Monthly Discussion Topics

AFFORDABLE HOUSING IN MINNEAPOLIS – WHAT’S NEXT?

Although Minneapolis has been growing, there has not been a concurrent growth in affordable housing stock. Between 2000 and 2014, the city is estimated to have lost 11,500 affordable units. Just to keep up with annual population growth production of affordable housing needs to at least triple. The Minneapolis City Council put $40 million in the 2019 budget for affordable housing, the largest-ever single year investment in these initiatives. How will these monies be spent? How can tenants’ rights be protected?  Are changes needed in code enforcement, evictions, or access by those with a criminal record? The LWVMpls focus on affordable housing in February is twofold: how the budgeted $40 million will be spent to provide more affordable housing in Minneapolis and protection of tenants’ rights. At Civic Buzz  on March 5, Andrea Brennan, Director of Housing Policy and Development, Community Planning & Economic Development, City of Minneapolis, will address how the $40 million will be used. She will elaborate on plans to finance the Affordable Housing Trust Fund, Stable Housing, Better Schools, NOAH - protecting naturally occurring affordable housing, and single family construction services.   In her role as Director, Ms. Brennan establishes housing policy, finances and redevelops single and multifamily residential real estate to improve access to quality affordable housing for all Minneapolis residents. Prior to this position, she served as the Director of Community and Economic Development for the Dakota County Community Development Agency and Deputy Executive Director for the Washington County Housing and Redevelopment Authority.Andrea has a Master’s Degree in Public Affairs from the University of Minnesota.  She serves as a board member of the Family Housing Fund and the Land Bank Twin Cities, Inc., and is a member of the Executive Committee of Heading Home Hennepin. Eric Hauge, executive director of Home Line, a tenant hotline service in Minneapolis, will address protection of tenants’ rights, meaningful Fair Housing protections, and issues around Section 8 housing voucher placement, evictions, and housing inspections. Mr. Hauge received his B.A. in Political Science and Peace Studies from Gustavus Adolphus College in 2003, later earning a Masters Degree in Public Policy from the Humphrey School of Public Affairs in 2009. His research at the Humphrey Institute involved analyzing Twin Cities metropolitan regional approaches to affordable housing planning and preservation. These speakers should provide lively discussion of affordable housing. Join us for this conversation. Become informed. Take action. Flyer to post. 
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Previous Monthly Topics

Metropolitan Council, What’s Next?

In preparation for our consensus vote in February, Civic Buzz focuses on the Metropolitan Council and its governance model. Our special guest is Metropolitan Council member, Cara Letofsky, who represents the 8th District (the eastern part of Minneapolis). LWV members throughout the Metropolitan area are discussing consensus proposals from the Council of Metropolitan Leagues (CMAL), reviewing…
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No January Civic Buzz

Due to New Year’s Day falling on the first Tuesday in 2019, there will not be a Civic Buzz until February where we  where we will discuss the Metropolitan Council and its governance model with Metropolitan Council member, Cara Letofsky, who represents the 8th District (the eastern part of Minneapolis) in preparation for our consensus vote…
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Vulnerable Elders Face Scare Not Care

In 2017, the Star Tribune published a five-part special report, Left To Suffer. It stated that each year hundreds of Minnesotans are beaten, sexually assaulted or robbed in senior care facilities. These cases are seldom investigated and families of victims are left in the dark about what happened. The Minnesota State Department of Health (DOH)…
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NO CIVIC BUZZ GATHERING IN NOVEMBER

ELECTION DAY IS TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 6TH Due to Election Day, there will be no Civic Buzz gathering in November.  Please encourage the people in your life to get out and vote. To register to vote, learn about voting, find your polling place or see your ballot, go to www.sos.state.mn.us
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Hennepin County Governance 101 

How much do you know about how the Hennepin County government impacts our lives?  Get a primer on our county government from Linda Higgins, retiring Hennepin County Commissioner for District 2.  Hennepin County, the largest county in Minnesota by budget and population, is governed by a seven-member Board of Commissioners, three of whom represent different parts of…
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Sexual Assault and Policing; Continuing the Conversation

Join us Tuesday, September 4th for the first Civic Buzz of the 2018-19 program year when our topic will be Sexual Assault and Policing – Continuing the Conversation. This important issue was brought to light by articles this summer in the Star Tribune series, Denied Justice: When Rape is Reported but Nothing Happens, focusing on victims of sexual…
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No Civic Buzz July or August

LWVMpls will continue the popular and informative Civic Buzz events this fall. Please use July and August to celebrate Independence Day,  Women’s Equality Day (August 26), and rest up for a very busy election season. We encourage our members and friends to volunteer to register voters, work for candidates of your choice and participate in…
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Looking for City Government Information?

Learn about a New Minneapolis Website:  LIMS The Legislative Information Management System (LIMS) was launched in September 2017 and provides the public with easy access to legislative action taking place in the City of Minneapolis. From reviewing actions that affect your neighborhood to analyzing a year’s worth of data, LIMS connects you to information without…
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Bonus Buzz: Minneapolis 2040

Minneapolis has just released a 20 year draft comprehensive plan affecting all its public policies from health, transportation, parks, jobs land use and housing. State law requires all metro area cities to produce comprehensive plans every ten years in order to achieve orderly and coordinated growth. Citizens have an opportunity to read the plan and…
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Reawakening of the Sanctuary Movement

Sanctuary Protections, ICE & Immigration Speaker John Keller Executive Director Immigrant Law Center of Minnesota Come and hear, discuss the idea of Sanctuary protections for immigrants that are increasingly at risk of arrest, detention and deportation under the new Administration. Minnesota has seen the 3rd highest increase in ICE arrests during the first year of this…
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OMNIBUS BILLS – DEMOCRACY IN ACTION?

There are basically two kinds of omnibus bills that thwart citizen efforts to follow Minnesota’s legislative process and to participate in government decision-making. The first is a committee policy bill that committee chairs and their staffs put together, behind closed doors, based on a number of bills heard by their committee. The second type of…
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Mapping Prejudice: Examining the Complex Legacies of Racist Housing Policies

Restrictions, known as racial covenants or racially-restrictive deeds, were used in most American cities before 1968 to prevent people who were not white from buying or occupying property. The Mapping Prejudice Project is working to identify and map racial restrictions buried in historic Minneapolis property deeds. Our speakers, Kirsten Delegard, Penny Peterson and Kevin Ehrman-Solberg will present their…
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NO CIVIC BUZZ IN FEBRUARY DUE TO PRECINCT CAUCUSES

There will be no Civic Buzz gathering in February because precinct caucuses will be held the first Tuesday in February. Attend your caucus.  Come prepared with resolutions.  Check out the LWVMN resolutions. Curious about what Protect Minnesota (January’s Gun Violence Prevention topic) suggests? Find it on their website. See LWV-supported resolution on automatic voter registration.…
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Gun Violence Prevention – An Advocacy Workshop

At this interactive workshop participants will be equipped with the basic information about the problem of gun violence, learn about opportunities for involvement in this issue, and acquire the communication skills necessary to engage in effective advocacy. Gun violence is a pervasive negative influence in America today, stealing lives, devastating families, oppressing communities, and costing…
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Recruiting For the 21st Century Police Officer; Hiring and Retaining a More Diverse Police Force

December’s topic is a focus on hiring and retaining a more diverse Minneapolis Police Department (MPD).   Our speakers are Kris Arneson, recently retired Minneapolis Police Department Assistant Chief, and Commander Charlie Adams who oversees the Department’s Procedural Justice Division. Kris Arneson was MPD assistant chief under Janee Harteau. During her thirty-year diverse career, Arneson…
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NO Civic Buzz in November!

Election Day! Tuesday, November 7, 2017. Next Civic Buzz: December 5, 2017, Topic: Recruiting the 21st Century Police Officer, Hiring & Retaining More Women. Speaker: Kris Arneson     Thanks to The Uptake, video is available for some of our past Civic Buzz topics →  
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Equity in Minneapolis Parks; History Status & Needs

A discussion on ways the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board & citizen groups, like Parks and Power work toward racial, cultural and socioeconomic equity in the Mpls parks system. Our speakers, Multicultural Engagement Strategist Joelle Allen, and Lead Organizer with Parks and Power, Jake Virden, will inform attendees about where initiatives at the Park Board stand and…
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Affordable Housing in Minneapolis: History, Status and Needs

This conversation with local affordable housing experts will provide a snapshot of the state of affordable housing in Minneapolis, including how we got here, an overview of current challenges facing our region and opportunities for action. The panel will be facilitated by Debra Behrens, Aeon’s Chief Advancement Officer. Aeon is a Minneapolis based, low-income housing…
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Urban Food Deserts and Affordable Healthy Foods

The Twin Cities Mobile Market: What, Where and How  Cities Mobile Market brings affordable healthy foods directly to urban residents at below-market rates. Our speaker, Leah Porter, developed this program to address healthy eating, food preparation and transportation issues.  Find out how it works and what the next steps might be. *If you missed this…
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Board of Estimate and Taxation

April 2017 Monthly Topic Materials Board of Estimate and Taxation Report/Update League of Women Voters Minneapolis  March 2017 Background: Why an Update In early 2016 the Chair of the Charter Commission for the City of Minneapolis, Barry Clegg, approached the League of Women Voters Minneapolis (LWVMpls) and inquired about our position(s) on the Board of Estimate…
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Redistricting – Who Draws our Congressional and State Legislative Districts?

Every ten years our Congressional district boundaries are redrawn. What can we do to ensure districts are drawn to fairly represent our citizens and provide opportunities for competitive elections? Our speaker, Annastacia Belladonna-Carrera, is the executive director for Common Cause Minnesota. Before joining Common Cause Minnesota in August 2016, Annastacia worked as Legislative Director for a…
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Caucus Information

There will be no Civic Buzz gathering in April. Some political party caucuses will be held on Tuesday, April 4th and we urge you to attend your caucus.
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Broken: My Story of Addiction and Redemption

William C Moyers will share his spiral into the grip of addiction, his struggles to overcome the illness and his two decades of advocacy work on behalf of Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation. Tuesday, March 7, 2017 · Black Forest Inn, 26th and Nicollet Ave S, Minneapolis. 5:30 Networking · 6:15-7:30 Speaker & Discussion
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Hazardous Freight/Rail Safety

February Civic Buzz · Tuesday, February 7, 2017 What has the state done? What can the state do to address rail issues? What about Minneapolis? Our speaker, Alene Tchourumoff, State Rail Director, is the point of contact for citizens worried about the potential for dangerous crashes from the oil trains rumbling through their communities. Previously she coordinated Freight…
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