Hill Update: Action Needed on McKinney-Vento Funding
On December 10, 2013, the conference committee tasked with coming up with a topline spending number for FY 2014 reached a deal. The deal would set FY 2014 total spending at around $1 trillion – somewhere in the middle of the House and Senate’s proposed spending levels.
Now that appropriators in the House and Senate have a number with which to work, they will be moving fast to finalize FY 2014 spending bills. Since there is a new number, the appropriators will have to write new bills – including a new HUD funding bill with spending levels that fall somewhere in between those in the bills initially proposed by the House ($2.088 billion for McKinney-Vento funding) and the Senate ($2.26 billion for McKinney-Vento funding).
With the holidays coming up, it is crunch time to make sure that every Member knows the importance of HUD’s McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Grants in their communities as they work on these bills.
Please take a minute today to call your senators and representatives and ask to speak to the person who handles housing issues. Click here for a contact list of Congressional housing staffers.
Tell them that the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Grants need an INCREASE in FY 2014. You can also click here for talking points.
After many ups and downs in this funding process, it seems as though Congress has finally reached an agreement with which they can move forward in determining FY 2014 spending levels. While both chambers still need to approve the compromise, it is likely that they will do so. NOW is the opportunity to capitalize on “regular order” and make another big push for McKinney funding.
We know that the NOFA cuts will be very difficult for many communities and this is an opportunity to tell Congress never again. We need to make sure that Congress works to make up for the FY 2013 cuts and ensure that we continue our great progress preventing and ending homelessness in the United States.
The deal struck by the conference committee includes numerous components. The agreement would ease sequestration cuts by approximately $63 billion in FY 2014 and FY 2015. This would be paid for through increases in various fees, including airline fees, raising contributions federal employees make to their retirement plans, and increasing premiums for a variety of pensions, among an assortment of other smaller savings provisions. The easing in sequestration cuts will likely result in more funding for HUD in the coming years.