Community Development Block Grant
Congress created the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program via the Housing & Community Development Act of 1974 (“the Act”). The primary objective of Title I (of the Act) is to promote “development of viable urban communities, by providing decent housing and a suitable living environment and expanding economic opportunities, principally for persons of low and moderate income.”
Each year, Congress authorizes funds to carry out the purposes of the Act. These funds are distributed on a formula basis to cities and states throughout the country. “Entitlement cities,” such as Kansas City, KS, receive an annual, federal allocation to be used to carry out its locally-designed program strategy consistent with federal regulations governing the CDBG Program.
Each jurisdiction’s plan and strategies for using its CDBG allocation are described in its Consolidated Plan, a master plan submitted to the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) for approval every (5) years. In addition to its Five-Year Plan, jurisdictions must also develop and submit a One-Year Action Plan in order to receive its annual allocation of CDBG dollars.
Citizen participation is a critical component in the development of the Consolidated Plan (Five-Year Plan) and Action Plan (One-Year Plan). Each jurisdiction must actively solicit—and consider—public input when designing its plan for community development, Emergency Shelter Grant (ESG), and HOME programs. In Kansas City, KS, the plan-development process begins in early spring as part of the Unified Government’s annual budget process, culminating in early August with adoption of the budget.