The Office of Economic Development (OED), under the auspices of the Assistant Secretary for Community Planning and Development, is guided by the basic principle that government can help to create an environment that encourages innovation, rewards risk-taking and promotes equal opportunity. OED recognizes the extraordinarily diverse range of economic and community development needs among the nation's individual communities, which may range from job retention and creation priorities, to new investments in public facilities and infrastructure and the development of affordable housing.
The Office is committed to building new public-private sector partnerships to address pressing economic development needs, by fostering increased collaboration between the private development sector, local and state governments and national and community-based not-for-profit organizations. OED works with the public and private sectors, as well as not-for-profit organizations, to provide financial and technical assistance to local communities to develop and implement their own economic development and community revitalization strategies. In an effort to lend greater weight to local economic development priorities, the Office has adopted a streamlined process for the approval of requests for assistance, moving significant decision-making authority closer to communities in need, through our Community Planning and Development field offices.
OED works to continually expand its outreach to communities and clients that may be unfamiliar with the financial and technical assistance that is available to help local communities realize their vision and goals for the new economy. In every region of the United States, an Economic Development Specialist works closely with state and local governments and the private and not-for-profit sectors, providing hands-on assistance and guidance in helping to make local economic development plans a reality.
Equally important to the OED mission is ensuring the proper and prudent investment of HUD's economic development resources to guard against waste, fraud and abuse. In exercising its public trust responsibilities, the Office is dedicated to a fully transparent and competitive process in the award of economic development funds. OED also closely monitors economic development projects receiving assistance and provides on-going technical assistance to recipients to ensure the integrity and success of the investment of federal economic development funds.
OED seeks to encourage and support comprehensive approaches to community and economic development that emphasize local initiatives, private sector opportunities and self-sufficiency. The Office's core economic development programs are designed to serve as a catalyst in spurring new private sector investment and job creation in communities struggling to secure the benefits of the new economy. OED programs support sustainable economic development strategies that leverage investments from other public and private sources in order to ensure the long-term viability of local economic development efforts. The Office of Economic Development views economic development as a means to an end, working to achieve demonstrable results through the strategic investment of federal economic development resources and helping to increase private enterprise and individual opportunity in every community.