Community Support and Well-Being - FY 2024

The Community Support and Well-Being service objective enhances access to recreation, health, social services, and basic utilities that create an active, healthy, socially thriving, and inclusive community. This objective seeks help residents live a meaningful life, feel empowered to make change, increase happiness, health, and connection to their community.

The Resident Survey was conducted in the fall of 2022, with the next one occurring in 2024. There are five Resident Survey questions the City uses to track its performance related to increasing Community Support and Well-Being. See the satisfaction rate for those five questions in the call-outs below.
The City provides various services to residents that support the overall quality of life in Norfolk. These include, among others, recreation and leisure programs, public health and human/community services , utilities including water and wastewater, trash and recycling services, supporting economic development, and public safety services including police, fire, and emergency management. The City also provides support to Norfolk Public Schools through a revenue sharing formula.
The City of Norfolk is committed to increasing affordable housing opportunities. These initiatives include but are not limited to homeowner and rental rehabilitation programs, homebuyer assistance and tenant based rental assistance programs.
The city currently has 18 recreation centers spread throughout the city. Information on the location, hours, and activities available at a recreation center near your neighborhood is available here.
The city's Department of Human Services (DHS) manages Adult Protective Services, Family Services and Foster Care, the Juvenile Detention program, and various forms of public assistance including SNAP and TANF.
The city's Department of Human Services (DHS) Benefit Administration and Adult Assistance program supports the determination of eligible clients for the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP) to reduce hunger and increase food security. Additionally, the City's Economic Development department works to incentivize private development of grocery stores across the city to ensure availability and accessibility of healthy, affordable food. In 2021, the Berkeley Supermarket opened, eliminating the food desert in the Berkeley neighborhood of Norfolk. Norfolk continues to work to attract and incentivize businesses to enhance the health and wellness of the community and decrease food insecurity.
The City also tracks the performance of services across multiple departments related to the goal of enhancing Community Support and Well-Being. Read more about these performance measures in the visuals below.
Eviction and Utility Cut Off Prevention Assistance
The COVID-19 pandemic and its resulting economic fallout exacerbated housing instability in Norfolk and across the country. Grant funding from the American Recovery Plan Act and the Virginia Eviction Reduction pilot program is being used to provide rental assistance and other support for low income renters in danger of eviction in the City of Norfolk. As of March 2021, $1.9 million has been allocated and 469 households have been assisted through the Eviction Prevention Center.
Number of Rental Educational Courses Offered Through Rent Ready Program
The Rent Ready Norfolk program is designed to increase the number of viable residential rental properties in the City of Norfolk. It provides comprehensive information and resources to renters as well as landlords and serves as a road map for the rental experience from start to finish.
Number of Rental Units Committed for Low- to Moderate-Income Households Through a Conditional Use Permit
The Neighborhood and Housing Preservation program is responsible for preserving and enhancing the quality and safety of existing housing stock through the implementation of rehabilitation and repair assistance programs. The program works to annually increase the number of affordable rental units.
Total Number of Residents Serviced Through Senior Real Estate Tax Relief Program
The City provides real estate tax relief to certain seniors and permanently and totally disabled homeowners. The combined annual income of owners cannot exceed $67,000 and their net worth, excluding the home, cannot exceed $350,000. The FY 2024 budget includes an expansion of the real estate tax relief program. In FY 2024, the assessed value of the home that is eligible for real estate tax relief increases to $267,609 from $203,386.

Total Number of Homeless Persons Sheltered

The Norfolk Community Services Board (NCSB) operates a 100-bed emergency shelter for single adults experiencing homelessness in Norfolk. The Center also provides day services to homeless individuals. NCSB has case managers that conduct street outreach and provide short term case management services. Additionally, outreach specialists provide direct services for those dealing with homelessness.

Number of Participants in Youth and Adult Sports

The City offers a wide variety of youth and adult sport programs throughout the year. To learn more about the youth and adult sport programs, and how to participate please follow this link:
Check out the other performance measures tied to the Community Support and Well-Being service objective in this filtered dataset!

FY 2024 Budget Highlights - Community Support and Well-Being

Fair Housing Education and Enforcement - The FY 2024 Adopted Budget includes funds for an additional position in the Department of Housing and Community Development to address fair housing through education and enforcement activities. The position will be responsible for coordinating fair housing training and engagement efforts, and monitoring subcontracts with fair housing testing agencies. These efforts will strengthen the local, state, and federal fair housing protections for all protected classes including race, color, religion, national origin, sex, elderliness, familial status, disability, source of funds, sexual orientation, gender identity, or military status.
Berkley Supermarket - The adopted budget includes $100,000 grant to the Berkley Supermarket to help continue operations. In FY 2021, the City approved funding to help incentivize an independent grocery store in the Berkeley area of the city to help mitigate the lack of access to fresh, quality food for residents of the area.
Commercial Grade Kitchen for Homeless Shelter - The adopted five year capital improvement program has $700,000 in planned funding in FY 2025 for a commercial kitchen at “The Center,” a homeless shelter on Tidewater Drive. The Center is a 100-bed shelter that began operating in FY 2022 to support and provide services to homeless individuals as they work toward transitioning to permanent housing. Since opening, 484 people have been served. The adjacent property will be used to install a commercial kitchen facility and dining hall to cook on-site and host volunteer groups willing to donate meals.
Affordable Housing - To address the lower resident satisfaction rating with affordable housing, the City is working with a consultant to prepare a comprehensive housing study and recommendations for a set of affordable housing policies. The FY 2024 budget will fund one new Senior Design and Rehabilitation Specialist to enforce the requirements associated with the anticipated inclusionary zoning policy. Inclusionary Zoning is a policy tool that will allow City Council to implement mandatory or voluntary set-asides for affordable housing units within new multifamily projects across the city. Other efforts include the transformative redevelopment of the St. Paul's area, now known as Kindred. The physical redevelopment assists in the deconcentrating of poverty with more than 90 percent of the residents moving to lower poverty neighborhoods with rental assistance and barrier removal offered through the city funded People First program. This program also provides assistance in job training, education and health and has resulted in a 74 percent employment rate and 100 percent of children having health insurance. The City is continuing to provide funds for Renovate Norfolk and Strengthening Neighborhoods owner-occupied rehabilitation and down-payment assistance programs, the Department of Neighborhood Services’ Rent ReadyNorfolk education program, and Norfolk Eviction Prevention Center.
St. Paul’s Blue/Green Way - The Blue/Green Way in Kindred will redevelop approximately 26 acres of public housing and other properties into an aesthetic open space designed to treat and store storm water runoff during storm events. This transformation will create a water eco-center comprised of parks and green spaces. The FY 2024 CIP includes funds for the construction of Storm Water, Water, Wastewater infrastructure in the area as well as funds to construct recreational amenities.
Blueway and Trail Connections - The adopted budget includes $150,000 for the “Trail Assessment and Recreational Trail Connectivity Plan” which will be used as a framework for the Department of Parks and Recreation decide how to best construct and connect blueways and trail networks throughout the city.
Code Enforcement Expansion - The adopted budget also includes an expansion effort that will add 12 Neighborhood Code Specialists and Neighborhood Code Specialist, Seniors to the Department of Neighborhood Services. Neighborhood Codes Specialists are responsible for enforcing city ordinances and the Virginia Maintenance Code (VMC) for private property in the city. These positions will increase engagement, education, and enforcement to improve the appearance of the city and its neighborhoods. The adopted budget also includes $100,000 for an abatement assistance program. These funds will provide one-time abatement assistance to eligible property owners with extenuating circumstances.
Enhance Street Outreach Efforts - The Street Outreach Team provides those experiencing homelessness with transportation to shelters, referral to benefits, services, and long-term planning to end their homelessness. $108,000 is included in the budget to enhance homeless street outreach. These funds also include the addition of a vehicle.
Increase Funding for Nighttime Basketball Program - The adopted budget includes an additional $250,000 for a nighttime basketball tournament, for residents ages eighteen and up. The program has an emphasis on positive activities while providing additional assistance such as employment opportunities, professional development, G.E.D. enrollment, healthcare services, and more. The funds will be used to support costs including security, referees, uniforms, and additional programming outside of basketball to include dance and G.E.D. classes.
Real Estate Tax Relief Program Updated - Seniors and permanently disabled homeowners that meet certain requirements are eligible for real estate tax relief and/or deferment. The FY 2024 adopted budget includes an increase in the assessed home value of program participants. To qualify for tax exemption, household income cannot exceed $28,611 and net worth cannot exceed $350,000. The exemption now applies to the homes assessed value of up to $267,609. This is an increase from home assessed value of $203,386 in the FY 2023 Budget. Households with income exceeding $28,611 but does not exceed $67,000 may defer the real estate tax on their home up to the assessed value of $267,609.

Want to learn more about how the City is tracking it's Strategic Goals and Objectives? Click here to head back to the homepage!