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Peterson passed up for Met Council seat

Former Washington County Commissioner Myra Peterson was passed up for a spot on the Metropolitan Council.

Peterson applied for a seat on the regional planning council in Gov. Mark Dayton's administration, but is not among the 16 people Dayton plans to appoint. Dayton's office released the list Wednesday; formal appointments are planned for Monday.

Peterson served about 18 years on the Washington County Board, but lost re-election last fall to Autumn Lehrke, like Peterson a Cottage Grove resident.

After Dayton won office, Peterson sought a spot on the Met Council, which oversees Twin Cities regional planning, growth, environmental issues and transportation. South Washington County city leaders, including Cottage Grove Mayor Myron Bailey, supported Peterson's bid.

Most of Washington County is in Met Council District 12. Dayton plans to appoint Mahtomedi resident and union official Harry Melander to the District 12 seat. Melander is president of the Minnesota State Building and Construction Trades Council.

Serving on the Metropolitan Council is considered part-time work, but the panel has significant influence over local government planning and transportation decisions.

The Met Council is led by Susan Haigh, whom Dayton appointed as chairwoman.

"There were a tremendous number of high-caliber candidates who applied to serve on the council," Haigh said in a statement. "I think Gov. Dayton made excellent choices and I look forward to working with the governor and the new council to move forward with our vision for the region."

Check back for updates.

Scott Wente

Scott Wente has been editor at the South Washington County Bulletin since 2011. He worked as a reporter at other Forum Communications newspapers from 2003 to 2011.

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