May 21 – The city of Enid’s estimate of its federal funding for community rights grants was about right, city staff learned this week.
Enid will receive $454,486 for its 2021-22 community development block grant allocation from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, the department announced Tuesday.
Deputy city manager Scott Morris said he received an email with the amount several days ago.
In early April, members of the city’s CDBG funding commission had agreed to recommend allocating $450,455.46 to 10 community applications, a preliminary amount estimated by the commission prior to HUD’s announcement.
“So we were really close,” Morris said on Friday.
The members said they would have met again if the allocation of funds had been different than planned.
Morris said he has been handling CDBG-related communications for the past week since the last day of the city’s CDBG office coordinator on May 13. Applications for the post from the town of Enid will be taken until Sunday.
Morris said he had suggested by email this week that the commission add several thousand more to Making a Difference, an after-school youth non-profit in Enid which plans to launch a program of aviation for college students in Enid.
just the facts
In early April, members of the city’s CDBG funding commission had agreed to recommend allocating $450,455.46 to 10 community applications, an amount the commission estimated before HUD’s announcement was $454,486.
Making a Difference would receive just over $75,000 to acquire and renovate a building, owned by Northern Oklahoma College, to house the program.
The additional $4,000 would then equal Hope Outreach Ministries’ funding request for its men’s transitional housing project.
The money was already capped at 15% of the total, or about $70,000, for the four organizations applying for program-related funding. The city’s other requests have all been fully funded.
“It was a pretty easy decision where to put the extra $4,000,” Morris said.
Enid town commissioners will still have to approve the CDBG’s final recommendations before the end of the federal government’s fiscal year, which ends on September 30 instead of June 30. Any individual contract over $50,000 will also need to be approved.
Morris said the city hasn’t even received an official letter from HUD yet — only the email notification.
“I don’t think he’ll be ready for an agenda item until we have some type of contract with that amount,” he said. “That will be the next step.”
CDBG compensation funds should generally be used to support programs and activities that meet one or more of the following three criteria: “provide a primary benefit to low-income individuals or households”, “assist in the elimination slums or scourge” or “to meet with other communities identified as particularly urgent development needs”.
Last year, the city of Enid received $469,150 in CDBG funding from HUD.
Metropolitan cities with more than 50,000 inhabitants and urban counties can receive annual grants. Enid, which only became a metropolitan city again after the 2020 census, continued to receive the funding as the city’s CDBG program began in the 1980s when it was still a main metropolitan city.
Eight cities in Oklahoma, along with Tulsa and Oklahoma counties, received $13.5 million in funding allocations, while Oklahoma State received $14.2 million.
Ewald is an editor and city/education reporter for Enid News & Eagle.
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