Citizens District Council Minutes 02-05-2019

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Citizen’s District Council Meeting
City of Muskegon CDBG
Conference Room 203
Muskegon, Michigan
February 5, 2019

The meeting was called to order by Veania Coleman at 5:34 pm.

Roll call was taken by Samantha Pulos-Porter, and a quorum was present.
    Present:
            Ken Johnson - Commissioner
            Veania Coleman
            Jeremy Lenertz
            Poppy Sias-Hernandez
            Eleanor Canter
            Kim Burr
    Absent:
            Carrie Johnson
            Scott Banninga
    Excused:
    Staff Present:
          Oneata Bailey
          Samantha Pulos-Porter

A motion to approve the minutes from December 4, 2018 was made by Poppy Sias-Hernandez;
Kim Burr seconded the motion, which pass unanimously.

Oneata reported that a summer youth program similar to the previous “Operation Graduation”
through Muskegon Heights in years past will tentatively involve two volunteers to be active
participants with the youth. The program intends to target youth in 9th and 10th grades that may
be in danger of not graduating. Veania asked how many kids the program would employ. Oneata
answered that it would depend on if we paid them via stipend or paycheck every two weeks.
Oneata said one option being looked at would be similar to when the Clerk’s office uses youth
for elections. Veania responded that she thought payment via check would be both and if the
youth could be used to clean up city parks. Oneata stated that the program would be managed by
the City and that the City Manager would like to connect with Muskegon Public Schools. Jeremy
asked if the program would be housed here and would connect with the school. Poppy asked
who would supervise the program and stated that the ability of those person were in order to best
serve the youth. Oneata answered that yes, it would be housed at the City and that CNS has two
Community Development Specialists, LaShaun Turner and Sharonda Carson, that would be the
supervising parties in CNS and the other departments would have personnel to do so as well.
Jeremy stated that he felt that the program was already behind the eight ball for this year.

Commissioner Johnson before leaving expressed that he thought that having the youth work with
Parks and Recreation was a good idea and that the youth have the option to work with as many
different departments as possible.

Oneata stated that the issue of any changes to the subordination policy will be tabled for now.
The city’s attorney is going to review the existing policy for any changes that could or need to be


Oneata reported that the time has come this year to start thinking of what the budget will look
like for the 2019-2020 fiscal year. She encouraged the CDC members to email her any ideas they
have for the upcoming year. She reminded them of a past HUD handout with the types of
programs that are eligible through our department. Eleanor asked if within the budget, there are
funds to help with home repair, funds for home rehab, and other special projects. Oneata
explained the budget and the activities that will happen, reflect the direction that city is moving
towards with their goals. Eleanor requested that whenever we rehab a home, that we make that
accessible or when any of our funds are used, for street-scaping for example, that proper curb
cuts be done to make correct ADA parking spaces. She stated that she wanted to be walked
through the plans for the third street beautification project to make sure the departments involved
were correctly implementing parking per ADA. Oneata stated that it was just the Planning
Department at this point. Eleanor said that she had knowledge that more departments than just
the Planning Department. She requested that the CDC take a stand and refuse funds to any
projects that don’t comply with ADA accessibility standards. She stated that any project entered
into with federal funds has to be made accessible under the law and that the city is currently out
of compliance. She also described that the Department of Justice and/or a private party could
bring legal action against the city for non-compliance. She explained that she currently has a
parking grievance with the city, citing the details of where throughout the city that the violations
have occurred. She also claimed that there is not one correctly done handicap space in any of the
city’s parking spaces and there were many signs put up. Poppy suggested that the members of
the board write a letter as city residents to the departments involved in the planning of the third
street beautification project. The process of project planning from conception to action was
explained that it begins and moves through multiple departments.

Chair/Vice-Chair Vote:

Kim nominated Jeremy for chair. Jeremy declined. Veania nominated Kim for chair. Kim
accepted chair. Poppy volunteered for vice-chair. Motion to approve Kim for chair and Poppy for
vice-chair by Jeremy. Eleanor seconded the motion, which passed unanimously.


Lead Hazard Control Update:

Oneata reported that CNS is approximately 80% through the first project and the new staff is
catching on quickly.

Jeremy asked about the CNS rehab houses. Oneata explained that 1015 E Forest is waiting on the
final inspection approval. The house was appraised for $115,000. It is located in Oakview


Eleanor motioned to adjourn the meeting, Poppy seconded the motion, which passed
unanimously. Meeting adjourned at 6:29 pm.

The next meeting date is: March 5th, 2019.


There was general discussion about different agencies locally that run youth programs. Boys and
Girls Club, MI Works, and Community enCompass were mentioned. Past youth programs and
their risk factors to make someone eligible for participation were also discussed.

There was general discussion about the capacity of the CDC as an advisory board in regard to
ADA Accessibility.

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