I am currently working as an Associate Planner for the City of Bakersfield’s Economic Development Division located at 1715 Chester Avenue in Bakersfield, Ca. The Economic Development Division is part of the Community Development Department which is made up of the Economic Development, Planning, and Building Divisions. My department works, “to assist in the creation of new affordable housing and rehabilitate existing housing stock with community partners, partner with local organizations to provide community services, and respond to Fair Housing concerns in the City of Bakersfield” (“Community Development”, 2014). My job, in particular, is to manage the Community Development Block Grants, and Emergency Solutions Grants issued by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
The Research Issue
All cities are faced with the complicated issue of addressing housing needs for their population. Even more complex are the needs of the city’s low income neighborhoods and residents. In addition, according to the article, “Social Inequities in Environmental Risks Associated with Housing and Residential Location—A Review of Evidence” by Braubacth and Fairburn, there is a, “strong link between housing characteristics and health.” To help address these issues and protect the health of our citizens, the City of Bakersfield receives grant funds from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The purpose of such funds is to benefit low- and