NEWS & VIEWS OF PHILLIPS SINCE 1976
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Nellie Stone Johnson/ Hennepin County Library Special Collections

By Lindsey Fenner

The Women’s Environmental Institute Is Offering Free Classes for Phillips Folks:

WEI offers a variety of courses and workshops on gardening, farming, herbalism, food preservation and more. People who work, live, play or pray in Phillips can take these events for free. Most classes are at the Amador Hill Farm Campus in North Branch. Check out the class schedule and learn more about the Women’s Environmental Institute: w-e-i.org. Contact Jerry at jerry@w-e-i.org for more information on how to get free registration.

Urban Farm Veto Upheld by City Council: On March 24, the Minneapolis City Council upheld Mayor Frey’s veto of CM Chavez’ motion supporting the East Phillips Urban Farm by a vote of 7-6. Although CM Chavez said he hoped to bring a new motion forward at the next full council meeting on April 14, no motion was made. According to the East Phillips Neighborhood Institute, the community group organizing the Urban Farm, they are in negotiations with the City of Minneapolis with a meeting scheduled for April 26. So far EPNI has rejected various proposals from the City. One would require the organization to come up with $14 million by this summer to purchase the full site. Another proposal would sell EPNI 2.9acre of the site for $1 but would include the demolition of the Roof Depot building.

Midtown Farmers Market Opens Saturday May 7 at Renovated Plaza: After three years at a temporary location, the Midtown Farmers Market will be returning to Lake and Hiawatha at a new civic plaza. The project was a collaboration between Hennepin County, Minneapolis Parks and Recreation Board, the Corcoran Neighborhood Organization, and the developers of the newly built apartment complex near the plaza. The new plaza is next to the Lake Street/Midtown Light rail station. The Market is open Saturdays May-October from 8am to 1pm and Tuesdays June-October 3pm-6pm. Vendors accept EBT/SNAP.

Nellie Stone Johnson Scholarship Deadline: Nellie Stone Johnson was a fierce advocate for workers, folks of color, and the power of education. The Nellie Stone Johnson Scholarship Program provides financial assistance to racial minority union members and their families who wish to pursue an education at one of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities. For more: http://www.nelliestone.org/scholarship-program Deadline June 1, 2022

Peace Coffee Workers Organize Union: On April 13, workers at Peace Coffee signed and submitted cards to the National Labor Relations Board to unionize with the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 663. Unionizing workers receive, roast, produce, ship and market coffee at the organic fair-trade coffee roaster in East Phillips. According to union organizers, workers are asking for “better pay, working conditions and a seat at the table.” As Peace Coffee did not immediately recognize the union, the National Labor Relations Board will determine a date for a union election.

Midtown Crossing Affordable Housing Moves Forward with approval of $13 million City Bond: The planned 5-story apartment building (formerly called Greenway Apartments) on 28th Street between 11th and 12th avenues will consist of 86 units including studio, one, two, and three bedroom units at 30%, 50%, and 60% Area Median Income. The project will also have 11 high-priority homelessness units that will receive Housing Supports program funds from Hennepin County and support services from Simpson Housing Services. The city bonding as well as a land sale for one city-owned project area parcel was approved at the March 24 City Council meeting. These city revenue bonds or obligations are part of a program to finance multifamily housing developments and will be repaid by the developer.

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