County board actions: expanded program aims to reduce contracting disparities, grant funding will improve recycling in public spaces

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Contact: Carolyn Marinan, Communications, 612-348-5969

County board actions

The board approved an action aiming to reduce contracting disparities, awarded grants to improve recycling in public spaces, approved a lease agreement for temporary youth library services at Sabathani Community Center and more.

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Expanded program aims to reduce contracting disparities

The board approved an action to supplement and enhance a program that promotes inclusion of minority- and women-owned businesses in contracts.

In 2016, the county participated in a joint disparity study led by the state, along with eight other state and local entities. The study documented that, despite the long-term use of a race- and gender-neutral contracting program, substantial disparities continue to exist in contracting dollars awarded to minority-owned and women-owned firms.

The county will take several measures to supplement and enhance its Small Business Enterprise program, its primary method of including local small firms in contracts. Tactics include:

  • Supplement and enhance the county’s Small Business Enterprise Program with narrowly-tailored race and/or gender-conscious contracting opportunities
  • Renew its participation in a collaborative that provides business development services and resources to local small businesses 
  • Streamline affirmative action/equal employment opportunity contract compliance for non-construction vendors
  • Coordinate department-level contract inclusion goals
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    Grants awarded to improve recycling in public spaces

    The board awarded nearly $100,000 to improve recycling at parks, along business districts and in sports facilities. Cities will use funding to add more than 150 recycling containers throughout the county.

    Hennepin County awarded grants to cities to purchase recycling containers for the following locations:

    • Bloomington Ice Garden 
    • Brooklyn Park – eight park locations
    • Maple Grove Community Center
    • Minneapolis – Eat Street (Nicollet Avenue) and Stadium Village business districts  
    • Richfield – Wood Lake Nature Center 
    • Rogers – North Community Park and Veterans’ Memorial Park
    • Shorewood Community Center

      These grant awards will help meet the county’s goal of recycling 75 percent of waste by 2030.

      Read more about these funding awards.

      County to lease temporary space for youth library services at Sabathani Community Center

      The board approved a lease agreement to move a limited range of youth library services to Sabathani Community Center between summer 2018 and summer 2019, while renovations take place at Hennepin County Library - Hosmer in South Minneapolis. This temporary relocation will reduce transportation obstacles youth may otherwise face in accessing programming to support out-of-school learning, such as Teen Tech Squad, Homework Help and the after-school snack program.

      Learn more about this action.

      Learn more about the Hosmer Library building project.

      Grant will continue Sheriff's Office terrorism prevention efforts

      The board accepted a $100,000 grant from the Minnesota Department of Public Safety to build resiliency in communities that are at risk for recruitment into extremist organizations. The Sheriff's Office will use funding for engagement with the community, including workshops with local partners.

      Read more about this action

      Current and archival board meetings, agendas and minutes are available online. View at

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