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Neighborhood Enhancement Program

McVey-South Shore Neighborhood Sign

Grants for 2015-2016 projects were awarded by City Council on July 21. The next application period will open in the spring of 2016.

About the Neighborhood Enhancement Program
The Neighborhood Enhancement Program (NEP) supports partnerships between the City of Lake Oswego and its neighborhoods by providing grants for projects or programs that provide a community benefit.

Grant Criteria

1. Provide a public benefit to the Lake Oswego community. Projects providing neighborhood benefit and applied for by City‐recognized neighborhood associations will receive funding priority over homeowners associations and other groups.

2. Have neighborhood/community support.

3. For physical improvements, be located on public land.

4. Be designed for no/very low maintenance.

5. Not fund ongoing annual expenses of the organization (funds may be used to initiate an ongoing program or fill a temporary funding gap, but should not be used to support ongoing annual expenses).

6. For neighborhood parties, picnics and other social events, NEP funding is generally limited to $300.

7. Be able to submit invoices for all project costs by June 30, 2016, and submit a project report by August 30, 2016.

Qualifying projects in neighborhoods that have not previously received a grant may receive priority over neighborhoods that have received past NEP awards. Projects that leverage matching funds or in‐kind contributions may also be prioritized.

Budget
The projected budget is $60,000* for grants during the 2015-2016 fiscal year. City-recognized neighborhood associations, homeowners associations, and Lake Oswego-based community groups with neighborhood association sponsorship are eligible to apply. Each neighborhood is eligible for up to $10,000 in grant funds, and may partner with one another to combine grant funds and apply for a larger project.

Project Ideas
Applicants must demonstrate that their project meets the grant criteria outlined on page one, with the goal of providing a benefit to the community. Within these parameters, the City welcomes creative project ideas that will implement neighborhood and community goals, build community pride, leverage volunteer efforts, and create partnerships.

Groups that are interested in applying for a grant are required to review their project with the grant program coordinator prior to application submittal, and are strongly encouraged to contact the coordinator early in the process to discuss initial ideas.

Following is a list of project ideas that have been implemented in past years and/or support the community benefit criteria. Applicants are not limited to these projects, but are encouraged to review the list for inspiration.

  • Small Capital Projects, such as playground improvements, park kiosks, outdoor benches, or streetlights.
  • Public Art, such as purchase/installation of a sculpture for a prominent location in a neighborhood, as part of the City’s permanent art collection.
  • Wooden Neighborhood Signs, up to two per neighborhood, to strengthen neighborhood identity.
  • Emergency Preparedness, such as creating a neighborhood directory, or training neighborhood block representatives in emergency response including purchase of tools such as walkie talkies.
  • Neighborhood Sustainability such as holding a recycling event for electronics, furniture, appliances, oversized plastic, etc.; or creating a community tool library.
  • Community Building projects such as events to build relationships, get more people involved in the neighborhood, help build partnerships between neighborhood organizations, or help underserved populations.
  • Invasive Plant Removal and New Plantings, such as removing ivy from trees in the public right‐of‐way, park land, or common HOA dedicated open space, planting native plants, or planting new street trees (see staff for additional materials if proposing street trees). (The City has a separate grant program, administered by the Parks Department, for habitat enhancement associated with designated natural resource areas.)

* City Council is scheduled to adopt the 2015-2016 budget on June 2.

If you have any questions about the program or to obtain an editable Word document version of the Application form, please contact Neighborhood Planner Sarah Selden at 503-635-0290.