In the final tranche of HUD funding via the CARES Act, Guam has received an additional $1.7 million, bringing total HUD CARES Act funding for Guam to $7.9 million.
“Nearly $8MM in HUD CARES funds have been provided to combat homelessness and provide rental assistance and mortgage assistance to our people. However, public announcements appear that we have barely deployed 25% of these funds at a time when our people need it most,” Congressman Michael San Nicolas said. “Additionally, the $117 million in state and local CARES funding Guam received could also be used to help homeowners and renters.”
San Nicolas added. “We need to move these resources out to our people now, especially when we are seeking additional federal funds for local government operations.”
In a recent hearing of the Financial Services Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives, many members of Congress raised concerns about providing additional funds to local governments when barely 25% of money already made available hasn’t even been spent.
“As your Congressman, we have been pressing our local government to account for and deploy out to our people the CARES Act money it has received, and this is not unique to Guam. The criticism is mounting in other jurisdictions with other Members of Congress entering into the record similar letters of engagement with their local governments; if we don’t use the resources already provided it will compromise the ability for us to secure more federal resources,” San Nicolas warned.
He added: “It becomes much harder to make the case for more federal funding, when the use of existing funding appears underwhelming at best or idling at worst, as it sends the wrong message that needs are not urgent and money is oversupplied. We need to deploy to our people federal funds received urgently, that we may have the basis for more going forward into uncertain times.”
(Delegate Michael San Nicolas New Release)