Skip to main content

St. Paul budget: Mayor to spend $140K to hire more people of color


A $140,000 investment so the City of St. Paul can employ more people of color is among the proposals revealed by Mayor Chris Coleman on Tuesday, in a budget aimed at reducing racial inequality in the city.

Coleman reiterated his aim for 23 percent of the city's workforce to be people of color by the end of next year, and has boosted the city's human resources department by $140,000 "to focus on recruiting more candidates of color."

In his 11th budget address, he said the city also plans to add 3,000 jobs over the next three years, and will be focusing on job creation specifically in areas with low income residents and people of color "in an effort to close the racial unemployment gap."

"According to a Pew Research study released earlier this year, between 2000 and 2014, our middle class actually shrunk – with some in our community tumbling out of the middle class," he said.

"When we layer this widening income gap over the intractable, pernicious racial disparities that plague the Twin Cities, we understand that the capital city’s response to strengthening the middle class must be to continue to put racial equity at the center of our work."

It's one of multiple initiatives Coleman revealed that will be funded by a 4 percent increase in the property tax levy in 2017.

However, Coleman points out, property tax bills overall will go down next year, because the city's tax base has grown by almost 8 percent.

Here are some key points from the city's budget:

  • The general fund budget is at $266 million, while the overall budget is at $562 million. Coleman says the city's been able to close a $11 million budget gap, while still maintaining city services.
  • More funding for city police, including five new officers, which bring the department up to an "historic" 620 sworn officers, compared to 576 when Coleman took office.
  • $150,000 in permanent, yearly funding for the Community Ambassadors project, so they can continue working with police to "divert youth from risky behaviors" and connect them with jobs and programs.
  • $1.7 million to combat emerald ash borer, predicted to infect 35,000 trees in the next 10 years.
  • $500,000 to redesign the Rondo Community Library "to better serve children and teenagers."
  • Creation of a job opportunity fund using $2 million made from the sale of the Penfield luxury apartments.
  • Another year of funding, at $750,000, for the city's commercial vitality zones "aimed at ensuring neighborhood commercial areas are effectively utilized."

You can read more on the budget here.

Next Up

Kirill Kaprizov

Kirill Kaprizov's slow start is a thing of the past

A potential sophomore slump has been erased with a three-point night against the Devils..

mpd aldi incident screengrab

Video shows MPD officer grab, throw Aldi customer

The department says the matter was referred to the Office of Police Conduct Review.

US Sec Defense Flickr - Joe Bide Nov 11 2021

Biden lays out wintertime plan to curb COVID's spread

It comes as the U.S. reported its second case of the omicron variant.

Willow River DOC

MN Dept. of Corrections offering $5K bonuses as it seeks to hire 200

The DOC is offering hiring bonuses for new employees and for referrals.


3rd federal medical team to join COVID-19 fight in Minnesota

There are more than 1,500 people with COVID-19 admitted to Minnesota hospitals.

hospital, emergency room

Driver killed after other motorist crosses into opposite lane

The head-on crash occurred early Thursday, just north of the Twin Cities.

shot clock

MSHSL approves shot clock for Minnesota varsity basketball

Shot clocks will be required at all varsity games beginning in 2023-24.

Redmons Popcorn Colbert screengrab

Popcorn shop featured on 'The Late Show' has to close 2 days later

A county inspection after the national TV appearance found code violations.