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Minneapolis City Council committee to wrangle again with protester permits

Last week, a Republican National Committee protest coalition and the city of St. Paul finally agreed on where to allow demonstrators near the Xcel Energy Center, where most of the action will be.

Of course, there likely will be protests in Minneapolis too, and for weeks, the City Council’s Public Safety and Regulatory Services Committee has puzzled over what to do with that darn First Amendment. The committee will hold another hearing on the issue at 1 p.m. Wednesday at City Hall.

The committee will be voting on whether to have groups apply for a permit, a cause pushed mostly by 1st Ward Council Member Paul Ostrow.

According to an e-letter issued by Communities United Against Police Brutality: “There is currently no Minneapolis city ordinance requiring groups who gather on the sidewalk to get a permit. This ordinance was written with the RNC in mind but its author, Paul Ostrow, said at the last PS&RS meeting that he intends for this law to become permanent.”

Second Ward Council Member Cam Gordon is expected to issue alternative proposals.

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