Contact: Matt Laible, Communications Department, (612) 673-2786

Minneapolis names Community Engagement Task Force

June 19, 2007 (MINNEAPOLIS) Minneapolis has named 22 city residents to a task force that will help the City enhance opportunities for resident participation in local government decision-making.

The new Community Engagement Task Force is made up of the 22 voting participants who represent neighborhood organizations, block clubs, ethnic/cultural organizations, issue-focused organizations, business associations, community development corporations, as well as residents serving as at-large representatives. In addition, there will be 10 non-voting members, including city staff and elected officials who will act as resources to the voting members. To see a complete list of members, visit Community Engagement.

The task force will meet weekly until mid-August, when it will submit its preliminary recommendations to the Minneapolis City Council. After seeking public input on the recommendations, the task force will present its final recommendations to the Council.

In May 2007 the City Council approved the formation of the task force and directed that final selection of task force members would be made by City Council President Barbara Johnson. The City had a two-week call for applications, and more than 70 people responded.

The group is being tasked with helping the Council define:

§ How the numerous neighborhood, community, cultural and business organizations in Minneapolis should participate in local government decision-making

§ What expectations these organizations and the City should have of one another

§ What role the City should ask these organizations to play in City decision-making

§ How the City can broaden and enhance community participation in decision-making

Minneapolis faces several issues that have spurred this review of the City’s overall community engagement system. That system includes the City’s relationships with community, business, and neighborhood organizations, and the Neighborhood Revitalization Program (NRP). Among the issues we face are changes in population demographics, tight financial constraints, and the approaching sunset of legislation that created the NRP.

Recognizing that input from residents, neighborhoods and community organizations leads to better decision-making, City leaders hope that the effort will result in a more meaningful and accessible community involvement process.

The task force will post its minutes and recommendations on the Citys website. To follow the process or sign up for e-mail updates, please visit Community Engagement.

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Communications Department
301M City Hall
Minneapolis, MN 55415

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Published Jun. 19, 2007