Today, Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey delivered his budget address live from the City Council Chambers. For the first time, Frey recommended a biennial budget — covering both 2023 and 2024.
In prepared remarks, Frey outlined his biennial budget proposal which features a commitment to affordable housing, intentional staffing plans for the government restructure, investments in the integration of the five safety departments that make up the Office of Community Safety, inclusive economic recovery work, climate and public health initiatives, and a resolve to rebuild core services and the City of Minneapolis workforce.
Frey’s proposed 2023 budget totals $1.66 billion in 2023 and $1.71 billion in 2024. The tax levy increase for 2023 will be 6.5% and is predicted to be 6.2% for 2024.
“For two whole years we’ve been reacting on the defensive, responding to a litany of crises by amending budgets, and reamending them as projections change. As our city comes back, and it is coming back, let’s press the advantage. And do more than simply get back to normal. We can blow by the old normal and do things differently,” Frey said.
Frey continued, “This year’s budget is geared toward the things that touch our daily lives in the here and now. The things that improve the fundamentals of a well-run city. Things that you may not notice when they are going well, but you certainly notice when they are not.”
“You need your garbage picked up now, you need a home now, you need to feel safe now. Residents of Minneapolis are demanding results, now. We must answer that call, now,” said Frey.
Frey’s budget priority areas
- Increases to a total of $18 million in both 2023 and 2024 for the Affordable Housing Trust Fund
- Ensures the sustainability of people’s access to the Right to Counsel policy with ongoing funding of $500,000
- Invests an additional $2.7 million in the Minneapolis Public Housing Authority, building on previous ARPA investments and an ongoing $1 million commitment
- Expands funding for NOAH Preservation by an addition $1.5 million in 2023 and Minneapolis Homes by $2 million in 2024
City Capacity and Performance
- Adds nearly $3.88 million in 2023 and $4.37 million in 2024 to improve roads, trails, and 311 response – this means concrete repair, litter pickup, mowing, sealcoat operations, and more
- Creates broader flexibility and capacity for the Department of Human Resources to recruit and retain a high-quality workforce
- Establishes a 30 percent increase in funding to the newly formed department of Racial Equity, Inclusion and Belonging
- Invests $40,000 in ongoing funding to create a first-of-its kind anti-racism curriculum for City staff
- Brings back over 50 FTEs to the City’s workforce by 2024, matching the pre-pandemic workforce size
- Expands paid parental leave from 3 weeks to 12 weeks total for the birth of a child or an adoption
- Funds voluntary body worn cameras for traffic control agents to keep them safe in the field
Climate and Public Health
- Addresses the opioid epidemic with over $600,000 in ongoing funds for immediate opioid addiction treatment services
- Creates access to abortion in Minneapolis with a one-time investment of $300,000
- Expands school-based clinics with $440,000 in ongoing funding for youth healthcare services like mental health, primary care, and long-term well-being
- Adds over $500,000 in two years for the Green Cost Share program which will help businesses reduce environmental pollution through solar energy and weatherization projects
- Expands electrical vehicle stations with $700,000 between 2023 and 2024, leveraging an estimated $2-3 million in additional federal funds to support electric vehicles and carbon emission reduction
- Establishes a full-time position to coordinate and maximize efforts to expand and equalize the Minneapolis tree canopy
- Builds on ARPA investments by adding $2 million to the Commercial Property Development Fund to provide ownership opportunities to BIPOC business owners
- Supports economic development along 38th Street with $500,000 one-time funding to Dreamland, a multi-tenant small business and event center
- Facilitates a business incubator on West Broadway with a $1 million investment in the Black Women’s Wealth Alliance ZaRah project
- Establishes ongoing funding for Black Business Week in Minneapolis
- Invests $250,000 in the Rise Up Center, a workforce partnership with the Unions
- Transitions the Office of Violence Prevention to ongoing general funds in 2024 (using $3.3 million ARPA funds in 2023) and elevates the office to a new, standalone department called the Department of Neighborhood Safety
- Funds 731 sworn officers in the Police Department and 4 classes of new recruits in each year of the budget, additionally investing $8.6 million for overtime and $1.5 million for contracting with other law enforcement entities
- Expands the Behavioral Crisis Response program with a $1.45 million investment in 2023 and increasing to $2.9 million in 2024
- Adds five new staff positions to the City Attorney’s office to improve charging decisions made on city criminal cases, and to dedicate staff to address findings identified in the Minnesota Department of Human Rights investigation
- Appropriates over $8 million for streetlight system replacement over two years in Steven Square, Loring Park, Como, and Marcy Holmes
- Reserves $2 million in 2023 and $3 million in 2024 (and in future years) to plan for one consent decree