City approves historic funding plan for streets and neighborhood parks

The City has approved a landmark agreement that will equitably address needed funding to repave City streets and maintain neighborhood parks far into the future. The measure will provide $800 million over the next 20 years to help the City and the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board keep up with needed maintenance and operations costs in an equitable fashion.

Under the plan, there would be $33 million in funding for City streets and neighborhood parks for up to 20 years to meet urgent, ongoing needs. About 82 percent of the funding would be paid through property tax increases, providing for:

·        Street maintenance

o   A guaranteed minimum annual funding of $21.2 million a year above the current City general fund expenditures for street capital projects.

o   $800,000 increase in base budget for street maintenance beginning in 2017.

·        Neighborhood parks

o   Startup funding of $1.5 million will go towards maintenance and operations of the neighborhood park system.

o   City will recommend a one-time $3 million base levy increase to the Board of Estimation and Taxation.

o   An additional $8 million in annual capital funds for neighborhood parks. Combined with $2.5 million already provided through the Capital Long-Range Improvement Committee, amounting to $10.5 million in guaranteed minimum funding.

A key concern for elected officials is that this increased funding will be used equitably throughout the city. The agreement includes language requiring both Public Works and the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board to use this additional funding in accordance with economic equity criteria, reporting back to the City Council annually on progress.




Published Apr 29, 2016