Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Mayor Morse Announces 2017 CDBG Allocations

On Wendsday August 30th, Mayor Alex B. Morse announced the 2017 Community Development Block Grant awards at an event held in gardens of Wistariahurst Museum, and attended by over thirty community members and representatives of municipal departments and non-profit agencies.

Mayor Morse presented the grant awards totaling over $1.6 million for a variety of activities intended to improve the lives of Holyoke’s residents. Activities funded this year include:

$252,446 for sidewalk repairs; $169,370 in Public Services to agencies providing housing, basic needs, employment skills, and educational services; $200,000 for demolition of vacant, blighted buildings; $134,500 for a targeted code enforcement program; $50,000 for small business grants offered through the SPARK Program; $427,000 for park rehabilitation at Veterans, Carlos Vega, Ely Court, McNulty, Soucy and Pulaski Parks; and $100,000 to OneHolyoke CDC’s Neighborhood Improvement Program for housing rehab assistance to owner occupants.

Mayor Morse noted “I am proud of the partnership between these agencies and the municipal departments as they tackle our community’s greatest challenges and work to better the lives of all Holyoke residents.”

Home ownership continues to a priority for Mayor Morse. A $3000 grant was made to the Holyoke Housing Authority to provide first time home buyer classes in conjunction with the City of Holyoke’s Buyers Assistance Program which provides down payment assistance to first time home buyers. Representatives from the Greater Springfield Habitat for Humanity were on hand to announce their recruitment of potential homeowners for a home to be built at 270 Pine Street funded with City of Holyoke HOME Investment Partnership funds.

Mayor Morse announced that the Office for Community Development would be offering a workshop for organizations (for profit and non-profit) to learn about CDBG funds, how to access grant funds to grow their agency, services or businesses, and how to develop a CDBG proposal for the upcoming FY2018 application cycle. The workshop is free and will be held on Wednesday October 4, 2017 from 5:30 pm- 7:30 pm in the City Hall Annex, 4th Floor Conference Room.

In support of the Community Preservation Act, Mayor Morse allocated $15,000 to the development of a Community Preservation Plan to guide the use of CPA funds for housing, open space and recreation and historic preservation.

Mayor Morse states “Now that the City has enacted the Community Preservation Act, it is important to have thoughtful planning of the use of CPA funds to ensure maximum community benefit.”

The Community Development Block Grant Program is one of the country’s longest running entitlement grant programs offered by the United State Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Holyoke has been a recipient of CDBG funds since 1975.

For more information, please contact the Mayor’s Office at 413-322-5510 or the Office for Community Development at 413-322-5610.

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