The city budget! Repairing damage caused by theives! Decorating your house! It's shaping up to be a full news week here in Southwest Minneapolis, and here's a preview of what we'll be covering.
City Council Tackles Mayor's Budget
When: Tuesday, all day.
Why we'll be there: Instead of last week's barrage of hearings and votes, this week's civic excitement is likely to be condensed into just one day, as the city council's Ways and Means Committee tackles the mayor's budget in a process known as "markup."
Southwest's councilmembers say the hearing is unlikely to be as contentious as in previous years, where big surges in property taxes and changes to the city's Neighborhood Revitalization Program dominated the headlines. The state's skimpy support for Local Government Aid is still creating pain—city contracts with some senior care providers, for example, could be on the chopping block. However, with firefighter staffing problems fixed for the time being, this year's biggest news for Southwest Minneapolis looks to be a plan from Ward 13 Councilmember Betsy Hodges: She wants to keep the area's two Crime Prevention Specialists on staff using extra money found in the Minneapolis Police Department's budget. The news that Southwest would see its two longtime specialists—civilian staffers who act as a linchpin in the police's efforts to fight crime in Southwest—fall victim to budget cuts caused great consternation earlier this fall.
Cafe Ena Fights Back Against Toy Thieves
When: Dec. 5 through Dec. 23
Why we're watching: Incensed that thieves stole scores of wrapped Christmas presents from The Family Partnership in Golden Valley, the owners of Cafe Ena and El Meson have organized a toy drive to replace the stolen items. Find out what's needed here. We'll bring you the drive's backstory later this week.
Who's Got The Best Lights?
When: Dec. 8 through Dec. 26
What's up: They say reporters should always try to stay out of the news. But this time, we can't help ourselves. Here are your hints: a $100,000 prize and holiday lights. See what the fuss is about at DeckTheHalls.Patch.com.