CUOMO AWARDS $1,915,220 IN GRANTS TO FIGHT DRUGS AND CRIME
IN PUBLIC AND ASSISTED HOUSING IN WEST VIRGINIA
Housing and Urban Development Secretary Andrew Cuomo today awarded $1,915,220 in grants to fight drug abuse and other crimes in public housing and HUD-assisted housing in West Virginia.
West Virginia's grants will be distributed to housing authorities and owners of HUD-subsidized housing for low-income families in the following cities:
- South Charleston.............$50,000
"These grants are good news for some of the poorest families in West Virginia 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.
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.
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, and signed by the President, 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 WEST VIRGINIA
- BLUEFIELD: $81,500 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Housing Authority of the City of Bluefield for programs to reduce and eliminate drug related crimes. The Housing Authority will place a security gate at the entrance to Tiffany Manor to stop unwanted traffic; have the gate run by the local police department; provide foot patrol by local police; and provide drug awareness programs for youth.
- $801,720 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Housing Authority of the City of Charleston for programs to provide drug prevention services. The Housing Authority will develop a resident neighborhood watch program; off-duty police officers to alleviate problems in specific areas; and surveillance equipment at all development sites. The Housing Authority will engage in After School Programs; leadership training; alternative; parenting; and job and education development programs.
- $95,300 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Kanawha County Housing and Redevelopment Authority to reduce and eliminate drug-related crimes. The Housing Authority is working with residents, law enforcement agencies, human service agencies, and educational initiatives in developing partnerships.
- CLARKSBURG: $258,400 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Housing Authority of the City of Clarksburg for programs to provide extra security shifts at Laurel Lanes Apartment, Koupal Towers and Mason House.
- MARTINSBURG: $98,100 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Housing Authority of the City of Martinsburg for programs to hire part-time off-duty sworn Martinsburg Police Officers to provide security and community policing. Another $125,000 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to private landlords of subsidized housing. The additional funds will be used to provide fencing for the Franklin Manor Apartments and hire security.
- PARKERSBURG: $50,000 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Housing Authority of the City of Parkersburg for programs to provide on-site drug prevention and intervention counseling. The Housing Authority will administer a summer youth recreation program and collaborate with employment and training programs to promote opportunities for Welfare Reform.
- SOUTH CHARLESTON: $50,000 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Housing Authority of the City of South Charleston for programs to reduce drug-related crime and empower residents to work together with federal, state and local law enforcement agencies.
- WHEELING: $280,000 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Housing Authority of the City of Wheeling for programs to maintain foot patrols and security services and provide random patrolling. In collaboration with the Resident Council, the Housing Authority will develop and administer a comprehensive drug prevention program.
- WILLIAMSON: $74,400 in Drug Elimination Grants will go to the Housing Authority of the City of Williamson for programs to contract with the City Police Department for supplemental protective services in and around the complexes. The Police Department will continue to utilize a community policing concept. The funds will also be used for small equipment purchases, to improve lighting, fund computer and life skills training, and subsidize meals and recreational programs.
Content Archived: January 20, 2009