Bloomfield Township will receive more than $50,000 in federal Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds to assist moderate to low-income residents with minor home repairs and meals in 2020, under a proposal approved by the board of trustees on Monday, November 11.
The CDBG program provides federal funds to local municipalities to assist qualifying residents with affordable housing, home repairs and other needs through individual grants or related programs. The objective of the program is to eliminate or prevent blight and meet urgent community needs where there is no other funding available.
Bloomfield Township Services Director Christine Tvaroha told commissioners the program expected to receive about $51,857 in funding for 2020, of which $36,300 would be dedicated to home repairs and $15,557 for the local Meals on Wheels program.
The township has partnered with Oakland County Community and Home Improvement since 2009 to provide minor home repair services to qualifying residents, and expanded offerings in 2014 to support Meals on Wheels. The program has resulted in $659,000 in funding since 2009, with about 70 percent going to minor home repair and 30 percent to meals.
The program has helped to complete 117 minor home repair projects, with the average age of the owner being 79 years old and owning the home for an average of 28 years. Tvaroha said the average annual income of recipients is $30,127. Under the federal Housing and Urban Development Department guidelines, those qualifying for home improvement grants must be a home owner over the age of 60. Income guidelines are differ for each community and are based on 80 percent of the surrounding community's median income, which in Bloomfield Township is $42,750 for a single person household and $48,850 for a two-person household.
Trustees unanimously approved the proposed program funds.
Tvaroha said the 2020 funding would allow for home repairs of about seven to nine homes, with the annual household maximum being $5,000 and the lifetime household maximum of $15,000.