The city of Granite Falls is working with the Upper Minnesota Regional Development Commission (UMVRDC) to apply for a grant from the Small Cities Development Program (SCDP) through the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED). This grant is for funds to help homeowners, rental property owners and commercial business owners rehab their buildings. The aim of these funds is to assist low to moderate income individuals and reduce substandard commercial buildings.

SCDP is funding by federal funds through the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program, a Housing and Urban Development (HUD) program. The goals of the SCDP is to develop viable eligible communities by providing decent housing, a suitable living environment and expanding economic opportunities, principally for persons of low and moderate income.

In December 2017, the UMVRDC was notified that the pre-application for Granite Falls was competitive in the areas of owner-occupied home rehab, single family rental rehab and commercial rehab, and has been invited to submit a final application.

The full application will designate a primary and secondary target area for all three of the activities. The city is encouraging additional interest from property owners, including rental, owner-occupied and commercial, in the areas between the following boundaries:

Western boundary: 13th St

Southern boundary: Hwy 212

Eastern boundary: the Minnesota River

Northern boundary: Dike Road, Holiday Road and 8th Ave.

Contact the city office for an Intent to Participate form, or go to the Granite Falls city website and look on the home page for “Small Cities Grant”. Send in your Intent to Participate form no later than February 8th to be included in this stage of the grant.

If awarded, property owners who apply and meet eligibility requirements would have access to funds to rehab their property. The program gives deferred loans or “grants” that require matching dollars. The deferred loan is forgiven over a 5-7-year period depending on which activity you are applying for.

The final application to DEED will require additional documents such as a resolution to authorize a full application, a slum and blight resolution will need to be approved at the February 5th city council meeting where a public hearing is also being held.

If you need a form sent to you or want additional information, contact Laura Ostlie from the UMVRDC at 320-289-1981 x102 or laura@umvrdc.org. You can also visit Facebook and follow “Granite Falls MN Small Cities Development Program” for updates of the application process in Granite Falls.