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Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative

Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative Survey

United Neighborhood Centers of America (UNCA) is supporting the White House Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative (NRI) by gathering responses to a short list of questions developed by the NRI. As you know, the White House NRI includes Promise Neighborhoods, Choice Neighborhoods, at the Byrne Criminal Justice Innovation program.

Answers to this survey will be shared with federal NRI staff and may also be used anonymously as the basis for an article on the Building Neighborhoods blog. All answers will be treated as anonymous and confidential unless permission has been granted to share identifying information.

We will be collecting surveys through the end of the day on Monday, March 21. We will submit the surveys to NRI staff by March 25.

According to the NRI:

The NRI is developing an interagency policy brief that will highlight promising neighborhood revitalization efforts across the nation. The purpose of the brief is two-fold: to help communities think differently and creatively about how they can braid Federal funds to catalyze and drive a core set of results for revitalizing neighborhoods, and to help Federal agencies identify barriers that might prevent Federal funds from being used to maximum impact.

As part of this effort, we are hoping to identify examples and models of successful neighborhood revitalization efforts that the government – and other communities – can learn from. A selection of these examples will be highlighted later this year in an event and on the White House website.

To answer the survey, go here.

Neighborhood Initiatives TA "Sources Sought" Request Published

HUD has published a "sources sought" request for potential technical assistance provider(s) under its Choice Neighborhoods program. It anticipates expanding this technical assistance to Promise Neighborhoods and Byrne Criminal Justice Innovation grantees, pending funding for those programs.

The text of the notice is below.  A link to the original is here.

Solicitation Number:
PIH2011 Notice Type:
Sources Sought Synopsis:
Added: Mar 08, 2011 1:43 pm

The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) intends to procure the services of a vendor to provide and coordinate comprehensive technical assistance (TA) to planning and implementation grantees of HUD's Choice Neighborhoods program.  It is anticipated that two task orders will be added for the vendor to provide and coordinate TA to the grantees of the Department of Education's (ED) Promise Neighborhoods program and the Department of Justice's (DOJ) proposed Byrne Criminal Justice innovation program, subject to the availability of FY2011 funding for those two programs.  Choice Neighborhood, Promise Neighborhoods and Byrne Criminal Justice Innovation are among the centerpiece place-based program of the White House Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative.  Through joint technical assistance, HUD, ED, and DOJ seek to increase program alignments where grantees have shared need and will befit from a common learning platform.

The proposed NAICS for this procurement is 541611 with $7.5 in annual receipts.  HUD estimates a period of performance of a two-year base period and a one-year option year.  At this time HUD has not determined whether to solicit the service as a sole source direct 8a award, competitive small business, an unrestricted basis or under the GSA Schedule under FAR Part 8.  A decision will be made after reviewing responses to this notice.  Interested vendors shall provide a detailed Capability Statement that addresses (1) working knowledge of comprehensive planning and implementation for neighborhood revitalization across a range of neighborhood assets, including integrating solution across the domains of housing and community development, education and child development, and public safety; (2) successful experience in improving the quality, scope and sustainability of grantee activities by providing and coordinating TA through a variety of delivery methods (i.e, direct consultation, assessments, facilitation, peer knowledge-sharing forums, structured online tools, conferences, written guides, and reports); (3) successful experience providing and coordinating TA to community organizations that maximizes the impact of activities similar in type and scope to the required activities of the three federal programs; (4) successful experience identifying, leveraging and coordinating partners to supplement the TA the vendor is able to provide; (5) successful experience helping community organizations integrate federal programs and communicate programs and policy  barriers and recommendations; and (6) successful promoting case studies that are emerging. If interested, please submit your Capability Statement to Gay.E.Julian@hud.gov and Selena.P.Anderson@hud.gov not later than 4:30 ET
March 14, 2011.

Contracting Office Address:
1670 Broadway
23rd Floor
Denver, Colorado 80202-4801

Place of Performance:
Washington, DC

United States

Primary Point of Contact.:
Gay E Julian,
Branch Chief
Gay.E.Julian@hud.gov
Phone: 303-672-5281 x1819
Fax: 303-672-5062Secondary Point of Contact:
Sharon L Kadinger,
Contract Specialist
Sharon.L.Kadinger@hud.gov
Phone: 303-672-5281 x1826
Fax: 303-672-5062

Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative Seeks Input

Update: You can answer these questions via our online survey.

From our friends on the White House Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative team:

The NRI is developing an interagency policy brief that will highlight promising neighborhood revitalization efforts across the nation.  The purpose of the brief is two-fold: to help communities think differently and creatively about how they can braid Federal funds to catalyze and drive a core set of results for revitalizing neighborhoods, and to help Federal agencies identify barriers that might prevent Federal funds from being used to maximum impact.

As part of this effort, we are hoping to identify examples and models of successful neighborhood revitalization efforts that the government – and other communities – can learn from. A selection of these examples will be highlighted later this year in an event and on the White House website.

If your organization would like to share examples of promising practices, please send a brief response that addresses the following questions to NRI@ed.gov.

How have you used funding from multiple Federal programs to successfully pursue neighborhood revitalization?  It would be helpful if your response addressed one or more of these factors:

  • The specific neighborhood revitalization goals you were pursuing. Examples include: improved educational outcomes from cradle to career; enhanced labor force participation; poverty reduction; infrastructure improvements such as parks, housing, and transportation; community building; increased public safety; new economic development; and improved public health.
  • The types of State, local, and private funding, combined with Federal funding, used to support these efforts.
  • Your efforts to align or braid these programs or funds to achieve maximum impact on neighborhood revitalization.
  • The impact of any waivers to Federal regulations you received.

What factors have limited your ability to use Federal programs or funds to successfully pursue neighborhood revitalization?

How have you developed your organization’s capacity to design and implement neighborhood revitalization efforts?

What additional Federal support is needed to facilitate successful neighborhood revitalization efforts?  How should that support be structured?

Please limit your response to no more than three pages. Responses received by March 25, 2011 will receive full consideration. Thank you for your assistance with this important effort to transform distressed neighborhoods into neighborhoods of opportunity.

Neighborhood Revitalization Conference, July 21-22

Save the date! On July 21-22, 2011, we will be hosting a 2-day conference in Washington, DC focused on the White House Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative (NRI), including Promise Neighborhoods, Choice Neighborhoods, and other pieces of the NRI!

The event will feature speakers from the Obama administration, members of the National Neighborhood Alliance, and local practitioners.  We now have the location (Washington Court Hotel, near Capitol Hill in Washington, DC) and are working out additional details. Please direct all questions to Patrick Lester at plester@unca.org.

Generous support for this event has been provided by the Annie E. Casey Foundation.

Obama Administration Proposes New Neighborhood Revitalization Grants

As part of its budget proposal for the coming 2012 federal fiscal year, the Obama administration has put forward a new $20 million initiative called Neighborhood Revitalization Grants. The program would provide 4-7 grants worth $3-5 million each to high need neighborhoods.

According to budget documents, the grants would:

(1) fill key gaps that would otherwise hamper revitalization;
(2) build organizational capacity for data utilization and evidence-based planning; and
(3) leverage and target large and flexible funding sources from Federal agencies, as well as State, local, and private dollars.

The proposal is included in the HUD budget and would require congressional approval before it becomes law. The grants would be funded with $5 million each from four federal agencies: HUD and the Departments of Education, Justice, and Health and Human Services. The grants would likely not become available until some time in 2012.

According to a senior HUD official, the purpose of the grants is "to improve the performance of our neighborhood revitalization activities across all the agencies that are part of the Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative. How we propose to do that is by collectively, as one Neighborhood Revitalization team, issuing Neighborhood Revitalization Grants."

According to the senior HUD official:

The intention behind these grants is to more effectively support the existing efforts that are ongoing around the country, many of them led by some of your organizations and other cities and nonprofits who are involved in this work. We really tried to listen to the field over the last few years and hear where the gaps are in the support that is available for effective organizations engaged in neighborhood revitalization.

We heard two primary gaps. First, we heard that there is a lack of flexible funding that can fill key gaps and adapt to changing conditions on the ground over time.

Secondly, we heard that there is a lack of available support for developing the organizational capacity to utilize data effectively, to collect it effectively, to analyze it effectively, and particularly to integrate data systems across agencies, across data sets, and develop analytic capacities to to use that data to effectively promote performance within the organization and to use it in predictive ways to target interventions.

The grants would go to "organizations in high need neighborhoods, who are involved in existing, highly effective neighborhood revitalization initiatives, to fill key gaps in their funding with flexible funding and to build organizational capacity for data utilization."

"What we would be looking for in these grants are organizations that are already proven to be effective in their work (high capacity organizations) and also effective at targeting and leveraging existing flexible funding sources. We know that in many communities around the country there are block grants -- federal, state and local -- and other funding sources. We want to make sure we are targeting this support to organizations in communities that are effectively leveraging those funds toward neighborhood revitalization activities they are involved in."

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by Dr. Radut