Minneapolis/ Politics & Govt
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Published on April 02, 2024
Minneapolis Council Member Wonsley Highlights Legislative Progress, Rideshare Reforms, Racial Equity GoalsSource: Chad Davis from Minneapolis, United States, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Minneapolis City Council is taking a breather this week with no committee meetings scheduled, but that's not slowing down the bustle of legislative activity that has marked the first quarter of the year, according to an update from Council Member Robin Wonsley. In a statement packed with announcements, Wonsley shared the Council's productivity including the initiation of over twenty-five ordinances, engaging with residents, and pushing several key projects forward, all while inviting constituents to reach out to her office via email at [email protected] for ideas, concerns, or feedback.

One major change on the horizon for Minneapolis is the rideshare ordinance aiming to reshape the city's approach to gig economy transport, with new companies MOOV, Wridz, Joiryde, Hich, and MyWheels eyeing to hit the streets this spring, some of them founded by local residents and people of color responding to the newly instituted minimum wage for drivers, "Competition is good for both drivers and riders and I am pleased to see local residents have the opportunity to engage as business owners in the new rideshare ecosystem," Wonsley told the constituents. State conversations are ongoing to align the council's approach with broader policies and possible data sharing with the state's Department of Labor and Industry.

Under the banner of racial equity and inclusion, Wonsley highlights the updates from the Race Equity Inclusion and Belonging (REIB) Department's analysis of the Strategic Racial Equity Action Plan (SREAP) which reveals a need for further refinement to ensure that every department has specific, measurable, and time-bound goals related to racial equity, "I look forward to working with the REIB Department to revamp the SREAP metrics to ensure that every department has specific, measurable, and time-bound goals related to racial equity," stated Council Member Robin Wonsley while also pushing for a long-awaited Truth and Reconciliation process to address the 2020 civil unrest and rebuild public trust.

With the opioid crisis in the lens, Wonsley acknowledges constituent concerns and has prompted the city for a comprehensive response plan slated to be presented in June, following the recent briefing by the Public Health and Safety Committee, Further, the Administration and Enterprise Oversight Committee has approved a significant contract with Laborers Local 363 after a decisive strike authorization—improving wages for workers responsible for maintaining key city infrastructure, with the full council set to vote on April 11th.

Amidst community engagement and infrastructural plans, Wonsley underscores her commitment to tourism that does not exploit workers or limit the housing stock, to workers’ rights, better public transportation around the clock, and safeguarding the city's natural attractions, all this while maintaining a focus on winter accessibility and pushing forward for sidewalk plowing initiatives. Neighborhood meetings showcased a pulse on local crime trends and safety center models, indicating residents' desires for both transparency and alternative approaches to traditional policing, amidst calls for a more inclusive and responsive city governance.