Brookhaven is seeking input for its 2022 plans for using a federal grant that aims to assist economically disadvantaged areas of the city.
The city announced that it will hold two public hearings to receive feedback on the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) 2022 Action Plan at a June 28 Brookhaven City Council meeting. The public hearings will take place on July 26 and Aug. 6 at 7 p.m. at Brookhaven City Hall at 4362 Peachtree Road. These hearings will take place during the city’s council meetings, and will be available to view on the city’s Facebook page.
The city previously adopted a five-year Consolidated Plan and a 2021 Action Plan in April of last year. At that time, the city expected to receive about $350,000 annually over the next five years from the CDBG program, which is funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Development (HUD). These funds are intended to go toward improving housing, neighborhood and employment conditions within the city for Brookhaven’s low-and-moderate-income residents.
According to city documents, the city’s 2022-2023 CDBG allocation is $336,993. The city proposes spending $219,603 on neighborhood and public facilities improvements, focusing specifically on the Buford Highway area. Director of Strategic Partnerships Patty Hansen said while the plan prioritizes the Buford Highway area, the city can address needs in other areas.
Projects under consideration in the Buford Highway area include additional ADA sidewalk ramps, sidewalk repair, filling sidewalk gaps, and improvements to the Peachtree Creek Greenway like potable water or electrical improvements. Citywide improvements under consideration include ADA sidewalk ramps and ADA accessibility updates at public facilities.
The 2022 plan also proposes using $5,000 on programs and activities to promote neighborhood safety. Hansen said the Brookhaven Police Department would use these funds for community outreach programs.
Ten thousand dollars is proposed for targeted code enforcement along Buford Highway, along with $35,000 to help develop and improve access to childcare for families. Hansen said the city does not have further details on how this improved access would roll out at this time. Lastly, $67,390 is set aside for administration of the plan.
According to Hansen, because the 2021 plan did not start until six months into the plan year and because of the time it takes for a program like this to meet federal requirements, the city did not expect to finish everything in that plan by the end of 2021. She said the city should have about 60% of the projects finished shortly, and the balance will be rolled out in the coming year.
Hansen also mentioned that one of the projects under last year’s plan, the removal of asbestos at Lynwood Recreation Center, has been completed, but the city made a decision to not use CDBG funds for that project. During the city council’s June 28 meeting, the council passed an amendment to the 2021 plan that would allow those funds to instead be used for ADA sidewalk ramps and sidewalk repair in the Buford Highway area.
“We are awaiting the HUD approval of that amendment, expected this month, and will be able to begin that work right away,” Hansen said.
The entire consolidated plan can be found on the city’s website.