April 7, 2021
Aaron Frank, Town Manager
Town of Colchester
781 Blakely Road,
Colchester, VT 05446
Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development
Josh Hanford, Commissioner, VT Department of Housing and Community Development
One National Life Drive, Davis Building, 6th Floor
Montpelier, VT 05620
The purpose of this notice is to satisfy two separate but related procedural requirements for activities to be undertaken by the Town of Colchester and the State of Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development.
Request for Release of Funds
On or about April 23, 2021, the Town of Colchester will submit a request to the Agency to release funds under Title I of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974 (PL93-383), the National Affordable Housing Act as amended; and the Agency will submit a request to HUD to release HOME Investment Partnership Program funds under Title II of the Cranston-Gonzalez National Affordable Housing Act, as amended to undertake a project known as the Stuart Avenue Apartments project, which comprises approximately 1.3 acres and involves new construction of a four story, 36-unit affordable housing residential building with underground and aboveground parking (approximately 75 total parking spaces) in the Severance Road Growth Center of Colchester. The proposed project is located at 242 Severance Road, Colchester, VT, and within the Severance Road Planned Unit Development (PUD- also known as Sunderland Farms).
The 8 step decision-making process was completed due to the existence of a nearby wetland, and during this process it was determined that any impacts to the wetland and its buffer are from the Severance Road PUD and not from the subject property itself. The building will be constructed using radon resistant construction techniques and activation of the radon mitigation system will be completed if warranted.
The estimated total cost of the project is approximately $11,245,600 including anticipated amounts of approximately $650,000 in CDBG Funds and approximately $500,000 in HOME funds, and approximately $500,000 HTF funds. The project also anticipates pursuing approximately nine Section 8 Project-Based Vouchers.
Finding of No Significant Impact
The Town of Colchester and the Agency have determined that the project will have no significant impact on the human environment. Therefore, an Environmental Impact Statement under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) is not required. Additional project information is contained in the Environmental Review Record (ERR) which will be made available to the public for review either electronically or by U.S. mail. Please submit your request by U.S. mail to the Town of Colchester, 781 Blakely Road,, Colchester, VT 05446 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or via U.S. mail to Environmental Officer, Department of Housing and Community Development, National Life Building, One National Life Drive, Davis Building 6th floor, Montpelier, Vermont 05620 or via email at James.Brady@vermont.gov.
Any individual, group, or agency may submit written comments on the ERR to the Town of Colchester regarding the use of CDBG funds, attn. Mr. Aaron Frank, Town Manager, 781 Blakely Road, Colchester, VT 05446, or via email at email@example.com or to the Agency for the use of HOME funds, Attn: Environmental Officer, Department of Housing and Community Development, National Life Building, One National Life Drive, Davis Building 6th floor, Montpelier, Vermont 05620, or via email at James.Brady@vermont.gov. All comments received by April 22, 2021 will be considered by the Town of Colchester and the Agency prior to authorizing the submission of a request for release of funds. Comments must specify which Notice they are addressing—the Finding of No Significant Impact or the Request for the Release of Funds.
The Town of Colchester is certifying to the Agency that the Town of Colchester and Aaron Frank, in his official capacity as Town Manager, and the Agency is certifying to HUD that the Agency and Josh Hanford, in his official capacity as Commissioner of the VT Department of Housing and Community Development, consent to accept the jurisdiction of the Federal Courts if an action is brought to enforce responsibilities in relation to the environmental review process and that these responsibilities have been satisfied. The Agency's/HUD's approval of the certification satisfies its responsibilities under the National Environmental Policy Act and related laws and authorities and allows the Town of Colchester to use CDBG funds and the Agency to use the HOME funds.
Objections to Release of Funds
The Agency will accept objections to its approval of the release of funds and acceptance of the Town of Colchester's certification, and HUD will accept objections to its approval of the release of funds and the State's certification for a period of fifteen days following the anticipated submission date or its actual receipt of the request (whichever is later) only if they are on one of the following bases: (a) the certification was not executed by the Certifying Officers Aaron Frank / Josh Hanford; (b) the Town/Agency has omitted a step or failed to make a decision or finding required by HUD regulations at 24 CFR part 58; (c) the grant recipient or other participants in the development process have committed funds, incurred costs or undertaken activities not authorized by 24 CFR Part 58 before approval of a release of funds by the Agency/HUD; or (d) another Federal agency acting pursuant to 40 CFR Part 1504 has submitted a written finding that the project is unsatisfactory from the standpoint of environmental quality.
Objections must be prepared and submitted via email in accordance with the required procedures (24 CFR Part 58, Sec. 58.76) and shall be addressed to the HUD Director of Community Planning and Development CPD_COVID-19OEE-BOS@hud.gov for the HOME funds. Potential objectors should contact HUD via email to verify the last day of the objection period.