§ 304.2District Organizations: Formation, organizational requirements and operations.
(a)General. A “District Organization” is an entity that satisfies the formation and organizational requirements under paragraphs (b) and (c) of this section.
(b)Formation. A District Organization must be organized as one of the following:
(1) A public organization formed through an inter-governmental agreement providing for the joint exercise of local government powers; or
(2) A public organization established under State-enabling legislation for the creation of multi-jurisdictional area-wide planning organizations; or
(3) A non-profit organization incorporated under the applicable non-profit statutes of the State in which it is incorporated.
(c)Organization and governance.
(1) Each District Organization must meet the requirements of this paragraph (c) concerning membership composition, the maintenance of adequate staff support to perform its economic development functions, and its authorities and responsibilities for carrying out economic development functions. The District Organization's board of directors (or other governing body) must also meet these requirements.
(2) The District Organization must demonstrate that its governing body is broadly representative of the principal economic interests of the Region, and, unless otherwise prohibited by applicable State or local law, must include at least one (1) Private Sector Representative and one (1) or more of the following: Executive Directors of Chambers of Commerce, or representatives of institutions of post-secondary education, workforce development groups or labor groups, all of which must comprise in the aggregate a minimum of thirty-five (35) percent of the District Organization's governing body. The governing body shall also have at least a simple majority of its membership who are elected officials and/or employees of a general purpose unit of State, local or Indian tribal government who have been appointed to represent the government. Upon the District Organization's showing of its inability to locate a Private Sector Representative to serve on its governing body following extensive due diligence, the Assistant Secretary may waive the Private Sector Representative requirement. The Assistant Secretary shall not delegate the authority to grant a waiver under this paragraph.
(3) The District Organization must be assisted by a professional staff drawn from qualified persons in economic development, planning, business development or related disciplines.
(4) The governing bodies of District Organizations must provide access for persons who are not members to make their views known concerning ongoing and proposed District activities in accordance with the following requirements:
(i) The District Organization must hold meetings open to the public at least once a year and shall also publish the date and agenda of such meetings sufficiently in advance to allow the public a reasonable time to prepare in order to participate effectively.
(ii) The District Organization shall adopt a system of parliamentary procedures to assure that board members and others have access to an effective opportunity to participate in the affairs of the District.
(iii) The District Organization shall provide information sufficiently in advance of decisions to give the public adequate opportunity to review and react to proposals. District Organizations should communicate technical data and other material to the public so they may understand the impact of public programs, available options and alternative decisions.
(iv) The District Organization must make available to the public such audited statements, annual budgets and minutes of public meetings, as may be reasonably requested.
(v) The District Organization and its board of directors must comply with all Federal and State financial assistance reporting requirements and the conflicts of interest provisions set forth in § 302.17 of this chapter.
(1) The District Organization shall engage in the full range of economic development activities listed in its EDA-approved CEDS. These activities may include:
(i) Coordinating and implementing economic development activities in the District;
(ii) Carrying out economic development research, planning, implementation and advisory functions identified in the CEDS; and
(iii) Coordinating the development and implementation of the CEDS with other local, State, Federal and private organizations.
(2) The District Organization may at its option contract for services to accomplish the activities listed in paragraphs (d)(1)(i) through (iii) of this section.
Title 13 published on 2014-01-01
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