ROMA, Reforms, and Reduced Funds – Analyzing the President’s FY 2014 Budget Request

— Mark Schmeissing, Senior Policy Analyst, NASCSP — 

President Obama released his Fiscal Year (FY) 2014 budget request on Wednesday, which included a proposed total of $350 million for the Community Services Block Grant (CSBG). Below is a breakdown of how the funding amount compares to allocations in previous years and some of the key notes provided by both the President’s FY 2014 budget request and the Department of Health and Human Services FY 2014 Budget Justification.

FY14 Budget graphic

As you can see in the chart above, the President’s budget request represents a 50% cut from the previous year’s allocation; however, the lack of funding for Community Economic Development and Rural Facilities grants makes the cut less severe for States and Tribes. The FY 2012 appropriation totals are used to tabulate the chart above because the final totals for FY 2013 including the total appropriations, continuing resolutions, and sequestration have not yet been released.

In regards to reforms, both the current efforts around standards and additional collaboration efforts were described as opportunities to strengthen CSBG. As in previous years, the budget emphasizes the administration’s focus on directing “CSBG resources to high-performing, innovative agencies” and indicates that core federal standards will be the method of assessment. It also proposes that:

States will have the flexibility to add to these core standards according to their own interests and needs. When an eligible entity falls short of meeting the standards, the state will be required to implement immediate open competition to serve the affected communities.

The request not only mentions the importance of looking beyond standards for local agencies, but also to standards for federal and state “monitoring, training, and technical assistance activities.” Collaboration and integration of CSBG with other Administration anti-poverty strategies was also emphasized  as “an opportunity to align with the Administration’s place-based policy and to build more capacity in local communities to create a deeper place-based infrastructure.”

Lastly, NASCSP’s work on the ROMA Next Generation Center of Excellence was described in the budget as, “the strategic process…including refining materials and training related to the ROMA performance cycle.” Tying back to the administration’s push for allocated resources based on performance, the budget indicated, “ACF will continue to work with national and state organizational partners on future refinements to the ROMA and NPI systems to assure that these systems contribute to a performance-based program and funding approach.”

HHS Budget Justification

President’s FY 2014 Budget

Want more detail about the budget and what it means for the future?

Join NASCSP for an overview and analysis of the 2014 Federal budget next Monday, April 15, 2013 at 2:00 PM EDT. We’ll discuss implications for CSBG and WAP as well as next steps for legislative efforts and advocacy. Presenters include Brad Penney, Arley Johnson, and Mark Schmeissing. Additionally, a senior Congressional Staffer and an Administration official have been invited to speak.

To register, please follow this link: