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Citizen Participation Plan 2015-2019

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CITY OF KISSIMMEE

Community Development Block Grant Program   

Citizen Participation Plan

2015-2019

Amended May 2020

  

Prepared by: City of Kissimmee

Development Services Department 

101 Church Street 

Kissimmee, FL 34741 



In conformance with the provisions of 24 CFR (Code of Federal Regulations) 91, "Consolidated Submissions for Community Planning and Development Programs" and more specifically with the provisions of 24 CFR 91.105, the City of Kissimmee has adopted the following Citizen Participation Plan. 

The City of Kissimmee Citizen Participation Plan outlines ways in which citizens of the City of Kissimmee can participate in its Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Programs. Its purpose is to encourage public participation in the planning process, as well as to meet the requirements of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Any persons who require assistance in reading or understanding this Plan or any other documents described herein due to disability or difficulty with the language will be provided assistance sufficient to enable them to understand its purpose and provisions.

The following subjects are addressed in the Plan:

1. Availability of Plans and Documents

2. Public Hearings

3. Special Notification

4. Accessibility

5. Information To/From Public

6. Comments/Consideration of Proposed Plan

7. Disabled/Handicapped Provisions 

8. Written Comments

9. Program Changes

10. Availability of Program Records

11. Plans to Minimize Displacement 

12. Assistance to Groups

13. Amendment to The Citizen Participation Plan - The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act)

 

Availability of Plans and Documents

The City of Kissimmee Citizen Participation Plan, Consolidated Plan and amendments thereto and Consolidated Annual Performance and Evaluation Reports are available for public review at any time. Copies of the Plan may be obtained through the Development Services Office, City of Kissimmee Development Services Office, 101 Church Street Kissimmee, FL  34741 during normal business hours which are Monday through Friday from 8AM-5PM. 

At the time the Citizen Participation Plan and/or Consolidated Plan is initially proposed, the public will be informed of its availability through a summary notice in a newspaper for general local circulation as a display ad in an appropriate section of the newspaper and will not appear in the legal notices section or classified section of the newspaper. When scheduling permits, the notice shall appear as an announcement on the City website home page and may also be included in public service announcements, or on the City’s public access TV channel. A reasonable number of free copies will be available. This process will be repeated at any point where either plan is updated or this process is required by federal or state law. If the Citizen Participation Plan is being adopted or updated at the same time City of Kissimmee is undertaking a Community Development Needs Assessment, then notice to the public will be given 7-14 days prior to the public hearing regarding the Community Development and Housing Needs Assessment required for participation in the CDBG programs.

 

Public Hearings

There shall be at least two public hearings per year to obtain citizens’ views. Any comments or views of citizens received in writing or orally at the public hearings will be considered in preparing the final Consolidated Plan. Together, the hearings must address resident views on housing and community development needs, development of proposed activities and review of program performance. 

One public hearing will be held before the proposed Consolidated Plan is published for public comment and the second public hearing shall be held to obtain public comment on the Consolidated Annual Performance and Evaluation Report (CAPER). 

All notices of public hearings will be published in a newspaper of general local circulation at least 7-14 days prior to the public hearing as a display ad in an appropriate section of the newspaper and will not appear in the legal notices or classified sections of the newspaper. When scheduling permits, the notice shall appear as an announcement on the City website home page and may also be included in public service announcements, or on the City’s public access TV channel.


Special Notification

In addition to notices in newspapers, City of Kissimmee will notify persons of proposed Community Development activities and projects in the City designated “impact areas” (target areas) through neighborhood-based methods. These methods may include direct contact with local neighborhood leaders; posting and/or distribution of notices. Similarly, notification will be provided to the local Housing Authorities in order to encourage the participation of their residents. 

 

Accessibility

All public meetings concerning the CDBG programs will be held at the City of Kissimmee Commission Chambers and will be convenient to citizens, particularly those who are potential or actual beneficiaries. Meetings will be held between 5:30PM and 8:30PM on weekdays. Meeting locations will be accessible to the handicapped, and the meeting announcement will indicate what extra assistance will be provided to accommodate the special needs of persons with disabilities.

 

Information To/From Public

Prior to the development of the Five-Year Consolidated Plan, City of Kissimmee will make public to its citizens and other interested parties, information that includes the amount of assistance (CDBG grant funds) that the City expects to receive, the range of activities that will be undertaken, including the estimated amount that will benefit persons of low and moderate income and assess the community’s development and housing needs, particularly those of low- and moderate-income residents. This process is known as the Community Development Needs Assessment. The participation of citizens will be encouraged as part of the determination of the community’s needs. Residents’ written comments and oral suggestions at the public hearing will be considered as part of the development of the Community Development Needs Assessment.

 

Comments/Consideration of Proposed Plan

After the development of the Five-Year Consolidated Plan and approval by the City Commission for the publication of the proposed activities, a thirty day (30) public comment period will be held to solicit public comment for the proposed activities. Written comments should be made to the City of Kissimmee Development Services Office, 101 Church Street Kissimmee, FL  34741. A summary of all comments received will be appended to the Plan.

 

Disabled/Handicapped Provisions 

Disabled: The City will meet all the requirements of Section 504 and the Americans with Disabilities Act. All public meetings will be held in handicapped accessible buildings. Written material will be available for persons with hearing disabilities and a staff person will be available to read to anyone who is sight-impaired. If any additional accommodations are needed for persons with disabilities, the following contact should be made a minimum of 72 hours prior to the meeting at (407) 518-2156 or send an e-mail to fdejesus@kissimmee.org.  Persons with hearing impairments may contact the City Clerk’s Office at (407) 518-2309 to make arrangements.  The City may utilize a Sign Language Interpreting Service to provide assistance to the hearing impaired.

Documents and records are available for review as discussed in section ten (10) entitled Availability of Program Records. If assistance in reading or obtaining program records is needed, Development Services should be contacted at the telephone or e-mail address in the previous paragraph.

 

Written Comments

Written comments or complaints concerning City’s Consolidated Plan, Consolidated Plan Substantial Amendments and the Consolidated Annual Performance and Evaluation Report (CAPER) will be responded to in writing within fifteen (15) working days. A summary of those comments or views not accepted and the reasons therefore, shall be retained on file in the City of Kissimmee Development Services Office and will be appended to the respective document. Written comments should be made to the City of Kissimmee Development Services Office, 101 N. Church Street Kissimmee, FL  34741.

 

Program Changes

The City will use the following criteria for determining what changes in the City’s planned or actual activities constitute a substantial change to the Consolidated Plan. An amendment to its approved plan will occur whenever it makes one of the following decisions:

1.         To make a change in its allocation priorities or a change in the method of distribution of funds;

2.         To carry out an activity using funds from any program covered by the Consolidated Plan (including program income), not previously described in the Action Plan; 

3.         To substantially change the purpose, scope, location, or beneficiaries of an activity. The following criteria are to be used for determining whether a program change would constitute a substantial amendment:

a)        Purpose – Whenever a change in the primary function of an activity requires that it be classified under a different eligible activity. (Note: This does not include a project that is generally unchanged, but is reclassified due to a reinterpretation of HUD regulations or definitions).

b)        Scope – If the service area, budget, or beneficiaries is changed so that 50% or more of the intended beneficiaries are no longer able to benefit from the activity. This does not include a budgetary change in a Direct Benefit or other activity where a service or other benefit is available as long as funds are available.

c)         Location – If the location of an activity is changed so that 50% or more of the intended beneficiaries are no longer able to benefit from the project.

d)        Beneficiaries – If the activity’s location or eligible recipients are changed so that 50% or more of the intended beneficiaries are no longer able to benefit from the activity. This does not include a budgetary change in a Direct Benefit or other activity where a service or other benefit is available as long as funds are available.

e)        If the propose change affect more than 50% of the public service annual allocation or 50% on the non-public service annual allocation. (Allocation equal total city allocation) 

Citizens will be provided with a reasonable notice and an opportunity to comment on substantial amendments. The City will advertise in the local newspaper and will provide no less than 30 days to receive comments on any amendment before the amendment is implemented. A summary of any comments, including the reasons for those not accepted, will be appended to the amendment.

 

Availability of Program Records

Citizens of City of Kissimmee will be provided with reasonable access to records concerning any activity undertaken with CDBG Program funds. Any such request for access to records should be made in writing to City of Kissimmee Development Services Office 101 Church Street Kissimmee, FL  34741. The telephone number is 407-518-2156 and the e-mail address is fdejesus@kissimmee.org. City of Kissimmee may charge reasonable fees for the duplication and provision of materials. Confidential information normally protected under state and federal freedom of information laws will not be available for public review. Interested parties may also access many of the program documents at the City of Kissimmee web site, www.kissimmee.org.

 

Plans to Minimize Displacement

The City does not have, nor does it anticipate funding any activities that will displace any residents or businesses. If displacement does occur, the residents or businesses displaced would be entitled to compensation and/or assistance under applicable federal laws. Should the need for displacement ever arise, the City will officially notify the residents or businesses expected to be displaced as soon as practicable following approval of the activity. The notice will include a description of the proposed action, a discussion of how they might be affected, and information concerning their rights and benefits.

The City’s Local Relocation and Anti-Displacement Policy provide more information on this subject. It is included in the Appendix of the Consolidated Plan.

 

Assistance to Groups

Technical assistance will be provided to citizens, citizen groups, nonprofit organizations and agencies that need assistance in understanding the program and developing project proposals. Such assistance is available upon request from the Development Services Department. Bilingual assistance and information provided include HUD low-income population data (per area), applicable regulations, project request forms, maps and other public data as available. Anyone needing technical assistance should contact the Development Services Department at (407) 518-2156.

  

AMENDMENT TO THE CITIZEN PARTICIPATION PLAN

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) 

With this Amendment, the City of Kissimmee establishes expedited procedures to draft, propose, or amend plans when planning and allocating funds made available by the U.S. Department of Housing and Community Development in response to the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), Public Law 116-136, which was signed on March 27, 2020. 

Expedited procedures include:

Notice in a local newspaper, city’s website and/or social media and reasonable opportunity to comment by e-mail of no less than 5 days. 

Program documents will be posted on the City of Kissimmee web site, www.kissimmee.org.  

In-person public hearings would not be required.  If needed, the City of Kissimmee intends to meet public hearing requirements with virtual public hearings. If any accommodations are needed for persons with disabilities, the following contact should be made a minimum of 72 hours prior to the meeting at (407) 518-2309 at least 48 hours prior to meeting.

A summary of any comments, including the reasons for those not accepted, will be appended to the amendment.