What are Preference Points?

The ability to access preference points in federal funding competitions is one of the key benefits of the federal promise zone designation.  Each year, participating federal agencies like the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the Department of Commerce, or the Department of Education, will announce grant opportunities that include a preference for proposals from Promise Zone communities.  Preference Points serve like “extra credit” for a grant proposal to improve the applicant’s competitiveness in the grant process.  The federal agencies determine how many preference points are awarded for Promise Zone Communities and the City of Los Angeles is responsible for certifying that the application for funding is from a Promise Zone partner organization and consistent with the goals and objectives of the Promise Zone.

Is our organization eligible to receive a Preference Point Letter?

Organizations that actively work within the Promise Zone boundaries and have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the City of Los Angeles are able to request a Preference Point letter for federal grant opportunities. A list of current MOU partners can be found HERE (add link).

How can I request a Preference Point Letter from the City?

Preference points will be awarded to a partner organization who can demonstrate how their program/project meets one or several of the Promise Zone goals.   The City of Los Angeles is able to certify only one grant proposal per competition, so it is important to contact the Promise Zone staff early in the process to determine if other local groups are interested in a particular grant opportunity.  The City of Los Angeles will encourage local groups to partner whenever possible when there is more than one group interested.

On the occasion where more than one request for a preference point certification letter is received, the City of Los Angeles will call on its technical advisory board -- composed of local experts in the fields of education, community development, sustainability and public health -- to review competing proposals and recommend the proposal that most closely meets the goals and objectives of the Promise Zone Initiative from the most qualified and experienced applicant.

Please follow this link and fill out the form.

When will we be notified if our organization received the Preference Point Letter?

You should hear back from the Promise Zone staff within 1-2 working days as to the status of your initial request.  The process for reviewing and certifying proposals can take up to two weeks, so please plan accordingly.