Page 1
Standard

Congressman David Joyce learns about importance of HUD funding

OCDCA is working with the Coalition on Homelessness and Housing in Ohio (COHHIO) to make the long-term case to key Ohio congressional officials about the importance of adequately funding community development and affordable housing in the HUD budget.

Congressman David Joyce (R – Geauga County) recently attended an educational convening with COHHIO and OCDCA members at the offices of Extended Housing in Painesville and learned about how housing is foundational to success and how federal programs work together to leverage resources to uplift the community.

From L to R – Gina Wilt (COHHIO), Karen McLeod (Extended Housing), Congressman David Joyce, Nate Coffman (OCDCA), Bill Faith (COHHIO)

Our organizations will continue to make the case in DC and throughout Ohio. We greatly thank Representative Joyce for spending the day with us, and our members who helped demonstrate their critical work.

Standard

Advocates and congressional champions secure increased affordable housing funding for 2018

From the National Low Income Housing Coalition:

The final fiscal year (FY) 2018 spending bill – released yesterday, March 21, by Congressional leaders – includes a significant increase in funding for affordable housing and community development programs at HUD and USDA, along with an increase in Low Income Housing Tax Credits and an important reform to the tax program. This successful outcome is due to the hard work of advocates across the nation and strong Congressional champions, including Senators Susan Collins (R-ME) and Jack Reed (D-RI) and Representatives Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL) and David Price (R-NC) – the chairs and ranking members of the House and Senate Transportation-HUD Appropriations Subcommittees – as well as Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA) and others.

The bill provides HUD programs with $4.6 billion in additional funding overall compared to FY17, or more than $12 billion above the president’s FY18 request. With a 10% one-year increase to HUD, many programs were funded at levels significantly above what was proposed in either the House or Senate draft bills. The spending bill renews all Housing Choice Vouchers and provides new vouchers to veterans and people with disabilities, allocates nearly $1 billion in additional funding to repair and operate public housing, and boosts funding for the HOME Investment Partnerships program (HOME) to the highest level in seven years. Moreover, the final bill includes none of rent increases proposed by the president in his budget request. See NLIHC’s updated budget chart for more details.

The final FY18 spending bill is a clear repudiation of the president’s budget request, which would have cut funding for HUD by nearly 15%, or $7.4 billion, compared to FY17 levels, provided the HUD secretary with the authority to increase the financial burden on current and future tenants, eliminated 250,000 Housing Choice Vouchers, and slashed or zeroed out funding for public housing, the national Housing Trust Fund, HOME, and Community Development Block Grants.

The House is expected to vote on the bill as soon as today, March 22, followed by the Senate soon thereafter. Congress must enact the spending bill before the current stop-gap spending measure expires on Friday, March 23. Congressional leaders could turn to a short, day-long continuing resolution to provide enough time to overcome procedural hurdles. Once the bill is enacted, NLIHC and our partners in the Campaign for Housing and Community Development will turn our full attention to defeating the president’s FY19 budget request, securing the highest allocation possible for affordable housing and community development programs, and defeating harmful benefit cuts.

Read and learn more on the NLIHC’s website.

Image

Community Development Week starts April 2nd

Please find below information from the Ohio Development Services Agency regarding Community Development Week April 2 – 6.

The week is an excellent opportunity to highlight the successes of the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), Home Investments Partnerships program (HOME), and other critical community development resources.

Each year, you, our community development professionals are asked to do more with less. Through your collaborative efforts, we’ve been able to help many low- and moderate-income individuals in communities across the state.

This year marks the 32th anniversary of National Community Development Week. It is an opportunity for you to showcase your communities’ accomplishments and projects. It is an excellent opportunity to educate residents, business owners and elected officials about the CDBG, HOME and other community development programs through ODSA and how they improve the quality of life for all.

The work you do locally helps to strengthen communities across Ohio. We encourage you to participate in in Community Development Week this year. The Council of State Community Development Agencies (COSCDA) has a planning guidebook for the week. The National Community Development Association also has resources and ideas for events and outreach you can do locally.

If your community is planning any activities or events during the week, please contact Deauna Gibbs at deauna.gibbs@development.ohio.gov or 614-752-9556 with more information. We would like to highlight the change you’re making in the communities where you live and work.

Standard

Sign here for increased community development and housing resources

We all know that there is tremendous unmet need in the state for community development funding and for housing that low-income people can afford.

However, there is good news: Congress’s recent bipartisan budget agreement is the first opportunity in many years to get increased federal funding for community development and affordable housing.

President Trump’s new budget is a bad start, but it’s just symbolic. The fact is, Congress just lifted austere spending caps that have starved HUD programs for years.

The bill adds $131 billion in domestic non-defense spending for the next two fiscal years, and now they need to figure out how to spend it.

While Trump’s budget would add only $2 billion of that new money to HUD (for an overall 14% cut), we know that increased funding for Community Development Block Grants (CDBG), HOME Investments Partnership program (HOME), rental assistance, and the National Housing Trust Fund would go a long way to alleviating resource scarcity and the affordability crisis.

But we need to let our members of Congress know these programs really work.

The first step is to add your organization to this sign-on letter asking Ohio’s congressional delegation to support increased funding for HUD programs.

After you sign the letter, we’ll get in touch when the time comes to call your members of Congress to let them know how important these federal community development and housing programs are to their constituents.

Standard

County gets $1.55 million housing grant from state

Daniel Carson of The News-Messenger:

“Sandusky County has received a $1.55 million community affordable housing grant that will help homeowners and rental property owners fix up dozens of homes in the county.

The county’s Community Housing Impact and Preservation Program grant is funded by the Ohio Housing Trust Fund, federal Community Development Block Grant and HOME programs, according to the Ohio Development Services Agency.

Sandusky County is one of 30 communities statewide to receive one of the grants.

County Administrator Theresa Garcia said WSOS is administering the community housing grant locally and has been doing so for at least a decade.

Garcia said the $1.55 million grant is for the next two years and is meant to assist residents with repairs that include installing new windows and other home upgrades.

She said WSOS takes and reviews applications for the grant funding and makes decisions on which homeowners will receive money for home repairs.

“They maintain the whole program,” Garcia said.

The Ohio Development Services Agency awarded the grant, which will be used to rehabilitate, repair and construct affordable housing for low-income Ohio residents as well as provide homeownership and rental assistance.”

Congratulations for the two year award, OCDCA member WSOS Community Action! This is a great acknowledgement of the benefit of OHTF, CDBG, and HOME.

Read the whole story here.

Image

What’s happening? HOME, Open enrollment

A brief sample of our October 2017 newsletter: What’s Happening in Ohio Community Development?

Sign HOME Coalition Letter and Submit HOME Success Stories by November 10

The HOME Investment Partnerships Program (HOME) is looking for HOME success stories. Congress has yet to finalize its fiscal year (FY) 2018 spending bills, and the House proposed cutting HOME by $100 million to a historic low of $850 million.

The HOME Investment Partnerships Program (HOME) is looking for HOME success stories. Congress has yet to finalize its fiscal year (FY) 2018 spending bills, and the House proposed cutting HOME by $100 million to a historic low of $850 million.   For over 20 years, HOME has been one of the most effective, flexible, and locally driven tools to help states and communities address their most pressing housing challenges. Recent cuts to HOME from more than $1.8 billion in 2010 to $950 million in 2017 have only made it more difficult for America’s most vulnerable households to access a safe, decent, and affordable home.

  1. Sign on to the HOME Coalition’s letter urging Congress to restore HOME funding to at least $1.2 billion in FY 2018. Sign your organization on to the letter now.
  2. Submit HOME success stories to show the impact of the HOME Program and give a face to who the program serves. Please use this HOME success story template and submit stories to Althea Arnold (aarnold AT ncsha.org) or Clay Kerchof (ckerchof AT enterprisecommunity.org).

The deadline to sign your organization onto the letter and submit success stories is November 10. Thank you for your support of this crucial resource.

Read the whole newsletter or subscribe!

Image

What’s happening? State & federal budget update

A brief sample of our May newsletter: What’s Happening in Ohio Community Development?

Administration Releases FY18 Budget Proposal, Guts Community Development & Housing

The President’s FY 2018 budget request was officially released last week titled A New Foundation for American Greatness. The proposal, which largely mirrors the budget preview released in March makes steep cuts to housing and community development programs, slashing the overall HUD budget by $6.2 billion or 13.2% compared to FY 2017. View the historic HUD/USDA budget chart by program.

The bulk of the cuts are to community development programs, which are largely eliminated such as the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and HOME Investment Partnership (HOME) programs. These proposed cuts, if implemented, would be devastating for communities.

Although the administration’s budget is largely a political statement that has been rejected by many in Congress, it remains important to communicate to your members of Congress the impact these cuts would have to your community: that the bulk of these programs have already been significantly cut over the last several years and that they need to be increased, not just protected.

To help tell the story of CDBG and HOME in Ohio, we’ve created flyers for these programs. View the CDBG flyer and HOME flyer. You can use these flyers when talking about these programs. The flyers are editable PDFs that allow you to enter your organization’s contact information on the back.

US House of Representatives – Click here to contact your representative.

US Senator Rob Portman – Click here to contact Senator Portman.

US Senator Sherrod Brown – Click here to contact Senator Brown.

Thank you for your advocacy!

Image

Have you considered joining?

The Ohio CDC Association (OCDCA) is a statewide membership organization that fosters vibrant neighborhoods and improves the quality of life in all communities through advocacy and capacity building of our member agencies.

  • We help support CDCs, community based organizations, and affiliated organizations through a variety of programs, services, and advocacy as explained in our 2016 annual report.
  • We have succinctly told the community development story in our two short videos.They explain what Ohio community development is and what quantitative impact our members have had in the state.
  • We regularly share funding opportunities to our members and provide resources and trainings. We create resources to make our members’ jobs easier including a public relations toolkit and the recently created CDBG and HOME info flyers.

Each year, we conduct a membership survey to gauge the needs and interests of the members, so we can better serve them.

As the collective advocacy voice of 245 organizations throughout Ohio, we would like to invite you to consider joining OCDCA. Organizations that join now receive a 25 percent discount on their yearly dues.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Melissa Miller at (614) 461-6392 ext. 209 or mmiller AT ohiocdc.org.

Video

Call to protect CDBG & HOME funding for community development week

This week, April 17-22, is community development week where we celebrate the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and Home Investment Partnership (HOME) programs.

Unfortunately, the President’s proposed budget has called for eliminating both CDBG and HOME. Because of this, it is essential that our Members of Congress hear from all of us why we must not only keep, but expand these programs.

Use these CDBG and HOME flyers

To help tell the story of CDBG and HOME in Ohio, we’ve created flyers for each of the programs. View the CDBG flyer and HOME flyer.

You can use these flyers when talking about these programs. The flyers are editable PDFs that allow you to enter your organization’s contact information on the back.

Please call or email your US House Rep and Senators Portman and Brown.

We realize advocacy is not easy for everyone, so feel free to use our sample script below. It only takes 30 seconds to make this call! To prove how easy it is, check out this video of our executive director, Nate Coffman, calling Senator Portman’s office:

 Sample call or email script

Feel free to tweak this script for your own community or use different points from the above flyers.

“Hi, my name is ________ and I’m calling to let you know about the importance of federal community development programs to my local community in zip code, _____.

Specifically, the Community Development Block Grant or CDBG program has created or retained 353,000 permanent jobs.The HOME Investment Partnership or HOME program has generated nearly 5 billion in Ohio local income since 1992 while providing much needed access to affordable housing.

CDBG, HOME, and other federal community development programs work and need to be substantially increased. Thank you!”

Find your Congressperson’s contact information

US House of Representatives – Click here to contact your representative
US Senator Rob Portman – Click here to contact Senator Portman
US Senator Sherrod Brown – Click here to contact Senator Brown

Engage on social media

If you want to keep the conversation going on social media, please use the hashtags #CDBG #HOME and #CDWeek2017. Share pictures and stories of projects you’ve done with these funds. Find us on Facebook (we’ll share your posts!) and follow us on Twitter at @OhioCDC and @NateTCoffman.

If you need help explaining community development, you can use these short Ohio videos that answer:
What is Community Development?
What is the Impact of Community Development?

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us. Thanks for your advocacy!

Standard

ACTION ALERT: Sign on to support federal community development funding

The President recently submitted to Congress his fiscal year (FY) 2017 budget request – the final budget request of his presidency.

Overall, the budget request provides a $2.1 billion increase in funding for affordable housing and community development programs.

For more details, see Enterprise’s comprehensive overview of the President’s FY 2017 budget and their updated FY 2017 budget chart.

Now that the President’s budget has been released, it is time for affordable housing and community development organizations to take action.

Here are three quick things you can do today to help protect affordable housing and community development programs:

1. Sign the national letter urging Congress to make funding for affordable housing and community development a top priority.
The Campaign for Housing and Community Development Funding launched this letter to bring together housing, community development, and transportation organizations to ensure that the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development (THUD) Appropriations Subcommittee gets the highest allocation possible. With this investment, communities across the nation can access the federal resources they need to thrive and meet the needs of their most vulnerable residents.
The deadline to sign on is Friday, February 19.

2. Sign the national HOME letter to restore funding to at least $1.2 billion in FY 2017.
For over 20 years, the HOME program has proven to be one of the most effective, locally driven tools to help states and communities address their most pressing housing needs. In recent years, HOME funding has been cut in half, making it more difficult for low-income seniors, people with disabilities, veterans, families with children, and homeless populations to access the housing they need. That’s why the HOME Coalition is urging Congress to restore HOME funding to at least $1.2 billion.
The deadline for organizations to sign on is Tuesday, March 1.

3. Sign the National Section 4 Letter.
Section 4 is the only federal program exclusively focused on increasing the effectiveness of local, nonprofit community development organizations. In the last five years alone, Section 4 has been used in rural, suburban, and urban communities in all 50 states, resulting in more than 37,000 affordable homes and $5.7 billion in total development costs and leveraging more than $20 for every dollar of Section 4.
The deadline to sign is Thursday, February 18.

Thank you for your advocacy.