How can Lake Street Council help you?

The primary purpose of Lake Street Council is to engage, serve, and advocate for Lake Street corridor businesses and our residential communities. We provide educational opportunities and promote the public good.

This is a brief menu of items that we may be able to assist with at the LSC office:

  • Entrepreneurial start-ups
  • Business and other community planning
  • Regulatory issues
  • Funding and budgetary issues
  • Loans
  • Licensing issues
  • Technical assistance
  • Zoning information
  • Inspections
  • Entrepreneur and employee training
  • Compliance and legal questions
  • Networking
  • Business and neighborhood contacts

We will introduce you to elected officials and their staff, connect you, and help you understand the many departments and agencies within the City of Minneapolis and Hennepin County.

Each of these categories may have subsections, all of which apply to the businesses and residential communities within the Lake Street corridor. The Lake Street Council can help you sort through these details to effectively assist you and improve the economic vitality of our communities.

Business Licensing

We commonly encounter questions and issues regarding business licensing. This City of Minneapolis page is the place to start for navigating licensing issues.

Minneapolis Loan Programs

Capital Acquisition Revolving Fund for business owners who want to purchase their building. Opportunity for long-term fixed rate financing below market rates available if property is in New Markets Tax Credit area. City finances up to 40% of the project, with a limit of $300,000.

2% Loan Program for small businesses to purchase equipment and/or make building improvements. CPED provides half the loan, up to $40,000, at 2% interest.

2% Commercial Corridor/Commercial Node Loan Program for small businesses to purchase equipment and/or make building improvements on commercial properties located in designated commercial corridors and commercial Nodes. CPED provides half the loan, up to $75,000, at 2% interest.

Starting a Business Guide, which covers details of starting a new business and lists a directory of organizations and agencies that can provide loans and grants to businesses.

Graffiti Information

Download and complete a Community Impact Statement for the City of Minneapolis about how graffiti affects you. See this document for strategies on removing different types of graffiti on different types of surfaces. Also see the City’s graffiti section of their website:

Lake Street Council supports a cohesive plan to combat graffiti that includes physical clean-up, improved legislation, police and judicial enforcement, a public information campaign, and school-based related education.

Free Tax Preparation

Free tax preparation sites are open throughout the state of Minnesota from February 1 to April 15 each year. Free tax preparation sites assist individuals who earn below $30,000 per year, families who earn below $50,000 per year, and those who speak limited or no English, are senior citizens, or have a disability. This service is free, accurate, and confidential, with e-filing and fast refunds. All volunteers are certified by the Internal Revenue Service to prepare your federal and state income and property tax returns.

For a list of free tax preparation sites near you, follow this link.

Trespass Form

Let’s face it—no one wants to shop in an environment that seems unsafe. Aggressive panhandlers, intoxicated persons, and loud and obnoxious persons sometimes create a disturbance. Sometimes crimes are committed where someone is detained for arrest. Because of this, there are established policies to remove those unwanted persons who commit crimes or violate rules while on your property.

This is the city-approved trespass form, a very effective tool for dealing with chronic offenders and using it is encouraged by our local police precincts.

Questions about what a trespass warning is, who can issue it, and when it should be used? Check out this write-up for details.

“Adopt-an-Ash” Receptacle Program

Minneapolis is looking for businesses to adopt ash receptacles. Ash receptacles are placed at appropriate locations throughout the city for pedestrian use to reduce cigarette litter in high traffic areas. Participating businesses will adopt a receptacle for at least two years. They will empty the receptacle regularly and work with the City to maintain it. Read all the details here.


The following is a list of business and community development organizations operating in the Lake Street corridor that also may be able to assist you: