Search Form
First, enter a politician or zip code
Now, choose a category

Public Statements

Letter to Alphonso Jackson, Secretary, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

Letter

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

Letter to Alphonso Jackson, Secretary, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA), Chairman of the House Committee on Financial Services, and Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA), Chairman of the Subcommittee on Housing and Community Opportunity, today sent a letter urging Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Alphonso Jackson to deny the Mississippi Development Authority's request for a waiver for its proposal to reprogram $600 million of housing recovery funds for the restoration and expansion of the Port of Gulfport, Mississippi. The members stated, "A further waiver to re-program CDBG funds for the expansion of the Port of Gulfport, when so many families have yet to be able to return home, is misguided and disregards the continued need for available housing in Mississippi."

The full text of the letter as follows:

October 17, 2007

The Honorable Alphonso Jackson
Secretary
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
451 7th Street, SW
Washington, DC 2041

Dear Secretary Jackson:

We are writing urge you to deny the Mississippi Development Authority's request for a waiver for its proposal to reprogram $600 million of housing recovery funds for the restoration and expansion of the Port of Gulfport, Mississippi.

We recognize the need in an emergency to provide moderate waivers of certain requirements, such as those provided in the Department of Defense, Emergency Supplemental Appropriations to Address Hurricanes in the Gulf of Mexico, and pandemic Influenza Act of 2006 (P.L. 109-148) and again in the Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act for Defense, Global War on Terror and Hurricane Recovery Act of 2006 (P.L. 109-234) However, an additional waiver of the low- and moderate-income targeting requirement would constitute an unwarranted diversion of funds and a disservice to displaced Mississippians still in need of affordable housing.

We believe that the case for denial of this request is especially strong since the Mississippi Development Authority has previously applied for and received multiple waivers of the low- and moderate-income targeting requirement for $4 billion of the State's $5.05 billion Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) allocation to address the State's economic and infrastructure redevelopment needs. However, the lack of available, affordable housing for low- and moderate-income families in Mississippi remains a critical issue for the State's recovery. FEMA estimates that 13,800 small rental units in Mississippi were severely damaged or destroyed. Yet, the State's current recovery plan for small rental housing only provides funding for the repair of 6,000 units. Additionally, according to FEMA's most recent Mississippi recovery report another 17,185 Mississippi families are still living in travel trainers and mobile homes. A further waiver to re-program CDBG funds for the expansion of the Port of Gulfport, when so many families have yet to be able to return home, is misguided and disregards the continued need for available housing in Mississippi.

Thank you for your consideration of this important issue.

Sincerely,

BARNEY FRANK
Chairman

MAXINE WATERS
Chairman
Subcommittee on Housing and Community Opportunity


Source:
Skip to top
Back to top