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Community Services Block Grant Discretionary Awards


Total Assistance, FY 2008 to Present
Assistance Type: PROJECT GRANTS
Popular Name: Community Economic Development & Rural Community Programs
Assistance Listing Number

Objectives: Community Services Block Grant Discretionary Awards includes three programs: Community Economic Development (CED), Rural Community Development (RCD) and the Neighborhood innovation projects (NIP). On an annual based Congress has only provided appropriations to CED and RCD programs. NIP has never received funding. CED program provides awards on a competitive basis to private, nonprofit organizations that are community development corporations (CDCs). The CDC provides technical and financial assistance for economic development activities that address the economic needs of individuals and families with low income, through the creation of sustainable business development and employment opportunities. CED funds are used for commercial developments and equity investments or loans to capitalize a new business or expand an existing business, so the businesses can create new, full-time permanent jobs for individuals with low incomes. CED allows communities to drive the type of investment and/or business to that which is most needed in the community. Seventy-five percent of the jobs created must be filled by individuals that are below 200% of HHS poverty guideline. In addition to the CED Projects Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO), CED has published three additional NOFOs that support communities with low-income that create business and job opportunities: (1) CED Focus on Social Enterprise (CED-SE); (2) CED Focus on Energy Communities (CED-Energy); and (3) CED Planning Grant (CED-Planning). All the initiatives have the same objectives of the CED program: to create economic mobility opportunities for individuals with low-income. The CED-Energy and the CED-Planning awards are aligned with President Biden’s Executive Order 14008: Tackling the Climate Crisis at Home and Abroad and the Justice40 initiative. The CED-Energy program supports efforts to empower workers by revitalizing energy communities. Energy communities are communities that have experienced employment loss and/or economic dislocation events because of declines in the fossil fuel industry and/or are disproportionately reliant on fossil fuel energy production or distribution, including coal, oil, gas, and power plant communities across the country. The CED-Planning initiative is to stimulate the development of new CED projects through the provision of resources that are used to support administrative and capacity building. The RCD program provides awards to multistate, regional, and tribal nonprofit organizations that provides training and technical assistance to small, rural communities for the improvement of drinking water and wastewater treatment facilities. RCD helps community members identify and address water and wastewater related issues, including infrastructure and accessibility needs; increase access for families with low incomes to water supply and waste disposal services; preserve affordable water and waste disposal services in low-income rural communities; train water operators to ensure water systems comply with federal regulations; increase local capacity and expertise to establish and maintain needed water facilities; increase economic opportunities for low-income rural communities by ensuring they have basic water and sanitation; utilize technical assistance to leverage additional public and private resources; promote improved coordination of federal, state, and local agencies and financing programs to benefit low-income communities; and help communities establish financial stability and financial reserves to maintain water delivery and wastewater disposal systems.