Community Development Corporation Questions Abound; Here Are Some Answers

Published: June 15, 2024

Misunderstandings about the nature and role of community development corporations (usually called CDCs for short) are plentiful. These private corporations are not held to the same “sunshine law” standards as local governments, in most places at least, so it can become difficult to obtain information about their internal workings if they do not live up to their mission statements about involving the community.

homes under construction

Yet their decisions impact the communities where they operate, sometimes very significantly, and they might be just as public-spirited as you would expect from your town hall. I am actually a big fan of the CDC as a driver of change and development, but sometimes the community does not understand what they can and cannot do, and at other times the CDC does not meet the standards of its own rhetoric.

If you have a question about community development corporations in general, usual practice among CDCs, or a practice you have observed on the part of a local corporation, you will be able to use the form at the bottom of this page to pose your query to the author of this website.

One question I frequently hear raised in conversation is how a CDC differs from a neighborhood association. On this website you can read all about neighborhood associations, which are private organizations of people who live in a neighborhood and possibly a few other interested parties, such as business owners. They tend to run like any civic league. 

In contrast, a CDC generally has professional management, at least once the corporation has established itself. As a generalization, we can say that a CDC frequently acts as a real estate developer, whereas that would be a fairly rare activity for a neighborhood association.  The CDC may or may not be interested in ordinary quality of life issues that usually dominate the agenda at a neighborhood association.

This website contains a page about starting a CDC but does not yet address a wide array of aspects of managing them. Just like any entity, poor administration, sloppy practices, and failed vision can create problematic situations for the community. The lack of transparency just adds to the frustration or mistrust on the part of the neighborhood.

So it is not surprising that visitors to this website and its predecessor asked enough questions about community development corporations that it seemed worthwhile to create a category pertaining just to these questions. Use the form below; also below you can see links to answers for questions others have asked.

Do You Have a Question about CDCs?

Are you wondering about good practices for community development corporations (CDCs) or even why CDCs are generally a good thing and how they relate to other community entities and governments? Here is where you ask all kinds of questions about CDCs.

Questions We Have Answered

Click below to see contributions from other visitors or editors.

CDC and 501(c)3 
Reviewed: June 12, 2024 Visitor Question: We are interested and looking into starting a CDC in our town. Do you need to register as a 501(c)3 with …

Recognition as a Community Development Corporation 
Reviewed: June 12, 2024 Visitor Question: We are in planning to establish a Community Development Corporation in the State of Florida. We have a …

City Involvement in a CDC 
Reviewed: June 12, 2024 Visitor Question: We are a small suburban city and what is the expectation of a Mayor's involvement in a CDC? Do Mayors, Council, …

CDC's Geographical Footprint Not rated yet
Reviewed: June 12, 2024 Visitor Question: Can CDCs have a national mandate or does it have to be local? Editors Respond: We suppose this is a …

How Long a New CDC Will Need Grants for Operations Not rated yet
Reviewed: June 12, 2024 Visitor Question: How long should a foundation expect to provide operating support for a new CDC? Is there research on the …

CDC acting in bad faith Not rated yet
Reviewed: June 12, 2024 Visitor Question: Who can we turn to when our community development corporation, a 501c nonprofit, acts in bad faith, counter …

How can a city create a CDC? Not rated yet
Reviewed: June 12, 2024 Visitor Question: I'm interested in having our city create a community development corporation for a part of our community …

Who Regulates CDCs? Not rated yet
Reviewed: June 12, 2024 Visitor Question: Who has the authority to regulate what a CDC does? The one that is active in my neighborhood is now proposing …

Becoming Certified as a CDC Not rated yet
Reviewed: June 12, 2024 Visitor Question: Who can I apply to for my company to become a Community Development Corporation? When is application taken? …

Cities funding CDCs Not rated yet
Last Reviewed: June 13, 2024 Visitor Question: Are there any restrictions on Cities or local units of government funding CDCs? Editors Reply: …

Closed CDC meetings and transparency Not rated yet
Reviewed: June 12, 2024 Visitor Question: Can a community development corporation hold meetings which are closed to the community at large? Editors …

Community Development Corporation Approval by United Nations  Not rated yet
Reviewed: June 12, 2024 Visitor Question: I have had a CDC since 2014. Are Community Development Corporations registered and/or approved by the United …

Is There a List of Current CDCs Not rated yet
Reviewed: May 31, 2024 Visitor Question: Is there a list of current CDCs? A central registry? How do I find out whether the need I want to address …

Multiple CDC's Not rated yet
Reviewed: June 12, 2024 Visitor Question: Is it possible to have 2 CDC's? If one just patronizes senior citizens and home owners. And the new one …

Elected officials and a CDC  Not rated yet
Reviewed: June 12, 2024 Visitor Question: We have a CDC (community development corporation) in our city that has created a roadmap for the development …

Can CDCs have employees Not rated yet
Last Reviewed: July 4, 2024 Visitor Question: Are community development corporations allowed to hire employees? Why or why not? Editors Reply: …

Click here to write your own.


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