Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Funding priorities and IMPACT

In an article ("Reserve proposed to fund new projects") in the Daily Progress yesterday, there were a lot of numbers thrown around. There's this much in the reserve fund, that much needed for programs x, y, and z. And it's noted that the Charlottesville Housing Fund is to get $400,000 less than the previous budget.
“Whenever funds are cut, it’s saddening to our community,” said Rickey White, pastor at Union Run Baptist Church and a member of IMPACT, a local interfaith group that has been credited with affordable housing accomplishments. “But we understand the economic situation that we’re in.”
I think it's wise to move our focus away from the dollars spent on one program or another, especially this year. Not that the programs aren't important, or that the money isn't needed. But putting a number on a program is always tricky, and fluid. The question shouldn't be, "How much are we spending?" but "Are we doing enough?"

"Doing enough" includes requesting public funding, but also includes asking questions about existing programs, looking for creative solutions, creating awareness in our community, building a group of people who believe strongly enough in these issues that they won't let them go, because they understand that we won't come out of these difficult times any stronger if we don't do enough.

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