The Committee met briefly yesterday morning to approve receipt of federal grants, donation of a bus to a non-profit and an internal committee funds transfer, which Chairman Austin will report out to the full City Council today.

Committee Members Present: Chairman Carrie Austin (34), Brian Hopkins (2), Leslie Hairston (5),  Roderick Sawyer (6), David Moore (17), Derrick Curtis (18), Matt O’Shea (19), Willie Cochran (20), Rick Muñoz (22), Michael Scott Jr. (24), Jason Ervin (28), Ariel Reboyras (30), Milly Santiago (31), Scott Waguespack (32), Deb Mell (33), Tom Tunney (44), James Cappleman (46)

The first ordinance brought by the Office of Budget and Management asked that the Committee approve an additional $8.2M in unappropriated federal and state grant funds. According to Rosalind Stevens, the director of administration for the Department of Budget and Management, city departments received the following grants:

  • $3.68M in federal funding from the Centers for Disease Control to the City’s Health Department to “conduct preparedness activities for civilians and monitoring of Ebola virus diseases over a three year period.”

  • $61,000 in federal funding from the from the U.S. Department of Education to the City’s Health Department to pay for the Child and Adult Care Food Program. The funds will pay for inspections for child and adult care sites.

  • $2.63M from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to the City’s Health Department for the Hospital Preparedness Program for Ebola preparedness and response activities. The funds will be used over five years to isolate, transport and treat patients suffering from Ebola.

  • $112,000 in private funds the Department of Family and Support Services asked to be rolled over. The private funds include $112,000 for the Foster Grandparent Program and $49,000 for the Senior Companion Program.

  • $1.7M in federal funds from the U.S. Department of Health and Urban Development for the Department of Family and Support Services for the Shelter Plus Care Program. The funds will provide permanent supportive housing for disabled and homeless households.

  • $210,000 in federal funds the Chicago Police Department received from the U.S. Department of Justice through the Research Triangle Institute National Crime Statistics Exchange. The funds will be used to “modify and enhance the Departments’ citizen and law enforcement analysis and reporting system.”

  • $373,000 in federal funds the City’s Office of Emergency Management received from the U.S. Department of Homeless Security through the Illinois Emergency Management Agency. The program helps pays for the unique planning, equipment training and exercise needs of high threat, high density urban areas.

  • The Health Department and Office of Emergency Management also asked approval to enter into an agreement with the Illinois Medical Districts Guest House for $90,000 in grant funds; half of the money comes from the Bioterrorism Terrorism Response Grant to pay for emergency house services.

The committee also okayed the Department of Fleet and Facilities Management’s request to donate an out-of-service Chicago Public Library bus to Growing Power, Inc., a Wisconsin-based non-profit. According to Deputy Commissioner Jennifer Muse, Growing Power would repurpose the bus into a mobile produce truck to sell locally grown fruits and vegetables in underserved areas. Muse says Growing Power received a federal grant to launch the program, which will make approximately 2,200 community stops over a 50 week period. The FFM also wants to donate $50,000 in fuel and $60,000 in maintenance services to the company. Muse stated in her testimony that the Department wants to donate one bus, but the ordinance lists two. George Blakemore provided the only testimony, asking how many black farmers participate in the program.

When Ald. Austin asked Ald. Derrick Curtis (18) to second her motion to approve the ordinance, she called him out for not paying attention, “Ald. Curtis  has a motion due pass–HEY, [Ald. Curtis] LOOK AT ME,” Austin demanded before laughing and repeating the motion.

Aldermen also approved an ordinance authorizing a transfer of funds within the City Council Committee on Housing and Real Estate. It passed without discussion or elaboration as to what those funds are.

At the end of the meeting, Ald. Ariel Reboyras (30) moved that two permanent City Council Subcommittees be reestablished: the Subcommittee of MBE/WBE Matters and the Subcommittee on Miscellaneous Matters.