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Promise Zones Update: Third Round Request for Comments

Provide Your Comments on the Proposed Selection Process, Criteria, and Submissions by next Monday, September 28, 2015

The third and final round of the Promise Zones competition will open in the Fall of 2015. HUD and USDA invite you to provide written comments on ways to improve the future competition.

In addition to providing comments on the proposed selection process, criteria, and submissions for the third round of the Promise Zone Initiative, commenters are encouraged to address any or all of the following questions.

  1. Overarching Questions:

For communities considering a Promise Zone application:

  1. Are the programs that provide preferential access for designated Promise Zones helpful? Are there policy areas or issues that you need to address that are not represented?
  1. If your community is not designated, but you and your partners intend to continue community revitalization efforts, please explain what particular types of information, technical assistance, peer exchange, introductions or other non-competitive assistance would be helpful to you as you move your work forward?
  1. Do you find the MAX Survey sufficiently easy to use compared to other federal application systems (e.g. Grants.Gov)?
  1. Would you be willing to provide the type of information requested in the Goals and Activities template for purposes of potentially connecting you to federal and private partners/peers that could facilitate your community’s development work if it were not part of a competition for a federal designation? (See MAX Survey)
  1. Community Development Marketplace

For users of the Community Development Marketplace (a database of strategy and activity information Second Round applicants permitted HUD and USDA to share):

  1. What kind of potential user are you? HUD has heard from foundations, investors, communities, researchers and national intermediaries and stakeholder networks, but there may be others who can use this data.
  1. Does the Third Round template capture information that would be useful to you? (See MAX Survey). If yes, how is this information useful to you?
  1. Are there additional pieces of information that would assist you in filtering and searching for information you would like to have?
  1. Promise Zone Website
  1. Is the website clear and easy to use? If not, what elements would be more helpful? (see Promise Zones website and linked program information).
  1. Is the interagency program information presented on the website well-matched to your community's needs? If not, what type of information would be helpful to add?
  1. Communications and Stakeholder Engagement
  1. Do you find Promise Zones communications, through emails, webinars, written documents and other means, useful to organizations working in your community? Please elaborate on what is useful or what could be done to make it more useful.
  1. How can HUD communicate more clearly/effectively with residents and community based organizations about the way that the Promise Zone Initiative operates and how it supports local work?
  1. How can the Promise Zones Initiative better engage new Americans and immigrant stakeholders?
  1. Data collection, research and evaluation
  1. How can the Promise Zones make use of the EPA Smart Location database?
  1. Does the Promise Zones framework for tracking data address the issue of burdening designees in terms of data access and reporting? Are there other ways we could accomplish this?
  1. Is the Promise Zones table of core indicators, measures, and data sources useful for community development outcome tracking? Are there other measures that should be added?

Written comments can be submitted by email to: PromiseZones@hud.gov with “Third Round Promise Zone selections” in the subject line.

Questions or comments may also be directed by postal mail to:

Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Economic Development,
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development,
451 Seventh Street SW., Room 7136
Washington, DC 20410
ATTN: Third Round Promise Zone selections

More information is available on the Promise Zones website.

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