Mayor to Minneapolis: Enough with the false modesty, already


...Then there's the one about the Minneapolitan who was so proud of his city he almost told someone.

OK, Mayor Betsy Hodges did not actually use that line in her State of the City speech. But she did urge Minneapolis to do some bragging.

Thursday gave the new mayor her first chance to deliver the annual overview that typically covers the waterfront of City Hall priorities for the year. As KSTP reports, Hodges explained that her overarching goals are to make the city run well, reduce racial disparities, and see the city's population grow.

But one of the ways to grow, Hodges says, is by telling people what a great city you have. And on that score she feels residents have simply been too modest.

MPR News quoted this section of Hodges' speech, in which she chides residents for their "Aw, shucks" approach to Minneapolis' strong points:

"We could discover cures for 17 kinds of cancer, and we would say nothing. And if someone else noticed, we would say, 'Yeah, well thanks. Anybody could have done it.' And then we would change the subject to the weather."

The Southwest Journal notes Hodges called the people of the city "militantly modest," and said experts who help growing companies decide where to relocate have told city leaders few people outside of Minneapolis are aware of what it has to offer.

That will change for at least one week this summer. In her speech Hodges proclaimed the week of July 14-20 will be "The Best Week of Bragging About Minneapolis Ever," promising Best Of lists and events that will help residents practice the art of bragging.

As for her other priorities, MPR spoke with a former Minneapolis health inspector who agreed with the mayor that the city needs to do a better job of communicating its rules to immigrant business owners.

The Star Tribune says Hodges plans to hire nearly 100 new police officers and reiterated that she wants the department to look like the people it serves.

Hodges delivered her speech at the Minneapolis American Indian Center.

Listen to it here:

Or read it here.

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