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Public Comments Sought For Proposed CDBG Money Disbursement

Public comments are still being accepted for the township’s proposed plan on how to spend more than $500,000 in federal Community Development Block Grant program money.

The money comes from the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development, and is used to support public services, public facilities and housing projects that service low-income communities.

The township’s proposed plan includes $41,035 for nine public service programs, $102,980 for seven public facility projects and $74,482 for three housing projects.

There is also $54,714 set aside for planning and administration costs.

The remainder of the CDBG money will be distributed to township businesses, the Franklin Food Bank, and used for COVID testing sites.

The proposed public service projects are:

  • $5,000 to Middle Earth, for its Journeys Program which addresses the needs of 40 at-risk-youths and provides mentoring services, homework assistance, employment readiness and assistance with social problems and issues.
  • $5,000 to the Center for Great Expectations’ Katy’s Place, which provides assistance with staffing for daycare for 36 homeless children of teen mothers.
  • $2,500 for the township Recreation Department to support the Boys and Girls Circle programs, which provide mentoring to 130 township middle school-aged youths.
  • $4,000 for teh township Recreation Department for summer activities for 50 children at Naaman Williams Park.
  • $7,914 to the Central Jersey Housing Resource Center for housing counseling services for 149 low- and middle-income families who live or work in the township.
  • $1,500 to the Franklin Food Bank for its Community Garden, which provides 30 pounds of produce for 60 families for 16 weeks.
  • $5,000 to Homesharing, Inc. to provide staffing assistance for its home matching services for 300 Franklin residents.
  • $3,207 to Sister 2 Sister for help with staffing costs for a part-time social worker and office manager. The organization provides a number of services to women dealing with breast cancer.
  • $6,914 to the Hillsborough YMCA for swimming classes for 84 students in grades Kindergarten to 5th in the after school CARE program at Elizabeth Ave, Pine Grove Manor, and Hillcrest schools.

The proposed public facilities programs are:

  • $9,300 for Sister 2 Sister for interior lighting upgrade and new signage for teh Hamilton Street facility.
  • $14,800 for Alternatives, Inc. for a natural gas generator for a group home for four disabled residents.
  • $15,000 for the Franklin Food Bank for installation of an ADA compliant public rest room in teh client services area and a utility closet with a wash sink in the warehouse.
  • $30,000 for the Somerset Community Action Program for an expansion to convert existing space to additional program office space, which will allow for an expansion of public program use of the facility.
  • $8,271 for Center for Great Expectations for installation of an ADA compliant parking lot.
  • $6,049 for the Center for Great Expectations for installation of privacy fencing and landscape replenishment for the children’s playground.
  • $25,000 for the Citizens Club of Franklin Township for the installation of parking lot upgrades.

The proposed housing projects are:

  • $29,340 for the Lena and David T. Wilentz Senior Residence for 30 kitchen and bathroom upgrades.
  • $31,602 for the housing rehabilitation program.
  • $13,700 for administration of the housing rehabilitation program.

Public comment on the plan is open until July 14. The Township Council is scheduled to vote on the plan at its July 14 meeting.

Residents may comment by writing to the Office of Grants at the Franklin Township Municipal Building 475 DeMott Lane Somerset NJ 08873 or via email to deborah.mitchell@franklinnj.gov.

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