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November Random alley News

By LINDSEY FENNER

Nonfatal Opioid Overdoses Saw a Sharp Increase in 2020: A new report out from the Minnesota Department of Health looks at nonfatal overdose trends in Minnesota from 2016 to 2020.  From 2019 to 2020 alone, the number of nonfatal overdoses involving opioids increased 43%, with the increase most pronounced in the 7-county metro region. American Indian Minnesotans were nine times more likely and African American Minnesotans were three times more likely than white Minnesotans to experience a nonfatal overdose. Younger people are also more likely to experience a nonfatal overdose, with Minnesotans aged 15-34 experiencing the largest number of nonfatal overdoses, accounting for 55% of all nonfatal overdose Emergency Department visits. See the October 2021 alley for the steps to reverse an opioid overdose. 

Your Feedback Wanted on City Redistricting: Every ten years, after the federal Census, political boundaries like City Council Ward and Congressional District get redrawn based on changes in population, so that each district has equal representation. The City of Minneapolis has begun the process of setting new boundaries for City Council Wards and Park Districts. This process is led by the City Charter Commission and Redistricting Advisory Group. You can get involved by attending public meetings, speaking at public hearings and listening sessions, submitting your own redistricting map through an app called Districtr, and sending in written feedback.  To learn more about the redistricting process visit: https://www.minneapolismn.gov/government/programs-initiatives/redistricting/

Former Gas Station at 25th and Bloomington Being Sold: The shuttered Speedway at 2445 Bloomington Avenue was put up for closed bid auction in mid-October, along with 166 retail sites in 22 states owned by Speedway LLC as part of an antitrust divestment agreement with the Federal Trade Commission. 7-Eleven Inc acquired Marathon Petroleum Company and its subsidiary Speedway LLC in May 2021 in violation of federal antitrust laws. The gas station at 25th and Bloomington had been closed after being looted in June 2020 in the civil unrest following the murder of George Floyd. The site has served various ad hoc community functions since then, including food and supply distribution, and as a space for unsheltered neighbors. 

zAmya Theater Project announces the Sixth Season of Homeless Network Newz: The virtual creative performances highlight stories, experiences and the creative contributions of people who have experienced homelessness. Homeless Network Newz Season 6 will be broadcast on YouTube and Facebook Live weekly on Thursdays at 7PM in November and December, starting November 4. zAmya Theater Project builds understanding and connection between people who’ve experienced homelessness and those who have not. zAmya began creating Homeless Network Newz episodes with zAmya troupe members as a way of using storytelling to engage with each other during COVID-19 and create awareness about current issues facing people experiencing homelessness. zAmya aims to inspire people to advocate for short and long term solutions to the housing crisis in Minnesota. Learn more at zamyatheater.org/homeless-network-newz.

6-Story Multi-Use Development Proposed at 2603-2621 Bloomington Avenue: The property owner is looking to demolish the current 2-story building and replace it with a 6-story mixed use building with 17,000 sf of commercial space, and 86 apartments, primarily 3-bedroom family units. The single-family home at the south end of the project would be moved. The existing businesses, which include a cafe, an adult day care, and a childcare center, would all be retained, and no tenants would be permanently displaced, according to the project presentation at the September 23 Planning Commission Committee of the Whole meeting. City staff and some Planning Commissioners had previously expressed some concern about the size of the building. The area is currently only zoned for 4-story buildings and is next to a 3-story-limit zone. The existing building was built in 1924 and was the decades-long home of Emrich Baking, well-known commercial bakery in the metro-area. See EPIC’s ad for a community meeting where this project will be discussed.

City, County Holding 2022 Budget Hearings in November, December: Both the City of Minneapolis and Hennepin County are proposing property tax increases in 2022, with a proposed increase of 5.45% for Minneapolis and a 3.5% increase for Hennepin County. Like many municipalities, Minneapolis and Hennepin County cut budgets in 2021 due to the uncertainty of the coronavirus pandemic. In Minneapolis, the budget is proposed by the Mayor and approved by the City Council. The Hennepin County budget is proposed by the County Administrator and approved by the Hennepin County Board of Commissioners. 

City of Minneapolis Budget Hearing Dates and Information:

  • Public hearings: 1:30 p.m. Nov. 16, 6:05 p.m. Dec. 1 and 6:05 p.m. Dec. 8
  • Dec. 8: Council scheduled to vote on budget adoption 
  • For more information on the Minneapolis budget visit https://www.minneapolismn.gov/government/budget/

Hennepin County Budget Hearing Dates and Information:

  • Tuesday, November 30, 6 p.m. – The proposed levies will be discussed at the Truth in Taxation public meeting.
  • View the schedule of budget hearings at hennepin.us/boardmeetings.
  • For more information on the Hennepin County budget visit hennepin.us/budgets
A view of the proposed mixed-use development at the southeast corner of 26th and Bloomington. Image credit DJR Architecture

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