Florida Small Cities Community Development Block Grant Program

The Community Development Block Grant Program is a federal program that provides funding for housing and community development. In 1974, Congress created the program by passing the Housing and Community Development Act, Title I. The national objectives of the program are to:

  1. Benefit low- and moderate-income persons
  2. Prevent or eliminate slum or blight
  3. Address urgent community development needs

The program, administered and funded by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, consists of two components:

  1. Entitlement - provides funds directly to urban areas
  2. Small Cities - provides funds to the states for distribution to rural areas

The Department of Economic Opportunity administers Florida's Small Cities Community Development Block Grant Program. This is a competitive grant program that awards funds to rural areas. Each year since 1983, Florida has received between 18 and 35 million dollars. One of the factors in the competitive process is the Community Wide Needs Score. This is a numerical representation of the needs of a community based on the following census data:

  • Low and Moderate Income Population
  • Number of Persons Below the Poverty Level
  • Number of Housing Units with More than One Person Per Room

The program is an excellent opportunity for communities to obtain funds for projects that the community cannot otherwise afford. Further, it provides a means to implement projects that local governments may not have staff to complete. Popular examples of community projects include:

  • Rehabilitation and Preservation of Housing
  • Water and Sewer Improvements
  • Street Improvements
  • Economic Development Activities
  • Creating Jobs for Low and Moderate Income People
  • Downtown Revitalization
  • Parks and Recreation Projects
  • Drainage Improvements

Project Requirements

To be eligible for funding, an activity must meet at least one of the following national objectives:

  • Low-Moderate National Objective - at least 51 percent of the beneficiaries must be low and moderate income persons (total family income is at or below 80 percent of the area's median income)
  • Slum and Blight National Objective - the area must be a slum or blighted area as defined by state or local law
  • Urgent Needs National Objective - the activity must alleviate existing conditions which pose a serious and immediate threat to those living in the area and are 18 months or less in origin. The local government must demonstrate that it is unable to finance the activity on its own and that other funding is not available.

Funding Categories

The program gives the community the ability to determine which projects - with a focus on the following five categories - are most needed within the overall eligibility and scoring priorities.

  1. Housing Rehabilitation
  2. Neighborhood Revitalization
  3. Commercial Revitalization
  4. Economic Development
  5. Section 108 Loan Guarantee Program

Eligible Applicants

The following communities are eligible to apply for funds:

  • Non-entitlement cities with fewer than 50,000 residents
  • Counties with fewer than 200,000 residents
  • Cities that opt out of the urban entitlement program

Funding Requirements

Upon receiving a grant, communities must comply with specific state and federal requirements related to the following activities:

  • Record Keeping
  • Procurement
  • Citizen Participation
  • Minority and Women Business Participation
  • Protection of the Environment
  • Acquisition and Relocation
  • Civil Rights (Fair Housing, EEO, Section 504 / Americans with Disabilities Act)
  • Labor Standards (Davis-Bacon Act, Contract Work Hours Act, Copeland Act)
  • Financial Management
  • Audits

Rule Authority


  • Roger Doherty, CLEP, Planning Manager
  • Tammy Anderson, Government Operations Consultant II
  • Mona Wood, Government Operations Consultant II
    • mona.wood@deo.myflorida.com
    • (850) 717-8408
    • Region 5 - Assigned Counties:
      • Brevard
      • Flagler
      • Indian River
      • Lake
      • Osceola
      • Orange
      • Putnam
      • Seminole
      • Volusia
  • Ted Court, Government Operations Consultant II
  • Debbie Dedman, Government Operations Consultant II
  • Patrick Howard, Government Operations Consultant II
  • Shaurita Jackson, Government Operations Consultant II
  • Roger Wilburn, Government Operations Consultant II
    • roger.wilburn@deo.myflorida.com
    • (850) 717-8424
    • Region 7 - Assigned Counties:
      • Broward
      • Charlotte
      • Collier
      • Desoto
      • Glades
      • Hardee
      • Hendry
      • Highlands
      • Lee
      • Manatee
      • Martin
      • Miami-Dade
      • Monroe
      • Okeechobee
      • Palm Beach
      • Saint Lucie
      • Sarasota
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