CUOMO AWARDS $1,224,200 IN GRANTS TO FIGHT DRUGS AND CRIME IN PUBLIC HOUSING IN KANSAS
Housing and Urban Development Secretary Andrew Cuomo today awarded $1,224,200 in grants to fight drug abuse and other crimes in public housing in Kansas.
Kansas's grants will be distributed to housing in the following cities:
- Kansas City
"These grants are good news for some of the poorest families in Kansas 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."
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.
Vice President Al Gore, Secretary 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 and the strength of local plans to address the problem. About 900 housing 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.
The New Approach Anti-Drug Program (formerly known as the Safe Neighborhoods Grant Program) provides funds for improving security at HUD-assisted developments and in surrounding neighborhoods by: hiring security guards, paying for extra police patrols, assisting in the investigation and prosecution of drug-related criminal activity, and implementing security-related physical improvements.
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 KANSAS
- Atchison: $57,000 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Atchison Housing Authority to deal with comprehensive drug prevention and intervention programs. The grants will help with the management, screening, and security measures of such programs, and will encompass drug education, recreation, peer parent classes and skill training, and resident enhancement and referral.
- Chanute: $70,000 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Chanute Housing Authority for programs aimed at reducing and eliminating drug-related crimes. The funds will assist families in developing self sufficiency through employment and education, and in reducing alcohol and drug use among the adolescent population through the provision of drug prevention activities.
- Kansas City: $564,200 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Kansas City Housing Authority to develop on-site drug prevention programs, operate security patrols staffed by off-duty police officers, investigate drug related crime, install security improvements in family housing complexes and work with local agencies and organizations to make services more accessible to residents. Another $155,000 from the New Approach Anti-Drug program will go to private landlords of subsidized housing. The funding will be used to assist in the prevention and elimination of drug use in the Chelsea Plaza Homes and surrounding community.
- Lawrence: $110,400 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Lawrence Housing Authority for use in a comprehensive security and prevention based approach to fighting drug-related crimes. This approach will combine private security patrols with extensive prevention programs for adults and teens. The activities will focus on personal growth and responsibility as key determinants in resisting and overcoming the risk factors associated with drug use and crime.
- Manhattan: $78,600 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Manhattan Housing Authority to reduce and eliminate drug-related crime. An aggressive education and prevention program will be implemented to empower residents with the information needed to make proper decisions. The program calls for substantial interaction with a multitude of community partners who will serve to provide on and off-site activities for both youth and adults.
- Topeka: $189,000 in Drug Elimination Grants will go the Topeka Housing Authority to fund a plan that will use partnerships with the Topeka Police Department, Shawnee Regional Prevention and Recovery Services (PARS), Let's Help, Inc., and Urban Scouts and Safe Streets to reduce and eliminate drug-related activity. The proposal is designed to maximize coordination with local Welfare Reform initiatives, provide positive alternatives and establish a police substation at the Deer Creek Housing Development.
Content Archived: January 20, 2009