HUNTINGTON BEACH : Distribution OKd for Block Grants

The City Council has unanimously approved distribution of $1.5 million in Community Development Block Grant funds.

More than $1.2 million will be earmarked for a number of programs, including the hiring of 10 part-time workers and one full-time employee to pick up trash and remove graffiti.

Also winning approval are programs that provide: down payment assistance for low-income residents; repairs of homes damages by contracting and expanding soils; a hoist for handicapped people at the city's gym and pool; street lighting; street improvements and other projects.

Most of the attention at this week's public hearing was focused on an allotment of more than $225,000 to 16 social service agencies. They included: the Episcopal Service Alliance, $10,000; the Huntington Beach Community Clinic, $35,000; the Legal Aid Society, $35,000; the Feedback Foundation, $5,339; the Girls and Boys Club of Fountain Valley, $14,000; the Salvation Army, $20,000; the Community Services Program, $25,611; Interval House, $28,350; the Huntington Valley Adult Day Care Center, $15,000; and Orange Coast Interfaith, $7,000.

Grants of $5,000 each were approved for the Dayle McIntosh Center for the Disabled, the Someone Cares Soup Kitchen, the Hotline of Southern California, California Elwyn, the Orange County Council on Aging and the Orange County Youth and Family (Amparo).

Human Resources Board Chairman Fran Andrade told the council that the recommendations for the social programs "came from the heart."

She noted that the task of deciding the recipients was made more difficult this year because the board could fund only 16 social agencies.

However, Chris Schneider, executive director of the Boys and Girls Club, said he was "shocked" that his organization's request for $8,500 to buy a used van for transportation of "latchkey children" was rejected.

A member of the Human Resources Board said the club has other forms of transportation available and it had to give priority to groups with greater need.

The federal grant, which is expected to arrive in July, must be spent to benefit low- and moderate-income people, address slum or blight conditions or meet a "particularly urgent" community development need.

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