The Obama administration Monday designated South Los Angeles a Promise Zone, where federal and local officials are intended to team up to promote economic development.
The president’s Promise Zone initiative “pairs federal government partners with local leaders to streamline resources across agencies and deliver comprehensive support,” said a statement announcing the third and final round of designations in the effort.
“The Administration has abandoned an outdated, top-down approach to investing in communities in favor of a collaborative federal role that is driven by partnership with local officials, and reliance on data and evidence to guide what works,” it said.
The L.A. area Promise Zone designated today — the South Los Angeles Transit Empowerment Zone — includes portions of Vernon-Central, South Park, Florence, Exposition Park, Vermont Square, Leimert Park and a small section of Baldwin Hills-Crenshaw. The administration statement noted that the zone’s residents are 94 percent people of color, including 71.2 percent Latino.
Among zone residents, “workforce participation is low, and among those working, 44 percent live at or below 150 percent of the poverty line,” the statement said.
Also included in today’s round of designations were a section of San Diego; Nashville, Tennessee; Atlanta, Georgia; Evansville, Indiana; Spokane Tribe of Indians, Washington; Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians, North Dakota; Southwest Florida Regional Planning Council; and Puerto Rico’s Ceiba, Fajardo and Naguado Municipalities.
Officials said Promise Zones will receive federal support that includes preferred access to certain competitive federal investments, federal staffers to help implement programs and five full-time AmeriCorps VISTA members. The previous designates have received more than $550 million in federal funding, according to the White House.
—City News Service