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HUD Archives: News Releases

HUD No. 99-105
Further Information:For Release
In the Washington, DC area: 202/708-0685Monday
Or contact your local HUD officeJune 21, 1999


SANTA ANA, CA - U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Andrew Cuomo today delivered a $3 million grant to the City of Santa Ana, CA, to begin implementing its plan for a new Empowerment Zone designed to help revitalize some of the poorest areas of the city.

Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez and Santa Ana Mayor Miguel Pulido joined Cuomo at a ceremony in which they signed an agreement conveying the $3 million to the city to implement the strategic plan that it prepared for its Zone. The State of California is also a party to the agreement. The strategic plan is a roadmap for community revitalization that the city, businesses and community groups will follow to stimulate economic growth and job creation in the Zone.

Sanchez and Pulido also joined Cuomo in a driving and walking tour of part of the 4-square-mile Santa Ana Empowerment Zone. The Secretary, Congresswoman and Mayor then participated in a roundtable discussion with community and business leaders about the future of Santa Ana.

The Santa Ana Empowerment Zone was one of 15 new Urban Empowerment Zones announced in January by Vice President Al Gore. Each of the Zones will receive $3 million in federal grants this year and $130 million in tax-exempt bonding authority over the next 10 years as a result of its designation.

If Congress approves President Clinton's request for full funding of the new Empowerment Zones, the Santa Ana Zone and each of the other 14 Urban Zones designated in January will receive much more - $100 million each in federal grants over 10 years.

"This Empowerment Zone is an important investment in a better future for Santa Ana and all its people," Cuomo said. "This city needs and deserves the full $100 million that President Clinton has requested from Congress, so we can replace poverty with prosperity and build a stronger and healthier Santa Ana in the 21st century."

Congresswoman Sanchez said: "The new Empowerment Zone in Santa Ana is a perfect example of how federal, state and community governments can partner with business and community groups to bring jobs, economic development and a higher quality of living to those areas of our country that have tremendous untapped potential."

Mayor Pulido said: "Santa Ana has partnered with HUD on a number of successful collaborations that have resulted in more affordable housing, economic development, and livable communities. The Empowerment Zone is another tool to maximize and leverage our resources through community partnerships. Together with our residents we are building up our city, block by block."

If Congress approves full funding for Santa Ana's Zone, the federal investment is expected to stimulate more than $2.5 billion in additional private and public sector investment, and create or retain 1,000 jobs.

Projects that will be able to move forward over the next few months in the Santa Ana Empowerment Zone as the result of $3 million that Cuomo delivered today include:

  • New Learning and Family Literacy Centers that will serve 960 students at 12 schools with a comprehensive program to decrease the risk of academic failure - $386,000.

  • A new Business Working Capital Loan Program that will improve access to capital and entrepreneurial assistance by leveraging resources - $250,000.

  • Existing programs to give Zone residents health care information and improved access to health care - $76,500. Reportable diseases, accidents, teen birth rates and infant mortality rates are significantly higher in the Zone than in the surrounding community.

Santa Ana's Empowerment Zone has a population of about 50,000, a poverty rate of 31 percent, and unemployment about twice as high as the rest of Orange County. Only about 20 percent of Zone residents ages 18 to 25 have high school diplomas.

Content Archived: January 20, 2009

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