League of Minnesota Cities (LMC) is an association of municipalities, townships, and special districts in Minnesota. LMC represents local entities before the federal and state legislatures and provides summaries to members on legislative priorities, new laws, and best practices. It has recently engaged in furthering race equity and seeking clarification on implementation of Minnesota’s cannabis law.
History and Structure
League of Minnesota Cities was founded in 1913 by a law enacted by the Minnesota legislature as part of the extension program at the University of Minnesota.  In 1974, it became an independent entity.  Currently, LMC represents 837 of the 854 cities in Minnesota as well as townships, joint powers entities, and special districts. 
The League of Minnesota Cities supports local decision-making authority while opposing attempts by the state and federal governments to interfere with local control.  The League’s main functions include advocacy, an insurance trust, research and best practices, and learning and events. 
League of Minnesota Cities’ coordinates advocacy before the federal and state legislatures on behalf of its member municipalities.  Each year, LMC publishes City Policies that identifies legislative priorities developed by committees of the League of Minnesota Cities.  LMC’s four policy committees are titled, improving services, improving local economies, improving fiscal futures, and human resources. 
LMC’s intergovernmental relations section provides a yearly summary of newly enacted laws to its members.  It has also expanded federal advocacy to work with Minnesota members of Congress on laws that affect its members.  LMC works with local officials to identify and list gubernatorial and state legislative appointments to commissions, committees, and task forces.  Yearly, LMC has a “City Day on the Hill” so that local leaders to meet with state legislators in Saint Paul. 
League of Minnesota Cities executive director David Unmacht has stated that LMC has assumed an intentional leadership role in advancing race equity.  LMC has two groups dealing with equity: the race equity team, which focuses on internal staff, and the Race Equity Council, which identifies resources available for its members.  LMC has identified books and films for cities to use and actions to advance equity.  Additionally, LMC maintains a list of consultants that cities may hire to speak on race and equity. 
In July 2022, a new law went into effect in Minnesota to allow cannabis edibles and beverages in the state but without any licensing requirements for production, taxation, or regulations on how much an individual may possess.  The lack of guidance left local municipalities confused as to the extent that cannabis products may be banned, regulated, or taxed by local governments and is cited by LMC as a top legislative priority for 2023. 
Research, Training, and Best Practices
League of Minnesota Cities provides handbooks and best practices guidance to municipalities on a variety of issues including city council functions, finance, city administration, human resources, public works, public safety and health, and community development.  LMC provides additional resources for smaller cities on budgets and finances; meetings, councils, and roles; hiring, benefits, and policies; administration; elections; and liability and risk. 
League of Minnesota Cities provides in-person and online learning programs for members.  Topics include race equity, federal grant opportunities, property tax basics, land use regulations, opioid settlement funds, city technology, and labor relations practices. 
In 1980, League of Minnesota Cities began operating an insurance trust covering liability, property, auto, and worker’s compensation to municipalities.  The trust also provides coverage to nonprofits that are part of municipality.  In 2021, the League of Minnesota Cities Insurance Trust had $140,539,262 in revenue and $124,937,983 in expenditures. 
In 2021, League of Minnesota Cities recorded $10,474,521 in revenue and $10,174,166 in expenses.