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Contra Costa, Solano Counties Receive More than $6 Million in Housing and Neighborhood Improvement Grants Provided through Wall Street Reform, Garamendi and Miller Say

September 9, 2010
Press Release

$1 Billion in Neighborhood Stabilization Grants Awarded Nationwide

CONCORD, CA – Congressmen George Miller (D-Martinez, CA) and John Garamendi (D-Walnut Creek, CA) today are pleased to report that Contra Costa and Solano counties will receive more than $6 million in Department of Housing and Urban Development Neighborhood Stabilization Program (NSP) Grants made available through the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. Previous rounds of NSP funding have provided the counties with over $16 million in assistance for rebuilding communities. Garamendi and Miller both supported the Wall Street reform legislation, which helped rein in financial sector abuses while providing needed relief for Main Street.

"Our communities have been especially hard hit by this housing crisis that was no fault of their own. This new funding is critically needed to help get our communities back on their feet and put an end to the continued unacceptably high rate of foreclosures," said Congressman George Miller, chair of the House Education and Labor Committee. "Our local governments are already working hard to improve our neighborhoods with the first two rounds of Neighborhood Stabilization Program funding – today’s new funding will bring much-needed additional help to homeowners and our communities."

"We’ve seen too many families lose their homes and too many communities lose their character because of the foreclosure crisis. Abandoned homes can expose our neighborhoods to blight, crime, and hopelessness," said Congressman John Garamendi. "When this Congress passed tough Wall Street reform this year, we insisted that the final package include significant assistance for homeowners and local communities. Today more than $6 million of that promise is being delivered to residents in Contra Costa and Solano counties."

The NSP grants will be used to rehabilitate or redevelop foreclosed homes in order to respond to rising foreclosures and falling home values. State and local governments can use their neighborhood stabilization grants to acquire land and property; to demolish or rehabilitate abandoned properties; and/or to offer downpayment and closing cost assistance to low- to moderate-income homebuyers. In addition, these grantees can create “land banks” to assemble, temporarily manage, and dispose of vacant land for the purpose of stabilizing neighborhoods and encouraging re-use or redevelopment of urban property.

Neighborhood Stabilization Program grants for Contra Costa and Solano counties announced yesterday include:

Contra Costa County $1,871,294
Solano County $1,622,757
Vallejo $1,744,593
Richmond $1,153,172
(Total $6,391,816)

Following the passage of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act in July, Garamendi hosted an event in front of a foreclosed home in Antioch with local officials, housing advocates, and a Concord family at risk of foreclosure. The home in Antioch was purchased, rehabilitated, and made available for sale from funds distributed in a previous NSP grant.