Aug. 10, 2003 – Gov. Charles W. Turnbull has sent the Legislature his proposals for distribution of the territory's 2003 federal Community Development Block Grant funds totaling $1.95 million and for reprogramming $789,671 in previously awarded funds.
The proposed new funding of 38 projects is based on recommendations submitted to the governor by the Planning and Natural Resources Department, which each year evaluates applications for CDBG funding from not-for-profit and government agencies that invariably far exceed the available money.
As is customary, the proposed allocations are divided equally between the two districts. A Government House release distributed on Friday gives the total for St. Croix as $780,000. It gives the totals for St. Thomas and St. John as $620,000 and $160,000, respectively. The itemized breakdowns add up to $660,000 for St. Thomas and $120,000 for St. John, but the district total still comes to $780,000, the same as for St. Croix.
The proposal also includes $390,000 for administration of the grant program by the administration's Capital and Development Planning Division.
According to the release, the deadline for the territory to submit the application for the V.I. grant to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development is Tuesday. However, Turnbull said he has requested a month's extension and is "confident that this extension will be granted." He gave the Senate a deadline of Aug. 31 by which to act on the proposal.
Following is the proposed awarding of 2003 CDBG money for programs and projects:
New awarding of funds
The Safety Zone — $75,000 to complete construction of a shelter facility for domestic violence victims.
DPNR Environmental Enforcement Division — $25,000 to develop of plans and specifications for the construction of a fishermen's facility in Cruz Bay.
V.I. Resource Center for the Disabled — $10,000 to operate an after-school program for the disabled at Julius E. Sprauve School.
St. John Community Foundation — $10,000 to operate an after-school program at Julius E. Sprauve School.
V.I. Heritage Museum Foundation — $125,000 to acquire a building in Savan to be used for tours of the neighborhood.
Bovoni Homeowners Association — $100,000 to improve sidewalks and a playground and to beautify the Bovoni neighborhood.
V.I. Resource Center for the Disabled — $70,000 to complete rehabilitation of a facility at No. 74B-75 Kronprindsens Gade.
Catholic Charities of the V.I. — $50,000 to renovate a soup kitchen facility at No. 7 Hospital Line.
DPNR Environmental Enforcement Division — $50,000 to construct a fish market on the eastern end of the island.
Education Department — $30,000 to construct a playground/recreational facility in Mandahl.
Methodist Training and Outreach Center — $25,064 to operate an outreach and counseling program for the homeless.
Catholic Charities of the V.I. — $25,000 to replace water and sewer lines to serve homeless persons, the homebound elderly and the mentally ill at a facility at No. 9 Hospital Ground.
DPNR Environmental Enforcement Division — $25,000 to install channel buoys at public beaches.
Garden Street/Long Path Association — $20,000 in additional funding to construct a community center and playground for neighborhood residents.
KidsCope — $20,000 to provide crisis-intervention services to children who have been abused or exposed to domestic violence and their families.
We From Up Street — $14,156 to operate an after-school program for youths of low- and moderate-income families.
Down Street People — $13,156 to operate an after-school program for youths of low- to moderate-income families.
Methodist Training and Outreach Center — $13,156 to operate an after-school program for youths from low- to moderate-income families.
St. Andrews Seek and Serve — $13,156 to operate an after-school program for youths from low- and moderate-income families.
V.I. Missions — $13,156 to operate an after-school and GED program for youths from low- and moderate-income homes.
We Savaneros — $13,156 to operate an after-school program for youths from low- and moderate-income homes.
Housing Parks and Recreation Department — $10,000 to operate a swimming and after-school program.
V.I. Housing Authority / Weed and Seed program — $10,000 to conduct courses in typing, basic computer applications and administrative office procedures.
V.I. Housing Authority — $10,000 to conduct courses in computer literacy and job readiness, and to operate an after-school program for public housing residents.
V.I. Resource Center for the Disabled — $10,000 to operate an after-school program for the disabled at No. 74-75 Kronprindsens Gade.
V.I. Housing Finance Authority — $250,000 to make improvements at various sites preparatory to construction of homeownership units.
Housing Parks and Recreation Department — $200,000 to complete construction of a community and recreational center.
V.I. Housing Authority — $108,729 to install water meters at the Williams Delight housing community.
Estate Castle Burke Tenants Association — $79,156 to construct a community center for Castle Burke residents.
Women's Coalition of St. Croix — $37,991 to rehabilitate a facility at No. 39 Queen Street, Frederiksted.
DPNR Environmental Enforcement Division — $15,000 to install channel buoys at public beaches.
Education Department — $14,156 to operate a John H. Woodson after-school program in Friedensborg.
Helping Children Work — $14,156 to operate an after-school program in Grove Place.
Holy Ghost Deliverance Ministries — $14,156 to operate an after-school program in Barren Spot.
V.I. Housing Authority — $14,156 to operate a computer literacy program in public housing communities.
Blue Marlins Swim Team — $14,000 to operate a swim program for youths from low- and moderate-income families.
Garden School — $12,000 to operate after-school programs at the Bamboula Foundation, John H. Woodson Junior High School and Eulalie Rivera Elementary School.
Women's Coalition of St. Croix — $6,500 to operate after-school programs in Christiansted at No. 7 Estate Street and at the Seventh-day Adventist Church on Queen Street.
Reprogramming of previously awarded funds
The governor is calling for the reprogramming of previously awarded fund for four purposes:
– $419,830 for V.I. Housing Finance Authority site improvement on St. Thomas.
These funds were previously awarded as CDBG funding consisting of $100,000 in program income, $150,000 from 2001, $140,000 from 1999, $20,282 from 1998, $8,691 from 1994 and $857 from 1990.
According to the release, these funds were approved by the Legislature for the purchase of a house in Smith Bay to serve as the East End Clinic. "However, the owner and the buyer have been unable to agree to a purchase price," it stated. Further, "the property has been placed on the open market for sale and there is a question about the suitability of the building."
– $60,000 for improvement of the Frenchtown fishermen's facility.
The money was allocated last year "for the construction of a second floor on the Winston Raymo Recreation Center to serve as a dormitory for visiting athletes," the release stated. However, "HUD deemed the project ineligible."
In 2001, $100,000 in CDBG funds was awarded to the Frenchtown fishing project. However, "this amount is insufficient," according to the release, and the $60,000 would be added to the initial grant. "The plans and specifications are in progress," he said.
– $219,651 for V.I. Housing Finance Authority site improvement.
This amount represents two earlier CDBG awards, of $115,495 in 2000 and $104,156 in 1999, to Our Town Frederiksted to provide loans and grants to Frederiksted residents for rehabilitation of their homes. "The organization has been slow in using these funds since it is unab
le to secure eligible applicants," the release stated.
– $90,190 in program income from the repayment of loans from earlier CDBG funding to Our Town Frederiksted, Savan and other housing rehabilitation programs.
The governor is proposing that this money be redistributed as follows: $58,652 for installation of the potable water line in Estate Bovoni, $18,038 for CDBG administration and $13,500 for rental assistance to persons enrolled in the substance abuse programs of The Village/Partners in Recovery on St. Croix.
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