Jackie Caro

Changes to Community Development Block Grant Program Funding

Jackie Caro, Community Programs Coordinator, No Phone Number Available

Friday, February 14, 2014 at 3:50 p.m.

Changes to Community Development Block Grant Program Funding

In October, the Community Housing and Human Services Department (CHHS) notified the leaders of the 13 neighborhoods currently eligible for Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds that the Federal Housing & Urban Development Department (HUD) is making changes that impact how these funds can be used.

A key component of the CDBG program is that funding must be used to benefit low and moderate-income individuals. There are many ways to show low and moderate-income benefit, but the primary methodology has been the use of census income data. A major change to the program is the federal government moving to using the annual American Community Survey, in replacement of the every 10-year process used previously. Because of this, our ability to prove low and moderate-income benefit for the use of CDBG funds is also changing.

In order to determine how the city’s CDBG program will adapt to these changes a Task Force on CD Neighborhood Strategies is forming. This Task Force will be comprised of CHHS board members and neighborhood leaders. We need you to engage in this conversation.

Though HUD is not responsible for the change in how the federal government gathers income data, it is responsible for implementing this change. If we do not determine how to adapt locally, HUD can hold our city accountable for being out of compliance in the use of these funds.

Because poverty impacts all neighborhoods we are extending an invitation to all 27 neighborhoods to participate in the Task Force. Neighborhoods may choose to collaborate with another neighborhood and share a liaison. If you intend to do this, please let rminarik@spokanecity.org know so we know who is represented.

The Task Force must complete its work by May so the plan can be implemented in time for next year’s CDBG program. Participants should expect a time commitment of 5 hours each month between now and June. The first task force meeting will take place on Wednesday, Feb. 19 from 6-8 p.m. at the East Central Community Center, 500 S. Stone St. Please RSVP your attendance by emailing Rod Minarik.

We are committed to neighborhood engagement and strong communication throughout this process. Meeting agendas, minutes and other materials will be shared on the City of Spokane’s blog site.

Update for March 4, 2014

The Task Force on CD Neighborhood Strategies held their first meeting on Feb. 19 at the East Central Community Center, view the minutes from the meeting (PDF 84 KB). The next meeting is scheduled for Thursday, Mar. 13 at the East Central Community Center from 6-7:30 p.m.

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