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Thursday
Dec062018

Minneapolis Park Board Adopts 2019 Budget

Via a December 5 e-newsletter from Minneapolis Park and Rec Board:

Budget focuses on youth services, fiscal responsibility, environmental protection and engaging the communities’ power

At their December 5 meeting, the Board of Commissioners unanimously adopted a 2019 Budget for the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board (MPRB) that focuses on four priorities: invest in youth; be financially sustainable; protect the environment; and engage communities’ power. It also reflects initiatives to meet the changing demographics and needs of the community, including more frontline staff to deliver critical services, piloting the wrap-around full-service community school/park model, and increased funding for a recreation micro-grant program. Commissioners also approved renaming the micro-grant program after former park commissioner Walter Dziedzic.

“Our city has a critical need for enhanced youth programs and services, and youth violence prevention strategies, and the Park Board is uniquely positioned to address this need” said Superintendent Mary Merrill. “We appreciate Mayor Frey’s support for the work we do and his down payment towards the ongoing investment needed for youth services. We are very proud to partner with the Mayor and the Minneapolis Public Schools on piloting the new wrap-around, full-service community school/park model for Minneapolis children.”

A wrap-around, full-service site will be the hub in the community where families will have access to resources where all their needs can be met. The Park Board's role in this partnership will be to find where a park and school share the same site and work together to leverage both park and school resources and services in support of young people and their families.

“I am proud this Board unanimously adopted a budget that increases the number of parkkeepers who care for our parks to pre-recession levels. We also increased our investment in youth, youth jobs and critical youth programming,” said Park Board President Brad Bourn. “It’s an honor to expand our recreation micro grant program and rename it after the late Walt Dziedzic who was such an advocate for parks, youth and families in Minneapolis. Parks are for everyone and this budget puts us in a sound financial position to continue providing services the community wants and needs.”

The MPRB 2019 Budget includes increased funding in the Youth Development Department for the Leadership Fund micro-grant program to focus on elders, girls and Somali program partnerships, and renaming the Leadership Fund the Walter Dziedzic Recreation Innovation Fund. Additional youth development initiatives include increased youth employment through Teen Teamworks, two additional Conservation Corps crews, support for the Run and Shoot Basketball League, and two additional Youthline program specialist positions.

The MPRB 2019 Budget includes a 5.7 percent property tax levy increase that includes 5.8 percent increase for the General Fund annual operating increase, and 3.0 percent increase for the Tree Preservation and Reforestation Levy to address Emerald Ash Borer infestation and tree loss due to storms. Of the Minneapolis property tax paid by Minneapolis homeowners, approximately eight cents of every dollar will go to the MPRB. The 5.7 percent property tax increase will result in an estimated annual increase of $17 for the owner of a $249,000 home.

For details about the approved 2019 Budget, read the full release on the MPRB website.

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