What is the purpose of the BLZ Committee?
There is a two-fold purpose to this model:
1) takes the politics out of business approval; and
2) empowers local business leaders to work together to create a stable, profitable local business environment.
When does the BLZ Committee meet?
BLZ meetings are every first Monday of the month or the following Monday if a holiday falls on the first Monday (Please call the office if you’re not sure). This meeting is open to the public. All business owners are welcome to attend. Voting members are chosen by the Alderman and are not compensated for their service.
If I want to start a business, what should I do first?
In order to ensure the full cooperation of the 15th Ward, anyone seeking to open a business within the 15th Ward must provide a written description of the business to the Alderman’s office. If any zoning, licensing or support letters are needed, the BLZ Committee will meet to determine if that is possible.
Does an existing business need the BLZ Committee?
Any current business wishing to make any change to their zoning or licensing that requires aldermanic approval MUST submit a written explanation to the Alderman’s office for consideration by the committee.
How are decisions made? Can the Alderman override them?
Applicants are invited to present directly to the Committee. All decisions are made by simple majority. The Alderman gives full authority to the Committee and will NOT override any decision made by the group.
All meetings are held at the West Englewood Office, unless otherwise noted. Meetings convene at 7 PM and businesses are seen in first come, first served order.
***Note: Due to COVID-19 restrictions, BLZ meetings have been suspended. We are working with our in-house technology team to move meetings onto a Zoom platform.***