The Community Development Block Grant entitlement program from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development allocated $272,000 in funds to Missouri City in May. City Council and the Community Development Advisory Committee met last week to discuss the city’s development of a CDBG consolidated plan.

The CDBG entitlement program allocates funds to the city annually through HUD to develop viable communities by providing decent housing, a suitable living environment and opportunities to expand economic opportunities for low- and moderate-income residents, according to meeting documents.

Funds must prevent or eliminate slums and blight, and meet an urgent community needs. Eligible applicants include non-profit agencies, city departments and public housing authorities. Some examples from last year include Fort Bend Meals on Wheels, Child Advocates of Fort Bend, scholarship donations, code enforcements, housing rehabilitation and city administration, according to meeting documents.

So far, the city has allotted the most funds to housing rehabilitation at $92,804.60. Additionally, $9,975 has been designated for educational scholarships.

Earlier in July, City Council provided direction for CDBG allocation considerations and decisions. Criteria includes awarding scholarship money to students within areas that would receive housing rehabilitation from CDBG funding, and provide preference to students pursuing public safety or government sector jobs.

Additionally, areas in poor condition will have the highest priority for rehabilitation; no parks will be funded unless they are public parks; applicant needs must be thoroughly reviewed by staff; and application forms must clearly state that the CDAC recommends approval from City Council.

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