The Metropolitan Council in Minneapolis/Saint Paul, Minn., voted Sept. 27, 2017, to award $1 million to five Twin Cities Metro Area communities looking to improve water quality and encourage conservation. The awards are part of a pilot project to support local efforts addressing issues in communities related to water quality, quantity and wastewater treatment.
The Metropolitan Council is the regional policy-making body, planning agency, and provider of essential services for the Twin Cities Metro Area. The council’s mission is to foster efficient and economic growth for a prosperous region.
The council awarded Green Infrastructure Grants to the Twin Cities Metro Area cities of Crystal, New Hope, Roseville, South Saint Paul and West Saint Paul. The grants will support local efforts to:
- conserve water
- improve management of stormwater runoff
- improve water quality
- prevent the inflow and infiltration of stormwater and groundwater into the sanitary sewer, using up sewer capacity and undergoing unnecessary wastewater treatment
“Communities across Minnesota face serious water quality challenges,” said Minnesota governor Mark Dayton. “Last spring, I worked with the Minnesota Legislature to establish grants that help cities afford to make important water quality improvements. These grants will help communities across the Twin Cities Metro Area provide the clean and affordable drinking water their residents need and deserve.”
The council reviewed projects for their integrated problem-solving approaches, and their ability to achieve multiple benefits and measurable outcomes. The council received 30 requests for funding totaling $7.2 million.
“The number of applications for these grants gives me confidence that there’s a local desire to address issues facing our water resources,” said council chair Alene Tchourumoff. “I believe communities recognize that all water is connected, and want to work together on integrated and comprehensive approaches to preserving the water resources that are such great assets to our region.”