Lake Street businesses say recovery has been slow 1 year after riots in Minneapolis

A business with bordered windows remains along Lake Street as the post-riot recovery continues in 2021. (FOX 9)

On the morning of May 28, 2020, Lake Street business owners began picking up the pieces of an overnight disaster from rioting and looting.

Their neighborhood had been the epicenter of the unrest that followed the death of George Floyd, with most of the attention focused on the former Minneapolis Third Police Precinct and nearby area.

As the damage was being accounted for, the nonprofit Lake Street Council quickly began a GoFundMe.

"70,000 people responded to that call for help and we raised $11 million in just a few weeks," said Russ Adams with the Lake Street Council.

One year later, a majority are back, but they consider the recovery only partial. Not all the damage is repaired and not all the debts paid.

The council has given more than $5 million in grants to over 300 businesses so far but they’ve had no help beyond their donors.

"We have not seen a significant investment by government at either the local, the state, or the federal level," said Adams. "And it’s time to act…  It’s very troubling and concerning because we know money exists."

"Why does it take the government so long to react to an emergency?" asked Henry Jimenez. "It’s been a year."

Jimenez is the executive director of the Latino Economic Development Council.

"In this special session that’s coming up, the state legislature needs to act on something," he said.

Jimenez has pushed state lawmakers for a year, through seven special sessions in that time already, and still nothing in state aid or federal relief.

"Not federal government, not state government, and as you said, it’s been a year to me this is an emergency and an emergency that everyone should have responded to these businesses," added Jimenez.