Last week, the House of Representatives voted to cut funding for innovative transportation and development programs that help communities across the country build stronger economies, create jobs and provide transportation choices for the 21st century. The Senate will soon be faced with the same decision and we need your help to make sure these crucial programs are preserved for the remainder of the fiscal year.
Among the cuts proposed are funds for the Partnership for Sustainable Communities, an unprecedented collaboration between three federal agencies that helps communities across the country implement their smart growth plans. The Partnership helps community leaders get the most out of each federal or state dollar invested in their neighborhoods. By leveraging private sector investment, saving money in municipal budgets, helping families save on things like transportation and creating jobs, programs like the Partnership for Sustainable Communities make sure federal funds go as far as possible.
One of the many projects supported by funds on the chopping block is a group of five counties in East Tennessee that received a Regional Planning Grant from the Department of Housing and Urban Development. The five separate counties are working together to address issues that impact all of them, like economic and workforce development, land use, infrastructure and public health while also leveraging area-wide resources and common strengths. This initiative is just one of the hundreds of projects from around the country that applied for grants through the Partnership for Sustainable Communities but these programs need our help.
This year’s federal budget decisions are difficult ones and Congress does need to cut wasteful spending, but smart growth investments like the Partnership for Sustainable Communities help the federal government work smarter. Cutting these programs would be a short-sighted solution to the budget shortfall, and one which would stunt the economic growth of regions currently benefiting from the program. Join the effort to preserve these programs by speaking out today.