MPCA Public Meetings
Several constituents reached out to me with concerns that the public wasn’t given proper notice of the informational meeting initially scheduled for February 7. (The meeting was later postponed due to poor weather.) It’s important that everyone in our community is aware of the effects TCE could have on their health and has the opportunity to voice their thoughts to the MPCA. I immediately brought your concerns to Commissioner Laura Bishop and urged the agency to send physical mail notices and schedule additional public meetings.
The MPCA has since scheduled two public meetings for February 21 and March 7. They will also be sending out physical notices to residents. I’m grateful for the cooperation of the MPCA in addressing this serious matter.
I’ll be streaming the meeting on Facebook Live for those who are unable to attend. You can visit my Facebook page on February 21 to watch live or view a video of the event later. If you have questions you’d like asked, please comment on this post. I’ll do my best to make sure your concerns are brought up and addressed.
When: Thursday, February 21 from 6:30 to 9pm and Thursday, March 7 from 6:30 to 9pm
Where: North Campus High School, 5045 Division Avenue, White Bear Lake, MN 55110
The content of these two meetings will be identical.
Other Emissions Updates
Many constituents have reached out to me with questions about the chemical emissions in our community. The MPCA can’t disclose certain information as their investigation is ongoing, but here are answers to some frequently asked questions based on what I know at the moment.
How long has the Water Gremlin plant been emitting high levels of TCE?
The MPCA hasn’t yet determined exactly when the plant began emitting too much TCE, but they have confirmed it’s been since at least 2009. Water Gremlin has an air emissions permit and equipment designed to limited TCE emissions. However, it appears that equipment began malfunctioning years ago.
How and when was this issue discovered?
MPCA requested information from Water Gremlin which they received on January 11. On January 14, the agency asked Water Gremlin to voluntarily shut down part of their plant based on that information. The public was notified on January 31 after a preliminary investigation.
When was the last inspection of the Water Gremlin facility?
The MPCA conducted an investigation of the plant in 2017. They didn’t identify any violations at that time.
Social Security Tax Cut for Seniors
I presented my first bill this morning in the Taxes Committee. House File 885 would provide a Social Security tax cut for Minnesota seniors. Many seniors from our district have told me about how important Social Security taxes are to them so I decided to do something about it! Watch the hearing here.
Lunch at Donatelli’s
On Tuesday, I enjoyed a delicious Donatelli’s lunch hosted, prepared, and served by fifth graders from Willow Lane Elementary School! The ongoing partnership between Donatelli’s and White Bear Lake Area Schools is a great example of local small businesses making our community stronger.
The Willow Lane students will be back for the next three Tuesdays. I encourage you to stop by between 11am and 1pm to support this great program.