Skip to main content

Minneapolis City Council committee passes 2021 budget, Frey threatens veto

The budget includes the "Safety for All" amendment, which would cut nearly $8 million from the city's police budget to fund alternative safety programs.

A Minneapolis City Council committee approved an amendment cutting nearly $8 million from the city’s police department in its 2021 budget, a move which could result in a veto from the mayor.

The city's budget committee approved the Safety for All budget Monday, shifting $7.77 million from the Minneapolis Police Department to other public safety programs. The move was spearheaded by Council Members Philippe Cunningham and Steve Fletcher along with Council President Lisa Bender.

“It is our duty to protect the people of Minneapolis, and our current public safety system fails to do so. The Safety for All Budget Plan will keep the residents of our city safer by meeting the urgent safety needs in our city now while also laying a path towards much needed transformation in our public safety system,” Cunningham said in a statement.

In Mayor Jacob Frey’s proposed $1.5 billion budget, the Minneapolis Police Department would receive $179 million, including three new officer recruitment classes. Frey has stated these new officers are necessary to compensate for attrition following the police-involved death of George Floyd and subsequent unrest. 

The Safety for All amendment would fund alternative safety programs by dipping into proposed overtime pay allotments and transferring between 10% and 15% of officer workload to other city staff.

Alternative public safety initiatives in the Safety for All proposal include around $2.4 million for mental health response teams, nearly $2 million for an expanded violence prevention program and around $1.8 million for neighborhood safety organizing.

The amendment would preserve Frey’s proposed recruitment classes, but it would set the city’s target officer staffing at 750 in future years, compared to the current 888.

“This Council is united on the goals of providing a better response to mental health crises and investing in violence prevention,” Fletcher said in a statement.

“We worked through some healthy disagreement about how to fund it, and how to create accountability for our Police Department. The outcome of that conversation was that the Council approved the Safety for All proposal in its entirety, setting us on a great course for a safer and more equitable future.”

Frey has been critical of the Safety for All amendment since it was introduced last month, calling it “irresponsible” and “untenable.”

In a statement Monday, Frey said the amendment’s cut to officer staffing means he would consider vetoing the council’s 2021 budget.

“Preemptively reducing the sworn capacity by 138 officers prior to having alternative responses in place or completing the mutually-agreed upon staffing study is irresponsible,” Frey said. “We’ve given the Council every opportunity to join us in a both-and approach that gives [MPD] Chief [Medaria] Arradondo the flexibility he needs to move forward and ability to scale up new safety solutions."

Frey pointed to a $5 million alternative proposal he introduced last week, which would fund public initiatives favored by the council through private donations managed by the Minneapolis Foundation.

But some activist groups have said the Safety for All amendment does not go far enough. Earlier this month, Reclaim the Block and Black Visions Collective introduced a proposal called the “People’s Budget.” The People’s Budget calls for $53 million in cuts to MPD to programs ranging from mental health responses to housing and childcare. 

Following a hearing on Wednesday, the council will debate and vote on a final budget. 

Next Up

Karl-Anthony Towns

Timberwolves survive Knicks' second-half barrage to get back to .500

Karl-Anthony Towns' lay-in helped Minnesota get a win in The Garden.

FLickr - crime scene tape do not crozz

Charges: MN teen shot mom after dispute over meth

The girl's mother said there had been a dispute over methamphetamine.

bad roads, blizzard

No travel advised: High winds, whiteout conditions in NW MN

Zero visibility in parts of greater Minnesota Tuesday night.

holy angels high school j nelson

Update: Holy Angels evacuated over bomb threat, school says

Someone left a voicemail early Tuesday suggesting there was an explosive device.

radio station, microphone

Convicted stalker charged with harassment of another DJ at The Current

He pleaded guilty to similar charges involving the DJ's colleague back in 2015.

Mall of America exterior Tyler Vigen Wikimedia COmmons

10 new shops, food stops at Mall of America

Donuts, K-fashion, model cars — the new tenants cover a lot of bases.

Gophers basketball

Gophers fall below roster minimum, postpone Penn State game

It is "due to internal COVID-19 protocols within the Golden Gopher program."

Raheem Morris

Report: Vikings request interview with Rams' Raheem Morris

Morris was once the youngest head coach in the NFL at 33 years old.

train crossing S Boardman Ave, New York Mills, Minnesota - August 2013 crop GSV

Sheriff: Drunk driver crashed trying to 'beat the train'

The BNSF train slammed into the side of the driver's car.

ambulance

Man run over after parking dispute leads to road rage crash

The two groups fought about parking prior to the crash.

hwy 41 engler boulevard crash crop

Deadly crash shuts down small stretch of Chaska highway for hours

A driver crossed over the center median and hit another vehicle.

covid test 6

You can now order 4 free at-home COVID tests from the government

Tests will ship for free within 7-12 days, according to the White House.

Related

Minneapolis City Hall

Mpls. City Council passes cuts to police budget, maintains officer staffing levels

The City Council voted to keep target staffing levels at 888 after Mayor Jacob Frey threatened to veto the budget.

Minneapolis City Hall

Mayor Frey proposes furloughs, cutting programs to close $97.7M budget gap

The City Council will hold public hearings on the budget, and then vote on it later this month.

Screen Shot 2020-11-08 at 2.47.24 PM

Council President Lisa Bender slams mayor's threat to veto budget

Mayor Jacob Frey has repeatedly criticized a Safety for All plan which would cut officer staffing targets from 888 to 750.

Minneapolis City Hall

Minneapolis council committee approves potential November ballot questions

The ballot questions relate to rent control, a potential new public safety department and changing the city's government structure.

George Floyd protest

Activist groups release 'The People's Budget,' call for $53M Minneapolis police cuts

The People's Budget, spearheaded by Black Visions Collective and Reclaim the Block, would cut more than $53 million from MPD's budget.

Bob Kroll

Minneapolis City Council committee votes not to provide Bob Kroll defense in lawsuits

On Wednesday, the Policy and Government Oversight Committee voted to deny Kroll indemnification in four lawsuits he is named in.

Jacob Frey

Frey's 2021 budget proposal includes $34 million in cuts

The proposed budget also increases funding for affordable housing and violence prevention programs.

Minneapolis City Hall

After 2 vetoes from Frey, city council approves ballot question to replace MPD

The council had to work quickly Friday as it faced an 11:59 deadline and two vetoes from Mayor Jacob Frey.