East Chicago tweaks facade program

2014-03-29T18:52:00Z East Chicago tweaks facade programPaul Czapkowicz Times Correspondent nwitimes.com
March 29, 2014 6:52 pm  • 

EAST CHICAGO | The City Council has modified an ordinance regulating facade, sign and awning grant programs it had initiated last year.

In November, the council established a program in which gaming funds could be used to award grants to building owners in the North Harbor Business District at up to 80 percent of the total cost of a qualified restoration project, at an amount not to exceed $25,000.

Council President Lenny Franciski said the new resolution allows for a smaller area in which business owners can receive up to 80 percent.

He said the original resolution defined the area as from the 3700 through 4000 blocks of Main Street in the Indiana Harbor section of the city, while the new resolution restricts the qualified area to just the 3700 and 3800 blocks.

The new resolution also excludes franchises from participating in the grant program.

"It's mostly for the small businesses," Franciski said.

The second resolution passed earlier this week modifies one approved in December in which the council approved a citywide facade, sign and awning grant program for businesses not in the defined North Harbor Business District.

In that program the city will match up to 50 percent of the total cost of a qualified project at an amount not to exceed $25,000.

Franciski said the new resolution also excludes franchises from participating and adds language that was accidentally left out of the original resolution that states it is a 50/50 grant program.

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