Minneapolis council passes gay marriage resolution

by Drew Geraets

State and national politicians should not pursue a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage, the Minneapolis City Council stated in a resolution passed Friday.

Openly gay council members Scott Benson, Robert Lilligren and Gary Schiff co-authored the resolution, which was unanimously adopted.

Mayor R.T. Rybak said politicians should not determine the definition of marriage or debate the matter in a politically charged atmosphere.

“It’s time for the city of Minneapolis to say, ‘We’re not going to be part of this game,’ ” he said.

Minneapolis began recognizing domestic partnerships Jan. 1, affording equal benefits to city employees.

“Minneapolis has a long history of support for the gay and lesbian communities,” said Paul Ostrow, City Council president.

Other council news

Permit fees for critical parking permits will increase from $10 to $25, following a unanimous vote.

Administrative costs of enforcing critical parking currently exceed revenues collected from parking fines.

The permit allows residents to park on streets in high-demand areas. There are approximately 4,500 permit holders. The areas are generally open for one- to two-hour parking for nonpermit holders.

Three of the city’s 24 critical parking areas surround the University’s Minneapolis campus.

The Council also approved proceeding with work on the 15th Avenue Southeast reconstruction project. The project will begin in late May or early June and last 16-20 weeks.