#BlongNBetsysFortress: Minneapolis Residents Show Up to Defeat $605K Payday for 4th Pct
Minneapolis, MN – On December 9, 2015, with about two hours notice, Minneapolis mayor Betsy Hodges and Northside city council member Blong Yang floated a vague proposal to throw $605,000 at upgrading the formerly besieged 4th Precinct facility.
Over a hundred community members packed the City Council meeting and eventually forced the planned amendment to be shelved:
#BlongNBetsysFortress has been pulled from the agenda after 100s packed the chamber. We just stopped $605k from going to militarize police!— Black Visions (@BlackVisionsMN) December 10, 2015
Minneapolis residents called out this diversion of resources as better being utilized to bolster sustainable economic development on the Northside.
This chunk of change accompanied a major increase in the city property tax levy hitting apartments particularly hard according to a Star Tribune article. As of 9:41pm the headline included the word “angry” to describe activists however they pulled that word from the page moments ago.
During the meeting, the voting for the $605,000 proposal was seemingly segmented into two pieces; the first segment, for $305,000, was geared towards “implicit bias” training and garnered “Yes” votes by every member of the Minneapolis City Council except Alondra Cano:
$305,000 unclear training I wont b supporting today, too many unknowns, CM presenting issue never discussed it w me pic.twitter.com/gOIApcYh4a— Alondra Cano (@AloCanoMN) December 10, 2015
The meeting extended four hours before the plans of the $605,000 amendment were scrapped. The hashtag #BlongNBetsysFortress trended both locally and nationally.