Carla A. Kosmerl
Director of Community Development
The Cheektowaga Office of Economic and Community Development administers Community Development Block Grant funds provided to the Town by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The primary goal of the Community Development Program is to develop and maintain viable communities with respect to housing, neighborhoods and economic opportunities. The flexibility built into the CDBG Program allows communities to achieve program goals while addressing their local needs through a variety of ways. Each activity undertaken must meet one of the following three national objectives:
1) benefit low-to-moderate income persons either on an individual level
or on an area-wide basis;
2) aid in the prevention or elimination of slums and blight; and,
3) meet a need having a particular urgency.
1) Low-Moderate Income Households: HUD defines low to moderate income households based upon the median income in a community on an annual basis. Median income is the point where half of all incomes are above and half of all incomes are below the area income. Furthermore, low income households are classified for program purposes at or below 30%, 50% or 80% of the Area Median Income (AMI). The current year 2014 Income Limits for the Buffalo-Niagara Metropolitan Statistical Area are included in the table named in the Income Eligibility Guidelines, located under the Quick Links section to the left. To first qualify for one of our HUD programs, your income would need to be less than that stated for your family/household size. Other requirements apply, dependent on the program to which you apply.
2) Low-Moderate Income Areas: HUD defines low to moderate income areas as those where a majority of residents are below 80% of Area Median Income. Currently, the Cedar Grove and Pine Hill areas of the Town, and parts of the Village of Depew and Sloan qualify for this designation. We encourage residents of this area to fully participate in helping to define the eligible activities and uses of HUD funds and to comment on proposed uses of these dollars.
Since the program’s inception in 1975, the Town has utilized CDBG funds for many activities, including housing rehabilitation, demolition of dilapidated structures, drainage and sewer improvements in income-eligible neighborhoods including the Walden Avenue, Cedargrove Heights, Beach Road, U-Crest and Wilshire Road areas, road reconstruction, sidewalk replacement, installation of playground equipment in Town parks and playgrounds (Stiglmeier, Winston-Vegola and Cedargrove Heights parks/playgrounds), economic development business loans, summer day camp, housing counseling, including mortgage default and pre-purchase counseling, neighborhood police foot patrols, purchase of senior citizen vans, senior citizen outreach assistance and senior citizen housing.
In 2014, the Town anticipates receiving $943,802 in Community Development Block Grant funds.
The Town, in partnership with the Towns of Amherst and Tonawanda, also receives federal funds for housing activities through the HOME Investment Partnership Act grant program. HOME funds must be used for housing related activities such as housing rehabilitation, new construction and first-time homebuyer assistance. The amount of HOME funds that are expected to be received in 2014 are $226,030. The plan to utilize these funds is included in the 2014 Annual Action Plan referenced in the Document Center to the left.
In order to ensure that the grant programs meet the needs of the community, HUD requires that the Town prepare and adopt a Consolidated Plan every five years. The Consolidated Plan is a strategic plan that sets forth a specific course of action. The first part of the Consolidated Plan assesses the existing assets and needs of the community and analyzes those needs relevant to the goals of the above HUD programs. The second part of the plan sets forth goals and objectives, as well as five year performance benchmarks for measuring progress towards meeting those goals. The third part sets out specific actions and a one year plan tied to available funding. The Town's adopted Consolidated Plan can be found in the document center located on this page.
A key component in creating the Consolidated Plan is citizen participation in each step of the process. In order to ensure that citizens have the opportunity to take part in creating the Consolidated Plan, the Town has developed and commits to the Citizens Participation Plan included in the Document Center on this page. Under this plan the public will have the opportunity to receive information, review and submit comments on any proposed submission including the Five-Year Consolidated Plan or any, Annual Action Plan, any amendments, and its Consolidated Annual Performance Report (CAPER). Information will also be available on the range of programs, estimated amount of funds available, and the estimated funding amount proposed to benefit moderate, low, very low, and extremely low income residents.
The Town makes reasonable efforts to consult with other public, nonprofit, and private agencies that provide housing assistance, health services, and various social services including those focusing on services to children, elderly persons, and persons with disabilities. The Town also encourages participation of other local and regional institutions, including businesses, developers, churches and community and faith-based organizations, some of whom are listed in the Related Resources shown on this webpage. The Town also consults with other general offices of government, including New York State, Erie County and surrounding jurisdictions.
The Town will provide citizens, public agencies, and other interested parties with reasonable and timely access to information and records relating to the Consolidated Plan and the Town's use of assistance under the relevant federal programs during the preceding five years. Please contact the Community Development Office to make arrangements to review relevant files.
The Town will consider any comments or reviews of citizens, units of general local government, agencies, or other interested parties. Written answers to written complaints and grievances will be provided within 15 days where practical.
The Town will provide accommodations for non-English speaking/Limited-English Proficiency (LEP) citizens in cases of public meetings or hearings were a significant number of non-English-speaking/LEP citizens can reasonably be expected to participate. Additionally, the Town will provide accommodations for hearing-impaired and sight-impaired citizens in cases of community meetings or public hearings were a significant number of residents can reasonably expect to participate. Residents requiring special accommodations will need to request such accommodations within a reasonable amount of time (at least five (5) days) prior to the meetings or hearings in order for the Town to make arrangements. Please contact the Town's Community Development Office in advance if you would like to request translation services, or if you need written documents in a format accessible to persons with disabilities.
If you have any physical impairments that limit your access to information about, or access to, our programs, please contact Carla A. Kosmerl at the Community Development Office, 275 Alexander Avenue, Cheektowaga, NY 14211, (716) 897-7200 Extension 7, for assistance in obtaining program descriptions, applications or other program information.