HUD NEPA Compliance
Every year, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) may allocate funds to the City of Detroit or other organizations or agencies which operate within the City of Detroit. Examples of HUD funding programs administered by the City may include, but are not limited to, the following:
- The Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program,
- The CDBG-Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) Program,
- The CDBG-Declared Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DDR) Program,
- The Self-Help Homeownership Opportunity Program (SHOP),
- The Housing Opportunities for Persons With AIDS (HOPWA) Program,
- The HOME Investments Partnerships (HOME) Program,
- The Lead Hazard Reduction Demonstration Grant (LHRDG) Program,
- The Special Purpose Grants Program,
- The Emergency Shelter Grant (ESG) Program, the Neighborhood Stabilization Program (NSP1 & NSP3), and
- The Public and Indian Housing Program.
These funding programs support a broad range of housing and community development activities and projects. Examples of these projects include single-family and multi-family rehabilitation, property acquisition, property relocation, handicapped accessibility improvements, demolition, new construction, lead hazard reduction, and redevelopment projects.
National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)
Each federal agency is required to adopt protocols to ensure environmental values are considered before committing funds to a project. Every HUD-assisted project must go through an environmental review process in order to obtain funding. An environmental review is a process of reviewing a project and its potential environmental impacts to determine whether it meets all federal, state and local environmental standards. This environmental review process is required to ensure the proposed project does not negatively impact the surrounding environment and the site will not have an adverse environmental or health effect on occupants. Under NEPA 24 CFR Part 58, the City of Detroit’s HRD has assumed the role as the Responsible Entity (RE) to carry out the environmental review requirements and analyze the impact of federally-funded projects on the environment.
Not every project is subject to a full environmental review, but each project must be in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and other Federal and state environmental laws. The developer is required to submit an Environmental Review Request (ERR) form to the HRD’s Environmental Compliance Division in order to determine what level of review will be required. The ERR requires a detailed description of the entire project, even if the HUD assistance only contributes to a portion of the overall project. Providing a vague project scope and/or not including the entire project in the description will delay the environmental review process. The ERR Form is included in the “Documents” portion of this page.
Section 106 Review
The above-mentioned activities or projects may affect historically- or culturally-significant buildings, properties and/or sites. The City of Detroit is responsible for ensuring that the activities or projects supported by these funds comply with all applicable historic preservation laws and regulations, one of them being Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966 (NHPA). The City ensures compliance through coordination and consultation with the appropriate regulatory authority. For HUD-funded activities or projects within the City of Detroit, this authority is the Michigan State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO). However, the SHPO has delegated certain aspects of its authority to the City of Detroit through the use of a Programmatic Agreement (PA). The PA is the legal document that allows the City of Detroit to expedite the review of its HUD-funded activities or projects. This review process is facilitated and managed by the Preservation Specialist who is housed in the Environmental Review Section of HRD.
Timeliness and Cooperation
Early communication with the Environmental Compliance Division is necessary to receive project approval in a timely fashion. Please communicate any changes to the project size, scope and/or funding to the project manager as soon as possible to prevent a delay in project approval.
Prior to environmental clearance, the RE may not commit HUD funds to projects where the activity would have an adverse environmental impact or limit the choice of reasonable alternatives. This extends to third parties including recipients, participants in the development process, public or private nonprofit, for-profit entities and contractors. Do not commit funds to a project until the project review has been completed and approved by the Environmental Review Officer.