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Selections from the MPLS. blog, the source for Minneapolis news at www.startribune.com/mpls
Running for political office in Minneapolis is going to cost considerably more than in the past — but it could have been worse.
The city's Charter Commission last week approved increases in filing fees to run for mayor and City Council. The commission voted to raise the fees from $20 to $250 for mayor and from $20 to $100 for a council seat.
It amended an earlier proposal that would have hiked the cost to appear on the ballot to $500 for mayor and $250 for a council seat.
The panel also approved an increase from $20 to $50 to run for the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board, and kept in place the $20 fee to run for the Board of Estimate and Taxation.
Proponents said the higher fees would discourage frivolous candidates. They also noted that the fees had not been raised since 1967.
But Commission Chairman Barry Clegg said some members of the panel "just thought those numbers were too high and would discourage good candidates from running ... and people wanted to make it affordable for legitimate challengers and not out of reach."
Additionally, the commission approved adjusting filing fees once a decade to reflect changes in the cost of living, rounded to the nearest $10.
The action next goes to the City Council, where it must win approval from all 13 members to take effect.
Hot dish extravaganza
That rite of spring in northeast Minneapolis, the Holland neighborhood's annual hot dish extravaganza, has a boozy new wrinkle this year.
In a nod to the area's burgeoning brewing industry, this year's Hotdish Revolution on April 21 will feature beer flights, according to publicist Kurt Nowacki.
Barley John's Brewpub, actually in St. Anthony, is the first to commit. Nowacki said invitations are out to Indeed, Dangerous Man, 612 Brew and Northgate, all Northeast labels. He's envisioning flights of four 4-ounce samples for $10.
Of course, there will be the usual taste-off of casseroles in the traditional divisions: spicy, vegetarian, tater tots, kids, meats, and fins and feathers. There's also a Jell-O competition.
Anyone can enter by showing up at 4 p.m. with a dish. Judging starts at 4:30, and the crowd gets down to consuming the entries at 5. The cost is $10 ($5 if you enter a dish) for adults, $5 for kids ages 5 to 12, and free for those under five. This year's event is at St. Maron Catholic Church's Cedar Hall, 602 University Av. NE.
The event is sponsored by the Holland Neighborhood Improvement Association, which is planning to compile previous years' recipes into a cookbook for next year's event. This year's contest also will serve as the kickoff for fundraising for another art installation by James Brenner, this one consisting of light poles in the Edison High School parking lot.
Because it's an election year, several contenders for the mayor's office have said they will be there, pressing the flesh with voters.
MAYA RAO and STEVE BRANDT