Print Cottonwood up for big grants in 2011
Written by Greg Ruland   
Wednesday, 22 September 2010 00:00

Cottonwood becomes eligible for Community Development Block Grants in 2011 and City Planner Charles Scully wants to be ready.

As much as $350,000 is at stake, Scully told to City Council on Sept. 14.

Community Development Block Grants are made available by the federal government on a four-year rotation among small cities and towns. The grants may be used for a variety of purposes within certain guidelines. Preferences rotate to Cottonwood next year, Scully said.

Federal rules control grant money offered to cities like Cottonwood. To qualify, any project suggested for CDBG spending must satisfy federal goals. Grant money must either be spent to benefit low to moderate-income residents, prevent slums or satisfy an urgent need.

Projects to build housing, remove architectural barriers, improve public works or public safety, foster economic development or improve social services would normally qualify.

Projects considered priorities by the Department of Housing and Urban Development would receive preferred consideration, Scully said. HUD priorities include housing rehabilitation, rental rehabilitation, street and sidewalk improvements and historic preservation.

Cottonwood Area Transit, Verde Valley Senior Center, Verde Valley Sanctuary and Verde Valley Chapter of Catholic Charities would all qualify Scully said.

City Council must prioritize CDBG applications in January, approve applications in February and submit them to the Northern Arizona Council of Governments in March.

The Arizona Department of Housing makes grant awards in July.