Aug. 8, 2006: A second time around the block

  • Article by: STEVE BRANDT , Star Tribune
  • Updated: January 12, 2012 - 8:52 AM

Ten years after a look at the 2600 block of Colfax Avenue N., blight is more evident, but behavior has improved. A new school has driven away drug dealers and landlords, but neighbors are drifting apart.

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nonsuberJan. 12, 1211:48 AM

I live in Jordan and we have quite a few great neighbors working to improve our community; however the City/County seems resistant to pursue options that will address the issues of crime and livability. 1. We need a cap on the density of non-homestead properties allowed into neighborhoods. The HUD Section 8 reimbursement guidelines are way too inflated for the quality and livability of many of these rentals which receive little maintenance from "investors" who are getting rich off cheap foreclosures. 2. The Minneapolis Police Department needs to institute a true community policing program where officers actually get out of their cars and get to know what’s happening in the neighborhoods (since few of them live in the community). 3. The City/County attorneys offices need to start supporting enforcement of the State of Minnesota's Nuisance Property laws rather than deferring established problems to CPED and the City Councils Problem Properties Unit on the basis of code enforcement. The absence of livability standards is what attracts and feeds these criminal behaviors. 4. We need much more cooperation between Police, City and County Attorneys offices, Social Services, and Inspections departments regarding livability issues. As it stands, it is up to local neighbors to repeatedly call reports to 311 and beg to initiate investigations of even the most grievous offenses leading up to murder before any actions are initiated. Most renters view tenancy in the community as short term and fear to get involved. This leaves fewer and fewer stakeholders to try and stabilize neighborhoods. We need Rybak and other leaders to stop lamenting and pontificating every time a child is killed and man up as leaders to address these issues.

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