"He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left."
Matthew 25:33

Monday, January 7, 2008

The ACLU Gets It Right

I have been up in arms recently because of the proposed West Saint Paul sewer ordinance. One of my biggest complaints with it was the $50.00 monthly surcharge that would be applied to a citizens water bill. This would be added to your water bill if you refused to allow an inspector into your home to look at your sump pump. You would have no choice in the matter. The City of West Saint Paul, as well as other cities, have been choosing to coerce their citizens, unconstitutionally, to comply to the requests of the Mighty Met Council. It is the Mighty Met Council that has been throwing it's weight around and threatening to fine cities that do not attempt to reduce the amount of water that ends up in the sanitary sewer treatment facility after a rain.

I spoke to Mayor John Zanmiller and several city council members on this issue this evening and we can rest assured that the proposed ordinance for West Saint Paul will be revised. I mentioned to council person Aaron VanMoorlehem that I would like to see the city stand up for it's citizens and fight the Mighty Met Council. He said that it would cost us more in attorneys fees than it would be worth. Too bad.

In an article printed in today's Saint Paul Pioneer Press, titled ACLU Foils Sump Pump Policy, it states that the American Civil Liberties Union of Minnesota has sent a letter to the city of Vadnais Heights informing them that their policy violates the U.S. Constitutions Fourth Amendment against unreasonable search and seizure.

Vadnais Heights citizen Don Jorgenson has shown the intestinal fortitude to stand up to city hall and put up a fight. He contacted the ACLU and received a refund check for $260. It takes citizens like Jorgenson to stand up and make a difference.

A similar city policy in Little Canada cost the city's insurer $90,000 to settle a lawsuit after a resident was charged after refusing access to an inspector.

The Mighty Met Council has been pulling this kind of drek on the cities for quite some time now. This has also been going on in Forest Lake and Shoreview.

Read the full article here,

Previous posts on this issue,

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