CDBG Advisory Committee

Member Year Appointed Term Expires
Mary Jane Laus, 2006 2015
Claude Tellier, Co-Chair 2006 2015
Jana McClure, Co-Chair 2007 2015
Nancy Gregg, Housing and Sheltering Com. Rep 2010 2015
Greg Schwartz 2011 2015
Ted Harvey 2011 2015
*Appointed by the Select Board: 7 members / 3-year terms

2015 Application Timeline


November 25, 2014--7:00 p.m. CDBG Advisory Committee Public Meeting (First Floor Meeting Room, Town Hall) to review draft Community Development Strategy, discuss community priorities, review proposal criteria and prepare for Dec. 4 Public Hearing.


December 4, 2014—6:30 pm. CDBG Advisory Committee Public Hearing (Glass Room, Bangs Center) to receive comments on the Community Development Strategy, priorities for funding, and target areas for projects. CDBG Advisory Committee Public Meeting after hearing to synthesize comments and finalize Request for Proposals.

December 8 or 9, 2014—Town staff to solicit Request for Proposals.


January 5, 2015—Proposals due at noon.

January 7, 2015—CDBG Advisory Committee Public Meeting (First Floor Meeting Room, Town Hall) to review and prioritize proposals in order to make recommendations to the Town Manager, and finalize Community Development Strategy.

January 13, 2015—Community Development Strategy due to DHCD.

January 21, 2015—6:30 p.m. CDBG Advisory Committee Public Hearing (Glass Room, Bangs Center) to receive comments on recommended proposals.


February 13, 2015—CDBG Application due to DHCD.

For Federal Fiscal Year 2015, Amherst can apply to the Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) for a Mini-entitlement Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) grant.  Each year the Town can apply to receive federal funds administered by the state, which are awarded primarily to projects, programs, and services that improve the lives of Amherst's low- and moderate-income residents (defined as individuals or families whose annual income does not exceed 80% of the Area Median Income as determined by U.S. Department of Housing and Urban development (HUD), and be located in an identified neighborhood or target area. 

Application Process
Amherst must apply each year to DHCD to receive the funding with applications typically due in mid-February. The CDBG Advisory Committee, with assistance from Town staff, oversees the public input process by holding public hearings and public meetings so that Amherst residents and boards & committees have an opportunity discuss priorities and target areas. The CDBG Advisory Committee also solicits proposals from the community to help determine which projects receive funding. These proposals can be submitted by various parties, including but not limited to a single individual (i.e. a developer), a Town board / committee, or a non-profit organization. Those interested in making a funding request are encouraged to contact the CDBG Advisory Committee and Town staff.

During the application process, Amherst citizens have an opportunity to discuss the following components of the Town's application to DHCD:
  1. Community Development Strategy - Summarizes various planning documents used by the community and outlines a plan of action intended to accomplish specific community development goals that will have an impact on the overall community, especially low and moderate income residents. 
  2. List of Priority Projects and Activities - A comprehensive list of town-wide projects, whether or not they are eligible CDBG activities, that the Town has identified with goals and timeline for completion.
  3. Map of Target Areas - Identifies areas in Town that are a priority to receive funding that are in accordance with the Community Development Strategy, list of priority projects and other planning reports.
  4. Project Proposals - Submitted to the CDBG Advisory Committee (by citizens, committees, organizations, etc.) at a public hearing to help determine which projects receive CDBG funds.  

Project Proposal Submission Guidelines: 
  • Location of proposed project—is it in a Target Area or village center?
  • A budget detailing the project, including total budget and all other sources of funding
  • Feasibility of project—can the project be completed within the allotted time?
  • A general description of the project
  • Statement indicating how the project achieves national objectives (i.e. benefits the low-to-mod income population of Amherst) and the populations served.
  • Impact of project on identified needs of community
  • Demonstrate consistency with the Community Development Strategy
  • Demonstrate consistency with Amherst's Master Plan
  • Provide supporting document as necessary
  • Demonstrate the support of other Amherst Town boards and committees with responsibility over relevant public interest.   

Application Guidelines and Documents
DHCD Webpage