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HUD No. 98-164
Further Information:For Release
In the Washington, DC area: 202/708-0685Friday
Or contact your local HUD officeApril 17, 1998


U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Andrew Cuomo today announced a workshop will be held May 7 in Providence to help communities compete for designation as one of 15 new Empowerment Zones that President Clinton has proposed creating.

The new Empowerment Zones, to be designated following a national competition, will be eligible for a broad range of federal tax incentives to stimulate job creation and economic development in economically distressed areas of cities. In addition, the Clinton Administration's 1999 budget proposes $1.5 billion in funding over 10 years for social services in the 15 new Empowerment Zones. Each Zone would get $100 million.

The workshop in Providence will be held at the Rhode Island Convention Center from 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. It is designed to help local government officials, members of community groups and other non-profit groups, and community residents work together to create strong applications for the Empowerment Zone competition.

HUD is holding a total of 10 workshops in cities around the country, enabling people to attend workshops in their own region.

Cities seeking to apply for Empowerment Zone designation have until October 9, 1998 to develop and submit comprehensive revitalization strategies. A critical component of the application process is a dialogue that pulls communities together to devise a vision for the future, approaches to resolve tough problems and the development of new partnerships.

"Empowerment Zones are powerful engines for job creation and economic growth that can transform some of our poorest neighborhoods and the lives of people living there," Cuomo said. "These zones create a partnership for successful revitalization between government, non-profits, the businesses community and neighborhood residents."

In addition to creating jobs and business opportunities for residents of economically distressed neighborhoods, Empowerment Zones can provide programs to help expand the supply of affordable housing, improve public safety, clean up environmental pollution, upgrade infrastructure, and provide affordable health care, child care and youth development programs.

In 1994, the Clinton Administration selected nine Empowerment Zones - six urban and three rural - which entitled them to receive federal tax incentives and direct funding for physical improvements and social services. In addition, Los Angeles and Cleveland were designated full Empowerment Zones by the Administration in January this year.

Communities may receive more information about how to apply for an Empowerment Zone and how to attend workshops on the application process by contacting HUD at 800/998-9999 or e-mail: comcon@aspensys.com

Content Archived: January 20, 2009

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