Building on our foundation of progressive results
I’m proud to have represented Ward one on the Minneapolis City Council for two terms and the progress we’ve made working together as a community.
For the past 8 years, we’ve been turning conversations into action, forging lasting community alliances, and activating them to create a groundswell of change and revitalization. We have made the Ward 1 neighborhoods the new standard for progress and growth, and we did it on our own terms. I’ve always believed local government can make a positive difference in people’s lives, especially the most vulnerable among us. It’s why I chose a life in public service and why I decided to run for City Council. Today, I’ve never been more confident in that belief.
Together, we transformed the Central Avenue commercial district into the vibrant small-business community it is today. We invested in multimodal public transportation that works for all Ward One residents. We implemented innovative environmental solutions, setting a city-wide example of sustainability practices. And we invested in creative industries and artists, bringing economic vitality and defining a new Eastside experience for residents and visitors alike.
With our values under attack from Republicans at the State and Federal level like never before, now is the time to double down on our foundation of progressive results. We need to build on our success and tackle the urgent challenges facing our community–from eliminating the racial disparities that plague our communities, to protecting workers rights, to managing our growth without compromising the character of the community we all cherish.
If I’m re-elected as your City Council Member, I will continue to listen, create dialogue, and make sure that all Ward One residents have a voice at city hall. We’ve made historic progress together. I look forward to earning your support so we can continue moving forward.
Let’s get specific! Select an issue below to learn more about how we can make progress together.
Our Community, Our Environment
I started my professional life in northeast Minneapolis as an environmental activist, not because of a class I took, or because it would look good on my resume, but because my neighborhood was choking on pollution. Every day it’s clear to me that cleaning up our local environment is a social justice issue. For example, the Mississippi River is one of Ward One’s greatest amenities. I remember when it was an embarrassment, a toxic dump. But we’ve worked hard as a community to treat it well, to clean it up, to improve access to it, and to celebrate it.
A safe place to live is a basic human right. I believe that a responsible community makes sure that all its members not only have decent shelter, but a place to call home. I'm proud that I've worked to bring quality, affordable housing projects to Ward 1 for over 15 years. During my tenure with the Holland Neighborhood Improvement Association, I've brought the following projects to fruition:
During the 20th century, the transportation systems in our city were planned and built in support of motor vehicles. Oftentimes this has been to the detriment of those who rely upon public transit, walking, and cycling. As a 21st century city, Minneapolis strives to do better – to be more environmentally sustainable and to understand that its success is reliant upon ALL its people being able to get around easily – and we have shifted toward an emphasis on “multi-modality” in transportation planning. This has resulted in the development of our new Complete Streets Policy.
Ladders of Success
Whenever I—or anyone from the City—talk to residents facing economic disadvantage, we hear repeatedly about a lack of fair access to good-paying, long-term jobs. Conventional wisdom says the City can’t do much beyond crafting policy that encourages the creation of good jobs by the private sector. But in this case conventional wisdom is wrong. The City of Minneapolis is a significant job provider, employing hundreds of people in good-paying positions. So how do we better connect these jobs with the people who need them most?
In 2003, not very long ago, the doors opened for the first time at Eastside Food Coop (Eastside). There were times when it felt as if we would never get to that point, but 14 short years later it’s hard to imagine our community without them. Eastside has become a strong community-based anchor on Central Avenue, and a tremendous source of pride for our community. From Eastside’s success, we’ve seen the launch of the Northeast Investment Coop (NEIC).
Budgeting and values
Most people who are into politics like to talk about values. Values are at the core of why we do what we do, why we work for what we work for. Budgets and fiscal policy, on the other hand, are not so exciting. But budgets are where we put our values into action. From where we get our funding to where we spend it, there is no more important way for the City to express its values than through its budget.
Fighting for Equity
Conversations about equity are perhaps the most important we are having today, as a community and as a society. For progressives, every day brings a new fight to uncover and remedy consequences of inequitable policy and action. There are lots of things the City does that on their face seem to have little to do with equity, so the challenge is to keep an eye on how even the most ordinary of City responsibilities can help everyone thrive.
Outside of the downtown neighborhoods, Ward 1 has been a leader in significant economic investment in Minneapolis. The key to our shared success has not been a focus on profit or cooperate growth, but rather on community-based, sustainable economics. Places with a high density of locally owned businesses experience higher income, employment growth and less poverty - and locally owned businesses encourage residents to put down roots, furthering social and civic engagement.
Bikes & Transportation
Kevin Reich believes that good local transit is an essential element of a safe, healthy, attractive, and livable city. Public transit needs to be an efficient, reliable and appealing option for all people, not just a last option for those who have no other choice. In addition, walking and bicycling must be promoted as healthy and safe options for the able-bodied. As your City Council Member and Chair of the Transportation Committee, Kevin has and will continue to: