Department Awards $5.8 Million in Community Development and Housing Funds to Pennsylvania County

Wednesday, January 14, 2004

The Department yesterday announced that Beaver County, Pennsylvania, will receive $5.8 million in federal assistance to stimulate local economies, produce affordable housing, help the homeless and promote community development. Assistant Secretary Steven Nesmith, in western Pennsylvania to make the announcement, noted the funding signals the Department's commitment to local communities that design their own plan to help lower income families.

The funding includes $4.7 million in Community Development Block Grant funds, $905,000 in Home Investment Partnerships funding and $170,000 in Emergency Shelter Grant funding.

Community Development Block Grants enables state and local governments to target their own economic development priorities. The rehabilitation of affordable housing has traditionally been the largest single use of the grants although CDBG is also an important catalyst for job growth and business opportunities for lower income families and neighborhoods.

HOME grants are the largest federal block grant to state and local governments designed exclusively to create affordable housing for low-income households. Since 1992, nearly 700,000 affordable housing units have been acquired, constructed or rehabilitated and nearly 70,000 tenants have received direct rental assistance. In addition, more than 200,000 new homebuyers have received assistance to purchase their first homes through the HOME program.

Emergency Shelter Grants help communities meet the basic shelter needs of homeless individuals and families. Part of HUD's award-winning Continuum of Care initiative, these grants also provide transitional housing and a variety of support services designed to move the homeless away from a life on the street toward permanent housing.

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