FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
September 20, 2000
Washington, DC --Today Conference of Mayors President and Boise Mayor H. Brent Coles joined Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Andrew Cuomo in calling on Congress to fully fund the Clinton Administration's proposed FY2001 budget. "It is important that the Congress of the United States join us–HUD and the Mayors of America–in a strong domestic policy. And that's what we're asking for–a partnership," Mayor Coles stated at a press conference held earlier today.
Among the program cuts made in the HUD budget Congress are:
Of the CDBG cuts, Mayor Coles said, "Every city in America leverages the CDBG dollars that provide such things in my city, Boise, Idaho, as the Terry Riley Clinic (a community health center). If we put one dollar in that clinic for those who are economically disadvantaged or homeless–put one dollar of CDBG money in there and I can leverage six or seven dollars from other agencies and from private non-profits. One dollar, multiplied six times."
- Elimination of 120,000 proposed new rental assistance vouchers, included in the Administrations request, which would have provided housing for more than;
- $37 million for a new initiative called American Private Investment Corporation, part of President Clinton's and House Speaker Dennis Hastert's plan agreed-upon program to spark economic development; and
- $100 million from the Community Development Block Grants (CDBG), which cities and communities use to invest in a broad range of community projects.
Also attending the press Conference with Coles and Cuomo was Buffalo Mayor Anthony Masiello, who noted that "the budget cuts that have been announced will impact every member of our community and are tantamount to damaging neighborhoods" in his city."
"If either the Senate or House Budget becomes reality, it means that Congress has to suspend this historic opportunity to help many Americans who need assistance to obtain affordable, decent, and safe housing," Secretary Cuomo added.
To view the full text of Mayor Coles remarks, or to learn more about the conference's housing policies and initiatives, please will visit the conference website at www.usmayors.org.
The United States Conference of Mayors is the official nonpartisan organization of cities with populations of 30,000 or more. There are about 1,100 such cities in the United states today. Each city is represented in the membership of the Conference by its chief elected official, the Mayor.