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Rosemount gets new representation on the Met Council

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The Metropolitan Council re-aligns districts the third year after the national census. As part of those efforts, Rosemount recently became part of District 15 which is represented by Eagan resident Steven Chávez. The change took effect in mid-July.

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Rosemount was formerly represented on the council by Wendy Wulff. Farmington continues to be represented by Wulff.

As a member of the Met Council, Chávez provides leadership for the seven-county metropolitan area. He was appointed to the Met Council by Governor Mark Dayton in 2011. District 15 also includes Eagan, Inver Grove Heights and Burnsville.

Chávez chairs the litigation review special committee, serves as vice chair of the management committee, secretary of the Metropolitan Council and a member of the community development committee, audit committee, and Thrive MSP 2040 Working Group.

In a phone interview this week, Chávez said it's his work with housing and transportation policy that will most impact Rosemount residents. As a member of the community development committee, Chávez helps review comprehensive plans and awards Livable Community Grants. Additionally, the committee provides funding for regional parks such as Whitetail Woods Regional Park, which will be located in Empire Township.

Currently Chávez serves on a working group that is creating a housing policy plan. The plan, Chávez said, will be used as a guide to help communities protect and secure housing in their communities.

Like most communities in the metro area, Chávez said Rosemount was impacted after 2008 when the housing market fell. However, he said the city is positioned to make a strong comeback as things look up.

"I'm proud of what Rosemount's done. I know what the city is trying to do," said Chávez.

Going forward, Chávez said, the Met Council wants to help cities protect homeowners and their investment.

Housing and transportation issues will become more pronounced in the area as the University of Minnesota moves forward with its UMore Park project. The University of Minnesota plans to build a sustainable community of 25,000 people in the southern portion of Rosemount and in Empire Township.

As the project moves forward, Chávez said, the Met Council will play a role in the planning and execution of establishing UMore Park. In particular, Chávez said water supply and waste water treatment will be key issues that have to be worked out.

Transportation is an issue for Rosemount already and as more people move into the area that problem will grow. Chávez said the Met Council is working on transportation issues in a number of ways at different levels.

Rosemount is considered a part of several major future transportation projects including the Robert Street Transit Corridor and the Twin Cities Passenger Rail Corridor. As those projects take shape, Chávez said, good planning will be important.

Looking at the bigger regional picture, Chávez is a member of the Thrive MSP 2040 Working Group. He said state law requires the Met Council to create a 30-year vision for the region every 10 years. The strategic plan includes land use, housing options, preservation of natural areas, transportation, wastewater treatment, water supply and economic development. That planning will affect every community in the metro area.

Outside of the Met Council, Chávez is director of public advocacy for Integrated Governance Solutions, an Eden Prairie firm providing corporate governance and risk management advice to boards of directors and senior management teams. Prior to his current position, Chávez worked as director of ethics and compliance for MoneyGram International in Minneapolis, and as a consulting and staff attorney for more than 25 years at several organizations.

Chávez plans to introduce himself to the Rosemount City Council at an upcoming meeting.

Residents can email Chávez at steven.chavez@metc.state.mn.us or call him at 612-670-8952.

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Emily Zimmer
Emily Zimmer has worked as a staff writer for the Rosemount Town Pages since 2007. She has a degree in journalism from Minnesota State University, Mankato. Outside of work, Emily enjoys running, reading and gardening. You can follow Emily's gardening adventures at the Areavoices blog East of Weedin'
(651) 460-6606
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