Urge your members of Congress to restore funding for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program to $3.5 billion as Congress considers funding for FY 2019. CDBG, funded through the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development (T-HUD) appropriations bill, has been drastically reduced in recent years, having been cut by nearly 25 percent, or $1 billion, since FY 2010.
The CDBG program was enacted in 1974 to provide block grant funding for community development programs. The program assists urban, suburban and rural communities to improve housing and living conditions and expand economic opportunities for low and moderate income persons. CDBG helps to create jobs through the expansion and retention of businesses and is an important tool for helping local governments tackle serious challenges facing their communities. Counties use the flexibility of CDBG funds to partner with the private and non-profit sectors to develop and upgrade local housing, water, infrastructure and human services programs. Counties rely on the flexibility of CDBG funds to meet their particular community development needs.
The CDBG program provides annual grants on a formula basis to over 1,200 metropolitan city and county governments and to state governments. There are 214 counties that receive grants directly. Local entitlement cities and counties receive 70 percent of CDBG funds, and states receive 30 percent. Non-entitlement communities, such as rural counties, must compete for funding via the state formula allocation. HUD determines the amount of each grant by using a formula comprised of several measures of community need, including the extent of poverty, population, housing overcrowding, age of housing and population growth lag in relationship to other metropolitan areas.
Currently, CDBG is funded at $3.3 billion under FY 2018 appropriations, an increase of $300 million over the FY 2017 funding level.
President Trump’s FY 2018 budget proposed to eliminate CDBG funding in order to shift community and economic development activities to the state and local level and redirect federal resources to other programs.
NACo members are encouraged to contact their members of Congress to support $3.5 billion in funding for CDBG in the FY 2019 appropriations process.
KEY TALKING POINTS
- Funding for the CDBG program should be restored to $3.5 billion in FY 2019. The CDBG program has faced drastic cuts in recent years, falling by over $1 billion since FY 2010. CDBG was funded at $3.3 billion in the FY 2018 Omnibus appropriations bill.
- CDBG funding cuts have already contributed to deficit reduction. Further cuts will hurt local job creation and community development investments.
- Counties utilize the flexibility of CDBG funds to support projects that meet their local priorities in addressing community and economic development, housing, water and infrastructure and human service needs.
- The CDBG program provides vital resources for state and local governments to make investments to support economic development and improve community conditions.
- According to HUD, for every $1 of CDBG funds, an estimated $4.09 is leveraged in non-CDBG funds, and over the last decade, CDBG has created or retained 401,992 economic development related jobs.
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