Community Legacy Program: What’s Getting Cut?

The Community Legacy Program is slated for a $1 million reduction at this Wednesday’s Board of Public Works (BPW) meeting, as part of Governor Hogan’s proposal to cut $83.3 million from the FY 2017 state budget

According to the Department of Budget and Management’s November 2, 2016 BPW Reductions Detailed:

Reduction of $1 million in FY 17 funds for Community Legacy will reduce grant investments in areas outside of Baltimore City.

Community Legacy is a program operated through the Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) that provides grants and loans to local governments and community development organizations for essential projects aimed at strengthening communities. Awards are made for activities such as business retention and attraction, encouraging homeownership, and commercial revitalization.

Funded activities can include mixed-use development, streetscape improvements, real estate acquisition, business retention and attraction initiatives, and facade improvement programs. There is also a Neighborhood Intervention component of Community Legacy, not to exceed 15 percent of the fund, which is “intended to function as a preventative measure to address problem properties.” Fifty-five projects in 19 counties and Baltimore City received a total of $6 million in Community Legacy grants in fiscal year 2016.  Counties receiving awards included Baltimore City, Baltimore County, Harford, and St. Mary’s.

All Community Legacy-funded activities must be located within a Sustainable Community, which are areas targeted for revitalization found within Priority Funding Areas. A list of approved Sustainable Communities is available here.

The approved fiscal 2017 budget originally included $6 million in capital funds for Community Legacy – the same amount from fiscal 2016.  DHCD opened the fiscal 2017 application round in June. Applications were due on July 15, 2016. Awardees are anticipated to be announced around mid-November.