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Restrictions on CDBG Funds - KOAM TV 7

Restrictions on CDBG Funds

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JOPLIN, MISSOURI - The Joplin City Council is deciding the fate of millions of dollars in available Community Development Block Grants and Disaster Recovery money.  

Thursday night, the council heard ten of roughly three-dozen project proposals.  

Federal rules and regulations for the money will come into play.

Now the city has to decide between 39 project proposals to allocate a remaining $98 dollars from a second round of federal grants.

"This is funneled through the department of housing and urban development," Joplin Planning & Community Development Director Troy Bolander said. "And typically what you can use those for is projects for housing, infrastructure, and urban development."

Bolander says the city council will have to prioritize the projects according to strict federal guidelines.

The funds can only be allocated to projects which either impact low to moderate income persons, improve blighted areas in the community, or directly meet an urgent needs following a disaster.  

Six of the proposals are considered ineligible under those requirements.  

But even for a selected project, there are still more hoops to jump through including an environmental review.  And Bolander says those projects don't simply receive a check. The City will reimburse an organization for money that is spent.

"[Then] we have to show HUD that at least 50 percent of the low to moderate income population has received the benefit of these funds," Bolander said.

The tentative date for the council's next work session to discuss proposals is Thursday, June 19th.

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