Philadelphia, March 19, 2018 – U.S. Rep. Brendan F. Boyle (PA-13), Philadelphia City Council President Darrell L. Clarke (5th District), and 9th District Councilmember Cherelle Parker on Monday joined with Olney neighborhood stakeholders and business owners to condemn President Trump’s reckless 2019 Budget proposal and the damaging effects it would have on the business corridor that comprises North 5th Street in the Olney section of Philadelphia. The President’s proposed FY19 Budget could eliminate critical Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funding that has been pivotal to the North 5th Street Revitalization Project and the ongoing resurgence of the business corridor along North 5th Street. The CDBG program provides flexible financial assistance to economically distressed areas.
“The President’s reckless budget would eliminate the Community Development Block Grant which many of the business owners and community leaders here in Olney reply upon – along with countless other lifelines to middle class communities like Olney across the country,” said Representative Boyle. “Community stakeholders, merchants and residents have all seen the benefits of the CDBG funding that has helped make this corridor a better place to live and work. If the President gets his way and this budget is enacted into law, it would sabotage their progress; the improved quality of life and increase in jobs that we’ve seen here would slip away. I will do everything in my power in the House Budget Committee and on the floor of Congress to fight any cuts to CDBG funding at the Federal Level.”
“The revitalization in Olney is real and that growth is due, in part, to the thriving North 5th Street commercial corridor, one of the city’s longest and most ethnically diverse,” Councilmember Parker said. “The North 5th Street Revitalization Project, which relies heavily on CDBG dollars, has worked extremely hard to welcome new businesses, make sure the corridor is inviting and to provide resources to business owners. That progress is under attack in President Trump’s proposed budget, but I commend Congressman Boyle for continuing to stand up and fight to protect our communities.”
“None of the promises this president has made with regard to infrastructure investments have materialized. The message of his budget is clear: That when it comes to investing in communities, cities and states are on their own,” Council President Clarke said. “The small businesses and residents of Olney, a wonderful neighborhood, deserve to be recognized and supported by government, not knocked down. I am grateful to Congressman Boyle for standing with Philadelphians and for continuing to fight for the investments our communities deserve.”
In Philadelphia, CDBG currently supports more than 20 programs. In addition to corridor revitalization it also supports outreach that includes financial counseling and helping homeless families with security deposits for apartments.
In the past, CDBG funds have helped the North 5th Street Revitalization project pay for:
- Litter removal campaigns that cleared away more than 2,000 bags of trash from the streets of the neighborhood
- Street and sidewalk repair
- Revitalization of 12 storefronts on North 5th Street, the main section of the neighborhood
Watch the press conference:
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