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City Manager Blog

Each week I send out an FYI Update to City Council and staff on the latest happenings within the City of Maplewood.  I would like to share this information with the residents of Maplewood, as well. 

Follow my blog if you would like to be kept up to date on the behind the scenes happenings within the City. 

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May 24

May 21, 2021

Posted on May 24, 2021 at 10:57 AM by Chad Bergo

Meetings and Announcements:   

  • The next City Council meeting will be held virtually on Monday, June 14th,with start time of 7 pm. There will also be a Council Manager Workshop at 6 pm to review the Ponds at Battle Creek Development Plan. The consultants from Perkins and Will will give an update on the process and staff will be seeking guidance as to how to proceed with next steps.

  • 2021 LMC Conference: Please let me or Lois know if you would like to attend. I would encourage you all to consider attending this virtual conference. It always provides valuable info and presentations geared towards Elected officials. I am planning on attending. I look forward to when we can attend conference in person again.

Updates from Staff and Council:

ADMINISTRATION

Web analytics for re-opening:

As we get ready to re-open City Hall, here’s a snapshot of our web searches and traffic, which basically confirms that folks are extremely interested in our DMV and services counter. Of the top 18 internal search terms (meaning they’re using the search on the site, not Google or a search engine) over the past 30 days, almost all are related to what’s going on in the lobby.  The 30-day traffic trend on the web also tracks the searches closely, with DMV, Services and the Passports pages among the top ten most visited.  You also see there is significant interest in the HyVee project, with 85% of traffic generating from a Google search.  

Top 5 searches:

  • DMV
  • Passport
  • Title Transfer
  • Appointments
  • Tabs

Top Pages:

  • Home Page
  • DMV
  • HyVee
  • News Flash
  • Services 

 

PUBLIC WORKS

Metropolitan Council – 2022 Municipal Wastewater Charge

The Metropolitan Council provides wastewater treatment to 110 communities.  All communities pay a portion of the Metropolitan Wastewater Charge (MWC) based on the percentage of flow from their communities.  The Metropolitan Council has calculated the proposed rates for 2022.  For the City of Maplewood, the estimated wastewater fee for 2022 will be $4,194,595.12, an increase of 15.19% over 2021.

A number of factors play into the proposed increase.  The proposed 2022 budget for Metropolitan Council Environmental Services includes an increase of 4% over their 2021 budget.  This has led to a larger MWC to be distributed amount the communities.  Overall, the total regional flow volume was down over the last year while metered flow from Maplewood was up over the last year.  This causes an increase to the percentage of Maplewood’s portion of the MWC.  

Recently, upgrades to a number of flow meters where completed, along with improvement to Metropolitan Council trunk lines, where completed in Maplewood.  Initial data from these new flow meters are showing a higher level of flow from previous years.  This has also played a part in Maplewood’s increased charge.  Metropolitan Council is conducting a review of the new meters to ensure they are providing good data.  This review will be completed prior to the adoption of the 2022 Municipal Wastewater Charges.

A copy of the flyer that was sent to the City is attached. It provides a summary of the data and proposed charges for the City of Maplewood.  Additionally, a map is included that shows the locations of Metropolitan Council’s trunk lines and meter locations.

PARKS/RECREATION

2021 Arbor Day Tree Sale 

The City of Maplewood partnered with Tree Trust, a local non- profit, for our third annual Arbor Day Tree Sale.  Residents were able to purchase two tree orders per address  and also received a bag of mulch for only $40 per order. Tree Trust handled the orders and provided directions for residents to pick up their trees on Saturday, May 15, from 9:00am- noon or Monday, May 17, from 5:00pm-7:00pm. Pickup was arranged as a no-contact drive-through inside the Public Works garage.

Public Works staff facilitated the pick-up events and had trees arranged in assembly-line fashion by species, making it easy to direct the residents through the garage.  Staff loaded the trees and mulch into the vehicles and one of our Maplewood Nature Center volunteers helped residents secure their trees and provided flagging for trees placed in trunks.

Thank you to Tree Trust, Public Works staff and volunteers for their coordination and hard work to make the 2021 Arbor Day Tree Sale a success with over 150 trees sold!

  

COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT

News from SPRWS

On Wednesday, May 19th, the St. Paul City Council approved an agreement for St. Paul Regional Water to lease land at Pig Eye’s Regional Park to locate their soil recovery and recycling operations. The lease has a term of 20 years, but the city retains the right to cancel the lease after 5 years if they determine a need for the parkland. The approval also includes adding public park amenities on the water board’s property adjacent to the former Hillcrest golf course. The agreement impacts St. Paul Regional Water’s operation at its Maplewood site as the soil recovery and recycling operations has previously occurred at the Sandy Lake site in Maplewood. 

 

These are the reports for this week. Please call if I can address any questions or concerns. Melinda