September CDC Meeting Announcement

The September Community Development Committee meeting will be held via Zoom on the 3rd Tuesday, September 15, instead of the regularly scheduled 2nd Tuesday of the month. Agenda and Zoom details TBA.

Request for King’s Fair 2021 Event Planning Volunteers

We need your help to make King’s Fair 2021 bigger and better than ever before!

Starting in 2021, we would like to see King’s Fair become an annual event. This means that we need your help to plan and carry out this defining event for Seward! 

If you have experience in event planning, community organizing, food service, theater or music production, or simply a desire to help out, we need you. If you have a neighbor or a friend that might be interested please put them in contact with SNG. 

Planning for the 2021 event will begin in shortly and meeting details will be sent to all interested parties. 

Send your input and interest to the Chris McLaughlin and the Community Building Committee at admin@mcwatson.org

Hope to see you there.

SNG is Hiring an Executive Director

Seward Neighborhood Group is hiring an Executive Director. This is a full-time, salaried position that reports to the SNG Executive Committee, is accountable to the SNG Board of Directors and its committees, and is responsive to the Seward community.

Executive Director Job Description

CBC Meeting 9/1 at 7:00pm on Zoom

Zoom Meeting Link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/434566880

AGENDA

  1. Kings Fair
    1. Notice to go out.
  2. Public Safety
    1. A survey on how to improve public safety has been created and results obtained.
    2. Draft being generated.
  3. Voter registration drive
  4. Social Media and Communications
    1. SNG needs communications tools to contact neighbors on a granular basis. 
    2. Propose that tools be purchased (CRM type software) and implemented. Budget for 2021 needed.
  5. National Night Out
    1. Propose cancelling neighborhood NNO, at least as sponsored by SNG.
    2. No reason to advocate gatherings at this time. Community building will suffer, but lower death rates are referred.
  6. New Year’s Eve – Ano Viejo
    1. Caveat regarding COVID
    2. Way to see out this awful year.
  7. Halloween
    1. SNG activities? 
  8. Information for Nonprofits
    1. Minnesota – https://www.ag.state.mn.us/Charity/InfoNonProfits.asp
    2. Federal – Virtual Small to Mid Size Tax Exempt Organization Workshop | Stay Exempt

SNG Letter to Minneapolis City Council Regarding Proposed 3rd Precinct Location

The below communication was sent to the Minneapolis City Council today in response to the proposal to move the MPD 3rd Precinct into the Seward Neighborhood. We greatly appreciate the input and involvement from our Seward neighbors in response to this proposal.

Minneapolis City Council Members,

The Seward Neighborhood was traumatized by the murder of George Floyd and the unrest that followed. Our neighbors have come together to discuss topics of policing alternatives, defunding the police, and how we can reduce crime while preventing the murder of our neighbors of color. We have barely begun the cleanup and healing from the murder and unrest and already you are asking us to move the 3rd Precinct into the Seward neighborhood.

The process of proposing and voting on the temporary 3rd Precinct site is concerning because of the lack of meaningful community input and engagement and because the Minneapolis Police Department has not made meaningful changes that ensures the safety of our neighbors of color. Because of this, the Seward Neighborhood Group asks that you table the vote on the temporary site to allow for more time for community input and engagement. Any action shy of tabling the proposal is negligent and will cause direct harm to our neighborhood.

As the City of Minneapolis had not conducted any engagement of our neighbors, Seward Neighborhood Group and Council Member Gordon were both forced to scramble to gather community feedback around the proposed site. Attached are written comments by neighbors inside and outside the Seward Neighborhood. The vast majority of neighbors who gave feedback said they do not want the temporary 3rd Precinct in the Seward Neighborhood.

We hope you listen to the voices of our neighborhood and our city when you vote against or to table the 3rd Precinct motion tomorrow.

Seward Neighborhood Group

SNG Virtual Board Meeting August 26

Join us for the SNG Board of Directors meeting Wednesday August 26th at 6:30 PM.

The Zoom Link is below:
 
The Agenda link is HERE: 
 

Open letter by Local Organizations to City about Lack of Transparency and Strategy (Disclaimer)

Disclaimer: The Seward Neighborhood Group is NOT a signatory to the following letter, was NOT asked to sign the letter, and had no advanced knowledge about the contents of the letter.  SNG is posting this letter for informational purposes only.

Dear Mayor Frey and Minneapolis City Council,

As representatives of businesses, community organizations and residents in areas impacted by the rioting after the murder of George Floyd, we are concerned by the lack of leadership, transparency and coordination by our elected officials and government agencies, particularly at the City level. We are requesting answers to the following questions:

1. Rebuilding: We appreciate hearing the recommendations from Minneapolis Forward: Community Now Coalition. Can you please provide greater detail around process and timeline of implementation and how the larger community will be involved?

2. Future of Policing: How will the City purposefully engage with residents to envision, educate and collaborate on the future of policing in our City? Are there plans to rebuild the 3rd Precinct building in the same location? If not, what are alternative plans for that property and for the relocation of the 3rd precinct building? Who is informing the direction of those plans?

3. Funding: Will the City of Minneapolis, Hennepin County or the State of Minnesota be allocating financial resources to businesses, local community-based and neighborhood organizations to assist in rebuilding our communities? What have you done to secure those financial resources?

4. Coordination Among Elected Officials: Are you working with your fellow elected representatives at all levels to align around a specific plan for rebuilding and to lobby the state legislature for funding to stabilize our communities over the long-term?

5. Community Engagement: How do you plan to engage residents, community organizations and businesses in plans to rebuild our communities and to find out the actual needs on the ground? If we organize the voices of businesses and residents, what processes and plans are in place for those voices to be heard?

6. Racial Equity: Please explain how your efforts (fundraising, policy, coordination etc.) are and will be done with an intentional focus on racial equity.

Until hearing the recommendations of Minneapolis Forward, few community organizations, businesses and residents of the impacted areas had received information or communication on the efforts of our City elected officials and departments. We still need responses to the above questions and action by the City to support the rebuilding of our communities. Please respond by Friday, September 4th. A lack of response will be interpreted as disregard for the voices of all of those who have been most deeply impacted by the recent rioting and unrest. Your responses will be shared with our communities through social and print media.

Our organizations, businesses and residents are currently engaged in many efforts and we are eager to share them with you. We are working hard on these same issues that we are asking you about, but we cannot and should not be forced to act without leadership and resources from our City, County and State governments. A more coordinated and inclusive City response is still absent, so we respectfully request that you do not direct us towards our individual City Council Members. The City of Minneapolis, Hennepin County and State Officials are responsible for a coordinated response to our communities that cannot be delayed and requires your cooperation.

Please send your response(s) to info@longfellow.org.

Sincerely, Corcoran Neighborhood Association, Midtown Phillips Neighborhood Association, Seward Civic and Commerce Association, Standish-Ericsson Neighborhood Association, Longfellow Business Association, Longfellow Community Council

MPLS City Council Committee Approves Lease for Temporary 3rd Police Precinct Site

A Minneapolis City Council committee on Thursday approved a lease for a temporary Third Police Precinct site.

The Policy and Government Oversight Committee advanced a proposed three-year lease for a temporary precinct building at 2633 Minnehaha Avenue. The lease would cost the city about $1.2 million per year, and the city would have an option to extend the lease for a fourth year.

Read more HERE.

Community Development Committee Meeting Thurs. Aug 20

Seward Neighborhood Group’s Community Development Committee
August 20, 2020  |  7:00-8:30 p.m.  |  Zoom (instructions at bottom)

Agenda
7:00 Introductions, Sign-In, and Pass July Minutes
7:10 CDC Leadership Change – Peter
Alexis Troschinetz has stepped down from the SNG Board at the end of July. She took on the CDC chair role in late winter 2020 to make sure the committee was tending to the then-pressing Agra development timeline. Peter D’Ascoli, new SNG board member, is chairing tonight’s meeting and will likely be stepping into the role of CDC chair going forward.

7:15 Agra Development (proposed for 27th and Franklin at Former Perkins Site) – Alexis
Newport Midwest (the developer) submitted funding applications for Agra in June and July. They expect funding awards to be announced in October/November of this year. The project team is awaiting receipt of funding awards to proceed, since the feasibility is so strictly tied to those awards. When/if the awards are secured, that will be the time for re-engagement with the community for feedback inline with our design process.
As noted in the letter that outlined SNG’s engagement on the project, SNG needs to collaborate with Newport Midwest to create “a page on the SNG website dedicated to the project proposal. This webpage will offer an opportunity for residents and constituents to find updates to the project’s status and design as well as submit feedback/comments on an ongoing basis.”
All of this said, good progress was made on a draft list of “asks” that the SNG CDC could finalize in the months before October/November. The SNG Board received community development training from Seward Redesign in February, wherein we were reminded of the Franklin Vision 2009. It may be a good resource to draw from while working on the list of “asks.” 


7:25 Seward Business Relief and Rebuild Fund Update – Alexis
In June, SNG, SCCA, and Redesign set up a GoFundMe to accept donations to help businesses recover from physical damage sustained from the unrest. The three implementing organizations and volunteers have met weekly in July to carry out disbursement of funds. Alexis will continue to carry out this fundraiser work as a volunteer of SNG. Money is available from GoFundMe now and $500 checks will go to businesses damaged shortly.
The group meeting weekly is also addressing other ways to support businesses in Seward, such as how to address the recent uptick in theft / robberies at businesses. SNG’s Interim Executive Director, Michael Jon, shared these two resources on another set of groups broader than Seward meeting to support small businesses: June 23 Notes, Small Business Support Matrix
From July meeting: Any additions to the list of affected businesses? Has the $500 initial offer gone out?  Will distribution occur by the end of August?

7:35 From July Meeting: Have the holes been repaired in prior boarded businesses

7:45 Potential CDC Task #1: Develop a set of Equitable Development Principles & Scorecard – Michael Jon Olson
1-Interim Executive Director, Michael Jon, brought this idea forward. It might be an opportune time to have a high-level discussion about how the redevelopment landscape has changed in the aftermath of the protests and in light of COVID – in terms needs, challenges, and opportunities. This could perhaps be done in partnership with Redesign.  Here’s an excellent template developed by an alliance of Twin Cities organizations and a specific example from the Westside Community Organization, adapted from the template.
2-In late February, SNG board met with Redesign to get a training on community development (noted above with the Agra item). At that meeting, a SNG board member brought forward the Westside Community Organization’s scorecard. So, this concept was briefly introduced to SNG this year. Action to this effect could still be taken.

8:05 Potential CDC Task #2: Create a Community Investment Cooperative – Michael Jon
We need a primer on this from Michael Jon Olson. 
Given current development and redevelopment opportunities we might want to look into this possibility. Forming an investment cooperative is a significant amount of work, but well worth it for gaining more say in development in the neighborhood.
The best local example is the Northeast Investment Cooperative

8:15 Seward Redesign Update – Chris Romano

8:22 Councilmember offices update – Robin Garwood, if present

8:30 Adjourn

Topic: CDC Meeting
Time: Aug 11, 2020 07:00 PM Central Time (US and Canada)
Every month on the Second Tue, until Oct 13, 2020, 4 occurrence(s)

Join Zoom Meeting: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/94664930202
Meeting ID: 946 6493 0202

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SNG is Hiring an Executive Director

Seward Neighborhood Group is hiring an Executive Director. This is a full-time, salaried position that reports to the SNG Executive Committee, is accountable to the SNG Board of Directors and its committees, and is responsive to the Seward community.

See attached for more information.