Community Development & Block Grant Program
About the Program
Bristol, Virginia is classified as an entitlement community by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The Department of Community Development and Planning is responsible for administering Community Development Block Grant (CDBG ) funds within the city. This requires that each activity, except Program Administration and Planning, meet at least one of HUD’s three Broad National Objectives. These are listed below and each project must:
(a) Benefit low- and moderate-income persons;
(b) Aid in the prevention or elimination of slums or blight; or
(c) Meet other community development needs having a particular urgency because existing conditions pose a serious threat to the health or welfare of the community when other financial resources are not available to meet such needs (natural disaster, fire, tornado, etc.).
The City of Bristol provides CDBG funds for sub-recipients to achieve several goals. These goals are important to the overall objective of improving the living conditions in this city. Goals and objectives are reviewed annually and are related to the National Objectives required by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). In order to be CDBG-funded, each activity must first meet eligibility criteria and then must also meet one of the three national objectives of the program.
Eligible projects include but are not limited to public services, housing rehabilitation, public facility improvements, demolition, infrastructure improvements, etc. Applicants must demonstrate that the selection of clients is an objective process and sub-recipients may not limit participation on the basis of age, race, gender, nationality, ethnicity, religion, familial status, disability, or sexual orientation.
Applying for Funds
CDBG funding is allocated to local agencies through a competitive application process. HUD and City policy governs the process for receiving, managing, and disbursing CDBG monies. The first step in this lengthy process is advertising the announcement of funding availability. Concurrent with this announcement, applications are sent to a list of eligible agencies and organizations that may be interested in applying for CDBG funds (usually in late January/early February). Individuals/private citizens are not eligible to apply.
Applications are submitted to the Department of Community Development and Planning. Following receipt of the completed applications, the CDBG Coordinator categorizes each request within the HUD funding categories. A selection committee then reviews the applications, scoring them based on the criteria for which HUD grades the City. City Council reviews the applications for funding at a public hearing before being remanded to a sub-committee established by the Mayor. The Mayor’s sub-committee reviews the applications and prepares the final allocation plan, which is announced at a public meeting of the City Council.
For More Information
If you have questions about this program, would like to learn more about the funding processes, etc., please contact Ellen Tolton, CDBG Coordinator, at 276-645-7473 or email@example.com.