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Knight CDBG Funding Amendment Passes Unanimously

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Washington, DC, September 7, 2017 | comments
Last night, Rep. Steve Knight’s amendment to the appropriations bill increasing funding for Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) passed the house with a unanimous, bipartisan voice vote and is now officially added to the full appropriations bill for FY18. Appropriations bills are used to fund all federal programs and are passed annually. 

“Community Development Block Grants have been a tremendous asset to states and local governments across the country that are looking for extra assistance keeping their communities safe and providing services to those who need it the most,” said Rep. Steve Knight. "Back home in California’s 25th District, CDBG funds are awarded to numerous non-profit organizations that do significant and far-reaching work for constituents. Securing funding for these grant programs to the FY17 level is not only a good thing for our communities but a necessary contribution from Congress directly impacting the lives of our constituents. I thank my colleagues for their support on this bipartisan issue.”

The funds provided by these grants pay for public services, housing rehabilitation, infrastructure and public improvements at both the state and local levels. President Trump’s original budget stripped all CDBG funds. Rep. Knight worked with the House Appropriations Committee to ensure there would be funding in the initial base funding bill which totaled $2.9 billion. With the passage of Knight’s amendment yesterday, an additional $100 million will be granted to mirror previous year’s appropriations totaling $3 billion. The full federal government funding bill for FY18 is expected to allocate $1.1 trillion for federal programs and agencies to operate.

“I am very thankful to the Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development and Related Agencies Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman Mario Diaz-Balart and the entire Appropriations Committee for all of their help and support ensuring these grants stay alive for the sake of our communities’ improvements,” said Knight.

In the City of Palmdale and throughout the Antelope Valley, CDBG funds have been used for numerous community based advancement and safety programs. Organizations like the South Antelope Valley Emergency Shelter (SAVES) has used the grant funding to provide food, clothing, social services, and emergency hotel vouchers to low income persons and families. The City of Palmdale also uses the funds for street maintenance in low income neighborhoods, and for repayment of a loan that partially financed construction of the senior center.  CDBG funds were also used for repairs to the AV College terminal building where the Aircraft Fabrication Assembly (AFAB) aerospace job training program is housed.

The work the Antelope Valley has been able to accomplish with help from CDBG is impressive. The services that have been provided to low income communities and training programs for our young people go far in advancing the appeal and safety of the community. I am happy to have been a leading force in ensuring the opportunity for more greatness to be done,” said Knight.

In the 2015-16 fiscal year, Santa Clarita used over $300,000 worth of CDBG funding. This provided the city with affordable and rehabilitating housing programs, early childhood services, mental health counseling and accessibility for those under the Americans with Disabilities Act. The City also used the funding for grant programs like Bridge to Home, domestic violence victim support centers, and summer youth development programs.

“Santa Clarita residents greatly benefit from the projects that these community grants fund. Making our sidewalks and city more ADA accessible, supporting youth programs and access to mental health services creates a greater and more appealing community. I look forward to seeing more of the great work that will be done for Santa Clarita,” said Knight.

Simi Valley has historically used CDBG funds for projects relating to housing and community development improvements. Funds go towards supportive services for low income persons and families, housing improvements, renovations to senior facilities, and programs for community youth and at-risk populations. A major focus for the city is on maintaining the quality of living through low-income development while providing services through non-profits the prevent homelessness and other at-risk behaviors. 

“I applaud the City of Simi Valley for putting these CDBG funds to great use in the past. Their focuses on homelessness and quality of life have directly affected many lives in a positive light. I am proud of the work done by my colleagues and I to ensure this work continues for the safety and benefit of the community,” said Knight.

The full Appropriations Bill is expected to be voted on sometime tomorrow.


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