Tag: Appropriations

Congress is nearing a budget deal – speak out today

This is a crucial time for national community development programs.

Today, committees in both the House and Senate are working on bills to fund the federal government for the rest of the fiscal year—including key programs at the Department of Transportation, Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Environmental Protection Agency. How much these programs receive in the coming year is currently under debate.

The bills will soon go to a vote, and so now is the time to speak out for these important programs.

Tell Congress to support community development in this year’s budget: Send a letter to your representatives today.

Together we can help communities clean up brownfields, reuse already developed land, revitalize neighborhoods and expand transportation options.

The Partnership for Sustainable Communities’ planning grants, brownfields assessment and clean up assistance, and the innovative TIGER program are all critical to this work. These programs get more out of public investment and help communities build in ways that will support local economies for decades to come—but Congress needs to hear from you.

Tell Congress to fund community development programs: Send a letter to your members today.

Posted in Action, Congress, DOT, EPA, Federal, HUD, Partnership and Main | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Congress reaches a two-year budget agreement. What’s next?

On Tuesday the Congressional budget conference committee, chaired by Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) and Congressman Paul Ryan (R-WI), reached a tentative agreement on the next two years’ federal operating budget. What does this mean for federal smart growth programs?

First, the big picture. The new deal sets top-line discretionary federal spending at $1.012 trillion for fiscal year (FY) 2014, $1.014 trillion for FY 2015 and provides $63 billion of sequester relief. Both the House and Senate still need to approve the budget before it becomes official: The House will vote on the budget agreement today and the Senate will likely take up a vote sometime next week. The measure is expected to pass both chambers.

The proposed agreement comes after Congress failed to reach a budget agreement in October, causing most of the federal government to shut down. The House and Senate eventually agreed on a short-term continuing resolution for the current fiscal year which is set to expire on January 15, 2014. If the proposed budget passes both chambers, Congress will have until January 15 to set funding levels for all federal programs.

Posted in Congress | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Committees in both House and Senate pass appropriations bills for transportation, housing and urban development

house-committee
The House Appropriations Committee, in meeting today. Image via C-SPAN.

The appropriations committees in both chambers of Congress passed bills this morning that will decide funding for transportation, housing and urban development programs in fiscal year 2014.

In the Senate, the committee’s proposal includes funding for many of the country’s most important community development programs. The Department of Transportation (DOT)’s TIGER grant program would receive $550 million to suppors a wide variety of transportation projects including bridges, public transit and railroads. The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)’s Integrated Planning and Investment grants, part of the federal Partnership for Sustainable Communities, would be allocated $75 million for the coming year.

“HUD’s programs solve local problem with local people,” said Senator Barbara Mikulski (D-MD). The Senate committee passed the bill quickly, just after 10 AM, with few remarks.

Posted in Action, Congress, DOT, Federal, HUD, Partnership and Main | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Senate votes to fund Partnership for Sustainable Communities, both bills go to full committee

As Congress negotiates the federal budget for the coming fiscal year, where do community development programs stand?

As of today, subcommittees in both the House and Senate have come out with their proposals for Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies (THUD) funding for fiscal year 2014.

Posted in Congress, DOT, HUD, Partnership and Main | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Don’t let Congress kill the Partnership for Sustainable Communities

You might already know about the federal Partnership for Sustainable Communities. It’s one of the most innovative neighborhood programs ever created by the federal government.

A new bill in Congress, however, would cut all funding for the Partnership’s flagship programs and end the initiative’s work.

Yesterday, a House Appropriations Subcommittee voted to eliminate all funding for key programs at the Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), both part of the Partnership.

The proposed cuts would be disastrous for the communities across the country. Many are using the Partnership’s help to slowly rebuild their economies, create jobs and improve their development. The House’s proposed cuts would kick the chair out from under these communities.

Among the programs that would be affected is HUD’s Office of Economic Resilience and DOT’s popular TIGER program. President Obama recommended strong funding for these programs, but the House bill would eliminate them completely.

Don’t let Congress set back communities: Tell your members to fund the Partnership for Sustainable Communities.

The Senate will soon consider this same bill and they need to hear that these programs are important. Congress is facing many tough fiscal decisions this year. It’s up to us to make sure these programs continue.

Community development projects are a worthwhile investment of taxpayer dollars, and yield economic returns for businesses, communities and taxpayers alike. Tell Congress to fund these programs today.

Posted in Action, Congress, DOT, HUD, Partnership and Main | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

House subcommittee introduces bill that cuts funding to Departments of Transportation, Housing and Urban Development

Earlier today the House Appropriations Subcommittee introduced the fiscal year 2014 Transportation, Housing and Urban Development funding bill. The bill slashes funding to programs at both the Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) by $7.7 billion compared to their 2013 spending levels. At DOT, the budget would eliminate funding for the TIGER grant program and rescind $237 million in unobligated TIGER funding from 2013. The bill would also eliminate funding for high-speed rail and cut Amtrak’s subsidy by a third.

At HUD the bill would cut overall funding by 35% compared to FY 2013, including a 50% cut to Community Development Block Grants and a 30% cut to the HOME Investment Partnership Program. The bill would also zero out funding for HUD’s Office of Economic Resilience, created just this year. President Obama’s FY 2014 budget proposed $75 million in funding for that office.

In response to the proposed bill, Geoff Anderson, President and CEO of Smart Growth America, issued the following statement.

Posted in Congress, DOT, HUD | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Senators and Representatives sign on to letter supporting the Partnership for Sustainable Communities

Senator Reed
Senator Jack Reed (D-RI), Chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on Interior, Environment and Related Agencies, is one of the recipients of this week’s letters. Photo via the Committee on Appropriations.

Last month we asked smart growth advocates to speak out in support of the Partnership for Sustainable Communities. Hundreds of supporters sent letters to their members of Congress, and Congress listened.

If you were one of the many people who sent letters to your members of Congress, thank you. Your voice was heard and Congress is taking action to support these important programs. In total, 29 members of Congress signed letters championing better development programs at the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in fiscal year 2014′s budget.

Posted in Congress, Featured Content, Partnership and Main | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Six members of Congress are taking a stand for better development. Ask your members to join them.

In the next few days, Congress will set priorities for millions of dollars of funding for federal programs—including programs that support better neighborhood development.

This funding could helps towns across the country revitalize Main Streets, redevelop historic buildings, rebuild on abandoned land and more. But only if Congress hears from supporters like you.

Congress needs to hear your support for this work. Send a letter to your members today.

Posted in Action, Congress, Partnership and Main | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Washington Update: FY 2012 funding extended into 2013, sequestration looms at the end of the year

In anticipation of the upcoming election season, Congress has passed a continuing resolution (CR) to extend federal spending until March 27, 2013.

Leaders in both chambers have pushed for the passage a CR in order to avoid a government shutdown so close to the November election. Funding for the current federal programs, which was scheduled to expire at the end of September, will remain unchanged until March at which point Congress will revisit budget negotiations. The resolution passed the House with overwhelming support on September 13. The Senate deliberated the measure, and eventually passed the resolution, 62-30. President Obama signed the CR late last week.

Posted in Congress, Federal, Partnership and Main, White House | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Update on Appropriations: The Partnership for Sustainable Communities

This week, the Partnership for Sustainable Communities celebrated three years of collaborative and innovative work, but members of Congress proposed to eliminate and restrict the funding of its programs. While the Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development Appropriations (T-HUD) bill in the …

Posted in Partnership, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment