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PRESS RELEASE - Berkshire Delegation Announces $4.9M in CDBG Funding for 7 Local Projects
August 13, 2009

BOSTON – Today, State Senator Benjamin B. Downing (D- Pittsfield), State Representative William Smitty Pignatelli (D- Lenox) and State Representative Daniel E. Bosley (D- North Adams) announce that seven local improvement projects have received Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funding, totaling $4,889,756. 
Statewide a total of $40.36 million in federal Community Development Block Grants was awarded for infrastructure upgrade projects, boost social services and increase housing, business and economic development opportunities in 75 communities.
The CDBG program is administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), and funds are distributed by the state Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) to cities and towns in Massachusetts with populations of less than 50,000. 
“For towns seeing reduced local aid, the combination of this state and federal funding is welcome relief and will go towards numerous vital projects that will greatly benefit the surrounding communities,” stated Pignatelli.
“Citizens across the region will soon see the benefits of these awards,” said Downing. “This large infusion of funding will lead to visible improvements in various types of public infrastructure throughout the Berkshires.” 
“The state and federal funding for various rehabilitation projects throughout the Berkshires are imperative to ensure these facilities are maintained. In difficult economic times, keeping core community establishments open and functioning is of the utmost importance. I am grateful to the Patrick administration for continuing to pursue as much federal ARRA funding as possible," said Bosley.
More than $31 million of the state’s award comes from annual CDBG program funding with the remaining $9 million coming to Massachusetts through the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act. 
Funds are awarded competitively and are targeted to support community revitalization, meet the housing and social service needs of low- and moderate-income people and build and repair infrastructure vital to the health and safety of all residents. Eligible communities with populations greater than 50,000 receive funding directly from HUD. The maximum grant for a single community is $750,000 or $900,000 for a single community undertaking multiple, geographically targeted activities. Regional applications are accepted.
Sixty-five Massachusetts cities and towns will receive regular CDBG program funding from DHCD. With the addition of recovery funds, 9 of those communities, and another 10 towns, will also receive support for projects that were not successful in getting funded in Fiscal Year 2008.
"Competition for these very popular and flexible grants is great, and because resources are limited, we sometimes can’t fund every worthwhile project," said state Housing and Community Development Undersecretary Tina Brooks. "We are delighted that many good projects, including a number of public housing capital improvement proposals that we couldn’t fund in 2008, can now move forward thanks to the use of these federal recovery funds." 
Local CDBG Awards:
Grant Amount
Storefront improvements; Summer Street sidewalks & drainage       
CHARLEMONT, Rowe, Bernardston, Colrain, Heath
Housing rehabilitation (23 units)
CHESTERFIELD, Cummington, Plainfield, Williamsburg, Worthington
Housing rehabilitation (14 units); design of elevator for Nash Hill senior housing; first time homebuyer assistance (7 purchases); Plainfield police cruiser purchase; social services (elder health; elder in-home living assistance; family counseling; food pantry)
Infrastructure repairs and upgrades at elderly housing authority property
Skating rink rehabilitation; Armory building rehabilitation                                        
Exterior rehabilitation, window replacement at housing authority property                    
Construction of senior center in the Village Center Target Area.
Total Local Awards:  $4,889,756
Total Statewide Awards:  $40,364,491


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