Public hearing held on 2011 CDBG program

City CouncilDate: Monday, Dec. 20Time: 7 p.m.Place: City HallThe first of two public hearings for the 2011 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) application was held Monday evening during the St. Marys City Council meeting. "The purpose of the public hearing is to provide an explanation for the CDBG program and for citizens to participate in presenting ideas for the development of plans for the city," explained Tina Gradizzi, community and economic development coordinator. Gradizzi explained that CDBG funds are federal dollars allocated through the Department of Housing and Urban Development to all states. The state Department of Community and Economic Development in Harrisburg administers the Pennsylvania program. "St. Marys is a third class entitlement city and we've been receiving around $350,000 annually," Gradizzi said. Gradizzi added that there was a 10 percent increase in the city's CDBG funding from 2009 to 2010. "It's estimated. We're not sure what our allocation will be. Sometimes it's up, sometimes it's down, so really we haven't gotten any word on any cuts yet, but we'll let you know," Gradizzi said. Projects eligible for CDBG funding have to qualify as either low/moderate (benefiting people of low or moderate income), slum/blight or urgent need. For more on this story, see the Dec. 7 edition of The Daily Press.