Block grants get tighter for area nonprofits

As a city committee charged with guiding federal grant funding to community organizations laid out its plans this week to begin working on next year’s disbursements, they received some bad news.

Once again, officials are expecting less money to distribute to social services in Glendale.

According to a city report, officials estimate Glendale will receive $1.7 million in community development block-grant funds in fiscal year 2015-16, down from $1.75 million this year. The year before that, the city got $2.03 million.

The cuts have been due to less federal money being set aside by Congress for the program as well as changing demographics in Glendale that showed quality-of-life factors improved in 2010, although officials have disagreed with the data.

As a result of past cuts, area nonprofits that typically receive the grants — such as Ascencia, a homeless services organization, and the Armenian Relief Society of Western USA — have had to backfill the losses with increased fundraising efforts.

The city divvies out the funding to nonprofit organizations that go through an application process. The Community Development Block Grant Advisory Committee makes recommendations to the City Council, which, in the end, gives the expenditures final approval.

Program priorities are set to be approved by November, and the application period for community organizations is scheduled to begin on Nov. 20 and end Dec. 30, according to a city report.

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