STATEMENT BY REP. MALONEY ON BUSH BUDGET CUTS TO HUD
WASHINGTON - Today, Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney (D-NY), a senior member of the House Financial Services Committee, joined Ranking Member John LaFalce (D-NY) and Housing Subcommittee Ranking Member Barney Frank (D-MA) to speak out against President Bush's proposed budget cuts to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). At the press conference, Maloney released the following statement:
"This morning I have a very simple message: The President should have to make a case for his cuts to housing programs before we vote on his tax cut.
"The transmission of President Bush's budget outline to Congress makes it clear why the Majority won't let this happen. The President's budget and specifically his HUD budget totally contradict his campaign promise to "leave no child behind." I agree with the President that the American people deserve a refund when the government collects more revenue then it needs. I hope the Republican leadership allows us to vote on our own very large package of tax cuts. But before we vote on a $1.6 trillion tax cut, Congress and the President should sit down and debate our overall tax and spending priorities and adopt a budget.
"Would a slightly smaller tax cut mean that the Administration's proposals to cut $700 million from the Public Housing Capital fund, to eliminate of the $316 million Drug Elimination grants program, and to eliminate the $26 million Rural Housing and Economic Development program not be necessary? Has the President taken into account the impact of higher winter energy prices on local housing authorities? We don't know without considering them in the overall context of all taxing and spending. These programs impact the very people that candidate Bush was supposedly was concerned about during the campaign.
"The administration thought it was important to conduct a review of military spending before asking for an increase. It is an insult to the people who depend on HUD services that no review, hearings, or budget resolution will be adopted before the House votes on the Bush tax cut which could hamstring HUD and other programs."
In addition to the statistics cited in Rep. Maloney's statement, the Bush Administration's budget outline that was delivered to Congress last week proposes the following cuts:
PUBLIC HOUSING: The Administration cuts $859 billion from the public housing budget.
COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT: The Administration cuts $422 million from the Community Development Block Grant program.
SECTION 8 RENTAL ASSISTANCE: The budget proposes to cut in half the number of incremental vouchers that have been funded on average the last three years.