Minneapolis ballot questions put government structure, public safety, rent control in voters’ hands

Minneapolis voters faced three ballot questions that allowed them to weigh the future of the city’s police department, the government structure and a possible rent control ordinance.

Question 2, which would replace the Minneapolis Police Department with a Department of Public Safety, has gotten the most attention leading up to Election Day, both locally and around the country.

However, the other two ballot questions offered the chance for significant change, as well.

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Question 1 would shift the city’s government to a "strong mayor" structure instead of its current setup. If passed, it would give the mayor administrative authority over all departments, like St. Paul’s government structure. Currently, the mayor only has that authority over the police department, and the other departments must report to 14 bosses — the City Council and the mayor.

Question 3, if passed, would allow the Minneapolis City Council to regulate rents on private residential properties. The question isn’t specific and would allow the council to either enact a rent control ordinance by itself or refer it back to voters for approval at a future election.

All three questions need at least 51% of votes to be "yes" in order to pass. The results for all three are expected to be in Tuesday night.