CDBG Program Activities

CDBG Program Activities

There is a wide range of more than twenty activities that are eligible under the CDBG Program. Grantees are free to select those activities that best meet the needs of their communities. However, in order to ensure that the primary objective of the CDBG Program is met—the benefit to low- and moderate-income persons—grantees must ensure that all activities meet a national objective. It is important for grantees to remember that activities must meet this “two-prong test”—activities must be both eligible and meet a national objective.

Described below are the types of eligible and ineligible CDBG activities. These activities have been very loosely grouped into general categories since this guidebook focuses specifically on eligible and ineligible housing-related activities.

Eligible CDBG Activities

This section lists basic eligible activities under the CDBG Program. Generally, CDBG funds can be used for the following types of activities:

  • Activities related to housing, including but not limited to:
    • Homeownership assistance;
    • Rental rehabilitation activities;
    • Homeowner rehabilitation activities;
    • Housing services in connection with the HOME Program; and
    • Lead-based paint testing and abatement.
  • Other real property activities such as:
    • Acquisition;
    • Disposition;
    • Clearance and demolition;
    • Code enforcement; and
    • Historic preservation.
  • Public facilities, including infrastructure, special needs facilities, or community facilities.
  • Activities related to economic development, including microenterprise assistance, commercial rehabilitation, and special economic development activities.
  • Activities related to public services, including but not limited to:
    • Job training and employment services;
    • Health care and substance abuse services;
    • Child care;
    • Crime prevention; and
    • Fair housing counseling.
  • Assistance to CBDOs—CDBG grantees may provide grants or loans to CBDOs to carry out CDBG-assisted activities as part of the following types of projects:
    • Neighborhood revitalization;
    • Community economic development; and
    • Energy conservation.
  • Other Types of Activities—Certain other types of activities are also eligible under CDBG, including:
    • Payment of non-Federal share of Federal grant-in-aid programs for activities that are CDBG-eligible activities;
    • Relocation assistance;
    • Loss of rental income (related to relocation);
    • Technical assistance to public or private nonprofit entities to increase the capacity of such entities to carry out eligible neighborhood revitalization, or economic development activities; and
    • Assistance to institutions of higher education with the capacity to carry out CDBG-eligible activities.

Ineligible CDBG Activities

In general, any activity that is not specifically authorized under the CDBG regulations and statute is ineligible. In addition, the regulations stipulate that the following activities may not be assisted with CDBG funds:

  • Buildings for the general conduct of government (e.g., city hall);
  • General government expenses; and
  • Political activities.

The following activities may not be assisted with CDBG funds unless authorized as a special economic development activity or when carried out by a CBDO:

  • Purchase of construction equipment or furnishings and personal property;
  • Operating and maintenance expenses (of public facilities, improvements, and services), except for operating and maintenance expenses associated with public service activities, interim assistance, and office space for program staff employed in carrying out the CDBG Program;
  • New housing construction, except under certain conditions or when carried out by a CBDO; and
  • Income payments.


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