On June 12, 2020, the Minneapolis City Council approved two staff directives related to off-duty police officers. A summary of Business Licensing’s actions and recommendations is listed below.
1. Direct staff of the Business Licensing Division of the Department of Community Planning and Economic Development to implement a change to the Block Event and Special Events process to allow all block event or special event organizers, if they choose, to use private security services rather than off-duty Minneapolis police officers.
Business Licensing recommends changing the policy, application process and committee decision making procedures related to security at special events.
Policy: Change the Off-Duty Police Requirements for Special Events Policy to Security Personnel Requirements for Special Events Policy. A copy is attached.
- The previous policy allowed only off-duty police to work at special events. The proposed policy gives event organizers a choice of licensed private security, volunteers/employees, and/or off-duty police.
Process: Change the application process for submitting a Special Events Security Plan.
- A new security plan template has been developed to assist event organizers identify their needs and solutions. Prior to this, event organizers presented information by telephone or email to the MPD Special Events Officer without structure or prescribed guidance.
- Event organizers will submit their completed security plan as part of their special event application. Event information such as size of event, type of entertainment, hours, security needs, etc. will then be reviewed by all members of the Block Event and Special Events Committee (BESE). Prior to this, the MPD Special Events Officer determined the number of off-duty officers required at each event.
Procedure: Implement a Security Personnel Decision Making Matrix.
- The third change includes the development of a matrix for BESE to determine the number and type of security personnel required at each event. This tool aims to provide consistency in decisions affecting the safety of events.
2. Direct staff of the Business Licensing Division to work with the Mayor’s Off-Duty Workgroup, and provide a report to the Business, Inspections & Zoning Committee no later than August 4, 2020, with the number of licensed businesses that have specific license conditions requiring the use of off-duty Minneapolis police officers.
Business Licensing uses license operating conditions as a tool to assist businesses remain successful. They are negotiated with the license holder, signed by the Manager of Business Licensing, and approved by the Minneapolis City Council.
Business Licensing has documented license conditions since 2002. A review of the 294 sets of conditions assigned to current licenses revealed that 1.3% require off-duty police for weekends or special events. Each of the four license holders has been notified of our goal to modify this requirement. Staff expects to submit revised business license operating conditions agreements to the Minneapolis City Council by October 2, 2020.
Additionally, Business Licensing reviewed the business plans of 712 licensed alcohol establishments to determine if applicants voluntarily submitted a plan for off-duty police as part of their original license application. Five establishments employ off-duty police officers. Staff will work with each license holder to determine the appropriate security personnel for their operation. These changes in business plans are subject to approval by the Minneapolis City Council and Business Licensing plans to complete this by December 4, 2020.