Citizen Participation Plan (91.105)
Subsection (1): the following represents the official Citizens Participation Plan (hereinafter Plan) for the City of Lincoln Park, CDBG Program. This Plan will apply to all projects and activities carried out using Community Development Block Grant (hereinafter CDBG) funds. This plan is designed to ensure that all citizens, non profit organizations, neighborhood groups, the business community and other interested parties are given adequate notice and an opportunity to actively participate in, review, be heard and comment upon all proposals relating to the CDBG Program. This Plan is designed to reach out to and encourage the participation of various stakeholders in the community. More specifically, this Plan is designed to encourage the input and participation of all stakeholders in the Consolidated Plan, Annual Action Plan and other related housing and non housing community development plans, revisions, performance reports and amendments for the Grantee City of Lincoln Park.
This Plan is designed to encourage participation by extremely low to moderate-income residents, minorities, non-English speaking peoples, persons with mobility, visual or hearing impairments or any other physical limitation. The Grantee will make every effort to reach out to the community and take special actions as necessary in order to ensure the active participation of all stakeholders in the development process. Community and Economic Development is considered to be a community based cooperative effort that requires access, participation and an openness on the part of local government officials to consider and incorporate all points of view with the community as a part of the development process.
The Grantee will work in cooperation with its Public Housing Commission to encourage and obtain the active participation of the residents of the public housing in the City and under the control of the PHA.
ACCESS TO MEETINGS
The Grantee City will at all times provide adequate, timely notice of all hearings and meetings relating to the CDBG Program. Such Notice shall be designed in such a way as to give citizens the ability to attend local meetings and to freely comment upon all proposals for the CDBG Program and to participate meaningfully in the development process.
ACCESS TO INFORMATION
Citizens of the community, non profit groups, neighborhood groups, public agencies and other interested parties, especially those most directly affected by the CDBG Program’s activities, must have the opportunity to receive information, review and submit comments on any proposed submission concerning the amount of funds available, including the estimated amount proposed to benefit low to moderate income residents in order to more fully participate in the community and economic development planning process. In compliance with the Uniform Relocation Assistance and Real Property Act of 1970, as amended, such persons and groups shall also have access to information relative to any plan the Grantee City may have for displacement of individuals and the plans for assistance that may be provided to those so displaced. Citizens and any interested party shall have access to records for at least five years after the close of any given fiscal year, as to that year.
The Director of Community Planning & Development will make technical assistance available when possible to any persons or groups requesting it. Technical assistance shall be provided to low to moderate persons and groups in need of same in order to prepare a proposal for the consideration of the governing body of the Grantee City and to allow for their more active participation in the community and economic development process.
The Grantee City shall provide at least two public hearings during each program year cycle. A Public Hearing will be held to consider the proposed submission of the Annual Budget, Substantial Amendments to previous budgets or the Consolidated Plan before said documents are submitted to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (hereinafter HUD). This process of public hearings shall be designed so as to assist in identifying housing and community development needs of the community, reviewing proposed use of funds, and reviewing the performance of the CDBG Program. At least one of those public hearings shall be held before the Consolidated Plan is published for public comment. The Grantee City shall, upon prior request, make available translators and sign language interpreters to facilitate the full participation of members of the community in need of such services. The Grantee will obtain a person of appropriate bilingual skills when it has prior knowledge that a significant number of non-English speaking residents can be expected at a public hearing. The public hearings shall be conveniently scheduled for people who might benefit from CDBG Programs, will be accessible to persons with disabilities and will be adequately publicized beforehand. At the very least, the public hearings shall be posted in various government buildings within the Grantee City. The public notice may also be placed on the government access channel of the local cable television system, the official city website, mentioned at the regular meetings of the Mayor and City Council and advertised in such other forums as may be deemed appropriate by the Mayor and City Council.
Public hearings shall be designed so as to facilitate the obtaining of views of citizens, public agencies, non profit groups, neighborhood groups and other interested parties to respond to proposals and comment upon all of the various stages of the drafting and submission process.
PUBLISHING PROPOSED CONSOLIDATED SUBMISSION
The Grantee City shall publish it proposed Annual Action Plan and five-year Consolidated Plan in such a manner so as to provide affected citizens a sufficient opportunity to review it and to make comments upon it. This requirement may be met by publishing a summary of the proposed Annual Action Plan or Consolidated Plan document in one or more newspapers of general circulation or the official newspaper of the City if there is one at that time. Copies of the summary of the Annual Action Plan or Consolidated Plan shall be made available to the public in the Office of Community Planning & Development the Office of the City Clerk, the Public Library, the Lincoln Park Public Housing Authority, the Lincoln Senior Center, the Lincoln Park Community Center and such other additional locations as may be deemed appropriate by the Mayor and City Council. The summary must include a list of the locations where copies of the entire Annual Action Plan and/or Consolidated Plan may be examined. The Grantee shall provide copies of the Annual Action Plan and Consolidated Plan free of charge to persons requesting it. The Grantee City must follow and carry out its Annual Action Plan and Consolidated Plan once it has been adopted by a majority vote of the Mayor and City Council.
AMENDMENTS TO PLAN
Substantial Amendments to the Consolidated Plan requires not less than a 30-day comment period from citizens. The Grantee will provide reasonable notice via the local newspaper. A Substantial Amendment is one which increases or decreases the original allocation of any project over 35% within a given program year or eliminates any project in the first year of its original allocation. After the first year, a project may be eliminated without public comment if the original allocation is $10,000 or less. Any proposed changes to the Consolidated Plan that does not meet the Substantial Amendment criteria may be made internally without public notification or comment.
The Grantee City shall provide a period of time, not less than 30 days (15 days in the case of Grantee Performance Reports and substantial amendments to said plans) to receive comments from citizens and other interested parties relative to the document proposed for submission. The Grantee City shall consider the views of citizens and other interested parties to expressed while preparing its Annual Action Plan and/or Consolidated Plan. The Grantee City shall attach a summary of such citizens comments and will so include a written explanation of such comments and whether they were accepted or rejected and why.
The Grantee City shall provide timely, written answers to written complaints received relative to the operation of the CDBG Program within 15 working days of receipt of said written comments, whenever practicable.