EDA housing program surveys Grand Marais residents

In February 2012, a survey was sent out to residents within 
the city limits of Grand Marais to assess housing needs in the 
community. Nancy Grabko, of Community Fundraising Solutions, which 
operates the housing program for the Cook County - Grand Marais 
Economic Development Authority (EDA), urges anyone who received a 
survey to take a few minutes to complete it and return it to the EDA. 
Survey results will determine if the EDA is eligible for a new cycle 
of housing rehabilitation grants. “We are asking for your help in 
accomplishing this requirement,” said Grabko.
For the fourth year in a row, the EDA is applying for a Minnesota 
Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) Small City 
Development Program (SCDP) grant. The EDA will be requesting funds for
rehabilitation of five homes and five businesses. To qualify for 
funding, however, 40 percent of the houses within a 20-block area must 
demonstrate a need for work on their houses and funding to do it.
Housing Administrator Nancy Grabko expects the EDA to request $335,000 
in its SCDP grant application, but matches from other sources will be 
used as leverage to bring the total project amount to an expected 
$480,000.
“Over the past four years, 31 homes within Cook County have been 
rehabilitated through this program and we are working hard towards 
securing funding for future projects,” said Grabko.
The new funding criteria may make it difficult for small rural 
communities to quality for the grant since they must demonstrate 
significant need within a 20-block area. If not enough people respond 
to the survey and demonstrate a need for financial help, the grant 
application cannot be submitted. At press time the EDA had seen only a 
17% return and so extended the return date until March 21.
“DEED requires we conduct a community wide survey to gather 
information which will help determine the ‘level of need’ and the 
‘impact’ this program will have on our community,” she said.
“You can help us by filling out the survey, which you have received in 
the mail, and return it back as soon as possible. You can also drop it 
off at the front desk at City Hall,” said Grabko.
She added that all information is strictly confidential and will only 
be used to help the EDA in its upcoming grant application.
If you have any questions regarding this survey, please contact Grabko 
at: dngrabko@means.net
or call 218-398-7626.