The city of Belle Plaine is slated to receive a grant for $603,750, from the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) by way of The Minnesota Small Cities Development Program (SCDP).
Belle Plaine is among one of 32 cities to receive such a grant. Funds will be used for funding single-family, owner-occupied rehabilitation and commercial rehabilitation within specified areas.
In September of 2019 the city of Belle Plaine conducted a survey from residential and commercial property owners within the targeted neighborhoods to help determine the interest and scope of rehabilitation needs.
Property owners who applied and meet the eligibility requirements will have access to the funds for certain home and business improvements.
Eligible improvements for residential properties include roofs and gutters, heating, doors, windows, insulation, siding, foundation, electrical, plumbing, and smoke detectors.
Eligible improvements for commercial properties include exterior renovations (such as signage and awning), code violation corrections, structural repair, elimination of lead based paint and asbestos, accessibility and energy improvements, and mechanical and electrical system repairs.
The SCDP grants are designed to pay for rehabilitating housing and commercial buildings and updating public infrastructure in small cities and counties.
“These grants will help small Minnesota cities move forward with essential improvements to housing and public infrastructure,” said DEED Commissioner Steve Grove in a statement. “The funding comes at a good time to assist Greater Minnesota communities in their recovery from the economic impacts of COVID-19.”
Cities and townships with populations under 50,000 and counties with populations under 200,000 are eligible to apply for SCDP grants. Eligible projects must meet one of three objectives: benefit people of low and moderate incomes, eliminate slum and blighted conditions, or eliminate an urgent threat to public health or safety.
The projects must be completed within 30 months.
Projects funded through SCDP grants are scheduled to kick off in the next few months and are slated to wrap up December 2022. Community meetings and construction applications are set to begin in September and run through October. Construction projects should wrap up by November 2022, and the SCDP funding period will close that December.
The SCDP is federally funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Statewide, the SCDP grants for infrastructure and rehabilitation projects hover around $19 million.