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

City Council votes to encourage legislature to extend NRP funding

March 21, 2008 (MINNEAPOLIS) The Minneapolis City Council and Mayor R.T. Rybak today unanimously approved a resolution to urge the State of Minnesota to enact legislation that would effectively fund the Neighborhood Revitalization Program (NRP) beyond 2009.

Specifically, the resolution urges the legislature to extend the pre-1979 tax increment districts in the Minneapolis Common project that are used to fund NRP. Additional funding from the extension would also go to support the Target Center.

"We know that strong neighborhood organizations are critical to the future growth and prosperity of Minneapolis," said Mayor Rybak. "We are dedicated to finding ways to support our neighborhood organizations with funding and today’s action is one in a series we are undertaking to ensure that our neighborhoods have the support they need to continue improving this great city."

"Today we’re showing a strong commitment to supporting our neighborhood organizations and the Neighborhood Revitalization Program," said City Council Vice President Robert Lilligren, who is chair of the City’s NRP Task Force. "Finding a way to fund the good work of the NRP into the future is important to keeping our neighborhoods strong. Our action today also helps us reach out to our other government partners to gauge their interest in continuing to financially support NRP."

"This is an important step toward securing continued investment in our neighborhoods," said City Council Member Scott Benson, who authored the resolution. "Now we’re asking the legislature to help us make that investment for the coming years. Our unique system of supporting neighborhoods has served the people of Minneapolis well in the last two decades, and we want that support to continue."

Tax Increment Financing (TIF) is a redevelopment tool authorized by State statute and used by cities and development authorities. When a TIF district is established, the tax capacity of the properties located within the district are "frozen," and for the duration of the district, the property taxes resulting from any increase in the tax capacity above the frozen level are available to the city. The 15 pre-1979 tax increment financing districts in Minneapolis are set to decertify in 2009.

The resolution encourages Minnesota Legislature to act to extend the TIF districts that are set to decertify in 2009. The resolution asks the legislature to extend the districts for the minimum time necessary to cumulatively provide $100 million to fund the needs of a neighborhood revitalization program that includes support for neighborhood organizations and neighborhood-direction action plans after 2009. The resolution also calls for the TIF district extension to fund $100 million to repay Target Center bonds and capital improvements at the center.

Public and community leaders originally conceived of the NRP in the late 1980s as a way to invest in neighborhoods and quell the trend of people moving from urban areas into the suburbs. The NRP was established through state legislation in 1990 and is governed by a joint-powers agreement between five government jurisdictions: the City of Minneapolis, Hennepin County, the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board, the Minneapolis Public Schools, and (originally) Minneapolis Public Library.

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Communications Department
301M City Hall
Minneapolis, MN 55415

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Published Mar. 21, 2008