Durham Celebrates National Community Development Week
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Durham Celebrates National Community Development Week

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DURHAM, N.C. – April 7, 2015 – (RealEstateRama) — City of Durham Mayor William V. ‘Bill’ Bell recognized the importance of the federal Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and Home Investment Partnerships Program (HOME) through a proclamation during last night’s City Council meeting as part of National Community Development Week.

National Community Development Week, which runs from April 6 through April 11, is a week-long celebration that brings together residents, government officials, businesses, and non-profit organizations to showcase the impact of the CDBG and HOME programs across the country as well as locally in Durham. Both programs are administered nationally by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

Spearheaded by the National Community Development Association (NCDA), National Community Development Week also serves as a venue for educating the public about these critically important funds that are allocated annually by Congress. This year marks the 41st anniversary of the CDBG program, and the 24th anniversary of the HOME program.  Both programs grant funds to Durham and other entitlement cities to address locally-determined housing, neighborhood revitalization, and public service needs.

On average, CDBG and HOME funds leverage more than $4 of private funds for every $1 of public funds invested. The NCDA recognized the City with an Audrey Nelson award earlier this year, with Durham being one of only seven cities in the U.S. honored for the exemplary and innovative use of CDBG and HOME funds. It is estimated that Durham’s Southside Revitalization Project, which was the subject of the Audrey Nelson award, will leverage over $40 million in private equity investment when completed, and will have created more than 1,000 jobs.

“The targeted use of public funds in the Southside neighborhood is an example of how local government can prime the pump for private investment,” said Bell. “The importance of the CDBG and HOME programs cannot be underestimated in spurring revitalization and addressing local needs.”

Members of the Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC) were also in the audience for the reading of last night’s proclamation, affirming their advisory role in the expenditures of these federal funds. The CAC facilitates resident participation in programs and activities financed with entitlement funds, and makes recommendations to the City Council on community development and neighborhood revitalization needs.

Kevin McLaughlin, chairman of the CAC, noted that the Committee plans to celebrate this week by supporting two local organizations that benefit from this federal funding. “CAC members will have hands-on learning experiences at two organizations receiving CDBG funding tied with the CAC review process,” McLaughlin said. “We’ll tour the Urban Ministries facility on April 9, with all participating members donating a new pair of socks or a jar of peanut butter. We also plan to volunteer at a local Habitat for Humanity project.”

For information about Durham’s celebration of National Community Development Week, contact Senior Project Manager John Murphy with the City’s Community Development Department at (919) 560-4570, ext. 22225 or by email at John.Murphy (at) DurhamNC (dot) gov.

About the Community Development Department
The City of Durham’s Community Development Department is responsible for coordinating the City’s housing resources and various housing assistance programs as well as promoting affordable housing by working with investors and community housing development organizations. The department also provides assistance with the abatement of lead in older homes and administers the City’s entitlement programs from the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development. Guided by the City’s Strategic Plan, the department helps to ensure that the City has thriving, livable neighborhoods by enhancing housing quality and affordability for Durham residents.

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