CUOMO AWARDS $3,339,228 IN GRANTS TO FIGHT DRUGS AND CRIME
IN PUBLIC AND ASSISTED HOUSING IN ARKANSAS
Housing and Urban Development Secretary Andrew Cuomo today awarded $3,339,228 in grants to fight drug abuse and other crimes in public housing and HUD-assisted housing in Arkansas.
Arkansas' grants will be distributed to housing authorities and owners of HUD-subsidized housing for low-income families in the following cities:
- Forrest City
- Fort Smith
- Hot Springs
- Little Rock
- North Little Rock
- Pine Bluff
"These grants are good news for some of the poorest families in Arkansas 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 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.
Another 53 privately owned HUD-subsidized low-income housing developments will receive a total of $11.7 million from a similar program called the New Approach Anti-Drug Program.
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.
In assisted housing, the Drug Elimination Grants are used for: drug prevention and education programs; referrals to drug treatment and counseling; and physical improvements to developments to enhance security. Individual grants for assisted housing developments are limited to a maximum of $125,000.
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 ARKANSAS
- CAMDEN: $411,700 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Housing Authority of the City of Camden for programs to reduce and eliminate drug related crimes. The Housing Authority will provide police patrols, a community center, drug prevention activities and an investigator to increase investigations as needed.
- CONWAY: $50,000 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Housing Authority of the City of Conway for programs to provide drug prevention services. The Housing Authority encourages community oriented police protection and resident involvement.
- FORREST CITY: $135,000 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Housing Authority of the City of Forrest City for programs to deter crime and violence. The Housing Authority will continue a community policing program and will continue educational and recreational activities aimed at providing residents with alternatives to drugs.
- FORT SMITH: $135,000 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Housing Authority of the City of Fort Smith for programs to lead to a drug-free community. The Housing Authority will fund an educational and law enforcement program that benefits both the adults and youth.
Another $125,000 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to private landlords of subsidized housing. The recipient, Allied Garden Estate Apartments will use the grant to provide a comprehensive drug prevention program for residents.
- HOT SPRINGS: $267,120 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Housing Authority of the city of Hot Springs for programs to provide drug prevention services along with physical improvements and resident involvement.
- JONESBORO: $50,000 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Jonesboro Urban Renewal & Housing Authority for programs to form collaborative partnerships and innovative problem-solving relationships to reduce/eliminate drug related crime.
Another $125,000 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to private landlords of subsidized housing. The recipient, North Acres Apartments plans to use the grant to increase security measures, including the installation of an eight foot wrought iron fences, and security gates.
- LITTLE ROCK: $737,400 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Housing Authority of the City of Little Rock for programs to reduce drug related crime and support activities including: the purchase/installation of bullet proof lighting in the Booker Homes public housing development; and drug intervention/prevention programming.
$55,000 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to private landlords of subsidized housing at the Terrace Green Apartments. The DEG will be utilized to improve security and employ a staff member to coordinate motivational activities for adults and children.
$246,908 from the New Approach Anti-Drug Program goes to the West Gate Apartments and surrounding neighborhood. The grant will be used to provide an array of programs to combat drug related activities. The programs will place an emphasis on law enforcement and drug prevention.
- MAGNOLIA: $54,000 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Housing Authority of the City of Magnolia for programs to increase police patrols; provide after-school study hall; youth reading program; parenting classes; and job training.
- MALVERN: $50,700 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Housing Authority of the City of Malvern for programs to provide security services and drug prevention through educational and recreational activities.
- NORTH LITTLE ROCK: $321,000 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Housing Authority of the City of North Little Rock for programs to provide drug prevention and make physical improvements to enhance security.
- PINE BLUFF: $85,200 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Housing Authority of the City of Pine Bluff for programs to provide drug prevention with emphasizes on alternatives to negative behaviors through youth activities and job readiness.
Another $125,000 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to private landlords of subsidized housing for the Piney Woods Apartments. The grant will be used to increase security measures and provide solutions to unwanted drug traffic and drug related crimes.
- STEPHENS: $50,000 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Housing Authority of the City of Stephens for programs to provide increased police patrols; after-school tutoring program; computer training; DARE Program; and Adult Basic Education.
- TEXARKANA: $315,200 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Housing Authority of the City of Texarkana for programs to provide additional law enforcement activities to prevent the flow of drugs in their community. The funds will also be used to provide educational, recreational and employment programs for the residents.
Content Archived: January 20, 2009