June 22-26, 2001



WHEREAS, the Community Development Block Grant program (CDBG),continues to be the foundation upon which cities have revitalized their downtowns, developed affordable housing, stabilized neighborhoods, and provided important public services for the past 26 years; and

WHEREAS, the strength of the CDBG program lies in its local determination of need and use, flexibility, and wide variety of eligible activities; and

WHEREAS, the formula funding for the CDBG program was increased to $4.6 billion in FY 2001, a $200 million increase over FY 2000 and the first increase in formula funding since 1995; and

WHEREAS, the number of new "entitlement communities" still continues to rise at a greater percentage than the increase in formula funding baseline appropriation; and

WHEREAS, legislation has been introduced in Congress that would destroy CDBG's current flexibility, effectively eliminate area benefit activities, and eliminate use of the exception criteria for communities and states whose poor persons are disbursed rather than concentrated; and

WHEREAS, the proposed legislation would also reduce the effectiveness of the CDBG program as a tool for expanding affordable housing opportunities and encouraging neighborhood revitalization, and instead turn it into an "anti poverty" program, something Congress never intended,

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the U.S. Conference of Mayors urges Congress to increase formula funding FY 2002 to $5 billion to accommodate the increase in eligible entitlement communities; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the U.S. Conference of Mayors urges Congress to oppose any legislative proposal that would limit the flexibility of the CDBG program and change its original intent.

Projected Cost: $5 Billion