Thursday, March 25, 2010

HUD Secretary Shaun Donavan Outlines Choice Neighborhoods Initiative

On March 17, HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan provided an overview of the Choice Neighborhoods legislative proposal to the House Financial Services Committee. His remarks provide more detailed information about the expected application process and guidelines than previously released.

According to FY2010 budget, HUD will issue both HOPE VI and Choice Neighborhood funding. Congress appropriate $65million for Choice Neighborhoods, which like Promise Neighborhoods, is being developed collaboratively across federal departments through the White House Office of Urban Affairs Interagency Working Group. Choice Neighborhood Funds will be targeted in neighborhoods that meet three criteria: severely distressed public or assisted housing; concentration of poverty; and potential for long-term viability.
Secretary Donovan defined these criteria as follows.

  • “Severely distressed housing is public or assisted housing that requires major rehabilitation or demolition, and is vacant or a contributing factor to the decline of the neighborhood.
  • Concentration of poverty does not rely on a bright-line formula based solely on percentages of families in poverty. Criteria will take into account high crime, neighborhood blight and abandonment, and the lack of high quality educational opportunities – all factors that combine to limit opportunity for children and families.
  • Long-term viability exists in a neighborhood that will build on or bring key neighborhood assets to support the economic and environmental health of the community, including educational institutions, medical centers, central business districts, major employers, effective transportation, or adjacency to low-poverty neighborhoods.”
HUD expects to select applicants over the course of two rounds. An initial RFP will be released in the summer. From the pool of applicants, HUD will select a group of finalists. Donovan said “The finalists will then be given an opportunity to put together a more complete application and a small number of applicants, perhaps two or three, will be selected for funding in early 2011.”

No comments:

Post a Comment