Tuesday 3:38pm
Rodney Singleton

DND/City Funding Awards for Rental Housing — June 2009

Hi John: I beg your pardon for not quoting the DND funding round information precisely last night. The DND/city rental funding awards that I made reference to were from June of 2009 (tabulated below) .

The total award for that round was $22,383,755, of which non-profits received $20,316,430. This represents nearly 91% – a disproportionate share indeed – of all city funding for that round awarded to the CDC non-profit sector. A share of funding did go to for-profit developers (Frank Thomas, Trinity, and Mitchel Properties) of a little over 9%, representing $2,067,325, but we’ve been having this discussion for spell now (see Banner letters below).
I quoted a lower number of 85% or 87% of the funding going to non-profits, indicating the disparity of city rental awards was more acute for the funding round in June of 2009. The point remains though, and we can argue the precise numbers and if they have changed much since 2009 (in lieu of arguing and to promote full transparency the city can also just provide the information — it’s a freedom of information issue — and a metric that helps establish a direction for change), but it’s clear the city spends more money with non-profits than it does with for-profit firms to develop rental housing. This has the effect of eroding the local business sector that provides the service of providing rental housing because winning city bids builds the kind of capacity that not only sustains the business and helps it grow, but also helps sustain and grow the community the local business is part of. So the city is in fact culpable in some measure for the capacity problems we face in our neighborhoods.
Add to Mr Guscott’s point, if he knew or the city had worked with his firm to locate the school department at Ferdinand’s, he would have been able to go to nearly any bank with lease in-hand and secure the funds required to develop the Ferdinand building.

— Rodney Singleton / Seen from the Hill


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