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Thursday, Aug. 21, 2014 12:01 am

HEAR HOW PEORIA DOES NEIGHBORHOODS RIGHT

 Should Springfield have a public official whose job it is to help revitalize neighborhoods? The Inner City Older Neighborhoods (ICON) coalition thinks so, and they’re hosting a public forum on Monday to talk about the idea. Joining the forum will be York Powers, the recently installed coordinator for the City of Peoria’s neighborhood revitalization program, along with Peoria’s top grant coordinator, Nicole Fredrick, and its top urban planner, Shannon Techie. Peoria has an entire neighborhood development division which helps neighborhoods apply for city, state and federal grants for housing rehabilitation, down payment assistance and new housing development programs, among other functions. “This is a position ICON feels is needed in Springfield – much more so than a special inspector,” said Steve Combs, vice chairman of ICON and past president of the Enos Park Neighborhood Improvement Association. “We plan to use this issue as we evaluate candidates for the upcoming elections.” The forum is planned for 6:30 p.m. on Aug. 25 at the Dove Conference Center in St. John’s Hospital’s Prairie Heart Institute, 130 W. Mason St.

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