Facade Grant

Purpose of the Program

The Town of Selmer and McNairy County EDC and Chamber of Commerce, Tourism is providing an incentive program to improve the facades of buildings within a targeted redevelopment area. By bettering the appearance of building facades, the program hopes to improve the economic viability of these areas. Better aesthetics increase property values, improve the marketability of space within the buildings and draw business and residents to the area.

Target Areas

The current facade improvement target areas are from Fourth Street to Front Street and Cypress Street to Warren Ave at the North end of town. This is known as the Selmer B2 District.

Application Process

Applications for the facade improvement program will be available from the Town of Selmer and McNairy County EDC and Chamber of Commerce, Tourism Office, or online at the Town of Selmer and McNairy County Chamber website. Applicants will be required to complete the program application, provide a project timeline, specifications of the proposed facade improvement work and contractor estimates. Proposals must pass a threshold review for eligibility and will then be reviewed for quality and impact of the proposed improvements. Approval of applications will be considered based on strength of proposals and economic development impact on the community.

Eligibility

All property owners willing to improve the exterior of properties located within the designated program areas may be eligible to receive assistance. A recipient may utilize the Facade Improvement Program in conjunction with other public financial resources. Owners may receive assistance for more than one building based on funding availability.

Eligible buildings are commercial buildings with facades visible from the street. New construction will not be considered for this program.

Applicants will be required to demonstrate financial capacity to meet the program match-funding requirements, and must be current on all property taxes, mortgage and insurance.

Buildings will not be required to be occupied to be eligible for this program.

Eligible Activities

Facade renovation activities must involve the general upgrading of a building’s external appearance in compliance with the Selmer Downtown Steering Committee and Facade Grant Administrators.

Examples of eligible activities:

  • Masonry repairs and tuck pointing
  • Repair/replace/preserve historically significant architectural details
  • Storefront reconstruction
  • Cornice repair
  • Exterior Painting and stucco
  • Awnings and canopies
  • Window and door repair or replacement
  • Permanent exterior signage integrated into the storefront design
  • Permanent exterior lighting
  • Repair/replacement of gutters and down spouts
  • Facade building code items
  • Visible roof repairs relating to the building’s facade and known by the Community Development staff before an application is submitted to the appropriate design review committee
  • Utility/trash enclosures
  • decking and stairs

Examples of activities that are generally not eligible:

  • Landscaping
  • Non-visible roofing
  • Attaching, hanging or projecting signs unrelated to the architecture of the building
  • Mechanical equipment enclosures (non-visible)
  • Parking lots
  • Billboards
  • Interior renovation
  • Temporary, portable or non-permanent improvements
  • New construction
  • Property acquisition
  • Expansion of building area
  • Conversion of use
  • Working capital
  • Refinance of existing debt
  • Payment of delinquent taxes
  • Improvements in progress or completed prior to loan/grant approval

Funding available

The available funding is based on the buildings within the program area and can receive $2500.00 based on total project cost.  Applicants must provide a match equal to or greater than twenty five percent of the amount awarded through this program. The match must be spent on the facade improvement project.

The program funding will be provided in form of a loan which is forgiven over a five year period, providing the property continues to be maintained in accordance with the program requirements, such as retention of ownership, maintenance of the facade, payment of all property taxes due and property insurance.

Design Guidelines

Eligible proposals will be required to follow design guidelines provided for this program. These guidelines are provided to assure appropriateness of the proposed work, and to provide for compatibility with the affected building’s original appearance and with other area buildings. For buildings not within an H-1 overlay and not otherwise designated as historic, the design guidelines are provided to essentially do no harm to the possibility of a future historic designation.

In the case of buildings within an H-1 overlay or otherwise designated as historic, the facade improvements must meet all applicable historic preservation requirements in addition to the program’s facade improvement design guidelines and program requirements.

Selmer Downtown Steering Committee

Applications will be considered by Selmer Downtown Steering Committee in order to assure, through an equitable process, that the application meets all applicable design-guidelines.

Financing Policies

  1. Reimbursements all assistance is on a reimbursement basis following completion of the project. The total reimbursement for all forms of facade improvement assistance shall not exceed $2,500 per project. Projects must be completed within twenty six weeks of the begin date, unless the Town approves a longer timeline, at the Town’s sole discretion.
  2. Security the facade improvement project reimbursement will be secured by a. deed of trust on the real estate for the requisite term which will self-amortize proportionally each year; providing the property continues to be maintained in accordance with the program requirements, such as retention of ownership, maintenance of the facade, and payment of all property taxes due.
  3. Repayments No repayments will be required if all terms are met.
  4. Default A recipient shall be considered in default and the balance pf financial assistance immediately due and payable upon failure pf the borrower: to retain ownership of the property for the duration of the forgivable loan, failure to properly maintain the facade after improvements are completed, delinquency pf city and county property taxes; or failure to maintain property insurance listing Town of Selmer as lien holder; or failure to operate in compliance with all applicable local, state, and federal codes, laws, and regulations.
  5. Remedies of Default In the event of default, the Town may exercise any combination of the remedies available to it with respect to the security agreement(s). The Town may take whatever action at law, or in equity, as may appear necessary or desirable to collect any outstanding balance or to enforce the performance and observation of any other obligation or agreement of the recipient.
  6. Ineligible Activities Applications which will not be considered for financial assistance are those which:
    • Involve interior rehabilitation including modernization of electrical, mechanical, or structural elements. However, facade funds may be used for facade improvements in conjunction with a separately financed rehabilitation project.
    • Cannot demonstrate the ability to bear the entire cost of relocation arid related expenses of residential or nonresidential tenants displaced as a result of project activities.
    • Activities specifically prohibited by the program’s funding source.
General Requirements
  1. All work must be done in accordance with the Design Guidelines, all applicable local, state and federal codes, and rules and regulations for the Community Development Block Grant program. Any renovation work undertaken prior to the Town’s final written authorization to begin construction is not eligible for assistance under the program. All renovation work undertaken in conjunction with the facade improvement program which exceeds approved financial assistance shall be borne by the applicant.
  2. All construction management shall be the responsibility’ of the applicant. All work undertaken may be subject to the Davis Bacon Act.
  3. Properties with residential components will be required to meet applicable lead-based paint abatement requirements.
  4. Each recipient will be responsible all acquisition and relocation costs when displacement of residential or nonresidential tenants occurs as a result of the project, in accordance with the Uniform Relocation Act. If temporary tenant relocation will be required for this project, contact the Town for further guidance prior to submitting this application.
  5. All applicants shall be required to demonstrate compliance with nondiscriminatory employment practices and Affirmative Action Programs under Title VI and Section 112 of the Civil Rights Act of 1969 and Public Law 92-65. Applicants are encouraged, to utilize minority and women-owned business enterprises under this program.
  6. The Town, the Department of Housing and Urban the Comptroller General Of the United States, or any duly authorized representatives, shall have access to any books, documents, papers and records which are directly related to the program assistance for the purposes of monitoring, making audits, examination, excerpts, and transcripts. All records supporting the costs and components of program assisted improvements shall be maintained for period not less than three (3) years following completion of the program agreement period, agreement termination, or default, whichever shall first occur. No person who is an employee, agent, consultant, officer, appointed official, or elected official of the Town Of Selmer who exercise or have exercised any functions or responsibilities with respect to CDBG activities, or are in a position to participate in a decision-making process, or gain inside information with regard to such activities, may obtain a personal or financial interest or benefit, or have interest in any program assistance, either for themselves or those with whom they have family or business ties, during their tenure or for one year thereafter.

The deadline to apply for the 2020 grant has passed, and applications are no longer being accepted.