Promise Zone Updates

City of Minneapolis and Promise Zone

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Augusts 16, 2018

Minneapolis Promise Zone Workmark

In this edition of Minneapolis Promise Zone Updates:

  • Mr. Faulkner's Old Fashioned Hot Dogs, Help Towards Building Trust 
  • Environmental Education Grants
  • Request for Proposals for Homeless Street Outreach Services
  • Minnesota Housing Partnership Releases New Report
  • Upper Harbor Terminal Draft Redevelopment Plan Ready for Input 
  • News, Events, and Jobs
  • Promise Zone Preference Points
  • About the Minneapolis Promise Zone

picture with jaequan, juli, and aaron
L to R: Fourth Precinct Inspector Aaron Biard; Jaequan Faulkner, Hot Dog Entrepreneur; Julianne Leerssen, Director of NMPZ

Mr. Faulkner's Old Fashioned Hot Dogs, Help Towards Building Trust on the Northside 

The Promise Zone Initiative is a place-based, or collective impact strategy that incentivizes over ten federal agencies, through a system of preference points in federal grant-making, to focus resources and funding to neighborhoods of concentrated poverty. Collective impact strategies are often gradual and aim to address cross-sector social issues, like economic and racial inequity. By engaging different actors, they collectively change their approach in order to solve a complex problem. The North Minneapolis Promise Zone (NMPZ) is uniquely positioned to facilitate new partnerships as a federal HUD initiative, operating out of the City of Minneapolis Coordinator’s Office, with a remote office in North Minneapolis.  

Relationship and trust building is a fundamental and time intensive component of place-based work that makes new partnerships possible such as the one between the thirteen-year-old Northside hot dog entrepreneur, Jaequan Faulkner, and the City of Minneapolis. Dan Huff, Director of Environmental Health received a complaint about Jaequan’s hot dog stand, and reached out to the NMPZ about how to avoid shutting him down. In response Julianne Leerssen, Director of NMPZ, capitalized on her relationships in the community to identify new solutions and resources by bringing multiple stakeholders to the table. A few days later, Julianne convened a meeting with a local non-profit that works with entrepreneurs and small business owners, Northside Economic Opportunity Network (NEON), and the City of Minneapolis Health Department. At this meeting it was decided that the Health Department would pay for a special event food permit, so that Jaequan could continue selling hot dogs in front of his home. In addition, due to the NMPZ’s long-established relationship with the Minneapolis Police Department, Fourth Precinct Inspector Aaron Biard agreed to host and pay for Jaequan’s permit to sell hot dogs at the station.  

 As a result since Julianne has invested in relationships both at the City and in the community, she was able to quickly bring key stakeholders together to find a solution for Jaequan. Although a young entrepreneur of color does not solve the racial and economic inequity in North Minneapolis it’s an example of how adaptative solutions are often more effective than a one-size-fits-all methodology, which can often be detrimental to Northside residents. The relational aspect of collective impact work leads to changes in individual and organizational behavior that better reflect community input and needs.  

    Environmental Education Grants 

    About the grants

    Hennepin County awards two types of environmental education grants:

    • Motivating behavior change for projects that focus on motivating adults and older youth to take one or two environmentally friendly actions using behavior change strategies. See the motivating behavior change guidelines (PDF) for more information.
    • Youth environmental stewardship for projects that work with youth on developing an environmental ethic and interest in environmental stewardship using environmental education best practices. See the youth environmental stewardship grant guidelines (PDF) for more information.

    Two levels of funding are awarded:

    • If you have received a Green Partners environmental education grant before, you can apply for up to $20,000 for a one-year project or up to $40,000 for a two-year project.
    • If you have never received a Green Partners environmental education grant before, you can apply for up to $10,000 for a one-year project.

    Eligible organizations

    • Registered nonprofit organizations such as community groups, youth programs and congregations
    • Park districts
    • Private and public schools and school districts, including community educations programs like early childhood family education

    See the Green Partners grants flyer (PDF) for a comparison of the grant options.

    Applying for a grant

    Application due date: Proposals are due by 4 p.m. on Friday, August 31, 2018.

    You can find the application materials on the Hennepin County supplier portal. You must submit your application through the supplier portal.

    Before you can submit your application, you must:

    1. Register an individual account with Hennepin County Online Services, THEN
    2. Go to the supplier portal, log in, and register your company's information or register as a new user with your organization. Learn more and get instructions.

    More Information

    Request for Proposals for Homeless Street Outreach Services

    The City of Minneapolis and the Hennepin County Office to End Homelessness are soliciting proposals for Homeless Street Outreach Services. The target population is people who are experiencing homelessness and sleeping in places not meant for human habitation, chronic users of services, and those in encampments and those who sleep on the Metro Transit Light Rails.

    Approximately $300,000 will be available annually for a single, qualified provider to deliver street outreach services for a period of five years. The provider’s contract would be evaluated annually for renewal based on performance. The contract period is proposed to begin on or about January 1, 2019.

    Eligible organizations should be 501(c)(3), not-for-profit, for profit, or governmental agencies serving Minneapolis residents.

    DEPARTMENT CONTACT/REQUESTS FOR CLARIFICATION: Prospective applicants may direct questions in writing only to:

    Tiffany Glasper, Sr. Project Coordinator
    CPED Residential Finance
    105 5th Avenue South, Suite 200
    Minneapolis, MN  55401

    All questions are due, in writing, no later than Friday, August 31, 2018. Answers to questions will be posted by 12:00 p.m. on Friday, September 7, 2018 at the City of Minneapolis web site at

    Minnesota Housing Partnership Releases New Report

    Across the Twin Cities, the growing ranks of renter households are facing an increasingly challenging housing market with rising rents and declining vacancy rates. While developers are leveraging public and private resources to create new affordable units, current owners of unsubsidized rental properties have few tools to preserve and improve aging properties to maintain homes for current and future tenants. 

    Building on our 2016 "Sold Out" report, Minnesota Housing Partnership launched a new research series tracking key trends in the unsubsidized multifamily rental markets across the Twin Cities

    This second report, published in July 2018, analyzes data for 28,740 unsubsidized rental units in properties with four or more units in Saint Paul from the CoStar database. 

    Upper Harbor Terminal Draft Redevelopment Plan Ready for Input

    During the last several years the City of Minneapolis, Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board and selected Upper Harbor Terminal (UHT) development team did extensive community outreach to gather input from the community as to how they would like to see the UHT site redeveloped. This engagement was followed by several months of work to research practical considerations and explore options. The draft redevelopment concept that has resulted from this process is now ready for more specific community input.

    The team wants to hear from you how well the draft plan responds to that earlier input. The initial round of engagement is outlined below, and we look forward to your participation!

    Community Input Opportunities.

    Wednesday, August 15, 11 am – 1 pm
    Park Board headquarters, 2117 W. River Road N.

    Thursday, August 166 – 8 pm
    Park Board headquarters, 2117 W. River Road N.

    Tuesday, August 28,  6 – 8 pm
    Park Board headquarters, 2117 W. River Road N.

    Saturday, September 8 (hosted by Councilman Phillipe Cunningham) 11 am – 1 pm
    North Market, 4414 Humboldt Ave. N, Community Room

    All of these meetings will include a presentation of the draft plan followed by time for Q & A and discussion. All of the meetings are open to the public and families are welcome. Refreshments will be provided.

    Informational materials and an on-line survey will be posted on the project website after the initial meetings.

    Staff also will be on hand for scheduled open hour discussions and at various community events. Watch the website and for future announcements as plans for these additional opportunities are firmed up.



    Thinking About Business Workshop
    Sat, Aug 18, 9 a.m. -12 p.m. 
    NEON, 1007 W. Broadway Ave., Minneapolis

    2018 SBA Minnesota Lenders' Conference
    Thu, Sept 6, 8 a.m. -5:30 p.m. 
    7025 Northland Dr. N., Brooklyn Park 

    2018 University of Minnesota Supplier Diversity Expo 
    Wed, Sept 19, 9 a.m. -3 p.m. 
    Sait Paul River Centre, 175 West Kellogg Boulevard, Saint Paul 


    Outreach Coordinator
    Northside Residents Redevelopment Council 
    More Information 

    Grant Writer 
    Center for Economic Inclusion 
    More Information

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    Promise Zone Preference Points

    If a discretionary funding opportunity indicates Promise Zone (PZ) preference points are available, please visit for additional information on forms and contacts to request preference point certification from the City of Minneapolis Promise Zone. Please submit your preference point request at least two weeks prior to the application deadline for Promise Zone certification approval consideration. 

    If a funding opportunity does not indicate PZ preference points, you are still encouraged to contact the Promise Zone Manager, Julianne Leerssen (612-225-7721), about potential partnership opportunities to strengthen your application.

    About the Minneapolis Promise Zone

    Promise Zones are federally designated, high poverty communities where the federal government partners with local leaders to increase economic activity, improve educational opportunities, and leverage private investment. The Minneapolis Promise Zone (MPZ) plan is a comprehensive, community-driven revitalization strategy that builds on and aligns numerous initiatives to address the persistent unemployment, crime, housing blight, and poor educational outcomes that affect that area.

    Contact information: Juli Leerssen, (612) 225-7721

    For more information, please visit

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    For reasonable accommodations, alternative formats, or to add content please contact Jennifer Melin at or by phone: 612-597-3406. People who are deaf or hard of hearing can use a relay service to call 311 at 612-673-3000. 

    TTY users can call 612-673-2157 or 612-673-2626.

    Para asistencia 612-673-2700, Yog xav tau kev pab, hu 612-673-2800, Hadii aad Caawimaad u baahantahay 612-673-3500.

    "Welcome to North Minneapolis" mural by youth artists from Juxtaposition Arts and TATS CRU