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Continued: Twin Cities mayors expand their networks; denounce racial disparities

  • Article by: MAYA RAO , Star Tribune
  • Last update: April 11, 2014 - 11:48 PM

Hodges, who has long touted the importance of increasing Minneapolis’ population, told the crowd that a city focused on reducing inequalities will grow better, faster, and over a longer period of time. But cities need tailored policies to bring people in different places to the same goal, she said — and they need to make everyone believe there is something in it for them.

“Let’s say we have a goal and we want everybody to be able to look over a 6-foot fence to see a ballgame — we are not all Bill de Blasio,” said Hodges, in a crack about the New York mayor’s height of 6-foot-5 that prompted laughs.

Some people over 6 feet tall can see over the fence without a problem, Hodges continued, while shorter people (like her) need to stand on a box or ladder. Others who can’t see well may need someone to help describe the scene.

She also displayed a slide showing people struggling with a rising tide flooding a boat and van, noting, “A rising tide isn’t doing what we need it to do.”

Hodges sees some of her role at such events as promoting the city.

“If people don’t know about Minneapolis, they don’t think of us for partnerships or funding,” she said afterward. “Part of my job is, ‘Here’s who we are, here’s what we’re doing.’ ”

Maya Rao • 612-673-4210

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  • Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges addressed other urban leaders at Friday’s “Big Ideas for Big Cities.”

  • St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman and Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges told other big-city leaders in Chicago on Friday that educational and income gaps stand in the way of making many of our nation’s cities great.

  • St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman greeted guests before he delivered his annual State of the City address at the new Arlington Hills Community Center, Monday, March 31, 2014 in St. Paul, MN. ] (ELIZABETH FLORES/STAR TRIBUNE) ELIZABETH FLORES •

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