We are pleased to announce that Congressman Rush Holt (D-12) has agreed to support full funding for the McKinney-Vento in Fy2012. He joins Congressmen Albio Sires and Bill Pascrell in supporting $2.4 billion to fund homeless assistance programs in the next fiscal year.
Kevin Cutro from Congressman Holt’s office confirmed that “he submitted his own requests for funding at the same levels as those group letters.”
Joining the sign-on letter or submitting a programmatic request for $2.4 billion for McKinney-Vento is of equal value.
The support of these three members of the New Jersey Congressional Delegation will support the policy priority of the National Alliance to End Homelessness (NAEH) and Monarch Housing to provide $2.4 billion for the Homeless Assistance Grants program within HUD in FY 2012 to:
Expand investments in homelessness prevention and rapid re-housing solutions through the Emergency Solutions block grant program;
Finish implementing the changes made by the HEARTH Act, which reauthorized these programs and increased prevention, assistance to families, rural programs, and effective administration;
Avoid cuts for projects to get children and adults off the streets; and
Cover the cost of renewing and expanding investments for permanent supportive housing and rapid re-housing—proven, cost efficient solutions to homelessness.
Although we are pleased that Congressmen Sires, Pascrell and Holt support this position, we find it difficult to understand why all thirteen members did not support adequate funding to end homelessness.
The federal budget process is now focused on raising the debt ceiling. Negotiations according to Politico appear to be focused on “annual caps on appropriations decided for fiscal 2012, beginning Oct. 1, as well as 2013.”
The Senate has “decided to defer a budget mark-up because of the high-level bipartisan leadership negotiations that are currently underway.”
Thus, we will need to remain vigilant over the next few weeks to insure we secure a substantial boost for McKinney-Vento programs that we need to more fully implement the HEARTH Act.