Miami-Dade County Homeless Trust pursuing all options to reinstate HUD's $6 million dollars in cuts
Senator Rubio, Congressman Diaz-Balart, and Mayor Gimenez join forces with the Trust, holding high level meetings with U.S. HUD
The Miami-Dade County Homeless Trust is pursuing all options to find solutions to the $6 million dollars in funding that was cut by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (USHUD) in early May. A formal appeal of their decision is underway by the Homeless Trust Board. Meanwhile, U.S. Senator Marco Rubio, Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart, Chairman of the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Subcommittee of the House Committee on Appropriations, and Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez held separate meetings with U.S. HUD Secretary Julian Castro, and U.S. HUD staff, to discuss and advocate for the importance of the Homeless Trust’s programs.
“From the federal level to the local level, we are working non-stop to find funding, permanent housing, and program options for those individuals affected by the cuts to our transitional housing programs,” said Ronald L. Book, Chairman of the Miami-Dade County Homeless Trust. “We are respectfully asking U.S. HUD to revisit and review scoring against the guidance they gave us during the grant application process. It’s our opinion they should re-examine our transitional housing programs because they are absolutely intrinsic to the unique needs and permanent housing success we’ve have in our continuum.”
The defunded programs serve victims of domestic violence, those recovering from addiction, youth, veterans, employment services, legal services and services supporting permanent housing interventions. Many of these programs have been operating in good faith since January of this year.
The announcement is the second phase of grant awards made by U.S. HUD resulting from the Trust’s collaborative response to U.S. HUD’s annual Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA), which requires communities across the U.S. to compete for dollars to support local projects that meet the needs of individuals and families experiencing homelessness. In order to provide communities with the opportunity to make strategic, local decisions, HUD requires homeless Continuums of Care (CoC), like The Homeless Trust, to score and rank projects in two tiers. Tier 1 projects are guaranteed funding from U.S. HUD. Tier 2 projects are forced to compete with other CoCs throughout the nation.
In the 2015 competition, Tier 1 projects for Miami-Dade County received more than $29 million dollars. Of the 26 programs for which The Homeless Trust submitted a part of the Tier 2 funding application, only three received funding representing $197,766 in grants. Approximately $6 million for long-established programs is now left unfunded. These cuts represent more than 750 transitional housing beds in our community, and services to many more.
The Trust is working with all its partners to identify funding sources, provide new funding opportunities and housing options, as well as all means to continue to provide invaluable services to families, individuals, women and children, who find themselves homeless. A debriefing on the Trust’s application process is forthcoming to assist with the appeals process.
Editor’s Note: Access the FY 2015 USHUD Tier 2 Continuum of Care Grants here: http://portal.hud.gov/hudportal/documents/huddoc?id=FY2015_Continuum_of_Care.pdf