Nebraska DED Announces 2019 CDBG Recipients

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On January 10th the Nebraska Department of Development (DED) announced the recipients of nearly $10 million in Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funding. Nebraska DED administers the state’s allotment of CDBG funding from the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Through a competitive application process, DED awards funds in a number of categories each year to aid Nebraska communities in an effort to benefit low-to-moderate income households.

This year’s recipients were (from the announcement):

  • Kearney ($395,000), Fremont ($475,000), Columbus ($516,000), Wayne ($475,000) and Norfolk ($460,000) received a total of $2,321,000 for Comprehensive Development activities involving sidewalks; architectural barrier removal; housing and sanitary sewers; streets and storm sewers; and streets, respectively.

Columbus’ award was matched with $215,000 in local funds for full project cost of $731,000. Awarded under the Comprehensive Revitalization Phase II category, the project funds will be applied to a number sub-projects including; $53,750 for sanitary sewer improvements along a few of the community streets in the southwest corner of Columbus; $376,250 for purchase/rehabilitation/reselling of four single-unit family units; $45,000 for grant administration and project management; $6,000 for lead-based paint risk assessment/testing; and $35,000 for housing management. For more on the Columbus award, check out The Columbus Telegram article.

  • Pierce will receive $445,000 for Downtown Revitalization, including architectural barrier removal.
  • Auburn ($547,000), Cozad ($547,000), Elm Creek ($315,000), Franklin ($315,000), Gothenburg ($315,000), Grant ($252,000), North Platte ($315,000), O’Neill ($252,000) and Ogallala ($119,004) received a total of $2,977,004 under the category of Owner-Occupied Rehabilitation, which will result in the rehabilitation of 98 housing units.
  • Beaver City ($32,500), Hastings ($43,000), Shelby ($26,200) and Sutton ($31,200) will receive a total of $132,900 under the category of Planning, to address comprehensive planning/zoning; ADA sidewalk assessment; comprehensive planning/zoning; and a downtown study, respectively.

The City of Hastings was awarded $43,000 for an ADA sidewalk assessment. This community in south-central Nebraska plans to use the funds to help ensure sidewalks and ramps throughout the city are compliant with ADA guidelines. The city will provide $14,000 from the general fund to fulfill the match requirements for the grant. The city plans to install or reconstruct 88 curb ramps throughout Hastings. For more on the Hastings award, check out the Platte River Radio article about the application. For more on sidewalk assessments, check out Rural Resurrection’s previous article on sidewalk surveys.

  • Fairbury ($385,000), Geneva ($385,000), Lyman ($334,235), Ord ($247,500), Rushville ($310,000), Stratton ($385,000) Wakefield ($385,000) and Wood River ($385,000) will receive a total of $2,816,735 under the category of Public Works, for storm sewers; a senior center; street improvements; street improvements; a fire truck; a library; street and sidewalk improvements; and a child care center, respectively.

Stratton, near the southwest corner of the state, was awarded $385,000 in funding for the construction of a new library. The total cost for the project is estimated to be $576,773 and will include a new village office (which is funded outside of the grant). The new building will be energy-efficient and more accessible than the two buildings that the library and the village office are moving from.

  • Ainsworth ($385,000), Scotia ($250,000) and Lynch ($250,000) received a total of $885,000 to support activities under the Water/Wastewater category.

A total of $9,577,639 was awarded to these recipients. For more information on this year’s announcement, please check out the press release.

Funding categories varies from state to state. For instance, some states will allow the use of funds for planning activities or for the purchase of a fire truck, whereas other states are more stringent and desire to use the funds for a more limited list of project types.

Regardless of the funding options offered by CDBG in each state, most rural communities can find a use for these funds. Although the application and program administration activities of a federal-based grant are extensive, many states have regional organizations like councils of government or regional development organizations that are available to help.