Marseilles applies for Community Development Block Grant

City tries to obtain grant for 2nd year in a row

Pictured is a before and after of one of the homes Marseilles was able to rehabilitate last year.

The Marseilles City Council has joined Streator and Ottawa in applying for the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity Community Development Block Grant with the help of the North Central Illinois Council of Governments.

Marseilles already has experience in receiving the grant, using it last year to provide funds for residents in homes that needed updates to reach code.

Marseilles Mayor Jim Hollenbeck said he hopes the city can receive the grant a second time to continue the work in updating some of these older homes.

The area that qualifies for receiving grant funds if the city’s application is selected stretches from Main Street to Chicago Street and is bordered by Bluff Street to the north and the Illinois River to the south.

Connie Buchanan, with NCICG, said the grant is competitive and works on a points system: By having more than 10 citizens show up to its meeting Thursday night, Marseilles took a step in the right direction.

The money for the grant comes from $7 million given to the state of Illinois by the federal government that is divvied to towns in $550,000 increments. The cities are then allowed to spend up to $50,000 on at least 10 different properties to rehabilitate owner-occupied, single-family homes and bring them to code.

Homes belonging to the elderly and the disabled will receive priority in the application process.

“Renovations can be anything as far as roofing, siding, windows, doors, flooring, electrical, plumbing and areas that concern health and safety,” Buchanan said.