The timeline of Minnesota cities and the League is of course interwoven with Minnesota's rich history, and one of the state's most notable institutions is no exception. Ski-U-Mah, anyone?
|League office space in the library building, 1938.|
That's right, the League of Minnesota Municipalities started out as a part of the University of Minnesota's Extension Office alongside a new Municipal Reference Bureau. The League benefited from the resources of the University and the Reference Bureau. Our first established offices were even in the campus library building.
|Executive Director Dean Lund|
And so in 1972, amidst budget pressures of their own, the University's Board of Regents voted to stop funding League activities to the tune of about $160,000.
LMM Executive Director Dean Lund and President Phil Cohen convinced the Board to give the League one more year of funding in order to create a plan for the future. A+ on that one, guys.
|A flyer from 1973 announces the move to new off-campus digs.|
Rather than disbanding or providing just a fraction of its former services, the League was instead bolstered by the support of its members (the best!) who agreed to sharp dues increases to keep their organization alive.
While the years to follow weren't easy, it was the right play for Minnesota cities. Looking back, we can see that independence was just what the League needed to grow and thrive—refreshing, just like a breath of autumn air.
Learn more about the Municipal Reference Bureau and League research in next week's centennial blog post!