The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) recently announced that the State of Montana has made it to Phase 2 of the CDBG-NDR Competition. If the State is successful, these grant funds will provide a historic opportunity to help Montana communities address unmet recovery needs and increase long-term resiliency across Montana.
For Phase 2, the State will work with its partners to identify resilient projects in areas that have met thresholds set by HUD to be eligible for grant funding. In the coming days, the Department of Commerce will be in contact with all communities and partners that participated in the Phase 1 application process to discuss next steps. Additionally, the Department will be scheduling meetings, one-on-one outreach and technical workshops in the coming months, to further engage Montana communities in the CDBG-NDR process and overall resiliency efforts.
Between 2011 and 2013, Montana was the recipient of three Presidential Disaster Declarations for impacts resulting from severe storms, flooding and wildfires. These disaster declarations affected 48 of the 56 counties statewide, and while federal relief funds have been spent in response to these events, extensive unmet needs continue to exist across the state. Montana’s state agencies, tribal governments, local governmental entities, private businesses, and non-profit organizations that work with, support, or represent Montanans in areas that continue to struggle with unmet needs related to these disasters partnered with the State to submit Montana’s Phase 1 application for CDBG-NDR grant funds in March of 2015.
Following notification of the State’s success in Phase 1 of the competition, the State has begun working to refine the proposed projects described in Phase 1. This refined approach and more detailed project proposal will form the basis for the State’s Phase 2 application, to be submitted in the fall of 2015. Given the expansive geography and dispersed population of Montana, barriers to communication have the greatest impact on statewide resiliency efforts.
If awarded CDBG-NDR grant funds, the State will establish an interactive digital platform to empower state, tribal, and local entities to implement resilient strategies in their own communities. Through this platform, qualifying communities under the CDBG-NDR threshold requirements will be able to select and implement locally driven projects to address their unmet needs and improve long-term resiliency. The platform will also provide all Montana communities access to other public and private resiliency funding opportunities and technical assistance resources.
Should you have questions, Community Development Division staff can be reached at (406) 841-2770 or DOCCDBG@mt.gov.