On his two-day tour of Miami, Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson advised against reading too much into the president’s proposed budget – especially cuts to housing and development funds.
“What you need to concentrate on is: The parts of these programs that are functioning well — and that are maintaining people — are going to be preserved,” Carson said during a press conference at Hialeah’s Hoffman Gardens low-income townhouse development, the Miami Herald reported. “There may be a different nomenclature. We may not call it the same thing…We are clearly going to maintain these programs that are going very well.”
Carson toured the Villa Aurora apartments on Thursday, a $28 million apartment complex that includes dozens of units for the homeless and dozens more for low-income residents. Carrfour Supportive Housing completed the building in 2009 with mostly federal funding, including $1.5 million from the HOME program, a $950 million national program that would be cut under Donald Trump’s proposed budget.
Under his budget, the HUD’s Community Development Block Grant program would also end, eliminating about $4 million a year in Miami, the Herald reported. Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart, a Republican, said that Congress, not the president, will determine what happens to HOME.
“If I didn’t support the HOME funding,” Diaz-Balart said, according to the Herald, “it wouldn’t be in my bill.”