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LCDBG Programs


Click here for information about the FY 2020/2021 LCDBG Programs.



FY 2019 Public Facilities

Eligible Criteria

An activity may be assisted in whole or in part with CDBG funds if the activity is defined as eligible under Section 105(a) of Title I of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974, as amended, {current law 42 USC 5305}.

Each state administering the CDBG program is allowed the flexibility of determining its priorities from that range of eligible activities under Section 105(a) of the Act. To formulate Louisiana's CDBG program, views on priorities are requested and received from municipalities and parishes through written surveys, public hearings and written comments on proposed plans. The input resulted in the establishment of the following activities eligible under the current Louisiana CDBG program:

•sewer systems primarily involving collection lines
•sewer systems involving collection and treatment
•sewer treatment only
•water systems addressing potable water
•new construction of graveled residential streets, rehabilitation, and/or reconstruction of residential streets [no asphaltic surface treatment]

Water, sewer and street improvements were identified as priority. Drainage improvements is an eligible activity but is allowed only within a streets improvements application. The State also allows funding for application preparation and program administration.

INELIGIBLE ACTIVITIES: community centers; expenses associated with repairing, operating or maintaining public infrastructure and services; and fire-fighting equipment including fire trucks.

Funding Criteria

The rating factors and corresponding points used to rate applications are discussed in the current Consolidated Annual Action Plan.

•Benefit to Low and Moderate Income Persons (maximum - 1 pt) - One point if the percentage of low to moderate income persons benefitting is 60 percent or higher. No point for a proposed benefit of less than 60 percent.

•Cost Effectiveness (maximum pts - 10)

•Project Severity (maximum pts - 50)

•Engineering Costs (maximum - 1 pt)

•Pre-agreement and Administrative Costs (maximum - 1 pt)

 
Total Maximum Points: 63

Applications are rated for cost effectiveness and severity within the following sub-categories: sewer systems primarily involving collection lines; sewer systems primarily involving treatment; water systems addressing potable water; and, streets. Water and sewer applications are required to include a signed statement by an engineer certifying that existing conditions violating a state or federal standard will be completely remedied if the project is implemented. No more than 2 target areas for street projects and all streets that qualified within the target area(s) must be improved.
 
 
Evaluation Criteria

Benefit to Low/Moderate Income Persons
 
Determined by dividing the number of low/moderate income persons benefiting by the total persons benefiting. (Income limits are provided by the State in the current Consolidated Annual Action Plan.) One point assigned if the percentage of low to moderate income persons benefitting is 60 percent or higher. No point for a proposed benefit of less than 60 percent.

Cost Effectiveness

Determined first by separating all sewer, water, and streets applications into two population groups each. The grouping of applications is based on the average number of total persons benefiting which is computed by dividing the sum of the total persons benefiting by the number of applications received in each category. One group is based on the larger than average number of beneficiaries and the other group is based on the average number and smaller than average number of beneficiaries. The application in each group having the best cost effectiveness (cost per person) receives 10 points and the remaining applications are prorated.

Determined by the following formula:
Cost Effectiveness Pts. =
Lowest cost per person benefiting /
Applicant cost per person benefiting x 10

Project Severity

The following criteria are reviewed by CDBG staff or the cognizant review agency (if applicable):
•wastewater systems and water systems addressing potable water: conditions in violation of the State Sanitary Code and the adequacy of the improvements. Compliance with federal and state laws and regulations are taken into consideration. Verification of existing conditions is provided by DHH and/or DEQ. Problems that are generally attributable to a lack of routine maintenance results in a less favorable evaluation.
•street applications: existing surface conditions and deficiencies and surface area measurements are scored following a site visit.

Engineering Costs

Applicants committing local (or other) funds for all engineering services are given 1 point.

Pre-Agreement and Administrative Costs

Applicants certifying that local (or other) funds will pay the pre-agreement and administrative costs are given 1 point.
 
Allocation

The Public Infrastructure allocation is the largest single component in the state's program. CDBG funds are awarded to projects to improve existing or to construct new sewer or potable water systems and construct or reconstruct residential streets.  A minimum construction amount of $200,000 must be included in the cost.

Includes a maximum of $35,000 for administration for grants up to $600,000 and $40,000 for grants over $600,000; up to $3,700 for pre-agreement costs.
•water projects (potable) . . $1,000,000
•sewer projects (treatment) . . $1,200,000
•sewer projects (new systems) . . $1,000,000
•sewer projects (rehabilitation) . . $1,000,000
•street projects . .$800,000

Application

Click here for the current Public Facilities Application.

 

FY 2019 LaSTEP (Louisiana Small Towns Environmental Program)

Eligible Criteria

The Office of Community Development implemented a self-help initiative known as LaSTEP in 1997. The concept is for small communities to solve water and sewer problems through self-help techniques; i.e., volunteer labor. By reducing the project down to the absolute essentials and utilizing the community's resources (human, material and financial), project costs can be reduced significantly thereby creating an affordable solution. (Required savings of 40 percent in construction costs.)

LaSTEP stems from a national program called the Small Towns Environment Program created by The Rensselaerville Institute. The Institute which is based in Rensselaerville, New York and has a southern headquarters - TRI South - located in Austin, Texas, collaborates with state agencies to implement the STEP program throughout the country. For over 25 years, the Institute has pioneered self-help techniques for solving water and wastewater problems in small towns and rural areas.

LaSTEP was established as a small set-aside from Louisiana's annual CDBG allocation. It is designed to provide water and wastewater services to communities of low and moderate income residents who have not been successful in obtaining funds through the traditional CDBG grant process.

Eligible expenditures under LaSTEP include materials, engineering and inspection services, administrative costs.

Funding Criteria

Awards are made continuously April through March 31 of each program year and are subject to the availability of funds.

Eligible recipients may apply for funding under this category by invitation only. They must be willing to solve water system and sewer system problems through the Small Towns Environment Program (STEP) method; i.e., self-help techniques utilizing community resources.

Applicants must address the following criteria:

•Commitment to the project,
•Completion through self-help techniques,
•Resulting in a significantly reduced project cost of at least 40%.

Requirements:

Applicants must attend a pre-application meeting with the Office of Community Development. Based on the outcome of the meeting, applicants are invited to submit an application and include documentation of the savings that will result through the LaSTEP method. Also needed is documentation for meeting the National Objective of 51 percent benefit to low-and-moderate income persons.

All activities must be consistent with Louisiana's current Consolidated Annual Action Plan.

Allocation

$500,000 - Includes up to $30,000 for administration; up to $3,700 for pre-agreement costs.

Application

Click here for the current LaSTEP application.

 

FY 2019 Demonstrated Needs

Eligible Activities

An activity may be assisted in whole or in part with CDBG funds if the activity is defined as eligible under Section 105(a) of Title I of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974, as amended, {current law 42 USC 5305}. However, only the following activities are eligible under this category of funds:

•improvements to existing sewer systems involving collection and treatment
•improvements to existing water systems addressing potable water
•improvements to existing gas systems

The State also allows for program administration and pre-agreement costs.

INELIGIBLE ACTIVITIES: fire trucks and fire-fighting equipment; projects for sewer treatment facilities for which the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) or the EPA have issued compliance orders; routine work such as sewer line or manhole repair/replacement or water line repair/replacement.

Funding Criteria

An application will not be considered for funding if it is also being considered under another LCDBG program category.

Evaluation Criteria:

General Eligibility
Projects involving improvements to existing water, sewer and gas systems, and other community needs as determined by the State.

National Objectives
Project must principally benefit persons of low-to-moderate income (at least 51 percent) or meet an urgent need.

Critical/Urgent Infrastructure Need (Project Severity)
Project must address a critical need that developed within 3 months of the submittal of an application. Each project will be evaluated in degree of urgency, degree of risk, number of persons affected and feasibility of the proposed solution. The evaluation will not be based upon a numerical rating system.

Demonstrated needs activities must be consistent with the current Consolidated Annual Action Plan.

Allocation

Awards are made continuously April 1 through March 31 of each program year and are subject to the availability of funds.

$300,000-Includes up to $25,000 for administration; up to $3,700 for pre-agreement costs.

Application

Interested local governments must contact the Office of Community Development to discuss the feasibility of the proposed project. If it is determined feasible, the local government is invited to submit an application. Click here for the current Demonstrated Needs Application.

 

FY 2019 Economic Development

Eligible Activities

An activity may be assisted in whole or in part with CDBG funds if the activity is defined as eligible under Section 105(a) of Title I of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974, as amended, {current law 42 USC 5305}. The Economic Development set-aside is to be used to provide grants to local governments for infrastructure improvements which will facilitate the location of a particular business. Examples include sewer, water, and street/road access on public property to the private industrial/business site boundaries.

The State also allows funding for program administration.

INELIGIBLE ACTIVITIES: Federal legislation has mandated that CDBG assistance will not be available to assist directly in the relocation of any industrial or commercial plant, facility or operation from one area to another if the relocation is likely to result in a significant loss of employment in the labor market area from which the relocation occurs.

Projects in which an elected official or a member of her/his immediate family has a financial interest as the project developer are ineligible.

Funds cannot be used to acquire, construct or rehabilitate a building or to create a general industrial park project with the hope of attracting future businesses/industries.

Also, projects involving "truck stops and related activities", gaming, "cut and sew" operations involving the manufacture of clothing/apparel and non-manufacturing operations such as hotels and motels, privately owned prisons, and nursing homes are not eligible.

Funding Criteria

Awards are made continuously from April 1 through March 31 of each program year, subject to the availability of funds.
Requirements:

•A pre-application meeting must be held with the Office of Community Development.
•A firm financial commitment from the private sector. The private funds/public funds ratio must not be less than 1:1.
•Cost per new, full-time job created must not exceed $10,000 for a grant.
•A minimum of 10 jobs created or retained.
•Employment of a minimum of 51 percent of persons whose household income at the time of employment is within low-to-moderate income limits.
•Documentation on the management, marketing, financial and economic feasibility for the proposed activities.

The review factors consist of the following: project creditworthiness; sufficient developer equity; the ratio of private funds to public funds; the number of jobs that will result in proportion to the money invested; and the applicant’s performance with any prior CDBG grants or loans from the State.

Economic development activities must be consistent with the current Consolidated Annual Action Plan.

Allocation

CDBG funds provide grants to eligible recipients for infrastructure improvements that will assist for-profit businesses. For further information, please contact Cory Williams by phone at (225) 342-7412 or by email.

The amounts available are limited by the number of new, permanent, full time jobs created based on a maximum of $20,000 per job for publicly-owned infrastructure. Includes up to $35,000 for program administration and a maximum of $9,000 for pre-agreement costs if the ERR is submitted prior to application submittal or a maximum of $4,000 for pre-agreement costs if the ERR is not submitted prior to application submittal.

New or Startup Businesses:
 

$639,000 grant for publicly-owned infrastructure
•$639,000 for purchase, rehabilitation or construction of a publicly-owned building

Expansion of Existing Businesses:
 
$1,039,000 grant for publicly-owned infrastructure
•$1,039,000 for purchase, rehabilitation or construction of a publicly-owned building

Application

Click here for the current Economic Development application.