A Champion for Entrepreneurs and Small Businesses

Small businesses are the heart of a local economy. This is what makes the stark lack of small businesses in the 4th Ward so troubling. We know small business owners create jobs and are likely to hire from the neighborhood. Despite this, many storefronts sit empty and commercial buildings dilapidated.

In a community that has seen a sharp decrease in household income over the 20 year tenure of the 4th Ward incumbent, this blight adds insult to injury to a community where jobs are desperately needed. It’s a no-brainer: investments in small businesses can launch a virtuous cycle.

 

Despite this, the long-time 4th Ward incumbent put a year-long moratorium on new businesses in 2007 without speaking to the community or small business owners. No actionable steps were taken as a result of the study; only stunting economic growth in the area. This is just one of many examples of how the 4th Ward incumbent is bad for small businesses and the local economy of the 4th Ward.

Speaking to many small business owners, I have heard time and time again they feel unheard in City Hall. This will no longer be the case with me as a City Councilmember. Small business owners will have an ally and champion in me.

As the City Councilmember for the 4th Ward, I will be a champion for entrepreneurs and growing the number of Northsider-owned small businesses in the 4th Ward by:

  1. Building thriving commercial corridors and intersections.

  2. Collaborating with public, private, and nonprofit partners to participate in a small business ecosystem that supports Northside entrepreneurs at all stages of a business’s lifecycle.

  3. Growing the City of Minneapolis’ Small Business Team to a Small Business Office.

  4. Developing more affordable retail, office, and industrial spaces for small businesses with emphasis on Northsider-ownership through cooperative business models and commercial land trusts.

  5. Connecting more small business owners to vendor contracts with the City of Minneapolis by including veteran and LGBT businesses in opportunities available to minority businesses - bringing the City up to current state standards.

  6. Generating more money for Northside business owners to improve their storefronts by growing the Great Streets program.