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HUD No. 98-513
Further Information:For Release
In the Washington, DC area: 202/708-06859:15 A.M. Thursday
Or contact your local HUD officeOctober 22, 1998

CUOMO AWARDS $1,043,026 IN GRANTS TO FIGHT DRUGS AND CRIME IN PUBLIC HOUSING IN RALEIGH, ROCKY MOUNT, SMITHFIELD, DUNN, SELMA, AND SANFORD, NORTH CAROLINA

Housing and Urban Development Secretary Andrew Cuomo today awarded $1,043,026 in grants to fight drug abuse and other crimes in public housing in Dunn, Raleigh, Rocky Mount, Sanford, Selma, and Smithfield, NC.

The communities received the following grants:

  • Dunn..................................... $ 50,000
  • Raleigh ..................................... $ 512,720
  • Rocky Mount ................................ ...$ 230,100
  • Sanford......................................... $ 133,800
  • Selma...................................... .. $ 54,900
  • Smithfield........................................ . $ 61,500

The announcement was made by at a news conference in Raleigh by Congressman Bob Etheridge, who represents the six cities, and Deborah Vincent, HUD's General Deputy Assistant Secretary for Public and Indian Housing.

"These grants are good news for some of the poorest families in North Carolina and bad news for drug dealers who terrorize them," Cuomo said. "We will fight drug abuse with prevention and treatment programs and with a crackdown on drug dealers and other criminals. We are telling drug dealers in HUD housing to find another line of work or be sent to another type of subsidized housing - a prison cell."

Congressman Etheridge said: "The battle against drugs is a battle to save our children. Every child in America is at risk of falling prey to drugs, regardless of race, ethnicity, or economic status. We must eliminate drugs from our communities and make North Carolina's neighborhoods safe havens to protect our children. These Drug Elimination Grants will help make out neighborhoods drug-free and give us hope that we can provide a drug-free world for our children."

Cuomo said the recent Congressional approval of the Department's $24.5 billion budget for the 1999 fiscal year, which he called "the best HUD budget in 10 years," will speed the transformation of public and assisted housing.

"HUD is transforming public housing from isolated ghettos of poverty, drugs, despair and crime into safe and economically integrated communities of opportunity," Cuomo said.

Nationwide, HUD is awarding $305.2 million in Drug Elimination Grants this year - more than in any previous year. The grants will be distributed in the next several weeks in this way: $280.6 million to 749 public housing authorities; $8 million to 39 Indian Tribes; and $16.6 million to 143 privately owned housing developments that receive HUD assistance.

Vice President Al Gore, Cuomo and Attorney General Janet Reno announced a four-part enforcement and prevention strategy to fight crime and drugs in public housing in June 1997. The grants announced today are one element of that strategy.

The Drug Elimination Grants are awarded on a competitive basis, based on the seriousness of the drug and crime problem facing a housing authority or assisted housing development, and the strength of local plans to address the problem. About 900 housing authorities, 60 Indian tribes and 500 privately owned housing developments applied for the grants being awarded this year.

HUD has awarded more than $1.6 billion in Drug Elimination Grants since 1989, including the grants being awarded this year.

In public housing, the Drug Elimination Grants are used for: drug prevention, intervention and treatment programs; reimbursing law enforcement agencies for providing additional security; hiring security guards and investigators; resident anti-crime patrols; and physical improvements to housing developments to enhance security - such as fencing, lighting and improved locks.

HUD's budget for the fiscal year that began Oct. 1 increases funding for HUD's key programs and renewals of Section 8 rental assistance by a total of more than $2 billion in the budget over 1998 levels. Spending was increased on most HUD programs and wasn't cut in any programs.

Legislation passed in the same bill as HUD's budget will:

  • Transform public housing by reducing segregation by race and income, encouraging and rewarding work, bringing more working families into public housing, and increasing the availability of subsidized housing for very poor families. In addition, the bill improves living conditions in public housing, gives the poorest families neighbors who will be role models of working families, and reduces crime. The bill also allows HUD to continue to tear down the largest failed public housing projects and replace them with new townhouse-style developments.

  • Expand the supply of affordable housing by enabling 90,000 more families to get Section 8 rental assistance vouchers that will subsidize their rents in privately owned apartments - the first increase in vouchers in four years.

  • Increase homeownership by raising the limit on home mortgages insured by the Federal Housing Administration from the current range of $86,317 in low-cost housing areas to $170,362 in high-cost areas. The bill increases the loan limits to a range of $109,032 in low-cost areas to $197,621 in high-cost areas. The higher ceiling on FHA-insured home mortgages opens the door of homeownership to thousands of families needing FHA insurance to get mortgages, but locked out now because the current loan limits have not kept pace with rising home prices.

HUD ANTI-DRUG ASSISTANCE FOR COMMUNITIES IN NORTH CAROLINA

  • DUNN: $50,000 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Dunn Housing Authority for programs to fight drugs and provide family services.

  • RALEIGH: $512,720 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Housing Authority of the City of Raleigh for programs in 16 developments that include drug prevention, intervention, on-site drug outreach services and off-site drug treatment.

  • ROCKY MOUNT: $230,100 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Housing Authority of the City of Rocky Mount for resident and community police patrols and prevention programs at the Computer Learning Center.

  • SANFORD: $133,800 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Sanford Housing Authority for programs to improve law enforcement and employ prevention strategies.

  • SELMA: $54,900 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Selma Housing Authority to continue an additional full-time police presence in neighborhoods.

  • SMITHFIELD: $61,500 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Smithfield Housing Authority to bolster security, educational, training and incentive programs to fight drug-related crime.

Content Archived: January 20, 2009

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