Jo Anne Longoria
Introduction The primary objectives of the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program are the development of viable urban communities by providing decent housing, a suitable living environment and expanding economic opportunities principally for people of low and moderate incomes. Proposed activities may be funded by CDBG if it intends to accomplish one of the following national objectives:
- Benefit low and moderate income people;
- Prevent or eliminate slums or blight;
- Meet other urgent community development needs
In order to accomplish its goal to meet one of the national objectives, the city may contract with public service agencies that can provide opportunities to maximize the impact of its resources. The city is allowed to fund up to 15% of its allocation to Public Service Agencies. The City currently funded 6% to nine agencies who provide services to low income residents. Agencies that have programs that are designed to meet the needs of low and moderate people are encouraged to submit an application for consideration.
To apply for funding:
The City of Mission has been receiving funds for the past 38 years from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program. This money is used to provide services for the benefit of individuals in areas throughout the city and who are low to moderate income. The City of Mission has provided funding for housing assistance, infrastructure and public service agencies. Our housing assistance program has had continuous growth since its inception. This fiscal year, approximately 70% of our budget is currently going to housing assistance to provide decent, safe, and sanitary homes to eligible low income families. This activity is needed due to a dire need in the community and has strongly impacted the quality of life by improving neighborhoods. The Housing Assistance Program has been the focus of the city’s priority.
The City has also provided funding to agencies like Amigos del Valle which provides home delivered meals to homebound elderly; Area Agency on Aging provides seniors with medical supplies and minor home modifications; CASA of Hidalgo County provides services for abused and neglected children. Children’s Advocacy provides screening and counseling services for battered and abused children; Easter Seals of the RGV provides rehabilitation services to handicapped individuals; Silver Ribbon provides utility and rent deposits, utilities, medical, and rent assistance for disabled individuals and elderly. C.A.M.P. University provides day habilitation providing life skills for adults with special needs. HOPE Medical Services provides medical services to uninsured and /or low-income residents. Comfort House provides twenty-four hour palliative care to patients who have a prognosis of four months or less to live.
Funding has been provided to assist residents affected by the coronavirus pandemic COVID-19 by the following agencies: Affordable Homes of South Texas provides rent and mortgage assistance; Boys & Girls Club will provide food distribution to its members; Food Bank will provide food distribution to residents; the Food Pantry will provide food distribution to residents and will deliver food for elderly/disabled persons. The Emergency Rent/Mortgage/Utility Assistance Program has been developed to prevent, prepare for, and respond to the coronavirus pandemic. Assistance for eligible households facing eviction/foreclosure and are at risk of becoming homeless and/or disconnection of services due to change in financial stability, such as job loss or reduction in hours as a result of COVID-19.
Duties and Responsibilities of the Department
- Responsible for administrating the City’s CDBG Program and Housing Assistance Program.
- Prepare the Five Year Consolidated Plan and Strategy and the One Year Action Plan
- Prepare meeting materials and serves as a liaison for the 9 member Citizen Advisory Committee.
- Review proposals submitted by Department Heads and Public Agencies requesting funds
- Prepare applications to solicit funding from state, federal government and/or private agencies.
- Prepare monthly, quarterly, semi-annual and/or annual reports required by HUD or other agencies.
- Conduct public hearings