Cambridge City
MA

City Manager's Agenda Item
CMA 2018 #284
ORDER ADOPTED
Nov 5, 2018 5:30 PM

Transmitting Communication from Louis A. DePasquale, City Manager, relative to the appropriation of $5,000,000 from the Community Benefits Stabilization Fund to the Grant Fund Human Services Other Ordinary Maintenance account to be used: (1) for grant agreements with nonprofit organizations to address the City’s most pressing service needs, and (2) to enter into a contract with a Project Evaluator to work with the grant recipients as well as the Community Benefits Advisory Committee (CBAC), which is overseeing this effort.

Information

Department:City Manager's Office, LADSponsors:
Category:Appropriation

Attachments

  1. Printout
  2. CB Approp attachments 110518

Body

I hereby request the appropriation of $5,000,000 from the Community Benefits Stabilization Fund to the Grant Fund Human Services Other Ordinary Maintenance account to be used:  (1) for grant agreements with nonprofit organizations to address the City’s most pressing service needs, and (2) to enter into a contract with a Project Evaluator to work with the grant recipients as well as the Community Benefits Advisory Committee (CBAC), which is overseeing this effort.

 

Background

Since 2010, over $20 million in mitigation funds designated for community benefits purposes have been pledged to the City of Cambridge (the “City”) as a result of zoning amendments and special permit requirements, of which $7.4 million has been received and transferred to the City to the Community Benefits Stabilization Fund to date.  A detailed timeframe for the additional funds (beyond the $7.4 million) is not known at this time.

 

Prior to the formation of the CBAC by ordinance (Chapter 2.127 of the Cambridge Municipal Code), the City, with the advice of a Needs Assessment Advisory Committee and funding support from the Cambridge Community Foundation (CCF), conducted a comprehensive needs assessment for an in-depth understanding of the City’s most pressing needs and service gaps, and to enable the City to make informed decisions on the investment of Community Benefits Funds. The <https://www.cambridgema.gov/CDD/Projects/Planning/cambridgeneedsassessment> was completed in January 2017 and adopted by City Council in May 2017.

 

CBAC is charged with soliciting and evaluating proposals from local nonprofit partnerships for the provision of services to Cambridge residents, and with establishing the rules, regulations and guidelines for the proper administration of community benefits funds. The CBAC’s recommendations are informed by Cambridge City Council’s Guiding Principles for Community Benefits Funding (Attachment A), which were originally established by the Ordinance, then adopted and expanded in the Community Needs Assessment. CBAC includes the diverse perspective of residents, representatives from the local nonprofit community including the Cambridge Nonprofit Coalition (CNC), businesses, CCF, and universities, and works with City staff to make recommendations to the City Manager for the award of Community Benefits Grants.

 

All CBAC meetings are open to the public. In addition, while developing the funding approach, the Committee held two (2) Listening Sessions to which the nonprofit community was invited to ask questions and give feedback on the approach. 

 

Additional information and resources and the full list of members are available here: <https://www.cambridgema.gov/CDD/Projects/Planning/CommunityBenefitsAdvisoryCommittee>

 

 

 

 

Current Phase:

The CBAC is overseeing a competitive grant process to disseminate the first round of Community Benefits funds. The Community Benefits competitive grant process will occur in two phases: a 6-month Planning Phase; and a 3-year Implementation Phase.

 

Using the Guiding Principles for Community Benefits Funding and the plan for implementing the Community Benefits process outlined in the Ordinance, this process is designed to bring nonprofit organizations together in partnerships that can address the three Top Tier Needs identified in the 2017 Community Needs Assessment. The Committee identified as the priority population to be served families with children that are low-income or in poverty, particularly those headed by a single woman (Target Population). The three Top Tier Needs are:
 

·              Affordable Housing & Homelessness

·              Financial Security

·              Behavioral Health: Mental Health & Substance Abuse

 

CBAC is prioritizing innovative approaches for the priority population that have the capacity to address all three Top Tier Needs in ways that respond to the unique needs of families, with the recognition that families may be impacted by one or more of the Top Tier needs in different ways.

 

CBAC recognizes that the Top Tier Needs represent complex and often interrelated issues, and is looking for innovative approaches to the provision of services that prioritize partnership and coordination, an integration of services, and a commitment to broader engagement of the community and available resources. CBAC is seeking to fund partnerships that will use the funds to develop creative and innovative approaches that could be new and/or that enhance and add value to what partnering organizations are already doing.

 

CBAC will select and recommend to the City Manager up to five (5) partnerships to receive a 6-month Planning grant from the City. These 6-month Planning grants will provide selected partnerships with up to $30,000 to formulate and hone their partnership and proposed approach, culminating in the development of a Plan for Implementation. At the completion of the Planning period, CBAC will review submitted Plans for Implementation and select and recommend to the City Manager up to five (5) partnerships to receive a grant for up to $750,000 per partnership to be distributed over a 3-year Implementation period. Grantees must participate in the Planning Phase in order to be eligible for the Implementation Phase, and receipt of a Planning grant does not guarantee receipt of an Implementation grant.

 

Through this process, CBAC aims to identify and support promising and innovative models for partnership that can address all three Top Tier Needs in the shorter-term and over time.  The focus on the Top Tier Needs does not preclude partnerships from addressing other needs identified in the Community Needs Assessment or including services that respond to other pressing needs among families that are part of the priority population.

 

This process is also designed to inform future rounds of Community Benefits funding.

 

 

ANTICIPATED TIMELINE

 

Planning Grant Phase

November 2018

Release of Planning Grant RFP; Convene potential applicants on RFP, project background, relevant data, and Q &A

January 2019

Additional convening for potential applicants, before proposals are due

February 2019

Planning grant proposals due to CBAC

March & April 2019

Planning grant proposals reviewed and finalists interviewed

Mid-April, 2019

Announce award(s) of no more than five (5) planning grants of up to $30,000 each

May - November 2019

Planning grant awardees develop Plan for Implementation

 

 

TIMELINE Implementation Phase (tentative dates)

November 2019

Planning grants expire and Plans for Implementation submitted to CBAC

December 2019 - January 2020

Plans for Implementation reviewed and partnerships interviewed by CBAC, evaluation team & external review committee

February 2020

Announce award(s) of no more than five (5) implementation grants

February 2020 - January 2023

Plan implementation and ongoing Evaluation work

January 2024 - December 2024

Evaluation completion

 

 

 

I am pleased with the work of the Community Benefits Advisory Committee and urge your approval of the appropriation request in so that the Community Benefits funding process can move forward.

Meeting History

Nov 5, 2018 5:30 PM Video City Council Regular Meeting
draft Draft

8-0-1

RESULT:ORDER ADOPTED [8 TO 0]
YEAS:Dennis J. Carlone, Jan Devereux, Alanna Mallon, Marc C. McGovern, Sumbul Siddiqui, E. Denise Simmons, Timothy J. Toomey, Quinton Zondervan
ABSENT:Craig A. Kelley