Congressman Paul Kanjorski called today for a doubling of federal Community Development Block Grants. CDBG's finance projects in every county and today they highlighted the effects of CDBG funds in Luzerne County. Kanjorski said he would hope the program can double from the current level of $4 billion a year to $8 billion under a new Democratic Administration and Congress.
George W. Bush has cut CDBG funds every year of his Administration. The event today, outside Hazleton, a town of crumbling sidewalks, empty buildings and a main street so decrepit you almost need an SUV to traverse it, highlighted the use of CDBG funds to bring new jobs to the area. The Humboldt Industrial Park North is being developed with these federal funds which are locally managed. Following an initial projection of 250 jobs this complex has already created 750 new ones with more to come on the 237 acres yet to be developed.
Community Development Block Grants fund local projects all over Pennsylvania. They are administered by your County government so there is local control since local governments understand the best places and most important needs for these funds. They build roads, bridges, sewers, water systems, make buildings ADA compliant and help our communities expand economically.
It's been a constant battle to maintain funding as each successive federal budget under George Bush has seen another cut in CDBG funding.