Loss Of Federal Funds Will Reduce Programs For Wichitans

Feb 13, 2013

After a lengthy discussion Tuesday, the Wichita City council decided which programs would be funded by a federal block grant.

The Community Services Block Grant is expected to be cut in half, providing about $532,000 to support various service programs in Wichita. That means some programs that were previously funded will get less - or none.

Mary Kay Vaughn, Director of Housing and Community Services, told the council that the review committee had to prioritize what programs would get funded.

The application approved by the council includes cuts to neighborhood city halls, summer youth camps and Project Access, a low-income medical care program.

Vaughn said all the programs are great programs.

"Our committee, however, decided that they felt employment services should be the highest priority and so they recommended more funding there and less in some other areas," she said.

"We are going to go forward and were going help as many people as we can, but I do think that we're going to have to start a community dialogue about what our community needs."

The application has to be submitted to the state by Friday.

The council is expected to have further discussions about shifting funds to support programs and having staff look into public/private partnerships for additional funding.