Friday, March 11, 2005


The Maine Community Development Association held a teleconference meeting on Friday, March 11, 2005 at approximately 10:00 a.m.  See attached Attendance List.


            *           Regarding the elimination of the CDBG program, MMA is collecting statements and resolutions from communities.  Some letters and resolutions have been sent directly to the congressional delegation offices so it has been difficult to keep track of just how many communities have responded.  Senator Snowe’s office has requested that the submittal of letters from individual communities and organizations be slowed somewhat.  Mathew Eddy proposed that MCDA develop a single position paper through the Maine Municipal Association and send it to the congressional delegation offices.

            *           There has not been a great deal of information circulated through the media other than a few press releases from municipalities regarding the CDBG resolutions and support for the program.  Ron Harriman stated that he had some publicity via the radio, which played for 6 weeks.  He will work with Mike Bush of Eastern Maine Development Corporation to get more publicity in the Bangor area.  Matt Eddy is concerned that the momentum will diminish and has proposed that MCDA maintain communication with the media.

             *          Orman Whitcomb stated that statements from both the House and Senate mirrored the President’s budget amounts.  It appears that there will be some reductions in the budget, but he does not know the individual programs that will be affected at this time.  The first step in the budget process is to establish budget limits, then there will be a significant amount of time for public comments.  Orman anticipates that we should have some indication of how the budget will be affected sometime in June or July.  The federal budget is supposed to be passed by October, 2005.  

            *           In light of the uncertainty of the CDBG program, the 2006 Proposed Statement process will be slowed down.

            *           CDBG Implementation Workshop will be held on May 18.  The site of the workshop has not yet been established.

            *           The Governor’s Bond Issue did not include the MITF program, but Sen. Lynn Bromley and Rep. Nancy Smith  have submitted a proposed amendment for $15,000,000 for the MITF program.  There will be no public hearings on this program; work sessions only.

            *           Both Sen. Collins and Sen. Snowe, as well as Congressman Michaud have signed on to a letter of support for the CDBG program.  They further support that the program be funded at the current level of funding.

            *           Communities should focus on the loss that would result if CDBG funds were eliminated.  Stories and photos of CDBG-projects that have made a significant impact on low-to-moderate income people should be submitted to Joella McBreairty for inclusion in the Newsletter.  The impact of the CDBG-funded projects on Maine communities should be expressed to all of our local legislators and senators during the Community Development Day at the Legislature to be held in the Hall of Flags on Friday, April 1, 2005.  The presence of CDBG beneficiaries at this event so that they may convey their appreciation of the program is another way of demonstrating the importance of this program.  If any community wishes to have beneficiaries attend CD Day, please let Mike Baran know.  He can be reached at 624-9816.

            *           The request for nominations to the Advisory Committee for “Strenghtening America’s Communities” has been extended to March 25, 2005 at 4:00 p.m.  The original deadline was today (March 11) at 4:00 p.m.  As of yet, no one was aware whether a Maine representative had been nominated to serve on this committee. 

            *           Today’s attendance was up from the previous teleconferences held.  Suggestions for the next meeting included inviting someone from COSCDA to do a teleconference with MCDA regarding their strategy in Washington.  Also, the State Planning Office should be encouraged to participate since CDBG plays a big part in the proposed implementation of Comprehensive Plans.

            *           The EDA will be holding a telecast on  Strengthening America’s Communities Initiative on Tuesday, March 15, 2005 from 3:00 to 4:00 p.m.  Locations for the telecast will be at the University of Southern Maine, University of Maine at Fort Kent, and various other locations in Maine.  For more information visit the National Association of Regional Councils at

            *           Schedule for April 1, 2005:

                         9:00 a.m. to 10:15 a.m. - Maine Community Development Association meeting at DECD Conference                                                        Room

                         10:15 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.  - Community Development Day at Hall of Flags

                         1:45 p.m. to                  - CD Technical Assistance Meeting with OCD and T.A. Providers

Respectfully submitted by,

Joella R. McBreairty