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Published: Tuesday, 4/15/2014 - Updated: 4 months ago

Agencies lament cuts in federal funds

Groups take concerns to city council

BY IGNAZIO MESSINA
BLADE STAFF WRITER

A number of social service agencies and community development corporations dependent on federal money funneled by the city of Toledo appeared Monday before a council committee to lament proposed funding cuts.

Councilman Jack Ford, chairman of council’s neighborhoods committee, suggested the agencies be required in the future to provide an “enhanced fund-raising plan” to make up for shortfalls in funding caused by the regular decline in federal Community Development Block Grants.

Mr. Ford said groups always need more money while the allocations from the federal government continue to shrink. Many of the groups, he said, do not know how to raise money to make up for the shortfalls.

Toledo got a reduction in Community Development Block Grant money — down about 1.7 percent from last year to nearly $6.89 million for the upcoming federal funding grant year that runs from July 1 through June 30, 2015. That translated into less money for most groups.

Terry Glazer, chief executive director of United North community development corporation in the ONE Village area of North Toledo, said the agency has been cut 40 percent over two years.

Mr. Glazer said United North has been honored as the best community development corporation in the state and that it has invested millions in North Toledo.

“I would hate to see our organization decline,” he said. “We do feel a 40 percent cut is an extreme measure.”

United North requested $349,959 and was recommended to get $206,039. The recommendations were made by the city’s “citizen review committee” and the Collins administration.

Mr. Ford said the recommendations would be approved with some “tweaks.”

Uptown Association Inc., a community development corporation in the Uptown neighborhood, requested $78,309 but was recommended to receive $40,000; Adelante Inc. requested $40,000 but was recommended to receive $30,640, and the East Toledo Family Center asked for $50,000 but was recommended to receive $13,781.

The Economic Opportunity Planning Association requested $451,000 in CDBG money, up from the $300,000 it received last year. It was recommended to receive $196,000.

Twenty-eight social service agencies and 13 homeless services providers applied for federal funding through the city.

The Collins administration last month learned the city would receive $569,389 from the federal Emergency Solutions Grant — money specifically meant for homeless shelters and homeless people. That amount is up 14.12 percent from the $498,959 received last year.

The Toledo Lucas County Homelessness Board, which oversees homeless shelters in Lucas County, would get more federal funding than it asked for under recommendations from city-appointed committees — while many of the shelters would get less.

The Toledo Lucas County Homelessness Board, which oversees the federally funded shelters, was given $70,422 from ESG in 2013-14 and asked for $82,422 this funding cycle. The ESG committee recommended $91,195 for the homelessness board. The homelessness board also got $72,958 last year for “direct financial assistance,” which is given to people in danger of becoming homeless. It asked for $75,000 but is recommended to get $76,678 this year.

Contact Ignazio Messina at: imessina@theblade.com or 419-724-6171 or on Twitter @IgnazioMessina.



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