Homeless shelter cuts: Public hearing set for tomorrowWritten by Caitlin McGlade | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Homeless shelter directors will address members of city council June 13 about deep cuts their agencies might soon have to take.
The staff and directors are clamoring to figure out how they’ll fill gaping budget holes by the beginning of next month, when they have to start a new budget cycle.
The city released Emergency Solutions Grant (ESG) recommendations last week and the results marred the hopes that any shelter directors had of making up for lost funding they incurred from prior cuts.
City Council has yet to vote on the recommendations, and has the final say.
The homeless shelters, including the Aurora House, Family House, Bethany House, the Harbor House and La Posada Family Shelter, learned about two months ago that they would no longer receive Community Development Block Grants (CDBG). Many of these shelters have depended on this money for decades. The Aurora House, a rehabilitative transitional housing program, used CDBG funding for at least 12 percent of its budget.
The Family House, a homeless shelter for families who stay about 38 days on average, loses 10 percent of its budget without CDBG funds.
Renee Palacios, director of the shelter, is irate.
“One Government Center isn’t going to be able to shake us out,” Palacios told Toledo Free Press last week.
Toledo took a cut in federal money for CDBG funding, but got more money for ESG allocations compared to prior years. Lourdes Santiago, director of the Department of Neighborhoods, said the city’s review panel chose not to grant some agencies with CDBG money because they were eligible for ESG while other city programs were not.
This did not imply, however, that the amount the shelters might receive would entirely replace the amount lost from CDBG money, Santiago said.
Palacios said she and other shelter directors were led to believe that the ESG money would cover for CDBG losses. But the amounts announced last week are meager replacements, Palacios said.
The public hearing will take place in council chambers at 1 Government Center at 2 p.m.