President Donald Trump to Eliminate Community Development Block Grants in 2017/18 Federal Budget


Syracuse Would Lose 4.5 Million Dollars in CDBG – Community Targeted Funding

Housing and Urban Development’s budget would be reduced by 15%

The Trump Administration has proposed cutting Housing and Urban Development’s budget by 15% down to 40.5 billion FY 2018. Under President Trump’s Budget proposal, HUD’s Community Development Block Grants would be eliminated. This would spell disaster for cities and small communities across the nation, if these cut aren’t restored to the Federal Budget.

For over 40 years Community Development Block program has been the foundation for the revitalization of cities and rural areas across America.  Allocated to over 1,100 local and state governments based on a formula. CDBG projects are designed to meet priorities of the national program, funding activates that benefit low- and-moderate income people. Acceptable use includes economic development and job creation/retention activities.

It has been proven that HUD’s CDBG program funds are leveraged to generate additional investments in areas where program funds are used.

According to HUD statistics CDBG economic development programs designed to spur economic growth in poor neighborhoods expended $120 million in CDBG grants, the result was 1,853 severely distressed public housing units replaced with over 3,000 new mixed-income, mixed-use housing units.  In 2006, HUD calculated that, the cities were leveraging an additional $636 million through public-private partnerships assisted with CDBG grant funding.

Syracuse receives funding from HUD’s CDBG to fund, housing services, Homelessness and prevention, education and workforce development. In addition to initiatives designed to eliminate blight, and provide housing for the elderly.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo

Governor Andrew Cuomo in part of a detailed statement said, “the Administration’s budget slashes $6 billion from the Department of Housing and Urban Development, eliminating Community Development Block Grants that have transformed affordable housing for New Yorkers in need. As a former Secretary of the HUD, I have firsthand knowledge of the crucial services the Department provides and the real, tangible harm these cuts will impose on vulnerable, hard-working Americans in New York and across the nation.”

According to Syracuse Mayor, Stephanie A. Miner, “This budget proposal shows a lack of a serious urban agenda by the current administration. Beyond the rhetoric, it’s clear that cities are thriving. More people than ever before are choosing to make cities their home. Cities are becoming hubs of the innovation economy, places where people come to exchange creative ideas and share diverse, dynamic experiences. We are entering a new era for urban America and this excitement is something our nation should be investing in. “

Mayor Stephanie A. Miner

Miner’s statement continues,” This budget is out of touch with the realities in our cities face: we are not going to put more Americans to work, revitalize our urban cores, or improve our schools by cutting funding for housing, education, and building a wall. These programs fight poverty and blight every day. Shortsighted investments for unsubstantiated fears will not make our country great again but will instead have a devastating impact on cities across the nation.”

U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) released the following: “The President’s budget is irresponsible and will short-change middle class New Yorkers, seniors, and students alike while doing harm to a fragile economy. I will do everything I can to fight these harmful cuts and protect funding that helps build our roads and bridges, supports our students and seniors, and makes smart investments to help grow the New York economy.”

The draconian cuts, specifically targeting Community Development Block Grants would have a devastating effect on the City of Syracuse.

On the national level of the debate, Meals on Wheels can’t be boiled down to saving dollars when Congress spent 2 million dollars on pastries, coffee and receptions, according to published reports.

The following are proposed changes in HUD based on the Federal Budget Submitted by the Trump Administration

  1. Maintaining the same level of funding for rental assistance programs
  2. Minimizing HUD salaries and administrative expenses by 5 percent
  3. Slashing the public housing capital fund by $1.3 billion, a reduction of 32 percent
  4. Cutting $600 million would from the public housing operating fund
  5. Lowering direct rental assistance payments — including Section 8 Housing and homeless veterans vouchers — by $300 million
  6. Removing 10 percent ($42 million) for elderly housing Section 202
  7. Reducing disabled housing programs under Section 811 by 20 percent ($29 million)
  8. Reducing Native American housing block grants by 20 percent ($150 million)
  9. Eliminating the $3 billion Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) program — i.e., Choice Neighborhoods and HOME Investment Partnerships

With the aforementioned in mind, review the Community Development Block Grant budget for the City of Syracuse. You’d see that CDBG funding is spread throughout the community, in many cases only partially funding Community-Based organizations and city agencies. We’ve used CDBG to fund programs enabling eligible homeowners to fix emergency repairs, receive counseling for possible homeownership, workforce development, etc.

The City of Syracuse through its use of CDBG effectively provides partial funding for 25 organizations and agencies. The following is a list of the organizations and what the funds are utilized for. The list gives you an idea of the tremendous impact CDBG has had in our city over the programs 42 year history.

This past week, Congress was on recess so members returned home to a litany of questions from constituents. The message many constituents are sending to congress as they returned? “We don’t like the budget”.

And if the visceral response to the loss of federal funding for Meals on Wheels is any indication of where things are going, President Trump’s first budget has been declared, dead on arrival.

City of Syracuse

 Budget
(May 1, 2106 – April 30, 2017)

 

 Applicant Program Year 42 Allocation Percent of Total Allocation
ARISE, Inc. Housing Referral and Advocacy Program | Ramp Intake + Referral $ 20,700 0.5%
Boys and Girls Clubs of Syracuse Teen Program $ 14,000 0.3%
Catholic Charities of Onondaga County Relocation Services for the Housing Vulnerable $213,120 4.7%
CNY Fair Housing Education and Enforcement $33,797 0.7%
Cooperative Federal Credit Union Revolving Loan Fund for Small Business Capacity Building $30,000 0.7%
Dunbar Association in Partnership with SWCC Youth Services Program $ 12,000 0.3%
Empire Housing Far Westside/City of Syracuse Revitalization Strategy $ 60,000 1.3%
Greater Syracuse Tenant Network Tenant Counseling $49,000 1.1%
Home HeadQuarters Home Improvement – SHARP $ 271,800 6.0%
Home HeadQuarters Home Improvement | Urgent Care + Ramp Construction $ 1,175,209 25.7%
Home HeadQuarters Homeownership Services – Downpayment Assistance $255,110 5.6%
Home HeadQuarters Homeownership Center $ 155,000 3.4%
Huntington Family Centers, Inc. Youth Services Program $ 16,500 0.4%
InterFaith Works of CNY Center for New Americans $ 49,500 1.1%
Jubilee Homes Workforce and SW Neighborhood Development $180,000 3.9%
Northeast Hawley Development Association Neighborhood Revitalization and Stabilization Program $ 62,200 1.4%
OCPL | Mundy Library Youth Employment | Stipends for Young Technology Leaders $ 20,000 0.4%
PEACE, Inc.|Common Council Allocation Big Brothers Big Sisters Youth Transportation $ 12,500 0.3%
Syracuse Model Neighborhood Corp. Rental Rehabilitation : Administration + Repair Assistance $ 300,000 6.6%
Syracuse Model Neighborhood Facility, Inc. Southwest Community Center $365,000 8.0%
Syracuse Northeast Community Center Northeast Community Center $ 250,000 5.5%
Visions For Change Choosing To Thrive $ 20,000 0.4%
Westcott Community Center Community Center Programming $ 75,000 1.6%
Welch Terrace Housing Development Fund Inc. Welch Terrace Housing $6,000 0.1%
YMCA of Greater Syracuse |Common Council Allocation Resident Advisement Program $ 10,500 0.2%
Syracuse NBD (20% Cap) NBD Administration $ 909,233 19.9%
GRAND TOTAL: PROPOSED ALLOCATION $ 4,566,169 100%