Public Facilities and Improvements
Modifying and improving public facilities to prevent, prepare, and respond to coronavirus is essential to foster the safety and well-being of the public. Schools, senior care centers, and other buildings used for public assembly, including those now being used as testing or vaccination sites, may require retrofitting, such as improved ventilation systems. To protect public health, CDBG-CV grantees and their subrecipients may need to modify facilities that serve vulnerable populations at higher risk for transmission and severe COVID. Some of these improvements may be eligible for FEMA funding, and this should be the first resource grantees explore, as CDBG-CV can also be used to provide the “local” share if a match for FEMA funding is required.
The need for broadband infrastructure, particularly in rural communities, was already well established, but due to coronavirus, the lack of connection to the internet leaves many without vital access. Many schools are now utilizing remote learning, and daily functions such as doctor’s appointments and ordering groceries—which used to be in person—have switched to virtual platforms. Broadband connectivity is essential. You may fund broadband with CDBG funds under public facilities and improvements activities, public services, economic development, or substantial rehabilitation of a building with four or more rental units, in accordance with 24 CFR 570.202(g). Eligible costs include the installation of wiring, fiber optic cables, and permanently affixed equipment such as receivers for areas to receive broadband/internet access.