Happy (belated) 2016!

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January 29, 2016

Happy New Year!


2015 was busy year in Ward 3; lots of redevelopment and a headache of a road construction summer. I am grateful to all of you who took the time to email or call my office about these issues and many more. Your feedback helped me fight for what’s right in Ward 3 and the City of Saint Paul. I know 2016 is sure to be just as full- with the Ford Site, the Riverview Corridor Study and a Snelling Zoning study coming down the pipe. Keep sharing your thoughts and concerns as we work together to make Ward 3 the best it can be. Below are some highlights of 2015.  I wish you and your loved ones a happy New Year! 



2016 Budget Wrap Up

On Wednesday, December 16, 2015 the City Council passed the 2016 City budget. The budget protects expanded library hours, supports street reconstruction efforts and maintains the high level of city services that we expect from Saint Paul. I’m pleased that funding for the Fire Station 19 expansion and Highland Community Center Play Area renovation was included. The Council added three key budget items to the Mayor’s proposal:


· Funding for a Safe Routes to School pilot program in partnership with Saint Paul Public Schools and Ramsey County Public Health. The pilot program will double the Police Department’s enforcement of crosswalk laws and help pay for traffic staff planning time, neighborhood outreach and education, potential infrastructure improvements. Here in Ward 3 we are working with Expo, Holy Spirit, Cretin Derham, Randolph Heights and both district councils to create a local safe routes to school plan. Look for info and events coming soon!


· Funding to pursue organized trash collection in Saint Paul. At this time no final decisions have been made and there are a lot of details to be worked out. I believe we can put together a system that provides the best prices for residents, reduces the strain on our alleys and the pollutants in the air and supports our local haulers.


· Funding to continue the Youth Ambassadors Program, a partnership between the Police and local youth works to reduce juvenile crime. This program has resulted in a 63% decline in juvenile arrests in neighborhoods where Ambassadors were working in 2014.

Macalester Nice Ride

Cleveland Bike Lane Conclusion


The Cleveland Taskforce completed its work on November 13th and recommended Cleveland Avenue as the best route for a north-south bike route between Fairview and Mississippi River Boulevard. After reviewing the recommendation, the City is moving forward with implementing bike lanes along Cleveland Avenue from Highland Parkway to University Avenue.


As the recommendation was very clear about the need for parking mitigation, I asked Public Works to prepare mitigation options, including at least one parking bay, and changes to timed and permit parking. I anticipate that information to be available by mid-January and anticipate a resolution of intent before at the City Council by the end of January. The goal is for the bike lane and parking mitigation to be implemented during the summer of 2016, although budget and process timelines will dictate whether that is feasible. 

Let me know what you're thinking!



Call: (651) 266-8630


Councilmember Chris Tolbert

15 W. Kellogg Blvd

Saint Paul, MN 55102




Modernized Restaurant and Liquor Laws

December 16th the City Council modernized our restaurant and liquor laws to reflect the industry today- and will enhance our current restaurants and attract new neighborhood restaurants too. I am proud to have been the lead on this ordinance. You can read more about the ordinances we passed here.


Look for more great restaurants in our neighborhood soon!

Could Your Business be a Right Track Employer?

I’ve been proud on the Council to help start Right Track, the City of Saint Paul’s workforce development program. Right Track works with local employers to train and hire youth for professional internships over the summer.  We are looking for local employers to help develop tomorrow’s leaders.


The program is growing quickly. Last summer, 54 employers hired 108 interns to assist with everything from data entry, scanning, and filing to community outreach and social media campaigns.  Our goal in 2016 is to provide opportunities to 150 motivated youth; we’re on our way, but we need your help. Check out the website to learn more about the program, the commitment, and the employers who are already involved.