CDBG Advisory Committee

Member Year Appointed Term Expires  
Paul Goulston
Andrew Grant - Thomas
Gail Lansky, Chair
Nathanael Larson
Becky Michaels
Lucas Hanscom
Vacancy (1)      

NEW: 2021 Grant Application Process and Schedule

Online Survey
The CDBG Advisory Committee is starting the 2021 application process and would like to hear from the community about priorities for social services, public infrastructure projects and focus areas in town (i.e. target areas) where work should take place.  Please click here to complete a short online form to provide input. Thanks. 

November 10, 7 PM Public Hearing
The CDBG Advisory Committee is holding a public hearing to receive comments on priorities and target areas for the 2021 application.  The Zoom information to access the hearing is, or by phone 1 312 626 6799  or +1 646 876 9923, with Webinar ID: 878 9582 6171

2021 Application Process Meeting Dates:


September 17, 2020-- CDBG Advisory Committee Public Hearing to review current activities and hear comments about priorities and ideas for 2021 grant process.


October 13, 2020-- CDBG Advisory Committee Public Meeting to set 2021 grant application schedule, discuss proposal format, priorities, and target areas.


November 10, 2020-- CDBG Advisory Committee Public Hearing to receive comments on social service priorities, non-social service priorities, target areas, and review criteria.

  November 17, 2019-- CDBG Advisory Committee Public Meeting to review comments from public hearing and finalize Request For Proposals, including review criteria.
  November 20, 2020-- Issue Request for Proposals
 December December 18, 2020-- Proposals DUE by noon


January 4, 2021-- Staff sends questions on proposals from CDBG Advisory Committee to applicants

 January 11, 2021-- Applicants send response to questions to Town staff
 January 14, 2021-- CDBG Advisory Committee Public Meeting to review and prioritize proposals in order to make recommendations to the Town Manager, and finalize the community priorities.

January 28, 2021-- CDBG Advisory Committee Public Hearing to receive comments on recommended proposals.


CDBG Application due to DHCD.

2020 Non-Social Service Priority (as of 11/14/19)

To continue meeting the goals of the community’s Master Plan and 2018 Community Development Strategy by focusing efforts on target areas in the Town Center, East Amherst Village Center, and the East Hadley Road/Pomeroy Village Center.

2020 Social Service Priorities (as of 11/14/19):

 Household (Individual and Family) Stabilization
 Support services for those experiencing homelessness
 Youth development
 Economic self-sufficiency (adult education)
 Food and nutrition
 Health services/Insurance navigation
 Support services for seniors


 For Federal Fiscal Year 2019 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 DHCDe, 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 February - March. 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 to 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 Town staff.

During the application process, Amherst residents have an opportunity to discuss the following components of the Town's application to DHCD:

  1. Community Priorities: A summary of community development goals that will have a positive impact in Amherst, especially low and moderate income residents. 
  2. Map of Target Areas: A map that identifies areas in Town that are a priority to receive funding.
  3. Project Proposals: Proposals are submitted to the CDBG Advisory Committee for review and prioritization as part of the Town's CDBG application.  


Project Proposal Submission Guidelines




National Objective: All projects social service activities receiving CDBG funds are required to serve a majority low and moderate income population

  • Location: Non-social service activities are required to be located in a Target Area
  • Detailed Budget: An itemized budget for the project including total budget and all other sources of funding.
  • Feasibility: A project timeline showing that the project can be completed within 12-18 months
  • Project Description: A narrative description that summarizes the project
  • Project Need: A statement that clearly outlines the need for the project
  • Project Impact: Description of positive impact of project on identified needs of community
  • Community Involvement: Demonstrate the support of other Amherst Town Boards and Committees with responsibility over relevant public interest 
  • Demonstrate consistency with the Community Priorities
  • Demonstrate consistency with Amherst's Master Plan
  • Provide supporting documentation as necessary  

Application Guidelines and Documents

DHCD Webpage