Monday, March 30, 2009

TON Community Development & Purchasing

The next section of the Annual Report describes the activities of the Community Development and Purchasing Department, a department that most people aren't even aware of. This department has two primary functions: dispersing money from the Community Development Block Grant, and purchasing office supplies and equipment for other departments. The Block Grant money actually supports a variety of projects in Normal: a short-term, intensive program at the local community college that prepares "non-traditional" students for employment (which has been very successful); employment for developmentally disabled adults; a center for children in one section of town to go to and participate in various programs that they would otherwise not have access to; downpayment assistance for low-income people who are buying a home in town; street resurfacing in areas with at least 51% low/moderate income households; and assistance for low-income people to prevent shut-off of utilities.

You would think that the purchasing function of this department wouldn't include anything worth noting, but I think it's interesting that this is the department that handles the annual auction of (old?) equipment and "found property." They auction off vehicles and lots of bicycles. I've never attended the auction so I don't know how many of those bikes are adult-sized, but it sounds like a great way to get a bike at a reduced cost.

There's a section at the end of this report about the farmer's market, the arts festival, and the sweet corn festival (quick, name any town in Illinois that doesn't have a sweet corn festival!). I think this department helps to promote these events.

There you have it. An unrecognized department that handles some important functions in Normal.

No comments:

Post a Comment