NRP Work Group to give update at meeting tomorrow

The NRP Work Group, formed to frame the future of Minneapolis neighborhoods’ funding and governance, will give an update to City Council Members tomorrow at the Committee of the Whole Meeting at Council Chambers in room 317 of City Hall.

The problem confronting Council Members, city staff and just about everyone else involved in this process is what neighborhoods will look like once phase II funding for NRP ends in 2010. Recently passed legislation has tweaked the way neighborhoods will be funded in the future.

Under the legislation, captured taxes can now be used to fund Minneapolis neighborhoods from 2010–2020 and pay off about $100 million in debt owed on the Target Center by 2024.

The NRP Work Group has been meeting weekly since October 2007 to come up with a plan, now known as “Framework for the Future.” Community feedback regarding that plan has been lukewarm at best, and Council Members will be asked to continue to keep in touch with their constituency following the presentation, according to NRP Work Group Chair and 6th Ward Council Member Robert Lilligren.

The NRP Work Group includes Lilligren, Council President Barb Johnson (4th Ward),  Council Member Paul Ostrow (1st Ward), Hodges, Mayor Rybak’s Policy Aid Cara Letofsky and NRP Chair Bob Miller.

So far, the Work Group has worked out an outline of a governance structure, but little else. The NRP Work Group will next give an update during the July 24 Committee of the Whole meeting.

Members of the Work Group are expected to present on the Neighborhood Community Advisory Board (NCAB). The board, comprised of elected and appointed citizens, would serve two-year terms. Neighborhood boards and elected officials would split the appointments with nine coming from neighborhood groups, seven from the City Council and two from the mayor’s office. The 18-member NCAB would act as an advisory board, and could largely replace the 17-member NRP Policy Board.

The Work Group will also address:
• a description of the functions of a proposed Neighborhood and Community Relations Department;
• a Minneapolis organization chart illustrating the proposed department;
• an outline of the proposed process for hiring a Neighborhood and Community Relations Department director; and
• a work plan for the NRP Work Group.

Looking forward, the Work Group and Council will have to decide what to do after funding “switches off” after 2010. In its place will be between $10 and $15 million annually to fund neighborhoods and pay down nearly $100 million in outstanding debt on the Target Center. How much and when is what will be determined.

A link to the agenda can be found here.