The SNCTF committee was created by the City of Atlanta in 2017 (17-O-1080 and 17-R-3853) with appointment of its 11 committee members being finalized in December 2017 (17-R-4751). The purpose of the committee is to provide guidance and oversight of the fund created by 17-O-1080, which was passed after the sale of Turner Field and surrounding properties. The fund is to support projects and activities that benefit the Atlanta neighborhoods of Mechanicsville, Peoplestown, Pittsburgh, Summerhill and the portion of Grant Park comprised of the named streets in the Turner Field Neighborhoods Livable Centers Initiative (LCI) study. A total of $5 million was initially designated by the city (17-R-3853) with additional funds to be contributed, per the schedule described in 17-O-1080, from the sale or lease of City-owned properties in the above-named communities.
Per city legislation, the following community residents were appointed to the committee for three-year terms by the mayor or city council. Specifically, the chair is appointed by the mayor and the vice-chair is appointed by the city council president:
Member Name Neighborhood
Semaj Blaine Summerhill
Sherise Brown Peoplestown
Mary D. Gay Summerhill
John Helton, Chair Summerhill
David Holder Mechanicsville
Rick Hudson Grant Park
Ann Marie Shields Pittsburgh
Travis Parks, Vice Chair Peoplestown
Dr. Jane H. Ridley Mechanicsville
Mika Smith-Brown Peoplestown
Elsie Lee Sullivan Mechanicsville
The authorizing ordinance (17-O-1080) states, “…these funds to be used solely to fund economic and community development initiatives, such as affordable housing and job training…” The committee is currently establishing a process to accept proposals for such initiatives, evaluate them based on set criteria consistent with the law, make awards and monitor the work of the recipients. The committee plans to issue an initial Request for Proposals (RFP) during the first quarter of 2019. Transparency, accountability and productive use of the funds will be critical elements of the award process.
The volunteer committee members met for the first time in February 2018 and have met nearly monthly since. The ordinances did not identify any administrative processes for the funds to be spent and the committee did not have staff support from the City of Atlanta. The group was charged with creating a structure for itself as well as all processes and controls to actually manage the work of awarding the funds for eligible projects. Though the committee was off to a fast start once it met, the change in administration, initial misinformation about what entity held the funds and how they were to be accessed and the need for additional clarifying legislation to be passed has delayed the initial award process far longer than planned. We are committed to fulfilling our responsibilities as quickly as possible.
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