There are a variety of reasons that businesses are choosing the 45th Ward to open their doors. With over 25 new business openings in just 2018, it’s clear that it’s become a destination for many.
The story behind Home Line Decoration, 4358 N. Cicero, however, is especially touching. Block Club Chicago’s Alex Hernandez recently published an article on the owners’ journey and how they landed on the southwest corner of Montrose and Cicero.
You can read the full article on Block Club Chicago’s website.
Community Alert: Harassment of a Minor
Chicago police are seeking help in identifying a man who pursued a 15-year-old girl last month in the Jefferson Park neighborhood.
At about 4:45 pm on December 17, a man began following the girl, who was walking east in the 4900-block of West Carmen. The man followed the girl for three blocks, remaining approximately 150-feet behind her. When the man lost sight of the victim, he began walking into residential gangways and yards to search for her.
The offender is described as a 5-foot-10, 180-pound white male between 40 and 45 years old. He is bald with sideburns and was wearing a knee-length tan jacket.
Anyone with information on the incident is asked to call Area North detectives at 312-744-8261.
Jefferson Park Branch Library Modernization Meeting Jan. 10
I’m pleased to announce that my office, in partnership with Chicago Public Library and Fleet and Facility Management (2FM), will host a community meeting on the scheduled improvements to the Jefferson Park Branch Library on Thursday, January 10, at 6 pm in the community room at the library, 5363 W. Lawrence.
These improvements are a result of the community-driven participatory budgeting process. During the 2018 cycle, 45th Ward residents voted to approve $175,000 for improvements to the library. Since then, my office has worked closely with both 2FM and CPL to take a more comprehensive look at the library and identify ways in which we can modernize and improve it. Because of these collaborative efforts, I was able to secure an additional $1.5 million in funds from the Jefferson Park TIF to bring these additional improvements to our local library.
During the meeting, 2FM and CPL will provide the planned improvements to the infrastructure and programming of the library as well as a timeline for work to finish, including planned closures for improvements to the interior.
I want to thank 2FM and CPL for their ongoing partnership and support in improving our local library. I would also like to thank the participatory community representative who made this all possible, Mitch Kmiec. Mitch took the feedback “love for the Jeff park library” from an idea collection session and worked closely with Eileen Dohnalek, the supervisor at the Jefferson Park Branch Library, to identify the initial improvements included in the participatory budgeting proposal.
These improvements continue to drive the ongoing revitalization efforts in Jefferson Park – including new business openings, the $25 million renovation to the Jefferson Park Transit Center, and continued private investment in our community. Additionally, these improvements demonstrate how much our community can accomplish when we work together.
Recycle Your Christmas Tree Jan. 5 – Jan. 19
Beginning Saturday, Jan. 6 and continuing through Saturday, Jan. 19, Chicago residents can begin to recycle their Christmas tree at any of the city’s 25 locations.
The city has once again partnered with the Chicago Park District to provide residents with this free service. Trees can be dropped off anytime during normal business hours. Free mulch will also be available on a first come, first served basis starting Jan. 7 at Lincoln Park, Margate Park, Mt. Greenwood Park, North Park Village, Warren Park, and the Forestry Site.
The closest recycling locations for 45th Ward residents are at Norwood Park, 5801 N. Natoma, and Portage Park, 4100 N. Long.
Only live/natural trees free of flocking will be accepted (this means no garland or wreaths). All trees must have any tinsel, ornaments, lights, and strands removed in order to be recycled. Any plastic bags used to transport the tree to a drop off location must also be removed.
A map of all drop off locations is available to view on my website.
Shared Cost Sidewalk Program Opens Jan. 8
Homeowners interested in splitting the cost of sidewalk replacement with the city can join the Shared Cost Sidewalk Program. The program allows homeowners to have new sidewalks installed at a significantly reduced cost over what they would pay a contractor.
The Chicago Department of Transportation will open the 2019 Shared Cost Sidewalk Program at 12:01 am Tuesday, January 8, 2019. Those interested should call 311 or log onto the new 311 website. When you call, make sure to specify that you are interested in the Shared Cost Sidewalk Program. Applications made prior to this date will not be accepted.
This is a very popular program that fills up within hours. Do not delay enrollment on January 8 if you are interested.
Annual Women’s Toiletry Drive
Once again, my office has partnered with Commissioner Bridget Gainer’s office and the Cook County Sheriff’s Women’s Justice Program to host a women’s toiletry drive throughout the month of January.
The annual toiletry drive helps provide women in Cook County Jail with basic toiletries and feminine hygiene products. Any of the items listed below will be accepted:
- Feminine hygiene products (e.g. pads and tampons)
- Travel size shampoo
- Travel size conditioner
- Travel size lotion
- Full bars of soap
- Small combs
- White socks
- Composition books
- Cards with stamped envelopes
This is an easy way to give back that will help women-in-need. My office will be collecting donations during office hours through January 30.
Volunteer for the Chicago Point-in-Time Homeless Count
The Department of Family and Support Services (DFSS) will host its annual point-in-time homeless count on Thursday, January 24, from 9 pm until 3 am.
This citywide count provides DFSS with a snapshot of Chicago’s homeless population. The data gathered on the homeless in Chicago serves as a basis for federal funding, for service and resource planning, and to raise public awareness about homelessness.
Volunteer registration for the count is available online.
Check to See if You Are Receiving a Property Tax Refund
The Cook County Treasurer’s Office announced that it is sending nearly 30,000 homeowners refunds totaling $8.3 million without requiring an application.
These refunds are being issued for past overpayments made by property owners since 2013. Overpayments can occur for a variety of reasons, including the simple mistake of paying more than is owed on the tax bill. More often, however, overpayments are the result from a reduction in property taxes after the bill was paid.
Of the 29,752 refunds being issued:
- 8,947 homeowners who paid their taxes through a bank/mortgage escrow account are receiving refund checks
- 20,805 homeowners who paid by check or online are automatically receiving refunds to their bank or credit card accounts
To see if you are entitled to a refund, visit the Cook County Treasurer’s website and:
- Select the purple box titled “Your Property Overview”
- Enter your address or Property Index Number
- Scroll down to view if there are any overpayments on the PIN
Find Out if Your Tax Bills Have Been Returned
To help homeowners who have mail-delivery problems, the Cook County Treasurer, Maria Pappas, now shows when tax bills have been returned by the U.S> Postal Service.
Property owners who don’t receive their tax bills can face interest charges for late payments. Additionally, they could potentially lose their home due to delinquent taxes.
To see if your tax bills have been returned, visit the Cook County Treasurer’s website and:
- Select the purple box that reads, “Your Property Tax Overview”;
- Enter your address or Property Index Number (PIN);
- Look for a red warning box that pops up if your bills have been returned;
- Update your mailing information if it is incorrect;
- Choose “eBilling” if you wish to receive your bill by email.
Help Students Succeed: Become a College Success Mentor
Pass With Flying Colors (PWFC) supports Chicago’s underserved first-generation students for college and career success. With 8 years of unwavering support, PWFC scholars will graduate college at dramatically higher rates than their peers and will be equipped to access careers that provide economic opportunity.
When you volunteer as a College Success Mentor, you play a key role in helping each PWFC student successfully navigate the unfamiliar college experience and transition successfully into their career. Mentors make a 5-year commitment to one scholar, beginning their junior year of high school. As a mentor, you provide the support, encouragement, and guidance they need to solve problems and celebrate successes.
Mentoring with PWFC is flexible. Training and ongoing support are provided to every volunteer. Currently, PWFC is seeking 22 volunteer mentors to be matched with scholars in their high school junior cohort. Individuals and companies interested in learning more about this opportunity should contact College Success Manager, Kelvin Boddie, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
More information on PWFC is available on their website.
Thanks for reading,
Tue., Jan 8, 7 pm, Oriole Park, 5430 N. Olcott. Learn what you can do about crime during the1613 beat meeting. Find your beat at the45th Ward map. More info: 312-742-4521. Free.
Tue., Jan 8, 7 pm, Kilbourn Park, 3501 N. Kilbourn. Learn what you can do about crime during the 1731 beat meeting. Find your beat at the 45th Ward map. More info: 312-742-4588.Free.
Wed., Jan 9, 7 pm, Athletic Field Park, 3546 W. Addison. Learn what you can do about crime during the 1732-1733 beat meeting. Find your beat at the45th Ward map. More info: 312-742-4588. Free.
Wed., Jan 9, 11 am, Portage Park Senior Center, 4100 N. Long. Want to make Portage Park more age-friendly? If so, please join in learning how a village project is trying to help isolated seniors in the community and how you can become a volunteer at the Portage Park Village Meeting. Parking and the entrance are located at Berteau and Linder. Free.
Wed., Jan 16, 6:30 pm, Gladstone Park, 5421 N. Menard. Learn how you can help further park development through volunteering, fundraising, and support during the Gladstone Park Advisory Council meeting. The GPAC meets every third Wednesday of each month. Follow them on Facebook to keep up on GPAC. news. Free to attend.
Wed., Jan 16, 7 pm, Independence Park, 3945 N. Springfield. Help plan upcoming events and identify priorities to better the neighborhood park during theIndependence Park Advisory Council meeting. Show your community pride and have fun in the process! IPAC meets every third Wednesday of each month. Follow them on Facebook to keep up on IPAC news. Free.
Wed., Jan 16, 7 pm, 16th District Police Station, Community Room, 5151 N. Milwaukee. Learn what you can do about crime during the 1623 beat meeting. Find your beat at the 45th Ward map. More info: 312-742-4521.Free.
Wed., Jan 16, 7 pm, 17th District Police Station, Community Room, 4650 N. Pulaski. Learn what you can do about crime during the 1722-1723 beat meeting. Find your beat at the45th Ward map. More info: 312-742-4588. Free.
Thur., Jan 17, 5:15 pm, Location TBD. Every third Thursday of the month, the Gladstone Park Neighborhood Association and the Gladstone Park Chamber of Commerce host aThirsty Third Thursday social gathering at a local watering hole. This is a great opportunity to meet new neighbors while supporting a local business. More info: online. Cost of purchases apply.
Thur., Jan 17, 7 pm, Location TBD. Meet neighbors and get involved in the community during the Jefferson Park Forward monthly meeting. Every month, JPF host their meeting at a different business or organization in the neighborhood. For location and more information, view their calendar online. Free.
Mon, Jan 21, 7:30 pm, Location TBD. Meet neighbors and discuss ways to become more involved in your community during the Portage Park Neighborhood Association meeting. Every month, PPNA hosts their meeting at a different business or organization in the neighborhood. For location and more information, view their calendar online. Free.
Sun., Jan 27, 10 am-2 pm, Copernicus Center, Annex Space, 5214 W. Lawrence. The Jefferson Park Sunday Market continues in the annex space at the Copernicus Center. There is even a cash bar to make those brunches a little more interesting this winter. More info: online. Cost of purchases.
Tue., Jan 29, 7 pm, Pasta D’Arte, 6311 N. Milwaukee. Meet neighbors and get involved in your community during the Gladstone Park Neighborhood Association monthly meeting. More info: online.Free.
Wed., Jan 30, 7 pm, Congregational Church of Jefferson Park, Basement Auditorium, 5320 W. Giddings. Meet neighbors and discuss how to improve your community during the Jefferson Park Neighborhood Association monthly meeting. A representative from the city’s 311 non-emergency system will give details about their modernization plan, including several new features and enhancements. Free.