By LINDSAY WELBERS
The South East Chicago Commission will apply to the City of Chicago to create a Special Services Area along 53rd Street, it was announced last week. The SECC has already created an 18-person advisory committee to determine what the SSA’s boundaries would be, what services it would bring to the area and how large its budget would be.
An SSA is an additional property tax, usually along a commercial corridor, that generates revenue then used to fund ongoing services along the corridor. SECC executive director Wendy Walker Williams said the idea came up in the 53rd Street visioning workshops last April.
“One of the primary suggestions was the creation of a Special Service Area on 53rd Street so the alderman asked the SECC to go ahead and get together an application to the city,” Williams said. The SECC intends to submit the application to the city before its June deadline.
Advisory committee chair Jim Poueymirou said an SSA could help to pay for things the community has enjoyed in the past, including sidewalk street cleaning programs like CleanSlate.
“This gives us an opportunity to plan more services within the area that will grant will make it a more hospitable environment for us to shop and to play,” Poueymirou said.
The advisory committee will meet in February at an as yet unannounced time.
The 53rd Street Special Services Area Advisory Committee:
Michael M. McGarry
Dr. Cynthia Reynolds-Temple