State Representative Candidates

Frank Hornstein, State Representative
Yolandita Colón, State Representative
Jim Davnie, State Representative
Ron Erhardt, State Representative
Jean Wagenius, State Representative
Dibble, Hornstein, Thissen letter
 

Frank Hornstein, State Representative (back to candidate list)

1. What will you do, if elected, to address and support our concerns and goals? Provide specific steps and actions.

FH: I will continue to push for an environmental review of RNAV at the state and federal level including an environmental impact statement.

2. Do you support the MAC’s and Met Council’s Long-Term Comprehensive Plan for airport growth?

FH: We must begin with proper environmental review of RNAV. I will continue to build bridges with suburban colleagues to address this issue.

3. What is your vision for the MSP Airport growth and statewide airport growth?

FH:  I am concerned that the 2020 plan, like RNAV, has not received proper environmental review. An EAW is inadequate to measure noise impacts and evaluate alternatives. Aviation must be treated as a statewide system. Airports in St. Cloud, Duluth, and Rochester are alterative locations to relieve capacity at MSP. High-speed rail connecting to MSP to the Rochester airport as well as to Chicago must also be pursued.

4. What are your specific ideas for reducing noise and air pollution from airplanes in and out of the MSP Airport?

FH: Delta and other airlines should be encouraged to replace regional jets with De Havilland Q400 aircrafts like Alaska Airlines has done in the Pacific Northwest. These planes are quieter and more energy efficient. In addition, older, noisier aircrafts should be phased out.

________________________

Yolandita Colón, State Representative (back to candidate list)

Here are my ideas and proposed actions relating to increased noise and chemical pollution in Twin Cities communities:

  • Set up a Southern Hub of runways, which will need to be accessed via trams, just as other Cities have done to minimize the Noise Pollution. (Find other Cities that have developed plans to handle this problem of airport expansion).
  • Direct landings and take-offs in such a way as to avoid flying over dense populated areas.
  • For obvious Security Reasons, planes should never be flying over Downtown Minneapolis or St Paul. This will avoid a potential catastrophic disaster, as well as cut down on noise pollution
  • Encourage funding to provide sound/noise renovations for homes affected by well documented increased noise pollution, that are harmful to residents and diminish property values.


________________________

Jim Davnie, State Representative (back to candidate list)

1. What will you do, if elected, to address and support our concerns and goals? Provide specific steps and actions.

JD: I will continue to work with my colleagues from effected communities to hold the MAC accountable as best we can. An example of that is my co-authorship of proposals such as Rep. Hornstein’s requiring the MAC to meet in publically accessible locations and not behind airport security. It allows the community to become more knowledgeable about the MAC, its actions, and the impact of those actions on our community.

2. • How can we count on you to help find workable solutions? What new ideas can you offer?

JD: My primary strategic concern is the questionable value of noise measurement by the MAC. I would like to see a fuller exploration of the placement of noise monitors and their process for extrapolating off of the data that they get from those monitors. I do not believe that the current monitors are placed where the current noise is in our community.

3. Do you support the MAC’s and Met Council’s Long-Term Comprehensive Plan for airport growth?

JD:  What is your vision for the MSP Airport growth and statewide airport growth? I do not know enough about the details of the MAC’s Long-term Comprehensive Plan to comment knowledgably about it. I am skeptical of it however as their public justication is the increase in large jets using MSP while they have also stated that the shifts in noise are a function of smaller jets using the airport. Those two justications seem to be in contradiction to each other.

4. What are your specific ideas for reducing noise and air pollution from airplanes in and out of the MSP Airport?

JD: I have been working with other legislators on supporting the development of high-speed rail in the Midwest as a way to decrease the use of MSP. While the actions by Wisconsin Governor Walker prohibiting high speed rail across Wisconsin was a planning set back it may actually benefit Minnesota as it increases the likelihood of a high-speed rail connection from Chicago connecting through Rochester, Minnesota to accomade expected significant growth of the Mayo Clinic.

________________________

Ron Erhardt, State Representative (back to candidate list)

As Chairman of the Transportation Policy Committee, I authored legislation to direct the Metropolitan Airports Commission to conduct a noise study in St. Louis Park and Edina to better understand and establish baseline noise levels in these communities. This is in addition to the permanent noise monitoring system. That study has been completed, the data collected and we expect it to be presented to the communities in November. This information is important so we have baseline data which will be empirical rather than anecdotal observations to use in any further discussions regarding flight tracks and noise levels.

When re-elected, I will continue to support the Noise Oversight Committee position regarding

increased community involvement and dialogue if the FAA proposes RNAV departure procedures again. Part of that dialogue must be a better and more transparent environmental review process.

The airport and the surrounding communities are going to continue to grow. When the legislature

created the Metropolitan Airports Commission, they were given the task of promoting aviation while balancing the environmental impacts, including noise pollution. I will hold the Metropolitan Airports Commission to that original enabling legislation and be sure environmental impacts are properly studied, held to a minimum, and/or mitigated.

One possible solution to the increased growth of air traffic at MSP is more air service at our outstate airports. For example, the St. Cloud airport recently retained air service to Chicago. We need to be sure the State is doing everything possible to make that air service viable and also look at other opportunities.

The noise from MSP runway use has been an increasing concern for my district. As their representative, I will ask the Metropolitan Airports Commission and the FAA to continuously review their runway use system to be sure traffic is distributed in an equitable manner and noise pollution minimized as much as possible.

________________________

Jean Wagenius, State Representative (back to candidate list)

1. What will you do, if elected, to address and support our concerns and goals? Provide specific steps and actions.

JW: Our legislative leaders on transportation issues are Senator Dibble and Representative Hornstein. I work closely with them and will continue to do so. Similarly, I work closely with my City Council Member John Quincy and am very supportive of his efforts to reform the Noise Oversight Committee.

We all need better information then the information that we have been getting from the MAC and the Federal government. I am particularly concerned about the health and environment information. When the MAC did its EIS for the expansion of the airport, the air quality information they provided could only be described as useless or worse.

I chair the Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture Finance Committee of the Minnesota House. We have had two hearing on the costs of air pollution, specifically fine particulate matter, in the metropolitan area. Even though the metro area currently meets federal standards, just barely, the financial costs of the current air pollution are enormous. Citizens and decision makers need to have a deep understanding of this issue. We need to push for more detailed information from our agencies, including the part the airport plays. I am committed to working on this.
Information from our committee hearings is posted on our committee website: http://www.house.leg.state.mn.us/comm/docs/CostofPM2.5.pdf
http://www.house.leg.state.mn.us/comm/docs/BenefitofAPreduction.pdf

2. • How can we count on you to help find workable solutions? What new ideas can you offer?

JW: I want citizen and decision makers to have good information in all areas, not just health and the environment. We cannot make good decisions without good information and transparency. I am especially concerned that we have relied on the MAC for long-term economic projections. Their interests reflect airline interests. Their interests and the State’s broader interests are not necessarily the same. I want us to work together to find a way to get better analysis.

3. Do you support the MAC’s and Met Council’s Long-Term Comprehensive Plan for airport growth?

JW:  What is your vision for the MSP Airport growth and statewide airport growth?

The MAC is notoriously bad in projecting the growth in the number of flights from this airport. Just consider the projections that they made when expanding the airport at the present site. We cannot rely on their assumptions or the projections that they make from those assumptions. An independent analysis is needed. Looking forward, there will be more and more constraints on the amount of carbon that can be admitted by anyone including airlines. Fast rail should become more and more prominent. A significant number of passengers leaving this airport are destined for Chicago. Good rail service to downtown Chicago could be faster than a trip by air. I am a strong supporter of fast rail to Chicago and to Rochester and will be part of any coalition to make that happen.

The State is working with Rochester to provide for accelerated growth of infrastructure to support greatly expanded Mayo services in the city. I believe this commitment provides the best opportunity, by far, for the expansion of regional air service. Fast rail to Rochester would provide another incentive for expanded air service.

4. What are your specific ideas for reducing noise and air pollution from airplanes in and out of the MSP Airport?

JW: It is time to renew efforts to cut down on early morning and late night flights. This is a simple fairness issue. The folks that are burdened should not be constantly burdened.

%d bloggers like this: