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Housing & Federal Grants

The Consolidated Grants Program consists of three "pots" of money which comes from the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development. These three funding sources are the Community Development Block Grant Program (CDBG), the HOME Investment Partnerships Program (HOME) and the Emergency Solutions Grants Program (ESG).

  • The primary objective of the Community Development Block Grant Program (CDBG) is the development of viable urban communities, by providing decent housing and a suitable living environment as well as expanding economic opportunities, principally for persons of low and moderate income. The City utilizes these funds primarily for the revitalization of low and moderate income neighborhoods through the rehabilitation of the existing housing stock. In addition, the City funds economic development activities and human services which will complement the "bricks and mortar" approach to revitalization.
  • Included among the objectives of the HOME Investment Partnerships Program (HOME) is the expansion of the supply of decent and affordable housing for low and very low income households and the strengthening of partnerships among all levels of government and the private sector in the production and operation of affordable housing.
  • Emergency Solutions Grants Program (ESG) funds may be used to improve the quality of existing emergency shelters for the homeless, to meet the costs of operating shelters, to provide essential social services to the homeless and to help prevent homelessness.  The City funds the Pathways Program at the Lehigh County Conference of Churches to provide rent assistance to prevent homelessness and to rapidly rehouse those who are homeless.  Requests for rent assistance can be made by calling (610) 439-8653 (the City refers all requests to this program).
  • Each of these separate pots of money has a unique and specific set of rules and regulations as to how the funds may be used.
  • The City of Allentown is considered an entitlement community, which means that based on a formula including population and demographic information, the City is allocated, by HUD and Congress, a certain amount of dollars each year. However, a comprehensive application must be submitted in order to receive
    these funds. This application is called a One Year Action Plan.
  • HUD requires a five year plan be developed for the use of these funds- this is called the Consolidated Plan. This plan is a major undertaking which analyzes housing data, reviews housing stock, and includes citizen participation in setting goals and strategies. Then each year, all activities funded must address those needs and strategies outlined in the Five Year Plan. The One Year Action Plan outlines each year's activities.
  • Each dollar spent must be spent on eligible activities and must correspond to the needs outlined in our Consolidated Plan.