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The Decatur Housing Authority disbanded the Decatur Improvement Association Wednesday during a special meeting. 

DECATUR — A dormant nonprofit arm of the Decatur Housing Authority met a quiet end on Wednesday when the agency's board of commissioners voted to disband it after more than 50 years. 

The Decatur Improvement Association was an entity through which the housing authority could own property and make business deals, and it received financial support from state and federal governments. 

Decatur Housing Authority Executive Director Jim Alpi told the board that the association had been inactive for years and was not likely to be used in the future because the housing authority has a newer not-for-profit arm, Decatur Pilot, NFP. 

The housing authority and its two nonprofit organizations all have the same board of directors. Wednesday's gathering included separate meetings for all three in less than half an hour. Decatur Pilot and the Improvement Association typically meet just once a year. Commissioners Shelith Hansboro, Jennifer Sykes and Bill Gosch were present, while Chairwoman Lisa Campbell-Hein and Commissioner Shad Etchason were not.

In disbanding Decatur Improvement Association, the group moved to transfer all of its assets, $122,000, to Decatur Pilot. Alpi said the former nonprofit no longer owns any property as far as he can tell.

“To our knowledge, all there is, is this bank account with cash,” he told the board.

But keeping up the bank account requires extra work and some extra money, he said.

“It does mean a whole another entity to be audited and an extra bank account,” Alpi said.

Commissioners have previously considered disbanding the association and finally decided to do so this year. “We’ve held on to it for quite awhile,” Hansboro said.

Decatur Pilot provides the same functions and benefits, Alpi said, with one major difference: It is tax-exempt, while Decatur Improvement Association was not. 

During the annual meeting of the Decatur Pilot, board members voted to accept the money they allocated to the group from the Decatur Improvement Association moments earlier.

Alpi said the community and housing authority appreciated the commissioners' work, and thanked them for their service to the now-disbanded Decatur Improvement Association. 

The commissioners also appointed themselves to serve as the Decatur Pilot board of directors for another year.

Contact Claire Hettinger at (217) 421-6985. Follow her on Twitter: @ClaireHettinger

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Public Safety Reporter

Public safety reporter for the Herald & Review.

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