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New England News
Thu June 14, 2012
North Adams Recieves $900k in Federal Aid for Community Development
North Adams is one of 46 cities and towns in the Commonwealth announced earlier this week to receive part of the 26.8 million dollar Federal Community Development Block Grants – or CDBG. The federal program is designed to fund neighborhood revitalization projects including supporting local infrastructure repairs, public works projects, housing rehabilitation, and a number of other initiatives.
North Adams is receiving 900,000 dollars in funding. Mayor Richard Alcombright said that the money will be funding various projects including the transformation of the former North Adams armory into a community center. Alcombright also mentioned that upgrades will be made in the city to meet new guidelines under the Americans with Disabilities Act.
The mayor also mentioned that the funding will help with long overdue city planning.
With the support, Alcombright said about 50,000 dollars can be recommitted to local social service agencies.
Massachusetts’ Undersecretary of Housing and Community Development Aaron Gornstein, whose agency distributes the federal funding, praised the flexibility of the CDBG program.
Gornstein did mention however that this year’s allocation of over 26 million dollars is a reduction from previous years.
Gornstein also mentioned that the federal program is a helpful tool for moving the state’s economy forward.
The maximum grant for a single community under the program is 1 million dollars, communities with populations less than 50,000 are eligible for the CDBG grants. Other area communities to receive funding include Amherst, Greenfield, Montague, and West Springfield. Projects in those areas include housing rehabilitation, support for food pantries, immigration services, emergency assistance, youth counseling and prevention services, and community planning.