GOP Cuts Would Hit COPS, WIC, Other Grant Programs

The proposed cuts would be the largest reduction in discretionary spending in the country’s history.
by | February 10, 2011

Deep cuts proposed by the House leadership for the remainder of the fiscal year would slash millions of dollars from programs such as CDBG, COPS and WIC that are viewed as crucial by state and local leaders.

House Appropriations Chairman Hal Rogers released Wednesday a partial list of 70 areas that would receive cuts in his party’s continuing resolution bill, which would fund the government through Sept. 30, the end of the fiscal year. The cuts amount to $58 billion in non-security discretionary spending, relative to President Obama's FY 2011 budget request, which was never passed.

If the Republican-controlled House and the Democrat-controlled Senate can’t eventually agree on a funding bill, the government will shut down next month. Democrats have already called the proposed cuts “draconian” – but they could eventually go even deeper. Many House Republicans have reportedly grown frustrated with the House leadership, arguing that their plan doesn't cut enough funding, and when the full budget proposal is released in coming days there may be even more dollars on the chopping block.

The following cuts released by Rogers are programs that may of particular interest to state and local governments. The full-list released by Rogers is available here.

  • Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy -- Administers the Recovery Act's $3.2 billion EECBG block grants program, among other things -- $899M
  • Economic Development Assistance  -- $16M
  • State and Local Law Enforcement Assistance -- awards state and local grants to fund police personell, equipment, training and other areas -- $256M
  • COPS -- Provides grants to fund state and local community policing efforts -- $600M
  • WIC -- Provides grants to states to states to fund food, health care referrals and nutrition education for low-income women and children -- $758M
  • Clean Water State Revolving Fund -- Loan program for wastewater facilities -- $700M
  • Drinking Water State Revolving Fund -- Loan program for financing infrastructure improvements for drinking water systems -- $250M
  • Job Training Programs -- $2B
  • Community Health Centers -- HHS program for providing clinics to under-served populations --  $1.3B
  • Maternal and Child Health Block Grants -- State grants for giving women, children and families access to health care -- $210M
  • LIHEAP Contingency fund -- Funding released through HHS to states for emergency funding of home heating or cooling bills for low-income residents -- $400M
  • Community Services Block Grants -- provide funding to community action agencies that seek to reduce poverty -- $405M
  • High Speed Rail -- $1B
  • HUD Community Development Fund -- funds CDBG grants that provide funding to state and local government for housing, job training and other areas -- $530M

With the proposal, Rogers said, “we will respond to the millions of Americans who have called on this Congress to rein in spending to help our economy grow and our businesses create jobs.” He said the cuts would be the largest reduction in discretionary spending in the country’s history.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said the plan would cost jobs, jeopardize safety by taking police off the street, and “threaten investments in rebuilding America – at a time when our economy can least afford it.” 

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