Second in a series. The community organization I work for organized an issues forum with the three candidates running for Mayor of Syracuse. These highly subjective and biased ruminations on the candidate’s remarks (I have endorsed and volunteer for Stephanie Miner) are solely those of your humble blogger and may not be reproduced without the expressed, written consent of Major League Baseball. Or if you buy me a nice present. Or if you ask nicely.
The organization I work for asked each candidate to respond to a 50-odd answer questionnaire on neighborhood issues. We then crafted an individual question to ask each candidate at the forum based on one of their responses.
Stephanie Miner: You oppose SUN’s call to increase Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funding for both the SHARP handyman grant program and the Urgent Care owner-occupant loan program for emergency repairs. We live in economic times when credit is tight and incomes are stagnant. These programs have been called the loans of last resort for many families. How do you propose to help families stay in their homes if you oppose increases to these historically underfunded programs?
Stephanie replied that her answers didn’t reflect a disinclination to help families struggling to finance home repairs, but her desire to systematically change the entire Community Development Block Grant program. A new administration will have the chance to make the program more efficient, fund more direct housing issues and decrease the city’s reliance on the money to fund City hall salaries and overhead. She said no to our requests for these programs because she wants to create something better.