DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING & COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT

FUNCTIONS


The Department of Housing and Community Development works to ensure available housing at all income levels, and encourage strong neighborhoods and viable communities. The Department funds or insures loans for purchase and construction of housing for low-income families; helps low- and moderate-income families buy or rehabilitate houses; and aids nonprofit organizations with grants or loans to house the elderly, developmentally disabled, and homeless. The Department also distributes federal rent subsidies to low-income families; and offers weatherization and energy conservation aid to qualified groups and households.

To revitalize commercial districts and blighted areas, plan growth and resource development, and provide housing for citizens not served by the private sector, the Department funnels federal and State funds to communities and supports community action and regional development agencies.

In April 2015, the Department moved from 100 Community Place, Crownsville, Maryland (Anne Arundel County) to its present site at 7800 Harkins Road, Lanham, Maryland (Prince George's County).

The work of the Department is carried out by four main divisions: Credit Assurance; Development Finance; Neighborhood Revitalization; and Policy, Strategy, and Research.


OFFICE OF SECRETARY

7800 Harkins Road, Lanham, MD 20706

Appointed by the Governor with Senate advice and consent, the Secretary of Housing and Community Development is chief executive officer of the Department. The Secretary sets policy, promulgates rules and regulations, and determines the strategies to fulfill the Department's mandate. The Secretary is responsible for the budget of the Department and the budgets of the boards, commissions, and offices under its jurisdiction (Code, Housing & Community Development Article, secs. 2-103, 2-104).

The Secretary of Housing and Community Development serves on the Governor's Executive Council, the Children's Cabinet, the Governor's Subcabinet on Climate, the Commerce Subcabinet, the Governor's Subcabinet on Infrastructure, and the Smart Growth Subcabinet.

As a member, the Secretary serves on the Maryland Affordable Housing Trust; the Interagency Committee on Aging Services; the Maryland Agricultural Education and Rural Development Assistance Board; the Behavioral Health Advisory Council; the Building Energy Transition Implementation Task Force, the Maryland Building Rehabilitation Code Advisory Council; the State Children's Environmental Health and Protection Advisory Council; the Board of Directors, Maryland Community Investment Corporation; the Interagency Disabilities Board; the Maryland Entertainment Industry Council; the Commission on Environmental Justice and Sustainable Communities; the Financial Education and Capability Commission; the Government Efficiency Commission; the Maryland Efficient Grant Application Council; the Maryland Heritage Areas Authority; the Maryland Advisory Council on Historic Preservation; Interagency Council on Homelessness; the State Coordinating Committee for Human Services Transportation; the Maryland Council on Innovation and Impact; the Law Enforcement Coordinating Council; the Workgroup on Low-Income Utility Assistance; the Council on Open Data; the Rural Maryland Council; the Interdepartmental Advisory Committee on Small, Minority, and Women Business Affairs; the Two-Generation Family Economic Security Commission; and the West North Avenue Development Authority.

Directly under the Secretary are the Deputy Secretary, the Chief Financial Officer, the Chief Operating Officer, and the Chief of Staff.

CHIEF OF STAFF

From February 2019 to March 2022, the Chief of Staff oversaw six offices: Fair Practices; Housing and Economic Research; Human Resources; Legislative Affairs; Operations and Administration; and Public Information. In March 2022, the Chief of Staff was renamed as the Chief Operating Officer and Chief of Staff responsible for three offices: Fair Practices, Human Resources, and Operations and Administration. In May 2023, the position of Chief of Staff was separated from that of the Chief Operating Officer.


CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER

Within the Office of Secretary, the Chief Financial Officer formerly oversaw Strategic Initiatives. Through a Departmental reorganization in May 2023, the Division of Finance and Administration was placed under the Chief Financial Officer.

DIVISION OF FINANCE & ADMINISTRATION

7800 Harkins Road, Lanham, MD 20706

As the Division of Finance, the Division of Finance and Administration began and received its present name in 1992. The Community Development Administration, the Maryland Housing Fund, and the Office of the Chief Financial Officer of the Department transferred to the Division in 1994. In May 2023 through a Departmental reorganization the Division was placed under the Chief Financial Officer.

The Division accounts for Department expenditures and revenues; manages the capital and operating budgets; processes contracts, purchasing and procurement requests; and provides financial analytical review and reporting services. For the Department, the Division oversees financial management and central support services, including telecommunication systems, and facilities and fleet management. Advice and technical support in fiscal matters also are provided by the Division to the Department's senior program directors and managers.

Two offices are overseen by the Division: Budget and General Accounting; and MHF, Grant and Loan Accounting.


CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER

From February 2019 to March 2022, the Chief of Staff oversaw six offices: Fair Practices; Housing and Economic Research; Human Resources; Legislative Affairs; Operations and Administration; and Public Information. In March 2022, the Chief of Staff was renamed as the Chief Operating Officer and Chief of Staff responsible for three offices: Fair Practices, Human Resources, and Operations and Administration. In March 2023, functions of the Chief Operating Officer were separated from those of the Chief of Staff.

Under the Chief Operating Officer are the Division of Information Technology, and four offices: Fair Practices; Human Resources; Operations and Administration; and Procurement.

OFFICE OF OPERATIONS & ADMINISTRATION

DIVISION OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY

7800 Harkins Road, Lanham, MD 20706

As the Office of Data Processing under the Division of Finance and Administration, the Division of Information Technology originated in 1985. It became the Office of Research and Information Systems under the Office of Secretary in 1988. Renamed Office of Information Systems in 1994, the Office reorganized as the Division of Information Technology and Portfolio Management in 1996, and under its present name in 1998. In May 2023 through a Departmental reorganization the Division was placed under the Chief Operating Officer.

The Division of Information Technology provides technology products and services to Department staff, and assesses their technology needs. Further, the Division designs, develops, implements, and maintains necessary databases and applications, trains staff users, and provides technical support.


DEPUTY SECRETARY

Assisting the Secretary of Housing and Community Development is the Deputy Secretary, who is appointed by the Secretary with the approval of the Governor.

From January 2022 to March 2023, the Deputy Secretary had been responsible for four offices: Community Engagement, Legislative and Public Affairs, Public Information, and Research and Economic Development. Through reorganization in April 2023, Legislative and Public Affairs moved to the Office of Secretary, and the other offices transferred to the Division of Policy, Strategy, and Research. Since May 2023, three offices have reported directly to the Deputy Secretary: Community Engagement, Public Information, and Statewide Broadband.

OFFICE OF COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT

The Office of Community Engagement started as the Office of Community Outreach under the Chief of Staff by September 2012. It moved, by June 2015, to the Office of Public Information within the Office of Secretary. In August 2022, still under the Office of Public Information, it transferred to the Deputy Secretary. By October 2023, it separated from the Office of Public Information and reformed as the Office of Community Engagement.

OFFICE OF PUBLIC INFORMATION

The Office of Public Information originated by June 2003 as Communications under the Office of Secretary. By February 2004, it reorganized as Communications and Marketing, and by April 2004 as the Office of Communications and Marketing. By August 2004, its functions were divided into the Office of Government Affairs and Public Affairs and a separate Office of Marketing. By April 2006, its functions were re-united in the Office of Communications, Marketing, and Advertising, but by June 2008, it reformed as the Office of Communications and Marketing, and in July 2008 transferred to the Chief of Staff. Renamed as the Office of Public Information in June 2015, it was placed under the Office of Secretary. By August 2022, it transferred to the Deputy Secretary. The Office moved to the Division of Policy and Strategic Initiatives in April 2023, and by May 2023 was placed again under the Deputy Secretary.

Under the Office of Public Information is the Office of Communications.

OFFICE OF STATEWIDE BROADBAND

In 2017, the Office of Statewide Broadband was created by the Governor as the Office of Rural Broadband within the Department of Information Technology (Executive Order 01.01.2017.14). By 2020, the General Assembly had established the Office by statute, and transferred it to the Department of Housing and Community Development where it was placed under the Chief Financial Officer. In April 2021, the Office of Rural Broadband was restructured by the General Assembly as the Office of Statewide Broadband within the Department of Housing and Community Development (Chapter 74, Acts of 2021). The Office moved directly under the Office of Secretary in July 2021, and transferred to the Deputy Secretary in May 2023.

In Maryland, the Office of Statewide Broadband develops definitions and standards for broadband to meet requirements for businesses, communities, educational institutions and health care providers. To create a statewide audit of availability, reliability, and affordability of broadband internet services in each county, the Office collects pricing data from providers, and assesses actual upload and download speeds experienced by consumers.

To expand access to broadband internet services, local jurisdictions are assisted by the Office, which identifies areas needing better internet service, estimates what funding is needed to connect residents to high-speed internet service, and coordinates the delivery of resources to improve access to broadband services in those areas. To further those ends, the Office is to maintain a website with a publicly accessible map showing where no access to broadband internet is available; the prices and plans available for broadband internet services in different areas; and other available geographic and demographic State data. Geographic and demographic data on households relying on mobile broadband for internet service is to be collected, analyzed, and shared by the Office.

Data on funding available through government and private sources for expanding broadband infrastructure is identified and shared by the Office, which also solicits information on financial investment in high-speed internet from local jurisdictions and private entities. Through partnerships with library systems, local jurisdictions, other institutions, and the private sector, funding and technical assistance is provided by the Office to local governments and private entities to qualify for federal funding opportunities, and to plan and construct broadband infrastructure. In addition, the Office evaluates new technologies that increase the availability of broadband internet service in Maryland; looks for partnerships to share resources; recommends policy, legislation, and regulations for improving availability and access to broadband internet service in the State; and collaborates with local education agencies and community colleges to ensure that students have reliable broadband internet necessary for remote learning.

Three Funds are administered by the Office of Statewide Broadband: the Digital Connectivity Fund; the Digital Inclusion Fund, and the Rural Broadband Assistance Fund.

Annually, the Office reports to the Governor and General Assembly, and by July 1, 2022, the Office was to prepare and submit a statewide broadband plan to the Governor and General Assembly (Chapter 74, Acts of 2021).


DIVISION OF CREDIT ASSURANCE

7800 Harkins Road, Lanham, MD 20706

In 1987, the Division of Credit Assurance started as the Division of Housing Insurance. Renamed the Division of Housing Credit Assurance in 1990 (Chapter 321, Acts of 1990), it received its present name in 1996.

The Division is responsible for the Maryland Housing Fund and asset management for the multi-family loan portfolio of the Department (Code Housing & Community Development Article, secs. 3-101 through 3-104).

MARYLAND HOUSING FUND

In 1971, the Maryland Housing Fund was established by the General Assembly within the Department of Economic and Community Development (now Department of Housing and Community Development) (Chapter 669, Acts of 1971).

By insuring mortgage loans and employing other credit enhancements, the Fund assists State citizens of low and moderate income to secure housing. To stimulate the flow of private investment capital into Maryland for this purpose, the Fund uses a variety of innovative mortgage insurance programs (Code Housing & Community Development Article, secs. 3-201 through 3-208).

ASSET MANAGEMENT

Asset Management began as Housing Management in the Community Development Administration. Renamed Asset Management, it transferred to the Division of Housing Credit Assurance in May 1994 and to the Division of Credit Assurance in 1996. Its functions reformed under Multifamily Asset Management in 1998. Reorganization in 2003 created Asset Management overseeing Single-Family Operations, and Multifamily Operations (now Special Assets).

Asset Management monitors and manages the Department's multifamily, single family, and small business portfolios and real estate assets, including State-funded loans and bond loans insured by the Maryland Housing Fund, the Federal Housing Authority, and others. To oversee these portfolios and real estate assets, Asset Management uses automated databases, standardized procedures, and early warning indicators. The database also provides a means of monitoring performance trends of the portfolio as a whole.

Construction Loans insure mortgages to nonprofit and qualified private developers of new or rehabilitated housing for families and individuals, the elderly and the disabled. Only in combination with permanent mortgage financing are construction loans insured. The Maryland Housing Fund is the only insurer of construction loans in the State, other than the Federal Housing Administration.

Permanent Loans insure permanent mortgages to nonprofit and qualified private developers of new or rehabilitated housing. Permanent mortgage insurance is provided to multifamily projects for new construction and rehabilitation, projects receiving federal subsidies, and market-rate projects financed by eligible issuers of revenue bonds.

Portfolio Management began in 1994 under the Maryland Housing Fund and became part of the Division of Information Technology and Portfolio Management in 1996. Functions of the office were returned to the Maryland Housing Fund in 1998. For the Maryland Housing Fund, the office focuses on risk management, and analysis and planning to better position the Fund's portfolio for the future. The office has helped increase reserve funds through loan and mortgage insurance initiatives.

Special Housing Opportunities Program (SHOP) Loans provide mortgage insurance to encourage the availability of financing to nonprofit agencies for group homes to house those with special needs, including the elderly, and the developmentally and mentally challenged. Mortgage loans finance or refinance acquisition, construction, or rehabilitation of shared living or related facilities for those with special needs. The Community Development Administration is the lender for these programs.


DIVISION OF DEVELOPMENT FINANCE

7800 Harkins Road, Lanham, MD 20706

The Division of Development Finance was created by the General Assembly in 1987 as the Division of Housing Finance (Chapter 311, Acts of 1987). In 1995, it received its present name (Chapter 115, Acts of 1995).

The Division consists of the Community Development Administration, which operates finance programs for single- and multi-family housing with the proceeds of revenue bonds issued by the Administration. The Division runs other State housing programs as well (Code Housing & Community Development Article, secs. 4-101 through 4-103).

BOND FINANCE
To raise funds for single-family and multi-family home loans, Bond Finance sells both tax-exempt and taxable bonds. It also directs the investment and accounting of over $2.8 billion in revenue bond assets. Bond Finance reports information about the financial strength of the Community Development Administration and its debt and bond programs to the Department, investment bankers, bond holders, and rating agencies.

COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT ADMINISTRATION

In 1970, the Community Development Administration was formed by the General Assembly within the Department of Economic and Community Development (Chapter 527, Acts of 1970). The Administration joined the Department of Housing and Community Development in 1987 (Chapter 311, Acts of 1987).

The Administration works to increase the supply of housing for families of limited income, the elderly, and the disabled. It also fosters sound community development and stimulates the construction industry statewide. Programs that increase home ownership, improve rental housing, build group homes, and assist owners with rehabilitated housing are overseen by the Administration. Programs are funded by the sale of tax-exempt revenue bonds; taxable bonds; State general obligation bonds; general funds; special funds generated through loan repayments, fees, and charges; and federal housing subsidies. The Administration also issues essential function bonds for the Local Government Infrastructure Program.

Projects proposed for financial assistance must comply with local priorities and complement and supplement local community development programs and initiatives. Projects also must meet eligibility criteria and financing requirements (Code Housing & Community Development Article, secs. 4-201 through 4-216).

BUSINESS LENDING PROGRAMS

Business Lending Programs began as Community Development, reformed as Multifamily Housing Programs, and restructured as Multfamily and Business Lending Programs in April 2015. It reformed as Business Lending Programs by May 2023.

Under Multifamily and Business Lending Programs are two units: Business Lending, and Multifamily Housing Programs.

BUSINESS LENDING
In 1995, Business Lending began as the Neighborhood Business Development Program under the Division of Neighborhood Development. Later, it became the Neighborhood BusinessWorks Program under the Community Development Administration. In April 2015, the Program was reformed as Business Lending within the Division of Development Finance under Multifamily and Business Lending Programs (now Business Lending Programs).

Business Lending stimulates investment in Maryland's older communities. It aids designated neighborhoods to develop, redevelop, or expand small businesses, invests in revitalizing small businesses, and helps local governments develop and expand small businesses (Code Housing & Community Development Article, secs. 6-301 through 6-311).

To help increase credit availability for small businesses in response to the economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, the federal American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 in March 2021 reauthorized and expanded the federal Small Business Jobs Act of 2010. The Jobs Act created the State Small Business Credit Initiative within the U.S. Department of the Treasury. In December 2021, the Governor designated the Department of Housing and Community Development to administer the State Small Business Credit Initiative for Maryland (Executive Order 01.01.2021.12).

The State Small Business Credit Initiative supports states with programs that increase access to credit for small businesses, which have had difficulty retaining existing loans or securing new loans needed to keep in operation.

ENERGY PROGRAMS

Energy Programs formed under the Division of Development Finance as the Office of Energy and Business Lending in May 2022. It separated into two units by 2023: the Office of Energy, and the Office of Business Lending. By May 2023, it reorganized as Energy Programs under the Community Development Administration.

Energy Programs oversees several programs that help Maryland residents improve energy efficiency in their homes. These include the BeSMART Home Loan Program, the EmPOWER Maryland Low-Income Energy Efficiency Program, the Enhanced Weatherization Program, and the Weatherization Assistance Program.

BeSMART Home Loan Program. This program offers innovative financing to improve home energy efficiency, save the homeowner money, increase the safety and comfort of the home, and add value to the home. Homeowners choose their weatherization and energy efficiency professionals from a list of eligible providers whose qualifications have been reviewed by the Department. This program has no income limits.

EmPOWER Maryland Low-Income Energy Efficiency Program. The program helps low-income households make energy efficiency repairs and upgrades free of charge. Program participants must meet income qualifications and have a utility account with one of five participating utility companies in Maryland.

Enhanced Weatherization Program. This program provides grants to eligible homeowners for energy efficiency repairs and improvements. To participate, homeowners must meet income qualifications and be the occupant of the home. The property must be located outside Baltimore City, and the homeowner must have a utility account with Baltimore Gas & Electric.

Weatherization Assistance Program. Formerly under the Department of Human Resources, this program became part of the Department of Housing and Community Development in 1987 (Chapter 311, Acts of 1987).

The Program funds local community service organizations to help eligible low-income households conserve energy by weatherizing their houses. Priority is given to homeowners who are elderly, disabled, or have children. Renters also may apply. The Program contracts with seventeen local administering agencies (county governments, community action agencies, offices on aging, and nonprofit organizations) to provide weatherization assistance statewide.

Since 1991, the Weatherization Assistance Program has entered into agreements with major utility companies in Maryland to promote energy conservation through weatherization in low-income households. By joining these private funds with federal funds, more low-income households can be served.

MULTIFAMILY HOUSING PROGRAMS

Multifamily Housing Programs administers lending programs to increase available housing statewide. Funds either are appropriated by the State or raised through bond sales by Bond Finance. Loans are used by borrowers to purchase single-family homes; construct or rehabilitate rental housing; finance group homes for the elderly and Marylanders with special needs; and assist homeowners with maintenance, rehabilitation, or weatherization.

Under Multifamily Housing Programs are three units: Housing Development, Multifamily Administration and Initiatives, and Strategic Initiatives.

HOUSING DEVELOPMENT
Ten programs come under Housing Development. They include the Elderly Rental Housing Program, the HOME Program, the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit Program, the Maryland Housing Rehabilitation Program - Multifamily, the Multifamily Bond Program, the Nonprofit Rehabilitation Program, the Partnership Rental Housing Program, the Rental Housing Production Program, the Shelter I Program, and the Transitional Housing and Emergency Shelter Program.

Elderly Rental Housing Program. This program was created by the Legislature in 1984. The Program provides below-market-rate or deferred payment loans to developers who agree to construct or rehabilitate rental housing for occupancy by low-income elderly households. Priority is given to developments that serve the lowest income households.

HOME Program. The Program finances construction, acquisition, and rehabilitation of rental housing, owner-occupied housing, and special needs housing, such as group homes. The Program was designated by the Governor to allocate funds from the HOME Investment Partnership Program established by the federal National Affordable Housing Act of 1990 (Title II). HOME funds are used in conjunction with the Homeownership, Housing Development and Special Loan Programs of the Community Development Administration. Projects funded must meet federal HOME regulations. For HOME funds used in conjunction with the Community Development Administration, projects must qualify for the Community Development Administration program. Some funds are allocated to an Opportunities Fund awarded competitively to initiate pilot programs, and support promising projects. Monies from the Opportunities Fund are awarded to projects that neither qualify for nor need funds from other programs of the Community Development Administration, or to those which the Administration, as a matter of policy, has elected not to fund under its existing program.

Low-Income Housing Tax Credit Program. The Governor designated this program to allocate tax credits in Maryland under the federal Tax Reform Act of 1986 and Revenue Reconciliation Act of 1989. Tax credits are awarded through a competitive allocation to both nonprofit and for-profit sponsors of low-income housing.

Maryland Housing Rehabilitation Program - Multifamily. The Program is designed to preserve housing by making direct, low-interest loans for repair and renovation to the owners of apartment buildings with five or more units and commercial properties. Recipients of loans for the renovation of rental properties must make units available to low-income tenants in the same proportion as Program financing to total project costs. Authorized by the General Assembly in 1975, the Program is funded by State general obligation bonds, general funds, and by repayments of principal and interest on outstanding loans (Code Housing & Community Development Article, secs. 4-901 through 4-932).

Multifamily Bond Program. Below-market-rate construction and permanent financing using taxable and tax-exempt bonds and notes are provided by this program. To be eligible, developments must set aside a portion of the units for limited-income households.

Partnership Rental Housing Program. Authorized by the General Assembly in 1988, the Program started as a two-year pilot project to expand the supply of affordable housing for the working poor. The Program was established by statute in 1990 (Chapter 343, Acts of 1990). In a partnership, local governments provide the finished site, including roads, water, sewer, and other infrastructure, while the Division of Development Finance provides construction and permanent financing for rental housing units (Code Housing & Community Development Article, secs. 4-1201 through 4-1209).

Rental Housing Production Program. The Legislature created this program in 1986 to stimulate production of rental housing for lower-income households. Funds can be used for capital assistance to cover costs of construction, rehabilitation, or acquisition of rental housing; or for mortgage assistance to reduce the operating costs of rental housing. Local governments must make a contribution to reduce costs or otherwise support developments financed through the Program. Priority is given to developments that serve households at 30 percent or less of area median income. The Program is funded with general funds and repayments of principal and interest on outstanding loans (Code Housing & Community Development Article, secs. 4-1501 through 4-1511).

Shelter I Program. Established in January 1990, the Program encourages nonprofit organizations, such as churches and community groups, to take the initiative in sponsoring their initial small housing project for low-income families or individuals. The Program supplies technical assistance and preferred interest rate loans from the programs listed above.

Transitional Housing and Emergency Shelter Program. This program provides grants to improve or create transitional housing and emergency shelters which include supportive services for their tenants. Its purpose is to reduce homelessness in the State. New construction, acquisitions, rehabilitation of housing, and purchase of capital equipment are eligible for grants. Grants may be provided to local governments and nonprofit organizations (Internal Revenue Code, sec. 501(c)(3)). Sponsors must agree to maintain the project as transitional housing or an emergency shelter for a term of 15 years. Local government letters of support are required for all projects.

MULTIFAMILY RENTAL SERVICES
Under Multifamily Housing Programs, Multifamily Rental Services provides rental assistance with federal and State funds to low-income families for decent, safe and sanitary housing. Federal rental assistance comes to the State through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development under the Federal Housing Act of 1937 (42 USC 1437, as amended). The office monitors compliance with legal mandates of all rental developments financed with Community Development Administration loans and federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credits. Rental Service Programs include the Rental Allowance Program, and the Section-8 Housing Choice Voucher Program.

Rental Allowance Program. Created by the General Assembly in 1986, this program was first funded in 1987. For low-income homeless households or those with critical or emergency housing needs, the Program subsidizes rent for short terms. The Program is administered through grants to local governments for monthly payments to eligible households. Funding is provided through State general funds (Code Housing & Community Development Article, secs. 4-1401 through 4-1408).

Section-8 Housing Choice Voucher Program. Under the Program, participating landlords make available to low-income families rental housing that meets occupancy standards. To qualify, total family income must be 50 percent or less of the median income for the area in which the housing is located. Through local administering agencies, the Community Development Administration accepts and reviews applications from prospective tenants for participation in the program. Families that qualify are issued Certificates of Family Participation.

The Community Development Administration or the local administering agency guarantees payments to owners who agree to rent to qualifying families. The housing and lease must adhere to federal standards. Through the Community Development Administration, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development subsidizes a portion of the rent. Families may seek rental housing in neighborhoods that best suit their needs.

Under the Voucher Program, rent is established according to a local payment standard. If the rent exceeds the standard rate for that area, tenants may pay no more than 40 percent of their adjusted monthly income.

SPECIAL NEEDS
Special Housing Opportunities Program. The Program funds nonprofit organizations (Internal Revenue Code, sec. 501(c)(3)) and local development agencies to construct or acquire and modify housing as shelter for persons with special needs. Created in 1991, the Program complements the Group Home Financing Program and is funded by tax-exempt revenue bonds.

STRATEGIC INITIATIVES
Under Multifamily Housing Programs, Strategic Initiatives began in May 2023.

SINGLE-FAMILY HOUSING

In April 2014, Single-Family Housing started as Single-Family Housing and Energy Programs. It reformed under its present name by May 2023.

SINGLE-FAMILY HOUSING PROGRAMS


DIVISION OF HOMELESS SOLUTIONS

In January 2024, the Secretary of Housing and Community Development created the Division of Homeless Solutions.

DIVISION OF JUST COMMUNITIES

In December 2023, the Division of Just Communities was formed by the Secretary of Housing and Community Development.

To lift up communities that have experienced historical and ongoing socio-economic marginalization, the Division develops, implements, and accelerates Department targeting strategies. In the process, the Division seeks to ensure equitable outcomes, increase community involvement in decision-making, and reverse the legacy of divestment and disinvestment in affected communities, particularly communities of color.


DIVISION OF NEIGHBORHOOD REVITALIZATION

7800 Harkins Road, Lanham, MD 20706

In 1995, the Division of Neighborhood Revitalization started as the Office of Neighborhood Revitalization. It received its present name in 1996.

The Division provides technical assistance, as well as grants and loans, to local governments, small developers, and nonprofit organizations. This aid secures and preserves affordable housing, and provides community services to Marylanders of low and moderate income (Code Housing & Community Development Article, secs. 6-101 through 6-103).

Work of the Division is organized under four offices: Administration and Policy, Cummunity Access and Partnership, Community Development Programs, and State Revitalization Programs.

OFFICE OF ADMINISTRATION & POLICY

The Office of Administration and Policy provides administrative, operations and technical support for the Division of Neighborhood Revitalization.

OFFICE OF COMMUNITY ACCESS & PARTNERSHIP

Within the Division of Neighborhood Revitalization, the Office of Community Access and Partnership first organized in 2003 as the Office of Regional Assistance. It reformed as the Office of Programs and Regional Development in 2006, and the Office of Community Programs in 2008. The Office reorganized in April 2015 as Office of Community Access and Partnership.

The Office of Community Access and Partnership is responsible for the Community Investment Tax Credit, the Endow Maryland Tax Credit, Keep Maryland Beautiful, Main Street Maryland, and certain operating assistance grants.

Community Investment Tax Credit Program. This program supports 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations through allocations of State tax credits for use as incentives that encourage individuals and businesses to donate money, goods, or real property to support operational and programmatic costs associated with specific approved projects delivering services to communities across Maryland. Businesses and individuals that donate to a qualified organization's approval project can earn tax credits equal to 50% of the value of the money, goods or real property contribution. These tax credits are in addition to the charitable contribution deductions on both federal and State taxes.

Main Street Maryland. This is a comprehensive downtown revitalization program created in 1998 to strengthen the economic potential of Maryland's traditional main streets and neighborhoods. Using a competitive process, Main Street Maryland selects communities that have demonstrated a commitment to revitalization and redevelopment, and provide access to resources and expertise to improve the economy, appearance, and image of their traditional downtown business districts.

OFFICE OF COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMS

This program began in December 1996. For housing rehabilitation, commercial revitalization, economic development, infrastructure improvements, and public services, the Program provides grants to rural local governments. It assists low- and moderate-income households, removes slums and blight, and promotes State and local partnerships for development and revitalization.

Maryland Town Manager Circuit Rider Grant. The Grant enhances the management capacity of small town governments by providing grants which allow them to hire public management professionals. Small municipalities, counties, and regional governmental organizations form a consortium to sponsor a circuit and hire a professional administrator who serves, on a part-time basis, several towns in the same area and provides expertise in public administration, financial management, planning, and community development.

Strategic Demolition Fund. The Fund assists local governments and nonprofit community development organizations with revitalization and redevelopment by supporting: demolition of derelict structures; site acquisition and assembly to create redevelopment-sized parcels for solicitation or planned development; site development; and construction-level architectural and engineering designs. Projects must be located in one of Maryland's designated Sustainable Communities. Moreover, the Fund prioritizes those projects that will have the highest economic and revitalization impact.

Technical Assistance Grants Program. This program provides funding to nonprofit organizations, local governments, local development agencies, and local development corporations for advisory, consultative, training, information and other services to support community development. Eligible project costs include, but are not limitied to, those costs associated with consultants or services, a portion of general operating expenses, and other costs directly linked to community development.

COMMUNITY FOOD & NUTRITION PROGRAM
To alleviate hunger in Maryland, the Office also provides grants through this federal program to agencies that operate nutrition programs.

OFFICE OF STATE REVITALIZATION PROGRAMS

The Office of Revitalization Resources is responsible for the Baltimore Regional Neighborhood Initiative; Community Legacy; Interagency Coordination; Maryland Storefront Improvement Program; Project Creating Opportunities for Renewal and Enterprise; Strategic Demolition Fund; and Sustainable Communities.


DIVISION OF POLICY, STRATEGY, & RESEARCH

In March 2023, the Division of Policy, Strategy, and Research originated as the Division of Policy and Strategic Initiatives. It was renamed the Division of Policy, Strategy, and Research in May 2023.

Under the Division are four offices: Business Development and Strategic Partnerships; Legislative Affairs; Policy Development; and Research and Compliance.

OFFICE OF RESEARCH & COMPLIANCE

The Office of Research and Compliance began when the Department of Economic and Community Development formed in 1970. The Office joined in 1987 the Department of Housing and Community Development. In 1995, it became the Office of Policy Analysis and Commission Support; in 1996, the Office of Research; and in 1997, Research and Statistics. By 2003, it reformed as Research and, in 2007, as the Office of Research. In July 2008, it reorganized as the Office of Policy, Planning, and Research, and in April 2015, as the Office of Research, Policy, and Legislative Affairs. Through restructuring in July 2015, it became the Office of Housing and Economic Research, and in 2017 moved under the Office of Public Information. In January 2021, the Office became the Office of Research and Economic Development under the Deputy Secretary, and in March 2023, it returned to its original name and transferred to the Division of Policy and Strategic Initiatives. In May 2023, the Office was renamed the Office of Research and Compliance under the Division of Policy, Strategy, and Research.

Policy issues are analyzed by the Office of Research and Compliance, which develops legislative initiatives for the Department. The Office helps develop Department databases and geographic information systems for policy reporting. The Office also prepares the Consolidated Plan (for housing and economic and community development) required by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Plan's annual updates, performance reports, and fair housing strategy.

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