Staff Directory 6370527

Faiza Mahamud

Reporter | Minneapolis

Faiza Mahamud covers Minneapolis for the Star Tribune. She has previously covered education, immigrant communities, city government and neighborhoods. 

Before joining the Star Tribune, Mahamud was a reporter and editor at Mshale, the largest African community newspaper in Minnesota. She has a bachelor's degree from Augsburg University and a master's degree from the University of Minnesota's Humphrey School of Public Affairs.
Recent content from Faiza Mahamud
Aileen Johnson, with the Loring Park Safety Block Club, brought a group of Minneapolis police on a tour of the Woman’s Club during National Night Ou

Want to stop crime? Walk with us, say Minneapolis block clubs

Neighborhood groups are forming walking clubs to deter crime around the city.
Immigrant rights advocates on Thursday rallied outside the Minneapolis City Council chambers, demanding city leaders implement a list of “pro-immigr

Advocates push Mpls. to issue city IDs to residents, unveil list of 'pro-immigrant' demands

Minneapolis passed municipal ID ordinance in 2018 but halted implementation over concerns information could be used to identify immigrants for deportation.
Council Member Michael Rainville met with some members of the Somali community last week at Dar Al-Qalam mosque in Minneapolis.

Rainville tries to make peace after firestorm over remarks about Somali youth

He had blamed Somali American youth for a wave of violence in the city over the July 4th weekend.
City Council Member Michael Rainville, a Democrat representing Minneapolis’ Third Ward, was responding to a weekend of violence that included a mass

Some Minneapolis council members want to censure Rainville, but it's not so easy

Council Member Michael Rainville's comments singling out Somali American youth for violence over the July 4th weekend sparked anger.
Minneapolis Third Ward City Council Member Michael Rainville addressed crime concerns during a town hall meeting Friday at Kramarczuk’s Sausage Co.

Pressure mounts against Minneapolis City Council's Rainville

He has apologized for singling out Somali youth after a wave of violence over the July 4th weekend.
The Lake Street Kmart a few months before it closed in spring 2020.

Minneapolis to demolish vacant building on former Kmart site

A St. Paul-based consulting firm hired by the city will begin community engagement in August around the future of the site.
If the former Victory Memorial Ice Arena becomes a roller-skating rink, it would become the only one in Minneapolis.

Vacant ice arena in north Minneapolis could gain new life as roller-skating rink

Though the plan is still in its infancy, the hope is to open the roller rink by 2024.
Minnesota job vacancies hit a record 214,000 in 2021.

Twin Cities minimum-wage workers get pay raises. Here's what you need to know

The step increases will occur over several years, with Minneapolis small businesses expected to hit the $15 rate by 2024, followed by St. Paul's in 2027.
A Metro Transit bus drove north on Hennepin Avenue in a dedicated bus lane toward the Uptown Transit Station.

Minneapolis City Council fails to override Mayor Frey's veto on Hennepin Av. redo

The matter has been sent back to the city's public works committee.
The Minneapolis City skyline, including City Hall, as seen from the back of the U.S. District Court.

Minneapolis City Council postpones nomination of Barret Lane as city's emergency director

Several members raise questions about Barret Lane's leadership during the unrest of 2020,
The Minneapolis skyline, including City Hall, as seen from the back of the U.S. District Court.

Minneapolis seeks injunction to stop court order blocking 2040 plan

The city argues that allowing the order to go into effect would throw a wrench into its long-range plan and expose it to possible lawsuits.
Minneapolis City Hall

Mpls. City Council committee approves nomination of Barret Lane to head emergency management

The department is tasked with coordinating the city's disaster plans, training and response.
“The only good place I am going to be is in the water,” said University of Minnesota student Lexi Charpentie, who kept cool in her butterfly float

Heat wave parks itself over state; highs in triple digits likely

Authorities urge people to stay hydrated when possible, and to be aware of the signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke.
Heat stroke, heat exhaustion: How to recognize, what to do

Heat stroke, heat exhaustion: How to recognize, what to do

HEATSTROKE AND HEAT EXHAUSTION What is heat stroke? It is a serious medical emergency where the body's temperature rises above the normal level and the…
The Minneapolis City Council this week approved a $150,000 settlement for a public housing tenant who said her calls about poor living conditions went

Mpls. Council OKs $150K settlement for tenant who said city failed to enforce code violations in public housing

City officials said they didn't know before that they had the authority to inspect public housing properties.
Angela Williams at a news conference held by current and former Minneapolis city employees outside City Hall before the City Council meeting Thursday.

Minneapolis City Council approves Heather Johnston's nomination for city coordinator

Appointment came as some current and former staffers said Johnston could have done more to combat a racist culture within the department.
The historic $27 million project at the Elliot Twins brought modern fire safety systems and upgraded living spaces in the downtown high-rise apartment

$27M upgrade for aging Elliot Twins public housing towers is complete

Housing Authority officials said the redevelopment of the towers will serve as a blueprint for how the agency can preserve and produce more affordable housing amid a crisis.
A group has launched an online fundraising campaign to help with hiring an off-duty police officer to patrol the Mill District from 5 to 10 p.m. in th

Downtown Minneapolis residents want to hire police to curb crime in neighborhood

The pilot project would bring an off-duty beat officer to patrol the Mill District in the summer.
Minnesota job vacancies hit a record 214,000 in 2021.

Pay increase coming to Twin Cities minimum wage earners July 1

Tips and gratuities do not count toward wage payments.
The fire-damaged building in north Minneapolis.

Why hasn't a fire-damaged apartment building in north Minneapolis been repaired?

The charred remains have been sitting vacant for more than a year, leaving many concerned about safety.
Photojournalist Linda Tirado

Minneapolis to pay $600K to journalist blinded in one eye by police projectile after George Floyd's death

Photojournalist Linda Tirado argued that the city and police conspired to deprive journalists of their constitutional rights during the unrest.
The Minneapolis City Council reappointed three longtime staff to department heads Thursday, May 26, 2022. They postponed a vote on the city coordinato

Three Mpls. department heads get nod; city coordinator decision postponed

While voting to delay the city coordinator appointment, council members acknowledged the position will likely cease to exist in a matter of months.
A new “George Perry Floyd Square” sign was unveiled in front of hundreds of community members Wednesday in Minneapolis.

Two years later: 'I'm going to still be out here to honor George'

George Floyd's brother and his aunt came to the corner of 38th Street and Chicago Avenue on Wednesday night, exactly two years after his killing, and quietly made official the name the intersection has carried almost ever since.
Brian Smith, director of the office of performance and innovation and interim director of strategic management for the City of Minneapolis, looks back

Minneapolis council committee forwards city coordinator appointment without recommendation

The full council could decide on Heather Johnston's nomination later this week. She's served as interim head of the department since August.
In 2013, Peter Ginder addressed crowded controversial hearings in Minneapolis City Council chambers on whether the city should form its own utility.

Retired Minneapolis deputy city attorney named acting head of the department

Peter Ginder will serve as interim city attorney until a permanent replacement is selected.
Omar “Shooli” Mohamed sat for a portrait Monday in Minneapolis, Minn. The U.S. government wants to deport the local Somali singer to his native co

Minnesota Somali singer fights deportation as he faces death threats in native country

The Minneapolis resident who came to the U.S. as a refugee teenager said he fears militants will kill him if he's deported to Somalia.
Tom Hoch, founder of the Hennepin Theater Trust, has been selected to lead the Minneapolis Public Housing Authority board.

Tom Hoch tapped to lead Minneapolis Public Housing Authority board

Hoch, who previously served as MPHA's deputy executive director, will preside over the board through 2024.
The Minneapolis city coordinator holds one of the highest-ranking, non-elected positions in city government and serves as an adviser to the mayor and

City Coordinator's Office staffers allege 'toxic, racist and unsafe workplace conditions'

Groups says they want the interim head of the department gone and have made several demands to create a better work environment for employees of color.
A screenshot from body camera footage shows Minneapolis police officer William Gregory punching Damareion McKizzie in the face before he is taken into

Man who sued Minneapolis, police settles for $50K

Damareion McKizzie accused officers of violating his civil rights when they used excessive force and detained him in March 2021 when he was 17. The settlement awaits the mayor's approval.
In 2017, Tasha Julius, production manager for the nonprofit Sustainable Resource Center, measured windows that will be replaced at Bravlia Rendon’s

Minneapolis officials say it's time to take lead out of homes

Mayor Jacob Frey announced that more than 3,000 school-age children, the majority of whom are students of color, have been poisoned by lead.
Minneapolis city crews worked Tuesday to clear a homeless encampment during rush hour along 5th Avenue near Lake Street in Minneapolis. Traffic in the

Minneapolis closes homeless encampment in Phillips West neighborhood

The camp, which was on city property, was a temporary home to more than 20 adults.
Minneapolis renters Jon Wills, left and Kiesha Steele with others attended the Minneapolis City Council meeting with hopes of a rent stabilization sol

Minneapolis to form rent control work group

The 25-member panel must submit a final report to the council by the end of the year. The City Council will submit a ballot question to voters in 2023.
Minneapolis Convention Center, which has been a ghost town during stretches of the pandemic, is slowly coming back to life. Here, workers prepared the

Convention Center expects slow recovery after pandemic crash

It could take three years before business returns to normal at the Convention Center, which saw at least 70% decline in revenue during the pandemic.
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey

Panel says Mpls. should invest more in youth, entrepreneurs, new homebuyers

Mayor Jacob Frey said the recommendations will be used in planning for the second phase spending of the pandemic relief money and the city's 2023 budget
Minneapolis City Council Member Jamal Osman

Mpls. mosques will broadcast call to prayer all year round

The City Council unanimously supported the broadcasts and recognizing Ramadan, which begins April 2.
Steve Meldahl, shown in 2019.

Minneapolis landlord ordered to pay $1 million in legal fees after tenants' rights violations

Judge notes a "disrespectful and unlawful treatment of vulnerable low-income residential tenants."
The Minneapolis City Council approved a $15,000 settlement Thursday for a couple who said police fired rubber bullets at them while observing a protes

Minneapolis City Council approves $15,000 settlement to couple injured by rubber bullets during George Floyd protests

Rally took place downtown the night of May 28, 2020.
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey unveiled a proposal to create an Office of Community Safety that would include police, firefighters and violence preventi

Frey unveils plan for new cabinet, with a safety office

Some local groups said they're intrigued by the idea, while others dismissed it as window dressing.
Investigators concluded that a sprinkler system would have saved lives in the Cedar High Apartments, a 25-story structure at 630 S. Cedar Av. In 2019,

New federal funds to bring sprinklers to public housing high-rises in Mpls.

A fatal 2019 fire prompted the Public Housing Authority to set the goal that all of its 42 high-rise buildings would have that safeguard.
The FBI raided the St. Anthony offices of Feeding Our Future in January. According to FBI documents unsealed so far, many of the subcontractors under

Minnesota Somali community on edge over FBI fraud allegations

Many of the child nutrition spending program subcontractors named in documents are in the community.
Brenda Jean Abari

Brenda Abari, a longtime special education teacher and humanitarian, dies at 75

Her love for children extended beyond the classroom to the world.
Real estate agent Tom Amberg, who owns property in downtown Willmar, searched for information when informed by a Star Tribune reporter that his buildi

Meals program in Willmar offers a window into investigation

The owner of a local restaurant contradicts FBI allegations and says disadvantaged families were served by the thousands.
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey

Mayor's office to lead replacement process for public housing board leader

The Housing Authority's board chair resigned after a building he co-owns was tied to a federal investigation of alleged fraud in programs meant to feed those in need.
The FBI raided Twin Cities nonprofit Feeding Our Future in Minneapolis on Jan. 20.

Mpls. Housing Authority board chair resigns after feds move to seize property he helped buy

Sharmarke Issa said his resignation had nothing to do with the federal investigation.
Brent Hanson and bartender Justin Fowler visited at Dusty’s Bar in northeast Minneapolis in January after the mask mandate went into effect in the c

As omicron fades, Mpls., St. Paul maintain mask mandates

Some other governments — at the local, state and national levels — have already rolled back mask mandates as the omicron wave recedes. Minneapolis and St. Paul have not.
FBI agents raided the Minneapolis office of Feeding Our Future on Jan. 20. The FBI says contractors of the nonprofit stole at least $45 million in tax

Former Frey aide named in forfeiture suit over alleged fraud in meals program

Federal prosecutors move to seize 14 properties owned by people associated with allegations of misappropriation of tens of millions of taxpayer dollars.
Elliott Payne, shown campaigning in November in northeast Minneapolis: “This is not a rehash of the debate we concluded during the last election cyc

Some on council want to skip voters, create public safety unit

Changing the Minneapolis charter by an ordinance requires several steps, including a unanimous vote by the 13-member council and the mayor's approval.
Nekima Levy Armstrong gathered with Black women demanding justice for Amir Locke at the rotunda at City Hall in Minneapolis on Monday.

Mpls. council debates future of MPD, ban on no-knock warrants

The Council's Policy and Government Oversight Committee convened a conversation on no-knock warrants, and one member said he would revive a charter amendment aimed at replacing the MPD with a new public safety department.
Minneapolis currently requires bar and restaurant patrons to show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test.

Restaurant owners, Mpls. face off over vaccine mandate

The case is raising questions about how much authority the city has to enact emergency measures during the pandemic. The judge presiding over the case didn't issue a ruling Wednesday but promised to do so "as soon as I can."
Server Luis Gonzalez brought food to Jasheena Bond and Erica Mooring on Friday at Smack Shack in Minneapolis. Owners of the restaurant were part of th

Restaurant owners sue Mpls. and Frey over vaccine mandate

Plaintiffs say the requirements of the vaccine pose challenges and go against guidance from medical experts.
The former mansion at 2400 Stevens Av. S. is slated to become an emergency shelter for women.

City moves forward on emergency shelter for women in Minneapolis' Whittier neighborhood

A City Council committee rejected a neighbor's appeal.
In November, voters approved a proposal that gave the City Council power to enact its own rent-control ordinance or put such an ordinance before voter

Minneapolis council debate on rent control starts to take shape

There's sharp division among council members as they begin to draft a policy.
Gail Nelson with the Hennepin Theatre Trust, left, checked the ID of Dorothy Hamman after seeing her vaccination status in an app on her phone in the

Minneapolis, St. Paul to require vaccine proof for bars, eateries

The moves come as an increasing number of large, Democrat-led cities across the country are adopting similar rules.
Tony Moline, general manager of Bulldog Lowertown in St. Paul. placed a sign about the mask mandate on Thursday, when it was due to return.

Fear, frustration, resolve resurface in Minneapolis, St. Paul as COVID again disrupts city life

Mask mandates are back. Businesses are shutting, and people are hunkering down.
Masked employees in the Linden Hills Coop in Minneapolis after the first mandate was imposed in May 2020.

Minneapolis, St. Paul reinstate indoor mask mandates

Mayors from both cities were citing a rise in COVID-19 cases from the fast-spreading omicron variant.
The Minneapolis City skyline, including City Hall, as seen from the back of the U.S. District Court.

Incoming Mpls. council sounds note of caution on rent control

A majority of the City Council, including newly elected members, say they want to proceed with caution and design a policy that protects vulnerable tenants but is also workable for developers and landlords.
The Lake Street Kmart a few months before it closed in spring 2020.

Redevelopment plan for former Minneapolis Kmart site to begin early next year

Construction on the 10-acre site could begin in 2024.
A delivery man biked with a food bag from Grubhub in New York in April. With pandemic emergency regulations soon expiring, the Minneapolis City Counci

Minneapolis makes permanent caps on third-party food delivery fees

The city began capping the fees temporarily during the COVID-19 pandemic to help its restaurants survive.
Minneapolis City Council Vice President Andrea Jenkins spoke at a news conference in April.

Andrea Jenkins favored to become next Minneapolis City Council president

Jenkins was first elected in 2017 and serves as vice president.
Mayor Jacob Frey spoke to the news media, flanked by charter department heads, on Friday at the Minneapolis Public Services Building in Minneapolis.

Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey gains unprecedented power in City Hall

The change to the city charter means staff can work "without the complications of politics muddling the efficiency of their work," he says.
This duplex in north Minneapolis is one of more than 650 small properties owned by the public housing authority.

Minneapolis aims to build 84 housing units across the city

With 8,000 families on the waiting list for public housing, the city's Public Housing Authority said it's a step toward meeting a dire need.
Testing stations at a new saliva testing center for COVID, being set up in the Minneapolis Convention and opening Monday in Minneapolis            ]

After nearly 20 years in the role, Minneapolis Health Commissioner Gretchen Musicant will retire

The city will undertake a search for Musicant's replacement in coming weeks.
Incumbent Mayor Jacob Frey held a news conference after being declared the winner of the 2021 election Wednesday in Minneapolis.

Re-elected as mayor, Frey calls election turning point for Mpls.

The Minneapolis mayor won a second term, defeating opponents who aligned against him in a campaign focusing heavily on his track record on policing.
Incumbent Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey raises his fist in the air as he greeted supporters at his campaign’s election night party at Jefe Urban Coci

Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey holds significant early lead

Challengers said they wanted to wait for all votes to be counted as the race was headed into a second day of counting ranked-choice votes Wednesday.
Community activist Mel Reeves said he’s not calling for defunding or abolishing the police, but wants police to be held accountable.

Minneapolis police ballot question divides Black activists, leaders

Proponents say this is their one shot at addressing policing issues. Opponents argue "ending" police is too much of a risk.
Allen Touche outside a Minneapolis apartment complex built by the Red Lake Nation. Minneapolis mayoral candidates have competing views on how to fix t

Minneapolis mayoral candidates offer plans to fix housing crisis

Candidates for mayor of Minneapolis agree that the city is suffering a severe shortage of affordable housing, but they offer sharply differing solutions.
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey spoke at a news conference Sunday, Oct. 17. In an interview Wednesday, Frey said his opposition to rent control hasn’t

Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey opposes rent control, but says he will vote for ballot measure

The mayor has spent months expressing opposition to rent control, and vetoed a separate measure.
Marjorie Wunder

Marjorie Wunder, a peace activist, dies at 90

She was arrested numerous times for civil disobedience in her attempt to bring attention to the dangers of ongoing wars and the production of nuclear weapons and cluster bombs.
The turnout in Ward 6 has dominated early voting in Minneapolis municipal elections this fall. (Star Tribune file photo by David Joles)

Minneapolis Ward 6 candidates at odds over policing, division of power in City Hall

Despite their split views on some of the other major issues, both candidates support rent control.
Andrea Jenkins is the incumbent in the Minneapolis’ Eighth Ward race for City Council.

Candidates for Minneapolis City Council's Eighth Ward seat at odds over policing

City Council district includes the area where George Floyd was killed.
A Minneapolis Police Department squad car.

What you need to know about the Minneapolis charter amendments

Proposals tackle the future of policing, how power is divided in City Hall and whether to limit rent increases.
A campaigning Mayor Jacob Frey was greeted by supporters at the Karmel Mall in Minneapolis last Sunday.

Jacob Frey faces new scrutiny in second run for Minneapolis mayor

Frey has worked under an intense international spotlight since George Floyd's death put the city into the epicenter of a reckoning over policing and racism. It placed the mayor at odds with many members of the City Council and powerful political forces bent on reducing police funding.
Elliott Payne, the first voter and a candidate for City Council Ward 1, right, gave a high five to fellow voter Jill Davis, the second voter, during t

Early voters head to cast ballots in Minneapolis election

The city is facing historic questions on the future of policing, rental pricing and power in city hall.
Early voting center workers prepped for the first day of early voting Thursday. ] ANTHONY SOUFFLE • Minneapolis elec

Big issues, lots of candidates: Minneapolis officials prep for historic vote starting today

Up for a vote are key ballot questions and elections for the mayor's office, all 13 City Council seats and more.
Jimmy John’s has agreed to allow its employees to take time off when they are sick and offer training and education to both its workers and manageme

Minneapolis Jimmy John's to pay $17K for sick leave violations

A city investigation found workers had almost no access to sick leave.