit is available through their transit store, different outlets as well as over 70 different partners including counties, schools etc. 

  • Patty also asked for more information regarding worker shortage 

  • Cyndi responded by highlighting how Metro Transit was able to keep all operators employed during COVID but did not do any hiring during that period. Due to attrition and individuals leaving they are facing a staff shortage. This shortage is also due to many other companies also aggressively hiring CDL drivers. 

  • Russ asked about income verification for TAP card 

  • Cyndi responded by mentioning that the program is intended to be easy to sign up for with over 25 different ways to submit income verification  

  • Nick asked about electrification of buses and if Metro Transit mindfully picks areas which are disproportionally affected by emissions, i.e., Rondo  

  • Cyndi responded by speaking to limitations of electric buses such as variability in range and the upfront cost of purchasing fully electric buses 

  • Scott followed up on the second portion of the question mentioning that Metro Transit is aware of this and one such example is Rice Street where they are putting the C line  

  • As EV technology improves so will reliability and affordability of electric buses 

  • Kathleen asked about ways that Metro Transit is trying to get people to reduce their emissions and use public transportation instead. 

  • Cyndi responded by saying that this is the issue that everyone is working on but one way that Metro Transit is working on this is by making sure their buses are a reliable as possible and efficient/speedy. Also bus only lanes, transit signal priority, more bus stops. 

7:45-8:00pm: Updates  

  • From the Executive Committee   

  • XCEL IRP was approved after 3-year long process 

  • Includes closing all coal plants by 2030, extending license of nuclear plant for 10 years, increasing renewables such as air and solar.  

  • Next IRP will have even more stringent equity and environmental requirements. 

  •  

  • From City Staff 

  • Candidate has been identified to fill labor vacancy just waiting on vetting and council/mayor approval 

  • EV Carshare program officially launched 

  • Climate action dashboard website is in progress 

  • From Board Members  

  • Youth Climate Justice summit occurring February 25th  

8pm Adjourn  

 

Last Edited: March 10, 2022