Community Development



The Office for Community Development (OCD) administers the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and the HOME Investment Partnerships Program Grant (HOME)  received by the City from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

The CDBG funds may be used for a wide range of activities that improve housing, the living environment and economic opportunities, primarily for persons of low to moderate income. The HOME funds can be used for housing (rehab, new construction, homebuyer) only.

Please explore the Community Development webpages for information on homeownership, fair housing, historic resources, and CDBG-funded public services available to Holyoke residents and businesses.

Please check back periodically for Proposals for the HOME Partnerships Program funds.  The general purpose of the HOME program is to expand the supply of decent and affordable housing for low and moderate income residents. 


Zaida E. Hoyt - Finance Manager


Jennifer J. Martins - Compliance Manager


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The Community Development Block Grant Program is a flexible program that provides communities with resources to address a wide range of unique community development needs primarily to serve low and moderate income residents.  Beginning in 1974, the CDBG program is one the longest continuously run programs at HUD.  The CDBG program provides annual grants on a formula basis to 1209 general units of local government and States.   Interested organizations should call the City of Holyoke Office for Community Development at 413-322-5610.  Funding is not available to individuals; individuals in need of services may call the Office for Community Development for referrals.

The Office for Community Development welcomes public input and participation in its public hearings. Public hearings and meeting notices are posted here and outside the City Clerk’s Office at City Hall. Check back often and feel free to attend!

2020 Consolidated Plan Schedule



FY2018 Draft CAPER will be available August 30, 2019 – September 18, 2019. The CAPER describes the performance and outcomes of the activities undertaken by the Office for Community Development.

Meeting Notices

CAC Meeting Notice 2-10-20

Language translation services and accessibility services are available for all meetings upon request at least five business days prior to meeting date.

Public Notices

Notice of Amendment of the FY2019 Annual Plan

 Environmental Assessments

There are no Environmental Assessments available for public comment.


Notice of Intent to Request the Release of Funds (RROF)

There are no RROF for public comment.


 FY2019-2020 Annual Action Plan – Allocations

Spreadsheet with the final FY2019 Awards.  Public Service activities must be completed by June 30, 2020.

2019 Proposal Descriptions

FY2020-2021 CDBG Request for Proposals

Spreadsheet 2020 requests for funding.

HOME Investment Partnerships Program

HOME is authorized under Title II of the Cranston-Gonzalez National Affordable Housing Act, as amended. Program regulations are at 24 CFR Part 92. HOME program regulations and standards contain property value and sale price limits, completion deadlines, rent limits, household income limits, developer capacity and experience requirements, firm financial commitments, reasonable costs, current market demand analysis, site and neighborhood requirements, development team fiscal soundness and experience criteria as well as other requirements and stipulations. HOME also requires enforceable provisions to ensure housing affordability.   Interested parties are encouraged to review the HOME Program prior to submitting a Proposal.  Additional information about the HOME Program can be reviewed at

The amount of HOME funds expected to be awarded may be up to $1,000,000, of which up to $30,000. specifically designated for direct homebuyer assistance.

Check back for funding announcements shortly.








Resources for Property Owners, Businesses and Residents 

The Office for Community Development funds several programs offering assistance to homeowners, rental property owners, small businesses and developers. Check here for a program that may help you.



Is assistance available to HOMEOWNERS for improvements?

Yes! The Neighborhood Improvement Program(NIP) administered by OneHolyoke CDC provides up to $10,000 in grants for home improvement of one-to-four unit, owner occupied properties. Program eligibility is based upon family size and income. Homeowners must be current on city property taxes and utilities.

Funded improvements include, but are not limited to:

New siding, new wiring, new plumbing, insulation, storm windows and doors, new driveways, lead-based paint removal, asbestos removal, roof repair, chimney repair, porch replacement, ceiling replacement, foundation repair, bathroom expansion for ADA accessibility, gutter and downspout replacements, aging in place modifications and smoke/heat detection systems.

Improvements must meet all NIP Program, OHDC, OCD, and HUD requirements including Safe Lead Practices, asbestos requirements, and Massachusetts Historic Commission approval, as applicable.

Homeowners must apply and be approved prior to starting work. All applications are subject to a home inspection and eligibility verification.

Funding is subject to the City receiving CDBG funds and funds being awarded to the NIP during the CDBG allocation process.

Please contact OneHolyoke CDC at 533-7101 for additional information.



Is assistance available to RENTAL PROPERTY OWNERS for improvements?

 Yes! The Rental Neighborhood Improvement Program (RNIP) administered by OneHolyoke CDC provides low interest loans for multi-family (3+ units) property improvements.

Priority consideration is given to those projects that bring occupied buildings into compliance with applicable codes. Refinancing of existing debt is not allowed. Loans up to $21,500/unit, depending on building equity and projected income.

Projects must meet all RNIP Program, OHCDC, OCD, and HUD requirements including Safe Lead Practices, asbestos requirements, procurement, Section 3, federal wage rates and Massachusetts Historic Commission approval, as applicable. Property owners must be current on City of Holyoke property taxes and utilities. Tenant income requirements must be met and will be verified.

Property owners must apply and be approved prior to starting work. All applications are subject to property inspections and eligibility verification.

Funding is from the RNIP Revolving Loan Fund. RNIP is now open. Please contact OneHolyokeCDC at 533-7101 for additional information.



Is assistance available to DEVELOPERS?

 At least once a year, the OCD issues a Request for Proposals (RFP) for housing development under the federal HOME program. HOME provides direct funding for new construction and rehabilitation of housing. If you are interested in knowing more about HOME program funding or the RFP, please contact our office.


Are you or your family in need of educational services, summer camp, child care, food,

employment training or other services?

The Community Development Block Grant Program funds a variety of public services for the Holyoke community. Please see the Community Development Public Services 2019 for additional information about available services funded through our office.  For additional services we are happy to provide you with the 2018 Community Resource Guide.


I have a complaint about my apartment, housing conditions, or problem in my neighborhood.  Where can I call?

The City of Holyoke Office for Community Development funds two Code Enforcement Officers dedicated to improving the housing, building, and living conditions of residents in the CDBG-eligible Census Tracts.  To file a complaint or request assistance, please call the Board of Health at 413-322-5595 or the Building Department at 413-322-5600 for assistance.


Is assistance available to small business owners or people looking to open a business?

YES!  The City of Holyoke Office for Community Development provides funding for small business development.  Grants of up to $10,000. for business development are available to SPARK graduates who are residents of Holyoke or opening their business in Holyoke.  For additional information please contact our office. 413-322-5610





The Fair Housing Commission works to eliminate discrimination and increase access to housing through investigation and enforcement, affirmative marketing, and inter-agency coordination.

Fair Housing and Equity Assessment

Fair Housing Commission

Mr. Marcos Marrero, Director, Planning and Economic Development

Mr. Matthew Mainville, Director, Holyoke Housing Authority

Ms. Nilka Ortiz, Executive Assistant to the Mayor

Mr. Gregory Virgilio, Virgilio Property Management

Ms. Gladys Lebron-Martinez, City Councilor

Ms. Alicia Zoeller, Administrator, Office for Community Development

Mr. Richard Romboletti, Community Member

Ms. Betsy Misch, Community Member


Choosing where you live is a right.   Here are some excellent resources if you have questions about Fair Housing-

MA Fair Housing Center

MA Justice Project

HUD Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity


The following links may be disabled.  Please be patient as we rebuild our webpage!

Have you found Closed Doors When Looking for Housing? English & Spanish

Fair Housing Domestic Violence Victims

Fair Housing Sexual Orientation

Fair Housing HIV-AIDS

Vivienda justa para individuos con VIH/SIDA

Fair Housing Physical Disabilities

Vivienda justa para individuos con discapacidades fisicas

Fair Housing Mental Disabilities

Fair Housing Mental Disabilities Espanol

Fair Housing Families with Children

Discriminacion contra familias con ninos

Fair Housing for Individuals Receiving Public or Housing Assistance

Fair Housing Public or Housing Assistance Espanol








The City of Holyoke is an Entitlement Community for the Community Development Block Grant and is the Lead City in the Holyoke-ChicopeeWestfield HOME Consortium. These grants are awarded directly from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.


The Community Development Block Grant Program

 What agencies/programs were funded for July 1, 2018 through June 30, 2019 with Community Development Block Grant (CDBG)?

2018 Spreadsheet


How are CDBG Funds allocated?

Allocation of the CDBG funds is done through a competitive multi-step grant process whereby interested agencies and others submit proposals to provide public services benefiting low and moderate income persons in Holyoke .   The FY2019 funding cycle will begin in early October;  applications will be released in early-mid December.

 OCD staff, the Citizens Advisory Council (CAC), the Mayor and the City Council review the proposals and make funding recommendations. The Mayor makes all final award decisions and submits the allocation plan to HUD by May 15, 2019 for activities beginning on July 1, 2019.

Proposals must meet HUD regulatory eligibility criteria and be able to demonstrate performance objectives and outcomes.


How can the public participate in the CDBG allocation process?


The public is invited to attend CAC and City Council meetings to observe allocation discussions and to attend public hearings regarding annual plans and re-programming requests.  The 2018 ConPlan Schedule lists all public meetings and hearings.  Please confirm dates, times, and locations with OCD or the City Clerk.


How are the City of Holyoke’s needs and priorities determined? Public Meetings.


Every five years, OCD prepares a five-year Consolidated Plan with specific annual updates detailing the projects to be undertaken in that program year.

The 2015-2019 Strategic Consolidated Plan presents an overview of the City’s priorities for the next five years.  The Annual Plan details the activities to be funded by CDBG and HOME for that year. Due to the size please contact our office to view.


How is progress of funded activities monitored?

OCD conducts fiscal and performance monitoring of each funded agency to ensure that all programs and projects are in compliance with OCD and HUD regulations.

By September 30th of each year, OCD must prepare a Consolidated Annual Performance and Evaluation Report (CAPER) to report on the progress of funded projects.  The CAPER is then submitted to HUD.

Due to the size of the full CAPER if you would like to view, please contact our office.



HOME Investment Partnerships Program

HOME funds are allocated via a separate Request for Proposals procurement process . 

Fair Market Rents 2019


CHDO Certification

The City of Holyoke, on behalf of the Chicopee-Westfield-Holyoke Consortium, conducts Community Home Development Organization (CHDO) certification for the Consortium’s HOME program.  At least 15% of the Consortium’s HOME allocation must be awarded to qualified CHDO’s.

Currently certified CHDO’s for the Consortium are:  Chicopee Neighborhood Development Corporation, Domus, Inc.

All new and existing CHDO’s must become familiar with CHDO Policies and Procedures.  All new CHDO’s must complete the CHDO application.  A Recertification Application will not be accepted for initial certification.  Deadline for certification submittal is November 30th for CHDO status eligibility December 1st- December 1st.  Recertifications for existing CHDO’s will be due annually on November 1st.


CHDO Policies & Procedures


CHDO Recert Application


What’s the history of my home– is it on the Historic Inventory?  

 Detailed information about historical development of Holyoke is available in the 1982 MHC Reconnaissance Survey Town Report.


The Holyoke Historic Inventory of individual property addresses is available here.  Historic property information may be available online from the MA Cultural Resources Information System (MACRIS).

If you are using HUD funds (like the CDBG or RNIP programs) for the rehab work, the Massachusetts Historical Commission must approve your work before you begin.  Rehab and renovation work must meet the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for Rehabilitation.  The Office for Community Development will coordinate MHC review for you as part of the Environmental Review Process.


How do I renovate in an historically sensitive manner?*

Holyoke Historical Commission

Preservation Mass

Preservation Mass Consultant Directory

New England Window Restoration Alliance

Secretary of the Interior Standards

*Please note that OCD provides these links for public information

purposes only and in no way endorses, recommends or suggests 

any specific service, contractor or advertiser.

Thinking of Buying a Home in Holyoke?

Check out Buy Holyoke Now 

Buy Holyoke Now is an initiative that establishes a collaboration of public, nonprofit and private-sector organizations to preserve and promote homeownership opportunities throughout the City of Holyoke.


Need to Know More About the Homebuying Process?  Be an Educated Homebuyer!

The Holyoke Housing Authority and Wayfinders offer first time home buyer education classes. Topics include money management, securing a mortgage, avoiding scams, understanding credit, and creating individual financial plans and timelines.  Classes are required for those income-eligible persons seeking down payment assistance.


Need Homebuyer Downpayment Assistance?

The Holyoke Housing Authority also offers first time home buyer financial assistance up to $4999. Recipients of first time home buyer funds must meet HHA, HUD and OCD eligibility criteria and complete a first time home buyer education class


Ready to Buy A New House? The City of Holyoke Has Home Ownership Opportunities in 2018!

The City of Holyoke recently awarded funds to the Greater Springfield Habitat for Humanity for construction of a single family house  (owner occupied) on Pine Street in Holyoke.   For additional information, please contact Greater Springfield Habitat for Humanity at 413-739-5503 for more information.


 Equal Housing Opportunity

For information on lead paint removal/abatement loans, visit MA Get the Lead Out.  The local lender for Hampden County is Wayfinders in Springfield (413-233-1500).


Information of deleading, the MA laws, and searchable databases, visit MA Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Center

If your agency receives Community Development Block Grant funds, this page is just for you!

Subrecipient Manual

Reimbursement Form

Monthly Activity Funding Update Form



OCD staff will be contacting each agency to schedule Performance and Fiscal Monitoring.  Here are the Performance Monitoring Checklist and Fiscal Monitoring Checklists for your reference.  Please have all documentation ready and accessible for the monitoring visit.


Please Note:  Contractor’s doing any type of construction work using Federal funds must be registered with the System for Award Management (SAM) formerly Central Contractor Registry (CCR).  SAM Quick Start Guide
For questions or for further information, contact our office 413-322-5610.

The CDBG Program funds all sorts of activities in Holyoke.  Here’s a summary of recent CDBG funded activities- both completed and in progress.

CDBG-funded activities completed in the last three months include:


Remediation of the former National Guard Firing Range on Mountain Road:

A historically contaminated site, CDBG funds were used to remove contaminated soils and restore this parcel to its natural beauty. 


Vista Pruning at McNulty Park, Lincoln Street:

Once a beautiful overlook of Log Pond Cove, the Connecticut River and Mt Holyoke Range, this park suffered from years of neglect.  The tree canopy had not been properly pruned and the beautiful views had been lost.  In the skillful hands of Cotton Tree Service in partnership with the City of Holyoke Conservation Commission and the Parks and Recreation Commission, the panoramic views have been restored.  A grand re-opening will be held in the spring.

 3-14 028 3-16 0103-16 008

Demolition of 569 South Bridge Street:

A long-time priority of the Problem Property Group, this vacant collapsed property had been a nuisance to the neighborhood; however, it was demolished and the lot cleared with a partnership between the Building Department and the Department of Public Works. 

2-1 001 569 South Bridge 003 Feb 8 001 July 14 022


Demolition of the former Springdale Park Bathhouse/Maintenance Garage:

An eyesore at Springdale Park, the former maintenance garage was demolished by City staff. 

 springdale 1 024 springdale 003 springdale 010

Center City Pedestrian Plaza:

A priority of Mayor Morse, this project provides an open air plaza for downtown residents and public event space.  The design was completed by Milone and MacBroom and site contractor was Mass-West Construction.


Veterans Park Monument:

To honor Holyoke’s three Medal of Honor recipients, a granite monument was placed in Veterans Park.  The project has been a collaboration between the Parks and Recreation Department, Veterans Department and the Historical Commission.



Demolition Along Main Street:

The City demolished 285 Main Street (the former El Tropical Building) and 405 Main Street.  The demolition contractor for both properties was American Environmental.

main 289-291 006405 Main 1Main Street Garage 001Main Street Garage 004

Rental Neighborhood Improvement Program

Provides low interest loans to multi-family property improvements to provide quality housing in the City.


292-294 Pine Street








Over the winter, municipal departments have been busy coordinating spring projects.  This spring construction season, the following CDBG-funded activities will be launched:


Ely Park:

A new basketball court and park amenities will be installed.  The City has contracted with Berkshire Design Group to assist with the park design, public outreach, and bid documents. Mass-West Construction was selected for the job.



Carlos Vega Park:

The City has several dominoes/games tables to be installed in the park.  Local game leagues will have the opportunity to host outdoor dominoes tournaments. Mass-West Construction was selected for the job.

Pulaski Park:

New benches and an outdoor fitness equipment circuit for teens and adults.  The outdoor fitness equipment features several weather-resistant exercise machines including an exercise bicycle and parallel bars installed with specialty surfacing.  Mass-West Construction was selected for the job.

Soucy Park:

The City installed a new play structure and child-sized table and benches and painted a mural on the former handball wall at Soucy Park near the intersection of Main and Cabot Streets. 

Soucy 9-15-17

Valley Arena Park:

A new basketball court and park amenities will be installed. Mt. View Landscaping was selected for the job.


Nearly $150,000 of new sidewalks will be installed in CDBG-eligible residential neighborhoods. Varandas and Sons Construction was selected for the job.

270 Pine Street:

Habitat for Humanity was awarded HOME funds to build a house for a first-time homebuyer.


Demolition of 28 Cabot:

The City demolished 28 Cabot Street.













To Any Interested Businesses:

Our office is reaching out to local businesses to inform you of HUD’s Section 3 Business Registry.

Section 3 is a provision of the Housing and Urban Development Act of 1968. The purpose of Section 3 is to ensure that preference for employment, training and contracting opportunities generated from the expenditure of certain HUD funds is directed to local low- and very low-income persons (Income Limits Attached), particularly those who receive federal housing assistance, and businesses that are owned by or substantially employ such persons.

The Section 3 regulation at 24 CFR Part 135.36 provides preference to Section 3 businesses that submit responsible bids for contracts and subcontracts, but does not guarantee the award of contracts.

Section 3 Frequently Asked Questions

Income Limits 2018   

If you believe your business is qualified as a Section 3 and are interested in submitting an application for inclusion in the registry, or would like more information, please go to HUD’s Section 3 website or the local office in Springfield


Department Head

Alicia M. Zoeller

Alicia M. Zoeller


Office Address

City Hall Annex- Room 400 Holyoke MA 01040 Map

Contact Info


413-322-5611 (fax)

Office Hours

Monday - Friday
8:30 am - 4:30 pm

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Posted on November 27, 2012 by