What Will Trump's Budget Cut In Your City?
A look at what the President's proposed budget will mean for cities, and reaction from city leaders.
The White House released its budget proposal for Fiscal Year 2018, featuring sweeping cuts to federal agencies and programs that directly benefit cities nationwide and support the residents who call them home. In response to the proposal, which will ultimately be decided on by Congress, National League of Cities (NLC) President Matt Zone, councilmember, Cleveland, released the following statement:
“President Trump’s proposed budget threatens the safety and prosperity of cities across the country, and it betrays his campaign promise to lift up American communities both small and large. From Community Development Block Grants to Community-Oriented Policing Services, the programs targeted for cuts provide support for millions of working Americans and help cities invest in public-good projects like police stations, food banks and domestic violence shelters. These unprecedented cuts would be devastating to all our nation’s cities — with the worst impacts felt in small towns and rural communities.
“America’s cities call on Congress to throw out this budget proposal and develop a new plan focused on building prosperity, expanding opportunity and investing in our future. We call on Congress to stand with cities and their communities. We look forward to working with champions of cities in Congress to ensure that a final budget is passed that puts cities first. “
Graphic depicting how budget cuts will effect cities. Image Credit: National League of Cities.
The following joint statement was issued from U.S. Conference of Mayors CEO & Executive Director Tom Cochran, National Association of Counties Executive Director Matthew Chase, and National League of Cities Executive Director Clarence Anthony following news of the Trump Administration’s plan to eliminate the Community Development Block Grant program in his Fiscal Year 2018 budget for the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development:
“Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds are the heart, lungs, and backbone of cities and counties, small, medium and large. By eliminating or cutting them, the Administration mortally wounds the places where the majority of Americans live, work and play. Such a move risks ending or harming programs that keep Americans safe, help them find better-paying jobs, improve their health and keep public facilities in good shape. It is an attack on places the President said he wanted to help.
“On behalf of the elected officials of America’s cities and counties across this nation, we urgently request a meeting with HUD Secretary Ben Carson to discuss our utmost concern before any proposal is sent to Congress.
“The National Association of Counties and The United States Conference of Mayors visited Congress last week and solidified support for CDBG. The NationalLeague of Cities will follow next week. Together, strongly united with the full force of our organizations, we will demand from Congress, representing the people that sent them to Washington, that they take action to speak and vote against any proposal to cut or eliminate this vital and successful federal program.”
Cynthia Bowen, President of the American Planning Association released the following statement on the Trump Administration’s FY 2018 Federal Budget Proposal:
“The federal budget proposal released today utterly fails to meet the needs of the nation’s communities. If the proposed cuts to essential community development, housing, and transportation programs are enacted, communities across the nation would face serious threats to economic growth and prosperity. At a time when cities and towns face significant challenges to infrastructure investment, affordable housing, and economic development, the elimination of critical and proven federal programs is damaging and unacceptable.
The budget sent to Congress today would eliminate several critical programs at the Department of Housing and Urban Development, including Community Development Block Grants (CDBG), HOME, and Choice Neighborhoods. In addition, the budget would end support for New Starts transit funding, TIGER grants for key transportation projects, and the Economic Development Administration.
These programs are the foundation of locally led efforts to build stronger, more just, and more prosperous communities. They not only have a proven track record of success and bipartisan support but also act as tools for leveraging private sector investments. The irresponsible cuts in this budget also make our communities more vulnerable and less safe with cuts to coastal mapping and resiliency efforts and the elimination of pre-disaster mitigation planning grants.
Simply put, the scope of these cuts places jobs, development projects, and public health at risk. Further, the proposed changes threaten to undermine expressed priorities of President Trump, ranging from infrastructure investment to boosting growth and jobs.
Planners stand ready to work with Congress and the Administration on policies and programs that will strengthen communities. This budget would take the country in the opposite direction. The elimination of federal programs that help communities plan and prosper will harm essential local housing, transportation, and economic development priorities. They will weaken job creation, hinder private sector growth and investment, and slow efforts to expand opportunity.
APA opposes efforts in this budget that undermine local community development. In particular, APA strongly rejects any effort to eliminate key programs like CDBG, HOME, Choice Neighborhoods, TIGER grants, and transit assistance. Now is the time for federal partners to assist communities in creating stronger and more economically vibrant places. However, this budget moves the nation in the opposite direction. APA calls on Congress to reject these cuts and support essential investments in the future of our communities.”