Mayor Aftab Pureval: New Cincinnati Budget Prioritizes Housing, Fiscal Responsibility

NewDEAL Leader Cincinnati Mayor Aftab Pureval’s $523 million budget proposal for the 2024 fiscal year was unanimously passed by the City Council. The budget invests in several housing initiatives, including rental assistance, eviction counsel, code enforcement, and a new pilot rental rehabilitation loan program. The budget also includes money for three groundbreaking programs aimed at realizing equitable financial opportunities for all residents: a medical debt relief program, a child savings account initiative, and a guaranteed income pilot program. Importantly, the city is planning for a future without federal assistance, eyeing additional revenue sources and responsible budget cuts that will ensure a smooth transition as COVID-era assistance ends. Read Mayor Pureval’s letter to the Council about his budget here.

Mayor Justin Bibb: Utilizing ARPA Funding for Housing Projects

AMERICAN RESCUE PLAN – Ohio: Cleveland Mayor Justin Bibb will deploy over $20 million in American Rescue Plan Act funds for crucial housing projects. The city will invest $15 million to revitalize Cleveland’s southeast side through the creation of a revolving loan fund for home repairs, commercial corridor improvements, and large-scale redevelopments. Additionally, $5 million will go to Habitat for Humanity, enabling the non-profit to build 50 homes in areas with low homeownership. Those projects are key to a five-year $32.5 million investment to aid 400 households in the Greater Cleveland area with new home builds and repairs. 

Mayor Justin Bibb: Ohio Rescue and Transformation Plan

ECONOMIC REVITALIZATION: Ohio – Cleveland Mayor Justin Bibb has unveiled a series of substantial investments aimed at revitalizing the city and expanding broadband access as part of his Rescue and Transformation Plan. Bibb announced a public-private collaboration expected to bring internet access to an estimated 29,000 homes over the next 18 months. He also recently committed $21 million of federal American Rescue Plan Act funding to a Waterfront Activation Fund, set to support nine projects along the city’s shores. In addition, he has pledged to allocate more of the city’s federal aid towards converting “thousands of acres” of brownfields into land ready for development.

Franklin County Board of Commissioners President John O’Grady announced $15.5 million in American Rescue Plan (ARP) funding for affordable housing

HOUSING – Ohio: Franklin County Board of Commissioners President John O’Grady announced $15.5 million in American Rescue Plan (ARP) funding for affordable housing in partnership with the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Healthy Homes program. The funds will leverage resources from other partners and support 33 new construction projects to create more than 200 new affordable housing units.

HOUSING – Pennsylvania: State Representative Jordan Harris – Whole-Home Repairs Program

HOUSING – Pennsylvania: State Representative Jordan Harris announced a $21 million grant to support the Whole-Home Repairs Program, an initiative that he had championed in the legislature to provide $50,000 in assistance to eligible homeowners for home repairs and weatherization. The program will allocate nearly $40 million from the American Rescue Plan Act to county agencies across Pennsylvania aimed at addressing habitability and safety concerns for low- to middle-income families.


HOUSING – Maryland: County Executive Angela Alsobrooks – Houses of God Initiative

HOUSING – Maryland: County Executive Angela Alsobrooks is increasing investment in the county’s Houses of God initiative, supporting seven houses of worship as they develop about 700 affordable housing units on their vacant properties. Funded by the county and Enterprise Community Partners, the initiative provides churches with technical expertise and resources, including architects, lawyers, and finance professionals, to facilitate project development. The county aims to involve 10 to 15 churches in the program, leveraging their land and expertise to create impactful partnerships and contribute to the county’s goal of constructing 26,000 new affordable housing units.

The Future We Choose: A Safe Home For Everyone


Each year, the Salt Lake County community invests $42 million in government and private funds on the complex issue of homelessness, helping Utah’s Housing First initiative to dramatically reduce chronic homelessness. Currently, resources are invested without coordination either among funders and service agencies or between them. Efforts of funders and service agencies are disconnected, and no one has a common understanding of the problem, shared solutions, or common ways to measure progress resulting in isolated pockets of efficiency and impact.


Salt Lake County is coordinating a system-wide effort to identify gaps in current homeless services and improve services delivery to individuals and families experiencing or at risk for homelessness. The County is also organizing broader community efforts around these outcomes by developing an innovative, integrated set of supportive finance strategies, including an innovative portfolio approach to related Pay for Success projects, a public-private funding collaborative, and an initiative to coordinate Community Development Block Grant funds region-wide. The Mayor is also determined to make the resulting data widely accessible online through a public dashboard, now in development, which will demonstrate accountability to residents. 

Tackling Foreclosure Crisis


The mortgage foreclosure crisis ravaged communities through New York City, and its impact is still being felt today. Thousands of families lost their homes and entire neighborhoods suffered from vacancies, blight and declining values. In addition to its effects on families and neighborhoods, pre-foreclosed real estate hinders economic development, costing the city roughly $84 million in unpaid property tax annually.


To deal with a continuing foreclosure crisis, City Councilman Dan Garodnick is advocating for New York City to buy back distressed mortgages controlled by federal housing authorities, restructure the debt in partnership with not-for-profits, and then resell the notes (and homes) to current homeowners and low- to moderate-income New Yorkers who can support the debt. Banks have been resistant to writing down principal balances because of regulatory constraints, and too many properties have been abandoned, or left in legal limbo. This solution will refurbish vacant or abandoned properties, rejuvenate communities, and give people much-needed housing.

Dilapidated Housing Ordinance


The steady decline of the coal industry led to a growing number of dilapidated and dangerous abandoned homes in Pike County, Kentucky. As the population decreased, many homes were left unoccupied and became dangerous eye sores in their communities. These abandoned and dilapidated homes lowered property values for other home owners in their communities.


As a county official, Rep. Harris sponsored and passed a “Dilapidated Housing Ordinance” which provided a method for the County Solid Waste Department to remove dilapidated structures from property. Upon receipt of a complaint from a neighboring land owner, the County Solid Waste Department provides notice to the owner of a dilapidated structure and affords them a reasonable period of time to either repair or remove the structure from the premises. If the structure isn’t removed within the time period allowed under the ordinance, the County Solid Waste Department may then take steps to remove the structure and place a lien covering the cost of removal upon the real estate. The Dilapidated Housing Ordinance removed countless dangerous eyesores from communities all across Pike County and improved safety and property values for those living near these abandoned structures. 

Public-Private Partnerships for Affordable Housing


The City of Oxford is facing a workforce and affordable housing crisis, and this is occurring against a backdrop of the highest land prices in the state. To further exacerbate the problem, Oxford is located in one of the most fiscally conservative states in the nation, so solutions which may be feasible in places like Aspen, Colorado or Asheville, NC are simply non-starters here.


Mayor Tannehill, beginning during her tenure as an Alderman, formed a coalition of community partners that would represent both conservative and progressive viewpoints while also leveraging the strengths of the public and private sectors. This bipartisan Public-Private Partnership was ultimately able to earn $15,000,000 in funding in federal tax credits layered with traditional debt which will be taken out by local developers. As a result of this achievement, the City of Oxford will soon be home to ninety-six high quality new construction homes – all in walking distance of local amenities – at zero cost to the local government. Mayor Tannehill’s achievement came as a result of fully engaging Republicans to Democrats… for-profit corporations to non-profit advocacy groups… the state government up to the federal government… large-scale developers to the working community… but all these partners only succeeded when their ideas were met by a City government with a strong leader who would ensure – to the person – that Oxford is pro-growth. While many local governments use ordinances and procedures to slow growth and obstruct development, Mayor Tannehill has fostered – instilled – a mentality in City Hall that nothing short of getting the job done will be accepted.