Community Spotlight: Community Development

Welcome back for another info packed episode of TV20’s Community Spotlight. On the latest episode, TV20 host Leah Longbrake sat down with Tania Menesse, Director of Community Development for the City of Cleveland, to discuss the roles the Department has in the City of Cleveland.

The mission of the Department of Community Development is a simple one: improve the quality of life for Cleveland residents. Through neighborhood revitalization, affordable housing, and urban development funds, the Department of Community Development has helped breathe life back into areas of Cleveland that were once left by the wayside.

The Department can be broken up into 3 categories:

  • Neighborhood Services
  • Neighborhood Development
  • Administrative Services

Neighborhood Services

Neighborhood Services provides home improvement services to the residents of Cleveland. These can range from consumer affairs counseling to senior homeowner assistance. Residents are encouraged to look into the currently available programs, such as the Repair-A-Home Program. Homeowners can take up to 80K in loans from the City at almost 0% interest.

Neighborhood Development

Neighborhood Development aims to bring new businesses and housing to Cleveland. With over 15 thousand plots of land currently in the City’s land bank, the Department is eager to work with for-profit and non-profit partners.

Administrative Services

While not the largest of the three sections, Administrative Services is the most philanthropic. Administrative Services disperses nearly 7 million dollars to the various Wards every year, while inviting non-profits to apply for funding.

The Department of Community Development also has a number of initiatives that are currently in the works. These are aimed at creating solutions to problems neighborhoods currently face. A few of these include:

  • Lead Safety – providing Cleveland landowners proper information and training on how to identify and handle lead in the household.
  • Healthy Homes – improving and maintaining homes to code through various cosmetic and structural repairs needed.
  • Middle Neighborhoods – how to improve neighborhoods that are neither well off nor impoverished.

We encourage you to watch the full episode of Community Spotlight, as there is far too much valuable information to pack into one blog post. You can always contact the Department of Community Development at 216-664-4000. You can also visit their web portal on the City of Cleveland’s official website. There you can find links to the programs and initiatives mentioned here.

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