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What you've missed at Minneapolis City Council this week

There have been a lot of significant discussions among council members.
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If you haven't been following the happenings at Minneapolis City Council, there have been a number of discussions and announcements with implications for city residents.

Here's a quick look at some of the most important issues.

Minneapolis 2040 plan heads for vital vote

The controversial plan, which would loosen zoning rules to allow "triplexes" to be built on any housing plot in the city, will head for final approval with a vote on Dec. 7.

It's looking like it will pass, judging by an amendment meeting on Monday that saw councilor Linea Palmisano, whose Ward 13 (southwest Minneapolis) is home to a large number of anti-2040 plan residents, submit an amendment that would reduce the maximum number of units from a triplex to a duplex.

The draft plan had already been reduced from a fourplex to a triplex, and Palmisano's amendment was rejected by the rest of the council, which is a signal that the rest of the council is ready to approve the plan during the final vote on Dec. 7.

Hundreds of city residents have made their feelings known about the plan during several public hearings at City Hall, so a large turnout can be expected for the Dec. 7 meeting. 

ID cards for Minneapolis residents?

Mayor Jacob Frey is seeking $200,000 in his 2019 budget to go towards the creation of municipal ID cards that would be available to any resident who can prove they live in the city and have a government-issued ID.

Crucially, the accepted ID can include ID cards issued by foreign governments, which provides an avenue for Minneapolis' immigrant population to get a local ID card even if they don't qualify for a state-issued ID.

This would allow them to do things like open a bank account, use certain city services, enroll children in schools, and encourage them to report crime as they would be able to officially identify themselves.

As well as immigrants, KSTP reports the cards are also intended to benefit the homeless, young foster children and those on low incomes.

KARE 11 reported that council member Alondra Cano said the cards won't be driver's licenses, nor would they allow someone to vote.

The plan will also be considered at the city council meeting on Dec. 7.

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Controversy over police funding in 2019 budget

Discussion of Mayor Frey's proposed budget prompted a huge turnout at a meeting on Wednesday night, with much of the controversy centering on the amount of police funding.

Frey's budget, which you can read here, includes an extra $1 million for the police department, some of which would be used to fill 8 civilian positions currently filled by sworn officers, allowing those officers to return to regular policing roles.

But relations between Minneapolis communities and the police continue to be strained, and FOX 9 reports many of those who spoke at Wednesday's meeting called for fewer police on the streets, not more.

Instead, they want additional money to go towards things like affordable housing and mental health programs.

Another public hearing will be held this coming Wednesday before a final vote.

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