Carol Overland - Legalectric

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Carol A. Overland, Overland Law Office -- Utility Regulatory and Land Use Advocacy
Updated: 1 hour 1 min ago

Racist extremists charged today!

Mon, 11/30/2015 - 12:48pm

Thanks to the STrib’s Libor Jany for posting the Statement of Probable Cause for Allen Scarsella.  The four are Scarsella, Joseph Backman, Nathan Gustavsson, and Daniel Macey.  Hennepin Co. Atty. Freeman’s press conference starts soon.

It looks like all four will be charged.  I’m very glad to see the County Attorney handling this quickly.  I believe they’re also looking at whether to charge this as a hate crime.  Given all the video and online threads, it’d be pretty hard to show it wasn’t a hate crime.

Probable Cause – Scarsella

From Reuters:

Allen Scarsella, 23, who prosecutors said in a complaint had admitted to shooting five protesters, was charged with one count of second-degree riot while armed and five counts of second-degree assault.

Joseph Backman, 27; Nathan Gustavsson, 21; and Daniel Macey, 26, were each charged with second-degree riot in the Nov. 23 late night shooting that left five demonstrators with wounds that were not life-threatening.


This is progress, a start.

From the press conference (close, but not necessarily verbatim):

“These are sick people…”

“These four have been in custody… we believe there may be another, and that’s why this is ongoing.”

“If you’re a racist, you’re a racist, and that’s just not acceptable.”

“For people to talk about about their fellow human beings in that manner is simply not acceptable.”

“First appearance is tomorrow, we’ve asked for half a million dollars for Scarsella, and for a quarter million for the others.”

Categories: Citizens

Tuesday 12/1 – PPSA Annual Hearing

Sun, 11/29/2015 - 3:40pm

Here we go again, this year’s Power Plant Siting Act Annual Hearing.

Public Utilities Commission (PUC) Docket Number: E999/M-15-785

Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH) Docket Number: 60-2500-32901

Date: Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Time: 9:30 a.m.

Location: Minnesota Public Utilities Commission, Large Hearing Room, 121 7th Place East, Suite 350, Saint Paul, MN 55101

Bad weather? Find out if a meeting is canceled. Call (toll-free) 1-855-731-6208 or 651-201-2213 or visit


Here are some prior dockets (to access the entire docket, individual comments, etc., go to :

2000 Summary of Proceedings

2000 Report EQB

2001 Summary of Proceedings

2001 Report EQB

2002 Summary of Proceedings

2002 Report to EQB

2003 Summary of Proceedings

2003 Report to EQB

2004 Summary of Proceedings

2004 Report to EQB

2005 Report to PUC

2006 Report to PUC – Docket 06-1733

2007 Report to PUC – Docket 07-1579

2008 Report to PUC – Docket 08-1426

2009 Report to PUC – Docket 09-1351

2010 Report to PUC – Docket 10-222

2011 Report to PUC – Docket 11-324

2012 Report to PUC – Docket 12-360

2013 Report to PUC – Docket 13-965

2014 Summary Comments– Docket 14-887

Categories: Citizens

Where are the “Prayers for _______”

Sun, 11/29/2015 - 11:34am

Methinks cognitive dissonance has people’s minds in a wringer leading to silence.

Whenever a police officer is killed or seriously injured on the job, my facebook feed lights up with “Prayers for _______,” “blue line” memes, and #policelivesmatter hashtags.  Officer Garrett Swasey was killed by a white male terrorist at Planned Parenthood of Colorado Springs, likely one of the first on the scene of that violent attack.  Five other officers, not publicly identified, were injured.  Yet the internet is virtually silent.  The usual many, many comments are not there.  Only two of the many people I know who are usually filling the feed with “Prayers for” comments have offered concern about the fallen officer, and there’s been nothing at all regarding those injured.

There are quite a few comments about this silence…

Here’s a remembrance in the New York Times:

Garrett Swasey, Officer Killed in Colorado, Is Recalled for Courage and Faith


Officer Garrett Swasey was champion skater, church elder

Categories: Citizens

Inciting violence — today a terrorist at Planned Parenthood

Fri, 11/27/2015 - 1:47pm


A suspect is taken into custody outside a Planned Parenthood center in Colorado Springs, Colorado November 27, 2015. Police arrested a gunman who stormed the Planned Parenthood abortion clinic in Colorado Springs on Friday and opened fire with a rifle in a burst of violence that left at least 11 people injured, including five officers, authorities said. REUTERS/Isaiah J. Downing FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVE. TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

What am I thankful for? I’m thankful that we have an opportunity, today, to recognize and acknowledge our rights, and our right and obligation to stand up for our rights and the rights of everyone, but particularly the rights of women, blacks, Muslims, immigrants, and everyone else who is under siege. It’s times like these where I’m thankful to be an attorney, sworn on oath to uphold the Constitution, grateful to have this piece of paper that says I can open a door for others.  Day to day, I do this in a small way, helping people speak up, participate, and exercise their rights.  But the much larger picture is so ugly. Each and every one of us, this is our right and our obligation. We have lost so much in the rights department since 2001, and now our most fundamental Constitutional rights are being challenged from all sides, in many venues. Stand up, ramp it up.

Last week, racist terrorists with stated intent to raise hell shot unarmed #blacklivesmatter #justice4Jamal protesters in Minneapolis.

Today, it’s a domestic terrorists shooting at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs, CO, so far shooting at least one police officer killed and four injured, and two civilians killed and unknown others injured, 9 or maybe more civilians injured.

Planned Parenthood notes that:

We share the concerns of many Americans that extremists are creating a poisonous environment that feeds domestic terrorism in this country.

It’s not surprising there’s be a terrorist at a Planned Parenthood, it’s happened before, and will probably happen again.  But it raises the issue of responsibility of speech.  One of the latest right-wing political distractions has been a protracted, orchestrated, inflamed and vitriolic focus on Planned Parenthood, based on a phony video, and aimed at cutting Planned Parenthood federal funding.  Nevermind that Roe v. Wade is the law of the land since 1973, despite so many attempts to legislate it away (like the 50+ attempts to repeal “Obamacare”), since that time there have been repeated efforts to strip federal funding, many Planned Parenthood clinics do not offer abortions, abortions constitute just 3% of services, and look HERE at the government funding. And today a guy goes in and shoots up Planned Parenthood in Colorado Springs, CO.




What this says to me is that this is not about abortion.  It’s a rallying cry to limit Constitutional rights, and to prevent women’s access to health care and birth control, cancer testing, and STD treatment.

In tandem, we see a rallying cry to prohibit entry of refugees, to establish a “religious test,” and such inflamed hatred directed at Muslims, citizens and non-citizens alike.  Horrible, ugly stuff.  Over and over, the rants are based on a claim of theocracy, the the U.S. is a “Christian” nation, and that only “Christians” should be allowed in.  Not a thought is given to the founding of this country by people fleeing theocracy!  No weight is given to the Constitutional prohibition of establishment of a state (government) religion.

And in Texas, a Texas militia group posts names and addresses of Muslims and “Muslim associates” (report HERE) for what purpose other than to encourage “religious” terrorists?  Here’s THE Texas Militia site: Texas Militia. Same one?

Donald Trump is a prime offender, but it’s much broader than Trump.

HERE: One way to handle hate speech without undermining the whole concept of freedom of speech at Brunel University where Katie Hopkins was a panelist in debate.

Categories: Citizens

About the shootings and openly racist threats…

Tue, 11/24/2015 - 1:56pm

The threads are being taken down, but many have screenshots.  Interesting that some of the comments on the City Pages article have disappeared, names were named in those disappearing threads, at least one showed up in comments, and surprise, and at least one has disappeared as well.

UPDATE: Saigamarine released, to others arrested.  Here’s the “connect the dots” piece: REVEALED: Accused Minneapolis shooters fascinated with guns, militia groups and the Confederacy.


UPDATE: Two arrests so far… 23 y.o. white male in Bloomington, and 32 y.o. Hispanic male in south Mpls.

For several nights running there have been white supremacists coming to the 4th Precinct, their online stated intent to shake things up and hurt people.

Here’s advice from one of them:

One shot from any gun of any kind that only wounded one protester would set of the spark that will open the season on Dindus. If you get away with it.

Points for using a bow and arrow with expanding razor blade head.

Cut the bar code off the arrow if you bought it at the store. Keep gloves on when you handle your arrows and make purchases in cash.

Don’t buy equipment in front of a video camera and then go Dindu Hunting before the data gets erased. (You probably have no way of knowing how long it is kept, if it was erased or even recorded.) It will be used against you.

Wait a few weeks, have patience, don’t get greedy. One Testimony (slain Dindu) that can’t be traced beats 50 that got you killed/captured and tortured. It makes the Dindus think that the “enemy” is everywhere. That causes them to lash out at the wrong people.

Consider a shotgun slug or 00 buckshot for short range. 30-06 or similar for long range.

Remember. LE’s will kill you for trying. So will Dindus. Unlike what the Dindus say, LE’s are not on the side of Vigilantes.

If you can run with the best of them, you could use a small pistol and disguise and flee to a car or bicycle that you have placed in a concealed area.

Here’s Minnesota’s criminal statute regarding terroristic threats:


Subdivision 1.Threaten violence; intent to terrorize.

Whoever threatens, directly or indirectly, to commit any crime of violence with purpose to terrorize another or to cause evacuation of a building, place of assembly, vehicle or facility of public transportation or otherwise to cause serious public inconvenience, or in a reckless disregard of the risk of causing such terror or inconvenience may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than five years or to payment of a fine of not more than $10,000, or both. As used in this subdivision, “crime of violence” has the meaning given “violent crime” in section 609.1095, subdivision 1, paragraph (d).

Subd. 2.Communicates to terrorize.Whoever communicates to another with purpose to terrorize another or in reckless disregard of the risk of causing such terror, that explosives or an explosive device or any incendiary device is present at a named place or location, whether or not the same is in fact present, may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than three years or to payment of a fine of not more than $3,000, or both.

Categories: Citizens

Life is good!!

Mon, 11/23/2015 - 4:31pm

I gots me a chuckbox!!!

Categories: Citizens

Thanks for speaking up, Dave & Jan!

Sat, 11/21/2015 - 6:33pm

Citizens trying to quietly and respectfully address the police problems in Minneapolis to the City Council were tossed out of the room, no public comment allowed!

I’ve known Jan Nye forever, she’s the third one here speaking to the Minneapolis City Council, and was hauled out, as were the others.  Before her was her partner Dave Bicking, who was also hauled out of the room.  Bicking was a member of the Civilian Review Board, which was disbanded by the City.  Since then, there have been many, many complaints regarding police behavior, and only 0.1% result in any discipline.  There’s a problem in Minneapolis, and it needs to be addressed.



HERE’S A LINK to the one video so far after the killing of Jamar Clark.

Categories: Citizens

George Snyder (?) spews in the bEagle

Thu, 11/19/2015 - 10:00pm

Here’s a “response” to the Letter to the Editor that I wrote last month — check the flawed logic and ad hominem jab:

And, what I find completely reprehensible, is that an officer of the court will give tacit acquiesce to this kind of activity based on some abstract concept of “cultural injustice.”

Yup, he really said that… and more… and it took him so many more words to do it (I wonder who wrote it for him):

Letter: The issue is more than ‘cultural injustice’ By George W. Snyder, Red Wing from Red Wing on Nov 17, 2015 at 1:32 p.m.

To the Editor:

Recently in this space there was a reference made of “animosity towards Black Lives Matter.” I submit that it is not animosity to Black Lives Matter protest so much as frustration and sadness. Let me explain.

There have been numerous news accounts where gang members roll through a black neighborhood shooting indiscriminately and an innocent black child is killed by a stray bullet through the wall. What “cultural injustice” causes this behavior? And why does this black life not matter?

Roughly 7,000 blacks are murdered annually. Tragically this figure represents more than 50 percent of all murders and even sadder still is that 95 percent of these murders occur at the hand of other blacks (see Walter Williams’ “ Fiddling Away the Future,” July 8, 2015). What cultural injustice allows for this and why do these black lives not matter?

Two Hattiesburg, Mississippi, police were murdered by four black men and a black woman. One of the officers, 25-year-old Liquori Tare, was black as well. Why does officer Tate’s black life not matter?

Two Brooklyn police officers were assassinated as they sat in their police cruiser, Ismaaley Brinsley, the black gunman who killed them, had earlier put a bullet in his ex-girlfriends abdomen. Why does her black life not matter and what cultural injustice justifies her shooting in Baltimore as a kick off for a cop killing spree in Brooklyn?

What cultural injustice makes acceptable that a Texas cop should get capped for simply fueling his squad car?

In that same letter there was a reference made that there has been a “decrease in police gun deaths” which was little more than an editorial sleight of hand intended to skirt around the fact that the aforementioned police assassins are currently batting 1,000. And, what I find completely reprehensible, is that an officer of the court will give tacit acquiesce to this kind of activity based on some abstract concept of “cultural injustice.”

Furthermore, whites like myself demand and expect our chiefs of police continuously to monitor their officers for the excessive use force. To do otherwise is morally repugnant and antithetical to any police officer’s first call to duty.

The sad part is that the black lives of men, women and children that are preyed upon in these communities by black criminals are negligible or expendable for their plight does not serve to prop up any philosophical or political worldview of ideologically motivated individuals.

Therefore, I see no reason to entertain much less engage in a dialogue with those who make irrelevant emotional pronouncements at no personal risk to themselves. In the end they defend that which is indefensible and are content while others pay a cruel price.

George W. Snyder

Red Wing

Here’s the Letter to the Editor I wrote after the Red Wing City Council voted UNANIMOUSLY to reconsider Resolution 6873:

Letter: Thanks, City Council, for reconsideration By Carol A. Overland from Red Wing on Oct 18, 2015 at 11:00 a.m.

To the Editor:

Monday evening, the Red Wing City Council decided that resolution 6873, promoted by the National Fraternal Order of Police, needed further discussion, and forwarded it to the Human Rights Commission for a public dialog and forum. The council did the right thing.

It’s more than “five words.” The resolution cover sheet states “The United States has seen an increase of hostility toward law enforcement over the past two years” and “law enforcement is the target of criticism and violent attacks,” and the resolution claims a “violent surge against police.” 

However, statistics show a decrease in police deaths by gunfire.

The resolution language elicits an are-you-for-the-police-or-against-them twist, and serves as a distraction from the legitimate constitutional, civil, and human rights issues at the root of hostility and criticism of police. Animosity expressed toward #blacklivesmatter shows a failure to acknowledge cultural injustice.

As an attorney, an officer of the court, sworn to uphold the Constitution, I find this offensive, because the “increase of hostility” and “criticism” is a demand for accountability, observation of fundamental rights, and prosecution of crimes committed by police. We must address this systemic problem.

It’s incumbent on myself and other whites to acknowledge racial and class inequity and crimes against others, and work toward change. Each of us bears responsibility, and I’m glad to see the City Council display some understanding of the nuances of this resolution and the need for community discussion. In the words of Congressman Luis Gutierrez, “We’re not going back to the ’50s.” 

The best outcome might be for the Red Wing Police Department to continue its proactive training and quality policing, and for the City Council and Human Rights Commission to begin our community discussion of how we can achieve equality and “liberty and justice for all.”

Carol A. Overland

Red Wing


Categories: Citizens

Rulemaking Ch. 7829 at PUC tomorrow

Wed, 11/18/2015 - 11:55am

Tomorrow, the Chapter 7829 Rulemaking is going to the Commission, for approval of the FINAL rules.  This rulemaking has been going on formally for over two years now in Docket 13-24 (go to NEW SEARCH and search for this docket).

Overland 7829 Comment Nov 18 2015

PUC Staff BriefingPapers_201511-115619-01

FINAL_Rules 7829_201511-115691-01

And some history…   I’ve been concerned about this chapter for a long while, and submitted a Petition for Rulemaking over FOUR YEARS ago.  Apparently that was filed in the trash:

Overland Petition for Rulemaking-7829

And prior posts:

Ch. 7829 Rulemaking Comments   July 20th, 2015 Stealth rulemaking — PUC’s Minn. R. Ch. 7829  July 10th, 2014 PUC’s Stealth 7829 Rulemaking Docket  June 4th, 2013 PUC requests Comments on 7829 rules  August 8th, 2013 Minn. R. 7829 marches on…   September 9th, 2013
Categories: Citizens

The old grey mare just ain’t what she used to be…

Tue, 11/17/2015 - 9:04pm

But she’s still pulling!  David, here’s the photo for Kevin!

Categories: Citizens

Hell Creek State Park (Montana) – Comments due 11/25

Mon, 11/16/2015 - 12:20pm

Hell Creek State Park, Montana, circa 1966

Comments on the Hell Creek State Park Master Site & Management Plan – Draft_10-28-15 are due November 25, 2015.  They’re looking at choices to address the serious overcapacity use of the park, and to determine what to do when the “no-cost lease agreement” with the Army Corps of Engineers expires in 2021.  At this point, they’re wanting to address site infrastructure needs, make priority improvements and continue management of site and concession facility under a new contract with USACE.

Send Comments, labeled as “Hell Creek State Park – Comments” to:

Montana State Parks 1420 East 6th Ave PO Box 200701 Helena, MT  59620-0701

or online:

Decades ago on a family camping trip, we went to Hell Creek State Park, and it was stunning in its vast austerity.  It was on the bank of the Fort Peck Reservoir, the dam being part of our infrastructure tour that summer, and it was so bleak, hot, and dry, I wondered how people survived out there. Here’s the one campsite now with a tree!

We had to drive this intensely bumpy dirt road from Jordan, the nearest town, about 26 miles away, and it took a LONG time.  When we got there, we were the only campers, and were warmly greeted by the ranger, who showed us around, warned us about the cactus and said to be careful what shoes we wore because those spines could come right up through flimsy tennis shoes!  He also displayed his day’s work, he’d been out shooting rattlesnakes that day, and had half a flour sack full of dead rattlesnakes.   I don’t remember a beach, though there must have been a designated swimming area, and for sure there would have been a boat launch.  What I do remember of the reservoir, other than the dam, was an old wagon, the wooden kind, with a bench seat, the bench sticking up out of the water, which reminded me of what was probably lurking underneath the water, whatever was left when they flooded the river valley.

I’ve wanted to go back there, and now with the camper, it’s on the agenda (let’s hear it for online reservations with photos!).  And in looking at the park, I found this Plan, and it presents some interesting issues, ranging from dealing with outfitters who direct clients to the park and use it as a base; moving to increased online reservations and a reservation only system; dealing with water and sewage issues, fish cleaning waste; and campground improvements to water, sanitary sewer system, electrical and cell service (there is NO cell service in the area).

If you’re a camper, fisher, hunter, check out this plan and let them know what you think!




Categories: Citizens

Clean Coal Carolers

Sun, 11/15/2015 - 1:29pm

Someone posted the Minion Carolers, and, well, though I don’t need to get too wrapped up in these things because I AM a Christmas Carol, I remembered this from a few years back and found one (weren’t there more?_ and want to capture it while the spirit moves me:


Categories: Citizens

Terrorist murders and hostages, and Lake Erie seiche

Fri, 11/13/2015 - 7:52pm

Many dozens killed, maybe over 150, and over 100 held hostage and also maybe killed in Paris:

And Lake Erie is going nuts too:

… and a 7.0 earthquake off Japan coast.

Friday the 13th… low barometric pressure… and the world is more than a bit nuts…

Categories: Citizens

Ongoing racism at University of Missouri… outgoing?

Tue, 11/10/2015 - 11:06am

Time for a change…

UPDATE: University of Missouri Teacher Who Sought ‘Muscle’ to Block Journalist Apologizes


A first person observation:

I was a black student at the University of Missouri. Racism there is nothing new.

From the Nation:
Black Mizzou Football Players Going On Strike Over Campus Racism

From the New York Times:

University of Missouri Protests Spur a Day of Change

And more from CNN:

University of Missouri president and chancellor step down amid race row

What is it going to take? Apparently a lot more. The U.S. has got to wrestle with this and get to “with liberty and justice for all.” As Rep. Luis Gutireriz says, “we are NOT going back to the 1950s.”

Categories: Citizens

Two derailments in WI, one with Bakken BOOM! oil

Mon, 11/09/2015 - 1:34pm

CBS 58

The good news is it didn’t blow up, hasn’t blown up yet… let’s hope that trend continues.  People have been evacuated, and can’t return until… ???

From CBS 58:

35 Homes Evacuated after 1,000 Gallons of Crude Oil Spill in Train Derailment

And our Amtrak “train every day, leaving either way” is not running:

Amtrak Service Disrupted by Train Derailment

From Karl Zarling:

And from CARS of Milwaukee, FYI, 1267 is Bakken BOOM! super-volatile crude oil:

Info on the derailment near Alma, WI is separate below, posted Saturday.

Categories: Citizens

EIS “Record of Decision” soon?

Mon, 11/09/2015 - 11:37am

Last week there was a large info dump from the DOE. Environmental Impact Statements are rolling through the Dept. of Energy’s Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability, one for the Plains & Eastern Clean Line (see BLOCK Clean Line) and its ; another for the Great Northern Transmission Line (see Not-so-Great Northern Transmission Line)  They’re in different departments at this office, “Clean Line” is a “Section 1222” review and the “Not-so-Great Northern” is a Presidential Permit application.

Here’s the Record of Decision schedule (click for larger version):

And the full DOE EIS schedule (they’ve not yet released the November schedule):

Key EIS Chart – October 2015

  • Record of Decision expected 1/16/2016.  The Clean Line project has no associated state permitting and review process, because the applicant was rejected by the State of Arkansas as a utility, and because they’re not a utility, they’re not eligible for a state permit.  To make things more complicated, the Section 1222 review is something new, there are no rules, and it’s a financing law, and that is all (though Clean Line wants it to be so much more!).  The DOE held scoping meetings and hearings in Texas and Tennessee, and in multiple locations across Oklahoma and Arkansas, but these were only about environmental review, and not the Section 1222 issues or anything else.  They’ve not scheduled hearings, there’s no evidentiary hearing, nothing, despite a specific request.  Comment letters are in Appendix Q, and there are THREE of them!   They listed on the comments the FEIS sections where comments are addressed.  What a pain to go back and forth, where the sections are not clearly identified on the links.
  • Record of Decision “uncertain.”  What does that mean?  The “Not-so-Great” Northern Transmission Project is before the DOE because the applicants Minnesota Power and Manitoba Hydro (in the U.S., it’s just Minnesota Power, doing the lifting for both) have applied for a Presidential Permit, essentially permission to market power between Canada and the US.  In tandem with this DOE Presidential Permit, MP has applied for a state Certificate of Need and Routing Permit.  Hearings are over, briefs are in (there are NO intervenors in this docket), and now we’re waiting for the ALJ Recommendation.  Then exceptions to the Recommendation, and on the the PUC.  that’s probably why the RoD date is “uncertain,” because there’s the state agency that they’re dealing with.

So there are procedural differences, timing differences.  But it sure is a lot to wade through.  Plus the PolyMet FEIS just came out.

Categories: Citizens


Mon, 11/09/2015 - 11:22am

Notice of the Power Plant Siting and Transmission Line Routing Program Annual Hearing

Issued: November 6, 2015

In the Matter of the 2015 Power Plant Siting Act Annual Hearing

Public Utilities Commission (PUC) Docket Number: E999/M-15-785

Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH) Docket Number: 60-2500-32901

Date: Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Time: 9:30 a.m.

Location: Minnesota Public Utilities Commission, Large Hearing Room, 121 7th Place East, Suite 350, Saint Paul, MN 55101

Bad weather? Find out if a meeting is canceled. Call (toll-free) 1-855-731-6208 or 651-201-2213 or visit

Hearing Description

The annual hearing is required by Minnesota Statute § 216E.07, which provides that:

Thecommission shall hold an annual public hearing at a time and place prescribed by rule in order to afford interested persons an opportunity to be heard regarding any matters relating to the siting of large electric generating power plants and routing of high-voltage transmission lines. At the meeting, the commission shall advise the public of the permits issued by the commission in the past year….

Note – No decisions about specific projects are made at the annual hearing.

Public Hearing Information
  • Public hearings start on time.
  • Arrive a few minutes early so you have time to sign in, pick up materials, and find a seat.
  • Administrative Law Judge James LaFave will preside over the hearing.
  • Public Utilities Commission and Department of Commerce staff members are available to answer questions about the Power Plant Siting Act processes and the projects.
  • You may add verbal comments, written comments, or both into the record.
  • Learn more about participating at a public hearing at
  • Judge LaFave will use information gathered at the public hearing and during the comment period to write a summary report for the Commission
Submit Comments

Topics for Public Comment:

  • Any matters related to the site permit process for large electric generating power plants and routing of high-voltage transmission lines.

Comment Period: November 6, 2015 through January 5, 2016 at 4:30pm.

  • Comments must be received by 4:30pm on the close date
  • Comments received after comment period closes may not be considered

Online Visit, select Speak Up!, find this docket (15-785), and add your comments to the discussion.

If you wish to include an exhibit, map or other attachment, please send your comments via eFiling (see below) or U.S. Mail.

Please include the Commission’s docket number in all communications.

Filing Requirements: Utilities and state agencies are required to file documents using the Commission’s electronic filing system (eFiling). All parties, participants and interested persons are encouraged to use eFiling:, select eFiling, and follow the prompts.

Important Comments will be made available to the public via the Public Utilities Commission’s website, except in limited circumstances consistent with the Minnesota Government Data Practices Act. The Commission does not edit or delete personal identifying information from submissions.

Hearing Agenda

I. Introductions
II.Overview of Programs
A. Public Utilities Commission – Facilities Permitting and Public Advisor
B. Department of Commerce – Energy Facilities Permitting Unit
C. Role of Other Agencies
III. Projects Reviewed
A. Projects Permitted in 2015
B. Pending and Anticipated Projects
C. Electric Facilities Subject to Power Plant Siting Act
1. Generating Plants
2. Transmission Lines
IV. Public Questions and Testimony
V. Adjourn

How to Learn More

Subscribe to the Docket: Subscribe to receive email notifications when new documents are filed. Note – subscribing may result in a large number of emails.

  2. Select Subscribe to a Docket
  3. Type your email address
  4. For Type of Subscription, select Docket Number
  5. For Docket Number, select 15 in the first box, type 785 in the second box
  6. Select Add to List
  7. Select Save

Full Case Record: See all documents filed in this docket via the Commission’s website –, select Search eDockets, enter the year (15) and the docket number (785), select Search.

Project Mailing Lists: Sign up to receive notices and opportunities to participate in other dockets relating to specific projects in which you are interested (meetings, comment periods, etc.). Contact or 651-201-2234 with the docket number, your name, mailing address and email address.

Minnesota Statutes and Rules: The hearing is being conducted according to Minnesota Statute 216E.07. Minnesota Statutes are available at

Project Contacts

Public Utilities Commission Public Advisor

Tracy Smetana –, 651-296-0406 or 1-800-657-3782

Categories: Citizens

Today – train derailment north of Alma, WI

Sat, 11/07/2015 - 1:43pm

Photo from

And the good news is that it’s NOT Bakken BOOM! oil, only denatured alcohol and some empty car cars.  The evacuation has been lifted and people are returning.  The other good news is that this means they won’t be shipping on the Wisconsin side of the Mississippi anytime soon, with the associated bad news that then they’ll be shipping through Red Wing more often.

Some good photos here:

NOTE: There’s a Minneapolis CARS message below regarding the November 10th Mpls. City Council meeting.

From News8000:

Emergency crews on scene of 32-car train derailment north of Alma

From KSTP 5:

Train Derails in Wisconsin, Prompting Voluntary Evacuation


Here’s the Minneapolis CARS (Citizens Acting for Rail Safety) message:

Nov 10th -- Attention Minneapolis residents: Support a Strong Rail Safety Resolution! Hello CARS network, as we reported last month, the City of Minneapolis is preparing a rail safety resolution that will come before the Transportation and Public Works committee on November 10th. We are encouraged from conversations with City Council members that the resolution will be a great first step forward and that the resolution is likely to pass the committee and the City Council. There is also understanding that this will be a living document that will need updating as more information is available. It is important that the City Council hear from us to know that the community is supportive of this important work. There are two ways you can do this: 1) Mark your calendars to attend the Minneapolis City Council Transportation & Public Works Committee meeting next Tuesday, November 10, 2015 at 9:30 am in the Council Chamber, Room 317 of City Hall. If you are able to attend, please let us know by replying to this email. Comments will not be allowed, but your presence will be important. Please also plan to stay for a brief press conference that is being organized for approximately 11:30 am. As the media reports this important success, it is important that we have as many people in attendance as possible showing community support. 2) Contact your Minneapolis City Council member to thank them for supporting a strong rail safety resolution. Call or Email them with some version of the following message, sharing your own personal story of living near the rails if you are willing. I am concerned about the risks that freight trains carrying crude oil, ethanol and other hazardous materials pose to my neighborhood. I thank the City for its leadership in supporting a strong Rail Safety Resolution that will protect Minneapolis. MINNEAPOLIS CITY COUNCIL CONTACT INFORMATION Ward 1 - - (612)673-2201 Ward 2 - - (612)673-2202 Ward 3 - - (612)673-2203 Ward 4 - - (612)673-2204 Ward 5 - - (612)673-2205 Ward 6 - - (612)673-2206 Ward 7 - - (612)673-2207 Ward 8 - - (612)673-2208 Ward 9 - - (612)673-2209 Ward 10 - - (612)673-2210 Ward 11 - - (612)673-2211 Ward 12 - - (612)673-2212 Ward 13 - - (612)673-2213 Cars Contact Info: Cathy Velasquez Eberhart Citizens Acting for Rail Safety - Twin Cities 651-587-5356 on Facebook at:
Categories: Citizens

Criminal Record for Assailant Burchard-Risch

Fri, 11/06/2015 - 12:29pm

From the “What the Hell is Wrong with People” department:  The report of Jodie Marie Burchard-Risch’s assault of another customer at the Coon Rapids Applebee’s was pretty disturbing — Burchard-Risch started yelling at her, threw a drink on her and then smashed her in the face with a beer mug because she didn’t like that she wasn’t speaking English.  Clearly doesn’t get the concept that she doesn’t rule the world, and that her rights end at someone else’s nose.  It seems that the management at Applebee’s handled it well, tried to eject her, and then after the assault followed her until she was arrested.

There’s a gofundme site for Asma who was attacked.

Here’s something important — this Burchard-Risch woman is really a peach.  Check out all the alcohol and traffic charges and convictions.  This is at least a 2nd assault, and also likely alcohol is a factor here.  There’s an established pattern of behavior, and she’s someone in need of treatment.  She’s way off the charts:

Jodie Marie Burchard Risch – Minnesota Criminal Record

Hope the prosecutor and judge push for a stint in jail and a long probation and mandatory treatment.

There’s been a lot of news coverage:

CAIR calls for hate-crime charges in attack on diner at Coon Rapids Applebee’s

Minneapolis Star Tribune – ‎1 hour ago‎

Jodie Burchard-Risch, 43, of Ramsey, was charged Monday in Anoka County District Court with third-degree assault. Burchard-Risch was dining Friday with her husband when she overheard the woman, who was sitting in a nearby booth, according to the … Group wants hate crime charges in restaurant attack Minnesota Public Radio News – ‎1 hour ago‎ A Muslim advocacy group in Minnesota is calling for hate crime charges to be filed in an attack on a woman at a restaurant in suburban Minneapolis. A criminal complaint says Jodie Burchard-Risch is accused of striking the Muslim woman with a beer mug … Applebee’s customer accused of assaulting non-English speaker Press – ‎9 minutes ago‎ Jodie Marie Burchard-Risch, 43, was charged Monday, Nov. 2, 2015, with third degree assault for allegedly striking a woman at a Coon Rapids Applebee’s restaurant because the woman was speaking a foreign language. (Photo courtesy Anoka County … Charges: Woman attacked restaurant patron for not speaking English Rick Kupchella’s BringMeTheNews – ‎5 hours ago‎ An apparent assault led to charges against a Ramsey woman after authorities say she attacked another female patron at the Applebee’s in Coon Rapids. KSTP reports Jodie Burchard-Risch, 43, was dining at the restaurant with her husband on Friday when … Charges: Woman attacked non-English speaking Applebee’s diner 13WMAZ – ‎21 hours ago‎ COON RAPIDS, Minn. – A woman is charged with assault for allegedly smashing a beer mug across a diner’s face at a local Applebee’s — all because the victim wasn’t speaking English, according to the complaint. Jodie Marie Burchard-Risch, 43, was … Charges: Applebee’s customer attacked for speaking Swahili FOX 29 News Philadelphia – ‎2 hours ago‎ Jodie Marie Burchard-Risch, 43, of Ramsey and her husband were eating at the Applebee’s at 129th Street NW on Oct. 30, according to the criminal complaint. Witnesses say the pair was upset that the victim, who was sitting in a booth next to them, was … Charges: Woman Assaulted at Coon Rapids Applebee’s for Not Speaking English – ‎Nov 5, 2015‎ They both said that a woman identified as 43-year-old Jodie Marie Burchard-Risch of Ramsey was at the restaurant with her husband, and another woman was seated at a booth next to Burchard-Risch. The managers said Burchard-Risch and her husband … Diner Accused of Assaulting Woman At Twin Cities Restaurant WJON News – ‎Nov 5, 2015‎ Jodie Burchard-Risch was charged Monday with third-degree assault in Anoka County District Court. She was arrested Friday shortly after the incident at Applebee’s in Coon Rapids. Burchard-Risch is accused of yelling at the woman, who was sitting in a … Diner accused of assaulting woman at Minnesota restaurant – ‎Nov 5, 2015‎ COON RAPIDS, Minn. (AP) – A 43-year-old woman is accused of attacking another woman because she didn’t speak English while they were dining separately at a restaurant in the Twin Cities. Jodie Burchard-Risch was charged Monday with third-degree … Charges: Woman Attacked For Speaking Foreign Language At Applebee’s CBS Local – ‎14 hours ago‎ COON RAPIDS, Minn. (WCCO) — Asma Mohamed Jama’s face now carries the scars from what she says was an unprovoked attack inside the Applebee’s on 129th Avenue in Coon Rapids. Jama was with her cousins and a total of four children having dinner …


Categories: Citizens

Plains & Eastern EIS released today!

Wed, 11/04/2015 - 3:05pm

Hot off the press,here at the Plains & Eastern EIS site!

Appendix Q contains the Comments and responses to those Comments:

EIS-0486: Final Environmental Impact Statement (Volume VII) EIS-0486: Final Environmental Impact Statement (Volume VIII, File 1) EIS-0486: Final Environmental Impact Statement (Volume VIII, File 2)

Here’s a very problematic statement from the intro letter:

Based on the information presented in the Final EIS, DOE has identified participation in the Project as its preferred alternative in the Final EIS.

Why?  Most improper in that the EIS is not supposed about a “preferred alternative,” which goes too far towards bias of a supposedly neutral party.  It’s pretty basic — the purpose of an EIS is to inform the record, and the decision makers, of the IMPACTS.  It is not a decisional document, it is not the basis for a recommendation.  Add to that the lack of a thorough evaluation of need, which, particularly in this case, is to be the deciding factor.  A project of this magnitude doesn’t go forward just because, or because the developers want it.  That’s not enough.  It’s about need.  If you search the Table of Contents, there is only one mention of “need” in the intro, talking about the “need” for an EIS, and there is one section in the text, entitled “Department of Energy Purpose and Need.”  There doesn’t seem to be any evaluation of need for the P-R-O-J-E-C-T!

Here ’tis:

Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Plains & Eastern Clean Line Transmission Project Final EIS Volume I Volume II Volume III Volume IV Volume V Volume VI Volume VII Volume VIII Final EIS Summary Reference CD ElectEnvironment Data Response Sec3.4 Clean Line 2014a Tier IV Route Analysis Ch2 Clean Line 2013 TrafficTechSupport Sup Info Section 3.16 Clean Line 2014 Visual Resources Tech Report (Section 3.18 Clean Line 2014)

And HERE’S a nearly verbatim cut and paste of their email, release of yet another FEIS from the Department of Energy:

Plains & Eastern EIS Plains & Eastern EIS

You are receiving this email because you signed up to receive information and updates about the Plains & Eastern EIS. Thank you for your interest in this project.

The Final Environmental Impact Statement for the Plains & Eastern Clean Line Transmission Project is now available

The Final Environmental Impact Statement (DOE/EIS–0486; Final EIS) is available on the project website at and on the DOE National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) website at DOE has not made a decision regarding the proposed Plains & Eastern Clean Line Transmission Project.

DOE is the lead federal agency for the preparation of the Final EIS, which examines the potential environmental impacts from the Applicant Proposed Project and the range of reasonable alternatives. The Applicant is Clean Line Energy Partners LLC of Houston, Texas, the parent company of Plains and Eastern Clean Line LLC and Plains and Eastern Clean Line Oklahoma LLC (collectively referred to as Clean Line or the Applicant).

The Final EIS considers comments submitted on the Draft EIS, including those submitted during the public comment period that began on December 19, 2014, and ended on April 20, 2015. Late comments have been considered to the extent practicable. During the comment period, DOE held 15 public hearings in Oklahoma, Texas, Arkansas, and Tennessee. Approximately 950 comment documents were received from individuals, interested groups, tribal governments, and federal, state, and local agencies. In addition to numerous comments that provided a statement of general opposition or support, the primary topics raised include, but are not limited to: concern about electric and magnetic fields from the transmission line; concern about reductions in property value; concern about impacts to agricultural resources such as crop production, irrigation, and aerial spraying; concern about the use of eminent domain; and concern about visual impacts from the transmission line. A Comment Response Document, included as Appendix Q of the Final EIS, contains the comments received on the Draft EIS and DOE’s responses to these comments.

Parallel with the NEPA process, DOE is evaluating Clean Line’s application under Section 1222 of the Energy Policy Act of 2005. This non-NEPA evaluation includes, but is not limited to, reviewing the application against statutory criteria and other factors listed in the 2010 request for proposals (75 Federal Register 32940). An outcome of this evaluation could be a Participation Agreement between Clean Line and DOE, which would define under what conditions DOE would participate with Clean Line and, if applicable, would include any stipulations or requirements that resulted from this environmental review under NEPA. The DOE Office of Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability website ( provides more information about the Section 1222 evaluation.

If DOE decides to participate in the proposed Project, it will publish a Record of Decision no sooner than 30 days after publication of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Notice of Availability in the Federal Register. Copies of the Final EIS and supporting documents are available for inspection at public reading rooms.

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Categories: Citizens

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