< Back to Search

CED Data Definition of Terms

Published: March 3, 2011
Community Economic Development (CED)
About, Data

CED Definition of Terms

The following definitions apply to all CED activities, partnerships, and grant projects:

  • ALTERATION AND RENOVATION (A&R) - A &R may be classified as minor or major depending on the extent of the required work, its relationship to an existing structure and its cost.  Typically, major A & R is any aggregate cost greater than $150,000.
  • BENEFICIARY - A low-income individual whose income level does not exceed 100 percent of the official poverty line as found in the most recent revision of the Poverty Income Guidelines published by HHS.  These guidelines may be found at http://aspe.hhs.gov/poverty/index.shtml .
  • BUDGET PERIOD - The time interval into which a grant period is divided for budgetary and funding purposes.  The budget period for CED projects cannot exceed 60 months for construction projects and 36 months for non-construction projects.
  • CASH CONTRIBUTIONS - The grantee's cash outlay, including the outlay of money contributed to the grantee by third parties.
  • COMMUNITY - Any geographic area defined by specific boundaries.
  • COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION (CDC) - A private, non-profit corporation governed by a board of directors consisting of residents of the community and business and civic leaders, which has as a principal purpose planning, developing, or managing low-income housing or community development activities.
  • COMMUNITY ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT (CED) - A process by which a community uses resources to attract capital and increase physical, commercial, and business development and job opportunities for its residents.
  • CONSTRUCTION PROJECTS - Projects that involve the initial building or large scale modernization or permanent improvement of a facility.
  • DISTRESSED COMMUNITY - A geographic urban neighborhood or rural community with a rate of high unemployment and pervasive poverty.
  • EMPLOYMENT EDUCATION AND TRAINING PROGRAM- A program that provides education and/or training to TANF recipients, at-risk youth, residents of public housing, displaced workers, homeless and other low-income individuals, and that has demonstrated organizational experience in employment directed education and training for these populations.
  • EMPOWERMENT ZONE AND ENTERPRISE COMMUNITY PROJECT AREAS (EZ/EC) - Urban neighborhoods and rural areas designated as such by the Secretaries of Housing and Urban Development and Agriculture.
  • EQUIPMENT - The tangible non-expendable personal property charged directly to an award having a useful life of more than one year and an acquisition cost of $5,000 or more per unit.
  • EQUITY INVESTMENT - The provision of capital to a business entity for some specified purpose in return for a portion of ownership using a third-party agreement as the contractual instrument.
  • FAITH-BASED COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION - A community development corporation that has a religious character.
  • HARD COST - Includes expenditures of construction or acquisition of real property and major alterations and renovations of real property.
  • HYPOTHESIS - An assumption made in order to test its validity.  It should assert a cause-and-effect relationship between a program intervention and its expected result. Both the intervention and its result must be measured in order to confirm the hypothesis. For example, the following is a hypothesis: "Eighty hours of classroom training will be sufficient for participants to prepare a successful loan application.''  In this example, data would be obtained on the number of hours of training actually received by participants (the intervention), and the quality of loan applications (the result), to determine the validity of the hypothesis (that 80 hours of training is sufficient to produce the result).
  • INDIRECT COSTS - Overhead costs of an organization that have been approved by HHS or other Federal agencies for use in applying for Federal funds.
  • INTANGIBLE PROPERTY AND DEBT INSTRUMENTS - Trademarks, copyrights, patents, and patent applications and such property as loans, notes and other debt instruments, lease agreements, stock and other property ownership, whether tangible or intangible.  Note: Grantees who use the CED funding to create intangible property or debt instruments must report to the Federal government on the continued use of these funds up to 12 years after the project period of the grant has ended.
  • INTERVENTION - Any planned activity within a project that is intended to produce changes in the target population and/or the environment for the purpose of job creation and can be formally evaluated. For example, assistance in the preparation of a business plan is an intervention.
  • JOB CREATION - New full-time, permanent jobs that did not exist prior to the start of the project and came about as a result of the start of the project.  These activities can include development of new business ventures, the expansion of existing businesses, or the development of new products and services.  The training and placement of individuals in already existing jobs, even jobs guaranteed to low-income individuals through a formal agreement with an employer is not considered job creation.”
  • JOB PLACEMENT - Placing an individual in an existing vacant job of a business, service, or commercial activity not related to new development or expansion activity.  All jobs supported by the project must meet the definition of new job creation, not job placement.
  • LETTER OF COMMITMENT - A signed letter or agreement from a third party to the applicant that pledges financial or other support for the grant activities contingent only on OCS accepting the applicant's project proposal.
  • LOAN - Money given to a borrower under a binding pledge for a given purpose to be repaid, usually at a stated rate of interest and within a specified period.  The creation of a revolving loan fund with funds received under this program is an allowable activity.  Loans made to eligible beneficiaries for business development activities must be at or below market rate.  Interest accrued on revolving loan funds must be used to continue or expand the activities of the approved project.
  • MICROENTERPRISE - a commercial business with five or fewer employees, one or more of whom is the owner.
  • MICROLOANS - Loans made to microenterprise businesses and usually low interest loans of $25,000 or less.
  • NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATION - An organization (including a faith-based organization or community development corporation) exempt from taxation by reason of paragraph (3) of Section 501(c) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986.
  • NOTICE OF FEDERAL INTEREST (NFI) - A lien or other notice of public record that an applicant must file when construction or major alterations and renovations begin or when an existing facility or land is acquired with Federal funds.
  • OUTCOME EVALUATION - An assessment of project results as measured by collected data that define the net effects of the interventions applied in the project.  An outcome evaluation will produce and interpret findings related to whether the interventions created the proposed jobs, or produced other desired changes.  An outcome evaluation should address any unanticipated outcomes.   It should answer the question: Did this project achieve its stated goals?
  • POVERTY INCOME GUIDELINES - Guidelines published annually by HHS that establish the level of poverty defined as low-income for individuals and their families.  The guideline information is posted on the Internet at the following address http://aspe.hhs.gov/poverty/index.shtml
  • PROCESS EVALUATION - A review and assessment of the planned activities implemented to produce the proposed outcomes (i.e., the creation of new, sustainable jobs).  Focuses on the effectiveness and efficiency of the program's activities and interventions (e.g., methods of recruiting participants, quality of training activities and usefulness of follow-up procedures).  It should answer questions such as:  Were the project activities comprehensive and were they implemented to achieve the desired outcome(s)?"  It is also known as formative evaluation, because it gathers information that can be used as a management tool to improve the way a program operates while the program is in progress.  It should also identify problems that occurred and how they were resolved and recommend improved means of future implementation.  In concert with the outcome evaluation, it should also help explain, "Why did this program work/not work?" and, "What worked and what did not?"
  • PROGRAM INCOME - Gross income earned by a grantee from Federally supported activities.
  • PROJECT PERIOD - The total time for which a project is approved for CED support, including any approved extensions.  For construction projects, the project period cannot exceed 60 months.   For non-construction projects, the project period cannot exceed 36 months.
  • REAL PROPERTY - Land, including land improvements, structures, and appurtenances (excludes movable machinery and equipment). Note: Grantees who use the CED funding to construct or provide major alterations and renovations or to acquire a facility or land for the project, must file a Notice of Federal Interest.
  • REVERSIONARY INTEREST - Protection of the government's interest in property acquired with Federal funds.  The applicant triggers reversionary interest once the assets obtained with grant funds are no longer needed for the originally authorized purpose of the project.
  • REVOLVING LOAN FUND - A distinct loan fund established exclusively for CED projects as a resource to pay for eligible business development and operational activities that, when repaid, generates additional program income to make new loans.
  • SELF-EMPLOYMENT - The employment status of an individual who engages in self-directed economic activities.  For FY 2008, OCS will not support self-employment activities or microenterprise business projects as a part of the CED program.  Applicants should consider the JOLI program if they wish to pursue this strategy. 
  • SELF-SUFFICIENCY - A state of being or status of an individual or family where by reason of employment, eligibility for public assistance is replaced by the ability to meet all basic needs.
  • SHAREHOLDER'S AGREEMENT - A binding arrangement among a company's shareholders that insures all shareholder rights are protected.  It specifies how the company should operate and the shareholders' rights and obligations (including what happens when the company is dissolved).  It also includes information on the regulation of the shareholders' relationship, the management of the company, ownership of shares and privileges and protection of shareholders.  The agreement includes sections outlining the fair and legitimate pricing of shares (particularly when sold). It also allows shareholders to make decisions about what outside parties may become future shareholders and provides safeguards for minority positions.
  • SITE CONTROL - Documented proof of applicant's ownership or control of the property where grant activities will be established.  Proof of site control includes: documentation of the specific property location (address, city, State); documentation of a signed and dated deed or lease agreement between the applicant and property owner; documentation in the agreement of the terms of the agreement, use of premises, and description of the site (prior use or new property, square footage, use of space for project).
  • STOCK - The purchase of a share of ownership of a company.  Stocks are sold by the original owner of a company to gain additional funds to help the company grow.
  • SOFT COST - Money expended that does not result in the acquisition of an "enduring" asset.  These expenditures would include: Architectural design and services, permits, fees, insurance, legal costs incurred in negotiating contracts, etc.
  • SOURCES AND USE OF FUND STATEMENT - The sum of committed resources (e.g. grant funds, donations,) for a specific project or activity and the extent to which these funds will be used (e.g., operating expenses, acquisition of capital,).
  • SUB-AWARD - An award of financial assistance in the form of money or property made under a CED award by a grantee to an eligible sub-grantee or by a sub-grantee to a lower tier sub-grantee. The term includes financial assistance when provided by any legal agreement, even if the agreement is called a contract, but does not include procurement of goods and services.  It does not include any form of assistance excluded from the definition of "award'' under Federal regulations at 45 CFR Part 74.  (Note: Equity investments and loan transactions are not sub-awards, these qualify as intangible property.)
  • TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE - A problem-solving event generally using the services of a specialist.  Such services may be provided on-site, by telephone, or by other means of communication. These services address specific problems and are intended to assist with immediate resolution of a given problem or set of problems.
  • TEMPORARY ASSISTANCE FOR NEEDY FAMILIES (TANF) - The Federal block grant program authorized in Title I of the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (Part A of Title IV under the Social Security Act), as amended.  The TANF program transformed "welfare'' into a system that requires work in exchange for time-limited assistance.
  • THIRD PARTY - Any individual, organization, or business entity that is not the direct recipient of CED grant funds.
  • THIRD-PARTY AGREEMENT - A written agreement entered into by the grantee and an organization, individual, or business entity (including a wholly owned subsidiary of a CDC), by which the grantee makes an equity investment of resources, or capitalizes a loan in support of grant purposes.  A loan commitment from a financial institution or memorandum of understanding from another community partner committing resources or capital is a typical third-party agreement.
  • THIRD-PARTY IN-KIND CONTRIBUTIONS - Non-cash contributions provided by non-Federal third parties that may be in the form of real property, equipment, supplies and/or other expendable property, and goods and services directly benefiting and specifically identifiable to the project or program.