The Department of Housing and Urban Development has awarded $389,000 in grants to Utah as part of the Emergency Shelter Grants Program. The state will receive $222,000, Salt Lake City will get $99,000, and Salt Lake County will be granted $68,000.

The grants program provides access for homeless individuals and families to safe, sanitary shelter, supportive services and other assistance. Grants are provided according to the formula used for Community Development Block Grants, and states, metropolitan cities and urban counties are eligible.Eligible activities include renovation, major rehabilitation or conversion of buildings for use as homeless shelters.

Within guidelines, recipients can also spend money for essential services for the homeless, including homeless prevention efforts. Funds can also be used for operating costs such as maintenance, insurance, utilities and furnishings.

To receive a grant, each grantee must have an approved Comprehensive Homeless Assistance Plan.

The program grants were awarded in proportion to last year's block grant allocation.