|HUD No. 00-128|
|Further Information:||For Release|
|In the Washington, DC area: 202/708-0685||11 a.m. Thursday|
|Or contact your local HUD office||June 8, 2000|
CUOMO ANNOUNCES $24.7 MILLION IN GRANTS FOR RURAL HOUSING AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT IN 38 STATES
WASHINGTON Housing and Urban Development Secretary Andrew Cuomo today announced $24.7 million in HUD grants to build and improve housing, create jobs and spark economic development in rural communities in 38 states.
The HUD Rural Housing and Economic Development Grants will fund programs run by local rural non-profit organizations, Native American tribes, community development corporations, state housing finance agencies, and state community development and economic development agencies.
"These grants will improve the lives of families across rural America and will strengthen rural economies," Cuomo said. "Unfortunately, some members of Congress have proposed cutting funding for this program by 20 percent. That would mean fewer rural communities get served, fewer rural problems get solved. This valuable program should not be cut, slashed and allowed to wither on the vine."
A total of 643 applicants around the country representing $218 million in requests competed for the 103 grants announced today. The rural grants will go to communities in the following states in these amounts:
|Alabama - $1.53 million|| Maine - $1.15 million
New York - $566,600
| Ohio - $179,442
West Virginia - $950,170
"Im pleased to make this announcement during National Homeownership Week," Cuomo said. "This year's theme is With Liberty and Equity for All a tribute to the freedom that we have in America for everyone to pursue the American Dream of homeownership."
About $19 million in grants will go to innovative local programs. Eligible activities include: preparation of plans, architectural drawings, acquisition of land and buildings, demolition, provision of infrastructure, purchase of materials, construction, use of local labor markets, and construction training.
Other possible activities include homeownership and financial counseling; application of innovative construction methods; provision of financial assistance to homeowners, businesses, and developers; and the establishment of Community Development Financial Institutions, lines of credit, revolving loan funds, microenterprises, and small business incubators.
About $3 million in grants will be used as seed money to fund start-up costs for activities to be undertaken by new organizations or for specific innovative housing or economic development projects new to existing organizations. These funds will be used for such things as acquiring space and facilities, hiring and training staff, seeking technical assistance and the purchase of land or inventory.
About $2.7 million in grants will help grant recipients improve their capacity to run housing and economic development programs. Possible activities include hiring and training staff, purchasing software and other tools, obtaining expertise from outside sources, developing an accounting system, and developing strategic plans.
Grant recipients were selected based on:
- Housing and economic development needs in a rural community.
- The strength of proposals to use HUD funds for improved housing, job creation and economic development.
- The extent of support from other federal, state, local and private sources for the HUD-funded activities.