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Minneapolis' $18 million safety-beyond-policing effort questioned after contracts go unpaid

Minneapolis' crime prevention department is facing scrutiny from City Council members and violence-prevention groups who say limited oversight and unpaid contracts suggest the city isn't committed to the work.

Of particular concern: Several organizations under contract with the city to provide street-level outreach have reported not being paid for months, forcing them to halt their violence-prevention efforts. Others say communication from the city's department of Neighborhood Safety has been erratic, at best. Meanwhile, the city is facing a lawsuit alleging that officials illegally and arbitrarily handed out millions of dollars in violence-prevention contracts.

"Our vendors are frustrated, it feels like community is seeing the services even less than a couple of years ago, and we're all just sort of left to figure out why," said Council Member Jeremiah Ellison.


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