City Detail

Background Information

City of Saint James
County: Watonwan
Population: 4605
GreenStep City category: B
Full-time equivalent city staff (approx.): 39
Participating township, county, school:

GreenStep Coordinator

Kathy Grothem
City Staff
507-375-3241
City web page relating to sustainability/GreenStep activities:
GreenStep City resolution: Click here to view the file.
GreenStep City status and date: STEP 1 ( )

City Assessment Files and City Performance Metrics

City councils pass a resolution to join the GreenStep program and are recognized at Step 1. Step 2 and Step 3 recognition levels reflect completed city actions, reported and rated below with stars (1 star = good, 2 stars = better, 3 stars = best). The Assessment File below summarizes completed city actions in a short Word file. Step 4 recognition is awarded to cities who report a minimum number of core metrics for the previous calendar year. These metrics aim to show the aggregate, quantitative results of taking multiple GreenStep actions. Step 5 cities show improvement in the Step 4 metrics. See yearly data for Steps 4&5. Additional city data can be found by reviewing information on B3 Benchmarking and Regional Indicators Initiative.

Assessment File

Best Practice Actions Underway and Completed

Completed actions are denoted by stars.

Total completed actions: 5
1 star actions: 3
3 star actions: 2

Transportation Transportation

Mobility Options {BP no.12}

1 star - Action 2:

Conduct an Active Living campaign such as a Safe Routes to School program.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Implementation details:
Safe Routes to School (SRTS) is a national program which assists communities and school districts in enabling and encouraging children to walk and bike to school. The program assists in planning, development, and implementation of goals to improve safety and health, while reducing traffic, fuel consumption, and air pollution near schools.
Outcome measures/metrics:
We identified strategies to engineer, educate, encourage, enforce, and evaluate our plan going forward.
Descriptive File: view file
St. James Public Schools, Region 9, MNDOT
For more information contact:
Sam Hansen (City staff) | Sam.Hansen@ci.stjames.mn.us | 507-375-5090
1 star - Action 3:

Prominently identify mobility options: transit; paratransit/Dial-A-Ride; ridesharing/cab services; rental cars; bikes; airports.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Implementation details:
St. James has a link to the Take Me There (TMT) Bus. TMT will take you to any location in Watonwan County. TMT may also take you out of the County for specific medical appointments. We also have a list of other transportation options available in town.
Outcome measures/metrics:
The outcome is that anyone looking to move to town or look to see what amenities we have in town have access to this information.
Descriptive File:
City of St. James, Watonwan County
For more information contact:
Sam Hansen (City staff) | Sam.Hansen@ci.stjames.mn.us | 507-375-5090

Environmental Management Environmental Management

Sustainable Purchasing {BP no.15}

3 star - Action 2:

Purchase energy used by city government - via the municipal utility, green tags, community solar garden, 3rd party - with a higher renewable percentage than required by Minnesota law.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Implementation details:
The City of St. James receives its power from St. James Public Utility. Currently 9% of our electricity comes from wind resources and 63% is supplied by hydropower. Overall, renewable energy supplies 72% of total purchases by the City of St. James, 78% of the total power is carbon-free.
Outcome measures/metrics:
Descriptive File: view file
For more information contact:
Sam Hansen (City staff) | Sam.Hansen@ci.stjames.mn.us | 507-375-5090

Sustainable Consumption and Waste {BP no.22}

3 star - Action 7:

Improve/organize residential trash, recycling and organics collection by private and/or public operations and offer significant volume-based pricing on residential garbage and/or incentives for recycling.

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Implementation details:
The City of St. James just accepted a contract with West Central Sanitation to pick up solid waste for its residents. Residents can choose from different sized carts for their garbage pick up. West Central only uses trucks that use natural gas, making it much quieter and greener.
Outcome measures/metrics:
The City of St. James partners with West Central Sanitation to ensure that every household in the city has garbage pick up. West Central provides the carts and they also do the billing.
Descriptive File: view file
West Central Sanitation
For more information contact:
Sam Hansen (City staff) | Sam.Hansen@ci.stjames.mn.us | 507-375-5090

Local Air Quality {BP no.23}

1 star - Action 2:

Regulate outdoor wood burning, using ordinance language, performance standards and bans as appropriate, for at least one of the following:

Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Implementation details:
Fire Pits/Recreational Fires - City of St. James Ordinance 10.25
Fire Pits/Recreational fires not permitted in the front yard setback area
Fire Pits/recreational fires maximum size is 3' in diameter and 3' high
Only sticks, twigs, and unsawn materials may be burned in fire pits in the City(no garbage, leaves, treated lumber, etc.)
Keep fires at least 25' away from any structure
Burning of Leaves - City of St. James Ordinance 10.26
Burning permit required
Burning permits available during the month of May and from October 15- December 1
Prohibited on City streets, boulevards, lake shores or any public property
25' setback from any structure, wood fence, hedge or bush and no less than 5' from any property line
Burning allowed between 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m.
Burning trash, rubbish, or other materials is strictly prohibited
Outcome measures/metrics:
Descriptive File:
For more information contact:
Sam Hansen (City staff) | Sam.Hansen@ci.stjames.mn.us | 507-375-5090