VOL. 115 | NO. 170 | Wednesday, October 10, 2001
By JENNIFER MURLEY
$2 million in grants bolsters CDCs
By JENNIFER MURLEY
The Daily News
Sixteen local community development corporations got a
much-needed shot in the arm Tuesday when city officials distributed more than
$2 million in grant awards to boost neighborhood redevelopment initiatives
throughout the city.
Before a packed City Hall chamber brimming with whos who in
local community housing, Memphis Mayor Willie Herenton opened the award
ceremony by reminding the crowd of a campaign promise in which he vowed to
devote his current mayoral term to revitalizing neighborhoods.
Great cities are comprised of strong vibrant
neighborhoods, he said. Today is a down payment, and a down payment means
there is more to come.
The funding, part of Housing and Urban Developments
set-aside HOME dollars, is being allocated through the citys Non-Profit
Housing Center as part of the mayors Redevelopment Partnership Program.
Robert Lipscomb, Memphis Housing Authority executive
director, and the office of Housing and Community Development, presented six
new CDCs recently designated as Community Housing Development Organizations
with individual $100,000 awards to be used toward administrative and project
development costs over the next two years.
While most CDCs are non-profit organizations, to be
considered a CHDO, which enables them to compete for federal HOME funds, they
must meet additional federal guidelines, which include providing affordable
housing to their stated community.
is one of the largest federal block grants to state and local governments
designed to create affordable housing for low-income households. Each year, it
allocates more than $1 billion among the states and hundreds of localities
The 2-year-old Frayser CDC was the first CHDO to publicly
accept its award Tuesday. The award was the largest grant it received to date,
said Quincy Jones, Frayser CDC executive director.
This gives us a lot of experience to, in the long run,
acquire more funding, Jones said. While his immediate focus will be on
determining the guidelines for appropriate use of the grant money, he said the
organization would eventually use the funds for housing development.
As far as our long-term goals go, we plan to develop some
duplexes, he said, referring to two units in his district pegged for upcoming
Carmen White, a Frayser CDC board member accompanying Jones,
said she hopes the community itself would ultimately reap the benefits from the
We have lots of major things going on, she said. I just
want (the money) to be used in housing and education.
Karen Tyler, an attorney with Memphis Area Legal Services,
was on hand to represent Riverview-Kansas, another newly designated CHDO that
received a $100,000 grant award.
Like the Frayser CDC, Tuesdays award represents the
heftiest grant ever received by the 3-year-old Riverview-Kansas CDC, which has
until now been run solely on a volunteer basis, Tyler said.
We need to hire an executive director, she said. That
will be our first thing.
By using the grant money to establish a solid, full-time CDC
staff, Tyler said the organization can then focus on securing funds to promote
affordable neighborhood housing, as well as social and economic development
within the community.
Other newly designated CHDOs to receive $100,000 awards were
Glenview CDC, Hyde Park/Nevets, New Chicago CDC and North Memphis CDC.
Awards ranging from $50,000 to $280,000 were distributed to
established CHDOs across the city for uses, which include administrative,
project development and economic development. CHDOs receiving the grants were
Cooper-Young CDC, LeMoyne Owen, Memphis Area Neighborhood Development Corp.,
Neighborhood Housing Opportunities, Orange Mound CDC, Project H.E.L.P.I.N.G.,
The Works, Inc., VECA CDC, Whitehaven CDC and South Memphis Alliance, and
Douglass, Bungalow & Crump.