Boston, MA - Last week, U.S. Representative Stephen F. Lynch (MA-08) along with U.S. Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Edward J. Markey (D-MA0), and U.S. Representatives Richard E. Neal (MA-01), James P. McGovern (MA-02), William Keating (MA-09), Joseph P. Kennedy III (MA-04), Katherine Clark (MA-05)Ayanna Pressley (MA-07) and Lori Trahan (MA-03) sent a letter to Congressional leadership urging them to include robust funding for the Department of Housing and Urban Development's Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program in the COVID-19 stimulus package currently being debated in Congress.

"This critical program will help mayors and local governments throughout the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the rest of the nation continue to provide vital services to their communities during this unprecedented crisis," the lawmakers wrote.

The CDBG program is one of the Federal government's most effective means to provide resources to meet the needs of low- and moderate-income communities across the nation. CDBG funding supports homeownership, housing rehabilitation, infrastructure improvements, and economic development projects in addition to expanding investment in local economies. Every $1 of CDBG funding leverages another $4.09 in additional public and private investments. CDBG funds are distributed to localities through a broad network of local organizations, such as nonprofits and community groups, that provide vital services and resources for families and neighborhoods.

"Cities and local governments will be on the front lines when addressing the spread of COVID-19, and their revenues will take a significant hit as a result of the lost economic activity due to the crisis," the lawmakers continued. "The inclusion of CDBG funds will allow cities to provide these and other services without having to cut off access to vital public services, including public safety, water, sewer, solid waste, and municipal electricity--cuts that would only exacerbate the impact of the crisis on the most vulnerable communities."

You can read the letter here.