Scottsdale City Council approves plans for CDBG, HOME funds allocation

The City of Scottsdale, for many, is the crown jewel of the Valley of the Sun but failing infrastructure has become a point of political strife in “The West’s Most Western Town.” (File photo)

The City of Scottsdale has approved its plans on how to use nearly $1.5 million in federal funds for the upcoming fiscal year.

Scottsdale city councilmembers voted unanimously to approve the fiscal year 2019-20 annual action plan and the allocation of federal Community Development Block Grant and HOME Investment Partnership fund. The approval came at an April 16 special meeting at City Hall, 3939 N. Drinkwater Blvd.

The city received $1,141,680 in CBDG funds and $331,572 in HOME funds. The city also solicited public testimony with the vote but Mayor Jim Lane said there was no one who wanted to speak toward the item.

Other stipulations in the approval included:

  • Reprogramming of prior years’ remaining funds and the return of program income from CDBG-funded activities for use in eligible activities;
  • Returning program income from the repayment of Green Housing Rehabilitation Program deferred loans;
  • Associated Department of Housing and Urban Development certifications and contracts; and
  • Mayor, city manager and community assistance manager to take certain actions furthering the approved resolution.

In general, city staff say these funds need to benefit those people whose income falls below 80% of the area median. The city has plans to allocate the money specifically to a variety of human services, housing projects and public facility improvements.

City staff say the final recommendation provides funding for eight agencies for 11 different activities. The anticipated number of individuals benefited is 4,854, according to a city staff report to council.

The federal government awards CDBG grants on a noncompetitive basis, through federal block grants, to cities with populations greater than 50,000. HUD uses a formula comprised of overcrowded housing, population and poverty levels; or age of housing, population growth and poverty to determine the amount.

City staff say the primary categories of eligible expenditures for these funds are public services; non-public services such as housing rehabilitation or public facility improvements; and administration and planning.

Where the money is spent needs to coincide with the city’s five-year consolidated plan. City staff also say at least 70% of the funds must benefit low- to moderate-income households.

With these funds, the city plans to allocate $500,000 to housing activities; $242,092 to public facilities and improvements; $239,916 to program administration; and $171,252 to public services activities.

HOME funds are also a federal block grant and the city has access to them because of its involvement in the Maricopa HOME Consortium. The goal of HOME is to support housing activities that can increase the supply of affordable housing to low-income people through publicly awarded contracts.

The goal of the city’s HOME program is to “provide decent, affordable housing to lower-income households, expand the capacity of non-profit housing providers, strengthen the ability of state and local governments to provide housing and leverage private sector participation.”

The program also makes participating agencies that receive HOME funding provide a match for an amount equal to no less than a quarter of the total HOME funds awarded.

Some uses of HOME funds include single-family and multi-family housing acquisitions, rehabilitation, new construction and tenant-based rental assistance.

The city plans to use $310,849 of the HOME funds on acquisition and reconstruction of real property; and $20,723 on program administration costs.

News Services Reporter Josh Martinez can be contacted at jmartinez@newszap.com or at 623-445-2738

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