MONDAY, FEBRUARY 10, 2014, 3:00 P.M.




1.   Roll Call


PRESENT:   Sharon Mortensen, Bill Garchow and Rob Wright


ABSENT:    Rick Loose and Bob Burgess


OTHERS     Grant Murschel, Community Development Planner; Candy Balis, Manager

PRESENT:   of Washington Woods Senior Living Community and sixteen (16) others.           


2.   Approval of Minutes

a.)    Regular Meeting – December 2, 2013

Motioned by Wright and seconded by Garchow to approve the minutes of the Regular Meeting of December 2, 2013, as presented.  Motion passed unanimously (3-0).


3.   Public Comments



4.   Community Development Block Grant Funding Applications

      Murschel informed the Commission that Caregiving Network has requested to present first due to an unexpected family emergency.  The Commission agreed to allow Caregiving Network the opportunity to present first.


a.)     Caregiving Network – Office Renovations

Julia Bristol, Executive Director, presented the funding request for the office renovations project at the Caregiving Network office building.  She explained that the project will focus more on clean-up and repair than renovations.  The building’s attic has extensive damage that has been caused by leaks in the roof and animals such as squirrels.


Mortensen asked if the accessibility issues that were mentioned in the application will be addressed by this project.  Bristol explained that those issues are for a separate building and are not comprised in this project proposal; however, Caregiving Network will likely in the future apply for CDBG money to remedy this issue.  Garchow wondered if health issues exist because of the current conditions.  Bristol explained that the current state does not help existing health conditions in the office.


b.)   Safe and Sound Child Advocacy Center

Nicki Smith, Executive Director, presented the funding request for the security and safety improvement project at the Safe & Sound Center.  The proposal is replace and upgrade 21 door locks within the facility and upgrade the stairwells in the building.  Smith confirmed that the building is owned by Safe and Sound and it is not leased.      


c.)    Shelterhouse – Bathroom Renovations

Janine Ouderkirk, Executive Director, presented the request for bathroom renovations at Shelterhouse.  The current condition of the bathroom has a lot of wear and tear.  She explained that approximately 91% of the clients they served are low-income. 

Wright asked if the amount requested came from a hard bid.  Ouderkirk explained that it is not a hard bid but she did have a estimate done by someone who works regularly with bathroom renovations; it is ballpark bid.  Garchow asked if the facilities in the bathroom will be expanded as part of the renovation.  Ouderkirk explained that the bathroom is limited by ventilation. 


d.)   Washington Woods Senior Living Community – Rubber Tile Installation & Medical Pull Cord Replacement

Candy Balis, Manager, presented the two funding requests.  She explained that the amounts requested came from close estimates.  The pull cord project would be just the purchase of materials.


Mortensen wondered how the materials will be purchased.  Balis explained that she will follow the purchasing procedures of the city where applicable.  All of the installation for the pull cord project will be handled by maintenance staff.


e.)    Washington Woods Senior Living Community – Bathtub Cut-ins

Balis presented the funding request for the architectural barrier removal project to remove the sides of four bathtubs in four units. She explained that this is part of an ongoing process to remove the tub sides in the majority of the facility to allow for easier access to the showers by residents. 


Mortensen asked about how many full bathtubs would like to be retained in Washington Woods.  Balis answered that she would like to see 5 remain on each side of the facility as to allow variety and to accommodate those who want a full tub.


f.)     Cleveland Manor – Bathtub Cut-ins

Trudy Laufer, Executive Director, presented the funding request for Cleveland Manor.  She explained that her request is very similar to Washington Woods’ bathtub request in that it is to provide easier access for residents to their showers.  The project will take place in Cleveland Manor II and will be conducted on fiberglass tubs rather than cast iron.


Garchow asked how many more Cleveland Manor would like to have done.  Laufer said 40 have been completed so far and the number done each year is based off of requests.  She said that those needed more barrier-free accessibility are directed to the apartments in Cleveland Manor II.     


g.)    Midland Area Homes – Accessibility Ramps & Home Repairs

Sally York, Executive Director, presented the request for the accessibility ramp program.  She explained that Midland Area Homes (MAH) constructs accessibility ramps onto homes within the city on a request basis.  She also explained the request for the home repair program.  Like the ramps, the home repair program is done through a request basis and is for the low-income individuals in the city.  MAH program differs from the City’s as they are able to work on mobile homes and they provide grants instead of loans.


Mortensen asked if the need for ramps is met each year with the money that is given.  York explained that with more money it would mean more ramps in the city.   


h.)   Midland County Habitat for Humanity – Neighborhood Revitalization Imitative Home Improvement

Jennifer Chapel, Executive Director, explained the funding request for Midland County Habitat for Humanity.  She explained that with the funds requested two homes within the identified neighborhood of the city will receive home repairs.  The homeowners must be low-income and meet the requirements of the CDBG but also Habitat for Humanity’s rules, such as sweat-equity.  The two homes will receive “critical” home repair which means that costs for the repairs will exceed more than 10% of the home’s value. 


Mortensen asked if the two homes have been identified.  Chapel explained that they have not but will be shortly.  Chapel also explained that the neighborhood is chosen based off Area Median Income (AMI).  The homeowners must have all property taxes paid and homeowners insurance up to date.


i.)      Reece Endeavor of Midland – Dial-A-Ride Tickets

Elaine Popovich, Executive Director, explained that this request is to serve the transportation needs of their clients.  It is intended to help the low-income and disabled people that they serve with transportation needs.  Additionally, it helps to build a strong connection between their tenants and the agency staff.  The funds will be used to by 444 ticket booklets.


At the conclusion of the presentation by Reece Endeavor of Midland, it was motioned by Garchow and seconded by Wright to suspend the meeting until the next presenter arrived.  The motion passed 3-0.


The meeting proceedings were suspended at 3:50pm.


Chairwoman Mortensen called the meeting back to order at 3:55pm.


j.)     Legal Services of Eastern Michigan – Fair Housing Testing

Edward Hoort, Executive Director, presented the funding request for fair housing testing.  He explained how the testing process works and how the benefits are not easily quantified but when discrimination is minimized, the whole community benefits.


Wright asked about how much each test costs.  Hoort explained that the cost varies depending on the type of test.  He estimated that a test can cost between $300-$900.  Garchow asked how landlords are reprimanded.  Hoort explained that they pass along the cost of a second test to the landlord if there are findings on the first test.  Tests are ran until there is no longer an issue.  If the landlord does not cooperate, Legal Services has the option to sue in federal court.


k.)   Legacy Center for Community Success – Literacy Services

Jennifer Heronema, President and CEO, presented the request on behalf of the Legacy Center.  She explained the literacy program that her agency administers.  Through the program both children and adults benefit through tutoring.  She believes that this program is a preventive approach as they are enabling the people they serve to be better readers; this allows the individuals to achieve more in life. 


Wright asked how their curriculum is different than the public school system.  Heronema explained that it isn’t much different, just more intensive.


l.)      West Midland Family Center – Family Ties Program

Susan Love, New Initiatives Coordinator, presented the request for West Midland Family Center (WMFC).  She explained that through this program, WMFC is able to serve the low-income, at-risk families in the Midland community.  Their goal is to keep at-risk families together.


Mortensen asked if it is difficult to get families to participate in the program.  Love said it is not as the families are able to participate in many activities that they might not be able to do otherwise.


m.) Ten16 Recovery Housing – Recovery Housing Program

Sam Price, President and CEO, presented the request on behalf of Ten16.  He explained that his agency has seen an increase in individuals needing help finding housing after they have moved through their recovery program.  The new position that is being proposed will dedicate all of their time to this need. 


Wright asked where individuals go after they finish the program.  Price explained that some rent by themselves while others have moved in together.  Mortensen asked if this position will allocate his or her time between the men’s and women’s shelters.  Price explained that 60% will be given to the men’s shelter and 40% to the women’s as more need exists for the men. Mortensen also asked how long Price expects this position to be sustained by the agency itself.  Price indicated that the request is for the start-up capital; the position will be self sustaining in 1-2 years.


5.   New Business

a.)    Cleveland Manor – Elevator, electrical and security system upgrading project

Murschel explained that Cleveland Manor has conducted a compliant bidding process for their current CDBG project and that after awarding the bids the project is over budget by $2,967.20.  The request by staff is for this additional money to be awarded to Cleveland Manor out of the contingency fund.


Wright asked if the other bidders did not meet the bid requirements.  Murschel explained that the bids were given to the lowest, compliant bidders.  The two lowest bidders did not include a bid bond which is a requirement.  Garchow asked if the funds in the contingency fund were allocated for this.  Murschel explained that this type of situation is what the contingency funds are meant for. 


Motion by Wright and seconded by Garchow that contingency funds in the amount of $2,967.20 be awarded to Cleveland Manor to cover the costs for the elevator, electrical and security system project.  The motion passed unanimously (3-0). 


6.  Communications

Murschel informed the Commission that next year’s Building Trades program does not have a buyer for the house lined up.  He was asked by the city’s Housing Technician, Bill Brown, to ask the Commission if they knew of any potential interested buyers.  In the past the completed house has been a spec home but more recently has been purchased by one of two local non-profits, the Arc of Midland and Reece Endeavor of Midland, to be used to house client-tenants. 


The Commission discussed the amount of total funds that will be available to award out during this upcoming program year for CDBG.  They asked Murschel to compile a best estimate of the amount and present it to them at the next meeting.


7.   Future Meeting Date

a)      March 3, 2014


VI. Adjournment

The meeting was adjourned at 5:05 p.m.


Signature.JPGRespectfully submitted,




Grant Murschel, Community Development Planner