On March 10, the U.S. Senate confirmed Marcia Fudge to serve as the eighteenth Secretary of Housing and Urban Development by a bipartisan vote of 66-34. Fudge resigned as the U.S. Representative for Ohio’s 11th Congressional District – a position she had held since 2008 – and was virtually sworn in by Vice President Kamala Harris later that day. As the head of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Secretary Fudge will be responsible for several federal programs of critical importance to counties including the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and the HOME Investment Partnership programs.
During her confirmation hearing, Secretary Fudge stated that her priorities for HUD include assisting individuals struggling to make rental and mortgage payments due to COVID-19, ending discriminatory housing practices and boosting housing affordability. She further expressed support for expanding Housing Choice Vouchers, the inventory of low- and moderate-income housing and housing counseling assistance.
Secretary Fudge takes over leadership of HUD at a critical time, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to exacerbate housing affordability and insecurity issues. During her confirmation hearing, Secretary Fudge testified that, because of lost income and unemployment due to the pandemic, 1 in 5 renters and 1 in 10 homeowners with a mortgage are behind on their housing payments. These challenges disproportionately impact communities of color, populations which are also disproportionately affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Secretary Fudge’s leadership will be particularly impactful for counties, who receive federal funding for essential community and economic development activities through various HUD programs including CDBG, the HOME Investment Partnership Program, homeless assistance grants and voucher programs. As a former mayor, Secretary Fudge’s local government experience has informed her view of these programs, including support for increased funding for CDBG.
Counties are grateful for administrative and Congressional action to support housing and community and economic development programs at the local level throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. We look forward to our continued partnership with HUD under Secretary Fudge.
For further information on COVID-19 funding, please view NACo’s COVID-19 Recovery Clearinghouse where counties can find specific information regarding federal funding for housing, rental and mortgage assistance, direct aid for counties and more.
- Affordable Housing Toolkit for Counties
- Webinar: Effectively Distributing Rental Assistance: Evidence for Local Governments
- COVID-19 Federal Emergency Rental Assistance Program
- NACo Policy Brief: Support Local Development and Infrastructure Projects: The Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program
- NACo Policy Brief: Restore Funding for HUD’s Home Investment Partnership’s (HOME) Program
- NACo Policy Brief: CDBG National Profile