Mpls. Business Owners Cry 'Foul' Over $600K 'Fancy' Streetlights
Minneapolis business owners along Penn Avenue South between 54th Street and Highway 62 are not happy about new, decorative streetlights.
They say the huge assessments they are going to have to pay for the $600,000 fancy lights is only one piece of a bad financial puzzle for them. Business owners say they will be hit with large assessments for the rebuilding of Penn Avenue, too, and that could put some of them out of business.
Rick Bohnen owns the Mobil and BP gas stations at 60th and Penn. He tells 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS that the lights will cost him $8,000 and the street improvements could be as much as an additional $30,000. Bohnen says the gas stations have been a family business for 35 years, but if the light and street improvement project goes forward, it could drive him out of business.
City officials say the decorative lights are the city's way of making it uniform and equitable across the entire city.
Betsy Hodges represents the area facing these huge tax assessments and she has declined to talk with 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS about the project. We tried emailing and calling her for five days to get an interview and she has not agreed to talk about the project.