“Patricia Garry vividly remembers the 1975 meeting. She was vice chair of a Cincinnati committee deciding how to split up the funds the city was receiving through what were the first Community Development Block Grants (CDBG). Using a formula to dole out funds to states and qualifying localities, HUD distributed $2.4 billion to 594 grantees that year.
“It was all these crazy, loud people. For me it was fun. We had $18 million and we had the doors closed and we just fought it out,” Garry remembers vividly. “Almost everybody who wanted to be at the table was at the table. We had a lot of support. There were city administrators who really weren’t crazy about it, but we just kind of outlasted them.””