Updated May 4, 2020
Responses to the COVID-19 Outbreak continue to change. Below are some updates that impact this community, however, we strongly urge you to follow the links provided for the very latest information.
Governor Walz Extends Stay Home Order to May 18
Governor Tim Walz has extended the Stay Home Order in Minnesota until Monday, May 18. He said the extension would serve to: slow the spread of COVID-19 and slowly build herd immunity; protect those working on the front lines by increasing access to personal protective equipment; and ensure our health system can care for all who require care. Governor Walz also:
- extended the closure order of dine-in food service to May 18;
- announced that as of May 4, retail businesses and other non-critical businesses can resume operations with curbside pick-up and other specific requirements; and
- strongly encouraged all Minnesotans to continue to telework whenever possible, wear face masks in public, screen for symptoms and regularly check their temperature, and maintain physical distance from each other.
New Website Helps You Locate Closest Testing Sites
The new COVID-19 website from the MN Department of Health provides easy access to Minnesotans’ closest testing site, offers general information related to the COVID-19 outbreak, and provides an interactive screening tool to help Minnesotans determine if they need a test.
CDC/Minnesota Department of Health – Guidance on Facemasks
The Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) recommend covering your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when in close proximity to others.
- When to wear a mask: What everyone should know about wearing masks in public.
- Use of Cloth Face Coverings to Help Slow the Spread of COVID-19
- How to Make Your own Face Covering (YouTube)
Real ID Deadline Extended By One Year
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security is extending the REAL ID full enforcement deadline to Oct. 1, 2021. The deadline was originally set for Oct. 1, 2020, but is being delayed by one year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This gives Minnesotans more time to apply for a REAL ID or enhanced driver’s license or ID card.
OTHER IMPORTANT LINKS
- Minnesota Department of Health: https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/index.html
- Minnesota Governor’s Office: https://mn.gov/governor/covid-19/
- CDC: https://www.cdc.gov/
MN Dept of Health COVID-19 Hotlines: 651-201-3920 or 1-800-657-3903
7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Interpreters available
City launches dashboard tracking confirmed Minneapolis COVID-19 cases
The City of Minneapolis has a new online dashboard tracking the number of confirmed Minneapolis COVID-19 cases. The Minnesota Department of Health is the source of the data.
City Preparing Emergency Foster Program for Pets
Minneapolis Animal Care & Control (MACC) is preparing for a possible influx of animals due to the COVID-19 pandemic. To avoid shelter overcrowding, staff hope to recruit members of the community for emergency foster homes. MACC will provide all the supplies to care for the animal. Foster homes will need to:
- Commit to take an animal for at least four weeks.
- Have reliable transportation to pick up the animal and supplies.
- Keep the animal separate from any other animals in the household.
If you’re approved as a foster home, you would be contacted if there’s an emergency need to care for an animal. Learn more about the application process.
Coronavirus Response Resources for Minneapolis Small Businesses
There are resources available to support small businesses, independent contractors, and non-profit organizations that shut their doors or changed their operations to help prevent the spread of the Coronavirus.
- Visit the City of Minneapolis Coronavirus FAQs for business
- Check out this Guide for Small Businesses from Minnesota DEED.
- Applications are now open for the city’s Forgivable, No-Interest Loan for small businesses and self-employed people impacted by the coronavirus. Application deadline is Monday, April 20 at 12:00 p.m.
- The Office of Mayor Jacob Frey is hosting open calls with the business community every Friday at noon. Register here to participate; you can also submit your questions in advance online.
Public Hearings and Meetings Moved Online
Due to the City’s ongoing efforts to combat the spread of COVID-19, Minneapolis City Council meetings and other public hearings have moved to a virtual format. Residents can watch the broadcasts (online and on TV) and participate in public hearings through a digital participation tool that will allow residents to provide live comments by phone. Ways to participate in these meetings are detailed at minneapolismn.gov/meetings.
Please Call 311 – Not 911 – about Stay-at-home Non-compliance
Calls will be routed to appropriate city staff. Read more about the Minneapolis Police Department’s approach to enforcement.
Other City Resources:
- City’s COVID-19 Updates: http://minneapolismn.gov/coronavirus
- Sign up for City’s Coronavirus Newsletter
- Ward 13 City Council Member Linea Palmisano provides regular and informative updates via email. Read past updates and sign up here.
MINNEAPOLIS PARK & RECREATION BOARD UPDATES
Board to Vote on Extending Parkway Closures to June 7
Currently the MPRB maintains 21 lane miles of parkways and roads closed to motor vehicles and opened to pedestrians, including Lake Harriet and parts of Bde Maka Ska Parkways (MPRB Road Closures page). At its May 6 meeting, MPRB Commissioners will consider a resolution granting MPRB Superintendent Al Bangoura the spending authority needed to keep parkways closed to motor vehicles and open to pedestrians through Sunday, June 7. To share your thoughts on this issue, you can:
- Email District 6 Board Commissioner Brad Bourn, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Submit comments to be read aloud at the May 6 board meeting. These comments should be sent to the Secretary to the Board at email@example.com before 3:30 pm on the day of the meeting and should be limited to approximately 200 words.
Restricted Re-opening of Some Basketball and Tennis Courts
Basketball and tennis courts are currently closed following the direction of the Stay at Home Order and recommendations from public health officials. As soon as the Stay at Home order ends (May 18), the MPRB will provide scheduled times for walk-up play by individuals and members of the same household at basketball and tennis courts in several parks. MPRB staff will be onsite to ensure social distancing. MPRB staff are also developing options for modified, social distanced programs and clinics at select soccer and ball fields.
NB lane of West Bda Maka Ska Parkway Closed to Traffic
As of April 20, the northbound lane of West Bde Maka Ska Parkway is closed to motor vehicle traffic between Richfield Road and Lake Street to allow more space for pedestrians to stay six feet apart. The southbound lane of East Bde Maka Ska will also remain closed between 36th Street and Lake Street. These closures remain in effect till May 4. Sections of Lake Street at the north end of the lake and East Bde Maka Ska Parkway at the south end of the lake between 36th Street W and Richfield Road remain fully open to motor vehicles.
*Reminder: Parkways Closed to Motor Vehicles are for Pedestrians Only; Cyclists should remain on bike trails.
MPRB Closes Beaches/Pools and Cancels Summer Events/Programs
- All outdoor aquatic facilities, including beaches, pools, and water parks, will be closed through August 31.
- All MPRB events are cancelled or postponed through August 31.
- All summer programs and team sports that do not allow social distancing are cancelled.
- Park buildings will remain closed, as will restrooms and drinking fountains.
Visit www.minneapolisparks.org/coronavirus for up-to-date information and FAQs.
MINNEAPOLIS PUBLIC SCHOOLS UPDATE
MPS Announces Virtual Graduation Ceremonies
Minneapolis Public Schools plans to hold virtual graduation ceremonies for the Class of 2020, amid ongoing COVID-19 concerns and the need for social distancing. MPS plans to air graduation ceremonies for each high school on Facebook Live through a link on the District’s website and on Minneapolis Comcast Cable Channel 15. Virtual ceremonies are to be held on the same dates as the originally-scheduled ceremonies. All recorded ceremonies will be archived on the MPS website for later viewing. Detailed information about the distribution of diploma covers, caps, gowns and other logistics will be shared with families soon.
School Board Taking Public Comment on CDD Before May 12 Vote
The MPS School Board will vote on the final draft of its Comprehensive District Design at its May 12 board meeting. The meeting will be held virtually and can be viewed by the public at https://mps.eduvision.tv and Channel 15. The School Board is also taking public comments on the CDD prior to the May 12th meeting. Comments can be submitted in writing from May 5-7 and via voicemail starting May 5th. For details on how to submit comments: https://board.mpls.k12.mn.us/public_comment
- Online distance learning continues through the end of the academic year. Details here.
- MPS expanded locations for free meals for children 18 years and younger. See where these sites are and related information.
- All playground equipment on MPS property will be closed to the public until further notice
Composters need your help – keep organics recycling clean
Composters are small, local businesses that are doing what they can to continue to operate. The city’s composter will no longer be manually removing contaminants from organics prior to the composting process, an extra precaution to ensure the health and safety of their employees.
Here’s what you can do to help:
- Keep putting all food in your organics recycling cart. This is the most valuable material for composting and the least confusing.
- Only put BPI certified compostable food-service products in your organics cart. If you aren’t sure if an item is certified compostable, put it in the trash.
- Make sure your organics are in a compostable bag. Acceptable bags include paper bags or BPI certified compostable plastic bags.
- Never put these items in your organics cart: Full list of what is and is not compostable.
For more information, please visit: http://www.ci.minneapolis.mn.us/solid-waste/organics
HENNEPIN COUNTY UPDATES
Hennepin County Library System Offering Curbside Pick-up
Curbside pickup is now available at eight regional library locations including three in Minneapolis: East Lake, Washburn and Webber Park. How it works:
- Place your items on hold on the Hennepin County Library website and select one of the library locations with curbside pickup.
- Once you receive a notification that your hold is available, call your curbside pickup library to tell them you are ready to retrieve your order.
- Staff will pull your items, check them out, put them in a plastic bag labeled with your hold pickup number, and place the bag on a cart outside of the building.
More info available here: https://www.hclib.org/about/curbside-pickup Extensive library services are still available even while library buildings are temporarily closed. Find the most current information about using the library here.
Hennepin County Continues to Provide Services By Phone, Mail, Digital and Fax. See how to access county services, including: licensing service centers, health care, libraries, financial assistance, human services and more.
No Print Newsletter in May
LHiNC has decided to cancel the May/June issue of its bi-monthly print newsletter The Line. With news and event information changing so rapidly, LHiNC feels that print newsletters are not an effective means of communication right now. LHiNC will continue to send out weekly e-news updates, as long as it is necessary and helpful to the community. If you have questions or concerns about this, please email Becky Allen at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Linden Hills Annual Festival Postponed – Due to the cancellation of all MPRB events through August 31, LHiNC is postponing the annual Linden Hills Festival originally scheduled for June 14. Neighbors and businesses that have already signed up for the garage sale and/or marketplace will be refunded their registration fees. Questions or concerns? Please email Becky Allen at email@example.com.
Calling all Block Captains – LHiNC has reached out to block captains (via our police precinct) with helpful information for your block. We hope you will pass it along to your neighbors. We are not able to contact block captains directly; contact information is protected. However, if you are a block captain and wish to receive updates directly from LHiNC, please complete this form. Thank you!
Stay Up to Date About COVID-19
To stay up to date the City of Minneapolis is advising people to visit the Minnesota Department of Health and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) websites often. The city is also providing updates here: http://minneapolismn.gov/emergency/coronavirus