The Los Angeles County Supervisory Board on Tuesday passed a motion, sponsored by the chairman’s supervisor, Hilda L. Solis, declaring April 5-9 “National Community Development Week.”
National Community Development Week is an opportunity for the county to commemorate the long-standing accomplishments of the federally funded Community Development Block Grant programs and HOME investment partnerships.
This year marks the 35th anniversary of this national effort to actively promote awareness, education and advocacy for these much needed programs.
The county takes this opportunity to celebrate National Community Development Week and to commemorate the continued successes of the CDBG and HOME programs. These programs have a significant impact on residents of Los Angeles County, especially during crises, such as the recent COVID-19 pandemic.
The county’s CDBG program, administered by the Los Angeles County Development Authority, is the largest of the nation’s urban counties, serving more than one million people in unincorporated areas and 1.4 million more living in 48 participating cities.
The success of the program lies in its flexibility, allowing local governments to respond directly to the needs of the community, targeting around 97% of funds allocated to benefit low- and middle-income people, through activities that include housing rehabilitation. ; public services for groups, such as the elderly, young people and people experiencing homelessness; economic development activities; and make public facilities, housing and sidewalks accessible to people with disabilities.
Additionally, in 2020, the CARES Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act generated $ 5 billion in additional CDBG funds, known as CDBG-CV funds, to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. The LACDA has used CDBG-CV to help residents and businesses affected by the pandemic. Once CDBG-CV funds are used up, it is estimated that 4,050 elderly people will benefit from restoration programs, 634 businesses will receive grants and loans, and 504 households will receive rental assistance.
The HOME program promotes and facilitates affordable and responsive housing for county residents living in its unincorporated areas and in the 46 participating cities. Since the inception of the HOME program in 1992, LACDA has overseen the administration of over $ 312 million in HOME funds in the county housing market. The additional advantage of the HOME program is its ability to mobilize local funding. For example, over $ 900 million has been mobilized with HOME funds since 1992 to develop affordable rental housing.
Emilio Salas, Executive Director of LACDA, said: “This past year has been a difficult time for everyone, but thanks to CDBG and HOME we have provided assistance to tenants and landlords. We’ve created programs to help businesses stay afloat and adapt to health orders. We continued to fund new affordable housing developments to ensure that all residents of the county have a place to call home. CDBG and HOME help us invest in the community and empower residents and businesses.
While the achievements of these programs are far-reaching and absolutely necessary, past national budget cuts have overshadowed their merits. Fortunately, through aggressive and continued advocacy efforts, the CDBG program for fiscal 2021 will receive $ 3.45 billion, $ 50 million more than last year. The HOME program will not experience a funding cut and will receive $ 1.35 billion in fiscal 2021, which is fiscal 2020.
More information on the CDBG, HOME and CDBG-CV programs is available at lacda.org or by calling 626-586-1760.