Homelessness:

McKinney Act Programs and Funding for Fiscal Year 1989

RCED-90-52: Published: Feb 16, 1990. Publicly Released: Feb 16, 1990.

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Pursuant to a legislative requirement, GAO provided information on the status of legislatively authorized, federal- and state-administered homeless assistance programs.

GAO found that the homeless assistance legislation: (1) initially authorized 20 programs for funding direct services involving emergency food and shelter, transitional and permanent housing, primary health care services, mental health care, alcohol and drug abuse treatment, education, and job training; (2) required jurisdictions to develop and submit a comprehensive homeless assistance plan outlining strategies for using federal, state, and local resources to assist the homeless; (3) authorized the Surplus Property Program to make underutilized federal property available to assist the homeless; and (4) created the Interagency Council on the Homeless to coordinate federal programs. GAO also found that: (1) Congress removed 2 of the 20 authorized homeless assistance programs and reauthorized them under other legislation; (2) Congress authorized about $1.7 billion and appropriated about $1.1 billion for the homeless assistance programs for fiscal year (FY) 1987 through FY 1989; (3) the Federal Emergency Management Agency's Emergency Food and Shelter Program received around $365 million of that funding, while other programs received between $3.8 million and $114.5 million; and (4) 6 of the 18 assistance programs provided funds through a formula- or block-grant process, while 10 programs used a competitive process, and 2 programs received no funding for FY 1989.

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