Impacts to Services
Sick & Safe Time | Police | Fire | Inspections | Animal Care & Control | Service Counters | Division of Race & Equity | Land Use Applications | Public Works Stakeholder & Engagement Events | City Attorney | Convention Center
Enforcement of Stay at Home Order
To slow the spread of COVID-19 across the state, Gov. Tim Walz directed Minnesotans to stay at home and limit movements outside of their home beyond essential needs from 11:59 p.m. Friday, March 27 to 5 p.m. Friday, April 10.
Mayor Jacob Frey and Police Chief Medaria Arradondo discussed enforcement of Gov. Tim Walz' Stay at Home Order at a March 27 press conference.
Read FAQs about enforcement
Who do I call if I have questions on what the Minnesota Stay at Home Order include?
Please DO NOT call 911 unless it’s an emergency. If you live in Minneapolis, you may call 311 or 612-673-3000 if outside city limits. Read the FAQs from Gov. Walz's office.
Can I report people congregating in groups?
Do not call 911 to report people who are not staying home during the City’s stay-at-home order. Please call 311 if you have concerns about the voluntary compliance of the stay-at-home order involving a business, organization or a group gathering in a public space. We will route all calls to the appropriate City staff for potential action. The local stay-at-home order was put in place by Minneapolis Mayor Frey, following the state directive by Governor Walz, to protect the health and safety of our community and health care system.
Are there emergency permits or waivers issued so people may drive during this Stay at Home Order?
No, there’s no need for permits or waivers since there are a number of reasons people can be out and about to tend to essential needs, like picking up groceries and prescriptions. Some businesses in essential industries have provided letters to their employees, but these are not necessary.
Will police be pulling people over to see what they are doing?
No. Police may approach groups of people congregating to ensure they are practicing safe social distancing and to discuss essential activities. The Minneapolis Police Department will not be pulling people over to see why they are not staying at home.
Can Police arrest people who do not follow the order?
The Minneapolis Police Department is prioritizing outreach and education in enacting the order. If violations are observed, officers will attempt to make contact with the individuals and discuss their activity.
We anticipate that our first order of business will be to educate residents on expectations outlined in this order and the importance of social distancing. Our officers will first offer encouragement comply with the order for the safety of themselves and their neighbors.
As a last resort, officers have enforcement options available under the law to address outright refusal, including a Misdemeanor citation or being booked into jail. The Minneapolis Police Department's goal and expectation is voluntary compliance so that we all do our best to keep our Minneapolis residents, workers and visitors healthy and safe.
City Hearings, Meetings & Events
To minimize the risk of exposure or potential spread of COVID-19, the City has canceled most of its public hearings and meetings for appointed boards and commissions through Friday, April 17, 2020. Some boards and commissions, like the City Council, which are required under state law and City Charter, will continue to meet during this time.
The public is encouraged to monitor these meetings remotely via broadcast or live-streaming available at minneapolismn.gov/tv/citycounciltv.
For the most current information about the City’s public hearings, meetings and events, check the Legislative Information Management System at lims.minneapolismn.gov.
Solid Waste & Recycling
Currently there is no change to the City’s solid waste, recycling, and organics collection operation.
Until further notice the South Transfer Station will be open to Voucher Customers only. Cash and checks will no longer be accepted. Any voucher overages will be added to the Utility Bill account for the property.
As of March 13, the City has suspended water meter shut-off for the next 30 days, and then will re-evaluate at that time. Washing hands is critical to protect public health. Water customers who have previously had their water shut off should reach out to Utility Billing and the City will work to restore their water services.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Can I catch COVID-19 from drinking water?
Our current practices of water filtration and disinfection provides an effective barrier against COVID-19.
The Environmental Protection Agency, Center for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization have provided expert opinion on the safety of the public drinking water supply, reinforcing the City’s high confidence level.
Staff at City drinking water facilities train for environmental and biological challenges employing multiple levels of redundancy to ensure safe drinking water is treated and distributed.
Do I need to buy bottled water?
Our current tap water operation will continue to function, providing safe drinking water to people in Minneapolis and the City’s suburban customers. There is no need to buy bottled water for drinking. Safe, clean tap water will continue to be supplied.
How are water utilities protecting the water supply?
The City has stringent hygiene measures in place at its water treatment plants. In addition, there is almost no human contact in the process of treating water for drinking.
Existing water treatment and disinfection processes, including use of chloramine, are effective in removing and inactivating viruses from water supplies.
We are in contact with key government agencies to monitor and understand the health impact of COVID-19 as it develops and are well-connected internationally to stay updated on the latest information and evidence.
What if workers are quarantined at home, will water still be supplied?
Water is an essential service and the City is well prepared to manage our response to COVID-19. We have existing emergency response plans and are continuing to update them in response to the most current available information.
In general water treatment plants are secure, have backup power and require few staff to operate them. The City ensures that multiple staff are able to operate water treatment plants and water supply systems so that if some employees are on leave for any reason drinking water can still be safely and reliably supplied.
Utility Billing will continue to provide services to its customers. We discourage anyone from physically visiting the Utility Billing counter or Downtown Minneapolis unnecessarily. You still have both communication and payment options available to you without having to come Downtown.
Utility Billing staff is available to you to answer your utility-related questions:
- Phone: 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Friday, 612-673-1114
- Email: Email [email protected] at any time.
- Online: View the online portal and create a Premium Access account. You can view your bill, payment histories, make payments and more, 24/7. Have your account number or property address and phone number available to register.
- 311: Call 311 7 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday-Friday. We work closely with 311 and they may be able to answer basic questions on your utility account or relay them to Utility Billing if necessary for your assistance.
Options to pay your bill are also still available to you.
- Phone: Pay over the phone by check or credit card. Call 612-673-1114 and follow the payment prompts. Keep your confirmation number.
- Internet: Go online to make your payment by check or credit card. Access your Premium Access account by logging in or select the Standard Access tab to make a one-time payment. Have your utility account or property address available.
- Electronic Bill Payment: Pay your bill electronically through your personal bank’s bill payment service. You will need your utility account number.
- EZ Pay: Make your cash payment in person at our local participating neighborhood retailer Family Dollar, CVS Pharmacy or ACE Express Cash. You will need a payment slip or coupon. Visit the EZ Pay website to create your payment slip.
- US Postal Service: Mail in your check or money order payments to Minneapolis Finance, PO Box 77028, Minneapolis, MN 55480-7728. Include your remittance stub if available or write your utility billing account number on your payment method.
Utilities (Gas & Electric)
- Xcel Energy, the electricity provider for Minneapolis residents and business owners, announced on 3/15 that it will indefinitely suspend residential service disconnections. Any business in Minneapolis experiencing difficulties paying their electric bill should contact Xcel Energy right away, they will work with business customers to arrange payment plans and to waive any late fees. If you have questions about your electricity bill or service, call Xcel Energy’s customer service line at 1-800-895-4999.
- CenterPoint Energy, the gas provider in Minneapolis, also announced it will suspend service disconnections and work with customers who need payment assistance, extensions, or other help. If you have questions about your gas bill or service, contact CenterPoint Energy’s customer service line at 1-800-245-2377.
Internet services available in response to COVID-19
US Internet (USI)
USI opened their WiFi network in Minneapolis for those that may need temporary Internet access.
- Select the “City of Minneapolis Public WiFi” or “USI Wireless” network on your mobile device and you will be connected. The process is similar to using Wi-Fi at a coffee shop or the airport. No password or credit card is required to sign in.
- These networks are available throughout the City of Minneapolis. Check the signal strength for your best option based on your location.
- Go to the Wireless Minneapolis webpage for the WiFi coverage map.
- Contact US Internet for more information or to get help over the phone.
Comcast opened their Xfinity WiFi network and is offering unlimited data for free.
- For a map of Xfinity WiFi hotspots, visit www.xfinity.com/wifi. Once at a hotspot, select the “xfinitywifi” network name open your Internet browser.
- Internet Essentials is free to new customers.
- Refer to Comcast's COVID-19 resources for additional details and how to get help.
See the Get Connected guide for additional low cost internet and computers resources in Minneapolis.
Minneapolis Sick & Safe Time ordinance
Under the City’s sick and safe time ordinance, employers with six or more workers are required to provide time off at a minimum threshold of at least one hour of paid sick time for every 30 hours worked. Employers with five or fewer workers must also provide sick time, but it may be unpaid.
An employee's accrued sick and safe time hours are legally protected for their use due to Coronavirus symptoms, testing or infection. Protection extends to the employee and the employee's care of a covered family member. Ordinance protection includes, but is not limited to:
- Coronavirus screening;
- Care or quarantine due to Coronavirus symptoms or infection;
- Testing or quarantine following close personal contact with a Coronavirus infected or symptomatic person;
- Covered family members' school or place-of-care closure due to Coronavirus; and
- Workplace closure by order of a public official due to Coronavirus.
Many non-emergency services, such as blood pressure checks, are suspended until further notice. In an emergency, call 911.
Property pick up from MPD Property and Evidence
Due to COVID-19 threat, restrictions to the release of personal property are in effect for everyone’s health and safety. Only 2 people at a time will be allowed into the public lobby. Everyone will be asked to maintain a 6’ or more distance from one another. For faster service, please call ahead to make arrangements for property pick up.*For more details:
Call 612-673-2932 or email [email protected]
Records Information Unit
The Records Information Unit will be closed to the public until April 13, 2020. Read more and request data here.
The City of Minneapolis’ departments that conduct inspections are all taking steps to ensure our customers and staff remain safe. To that end, business practices are being updated to include the following:
- Internal inspections of businesses and occupied residential buildings will be limited to essential inspections until April 13.
- Essential inspections include those that are needed for life, safety and health situations, including high-risk complaints and violations, lead poisonings at State mandated levels, food safety and foodborne outbreaks inspections, permits and certificates of occupancy.
- In buildings with concentrations of vulnerable populations such as schools, hospitals and care centers, health and building inspections will be limited to essential inspections.
- Inspections staff will primarily be based from their cars or home, significantly reducing their time in the office.
- Additionally, staff is developing a list of projects that can be done remotely.
- Messaging will be going out to 311 and license holders.
Animal Care & Control
Animal Care & Control is on restricted access due to COVID-19 containment protocols as of March 16.
The low-cost vaccination clinic on April 26 is canceled.
All adoption fees are waived starting March 20. View animals for adoption at minneapolismn.gov/animals and call 612-673-6222 to make an adoption appointment.
The City operates several service counters – for development review, business licensing, at the Minneapolis Animal Care and Control (MACC) shelter, and the Assessor’s Office. As of March 16, operations at these counters will change to align with recommendations from the Minnesota Department of Health.
We are suspending in-person counter service and shifting to drop-off service for plans, permits, licenses, homestead and other special program applications. All communication between customers and City staff will shift to phone and email. In addition, MACC has adjusted operations to require appointments rather than walk-up counter service. Please call 612-673-6222 to request a MACC appointment.
For more information or guidance on new processes, contact 311.
Division of Race & Equity
Emergency Mental Health Fund
The division is offering $75,000 to individuals and organizations who can provide behavioral and mental health services to marginalized communities. Read more...
Land Use Applications
On March 17, 2020, Mayor Frey issued Emergency Regulation 2020-4, declaring that the City must not accept or process any new land use applications submitted in any form during this period of declared emergency to ensure compliance with Minnesota Statute 15.99, which requires all written requests relating to zoning to be processed within 60 days after the receipt of complete applications.
- This regulation will be reassessed regularly and may be modified in coming weeks.
- During the local public health emergency related to COVID-19, the form and schedule of future meetings of the City Planning Commission/Heritage Preservation Commission remains in flux, as well as the ability to ensure a quorum of commissioners will be present.
- The City Clerk and City Attorney are working on developing a way to hold public hearings which would meet both statutory requirements as well as CDC and MDH guidance.
Public Works Stakeholder & Engagement Meetings
All in-person stakeholder and engagement meetings for Public Works projects are canceled. Please visit the project webpage for more information on the project and how to participate remotely.
Learn more about all Public Works projects.
Sign up and receive updates on all Public Works projects.
The City Attorney’s Office is open between the hours of 8 a.m. and 12 p.m. and will have a minimal physical presence in the office. We discourage anyone from physically visiting the City Attorney’s lobby area unnecessarily. If you must drop off documents, please email the recipient to arrange a safe method. There is space to leave documents in the lobby only as a last resort. If you have questions for the City Attorney’s Office, please contact 311 and ask to be connected.
- Events at Minneapolis Convention Center will be restricted through May 10. View the Minneapolis Convention Center's website for updates.
Minneapolis Parks and Recreation Board
- All Minneapolis Park and Recreation centers will be closed until April 5.
- Find out about parks, playgrounds and other Park Board services at minneapolisparks.org/coronavirus.
Minneapolis Public Schools
- Minneapolis Public Schools closed on Tuesday, March 17 and resume May 6 or until further notice.
- Minneapolis Public Schools is providing children with meals while schools are closed.
- Effective March 17, Hennepin County is closing all public-facing services at its 41 library, human services and licensing service centers.
- Visit Hennepin County's website for updates.
- All service has been suspended between 11 p.m. and 4:30 a.m. and service reductions take effect on Wednesday, March 25.
- Metro Transit's response to COVID-19
Last updated Apr 2, 2020