Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Elise Stefanik today joined a bipartisan group of colleagues in introducing legislation to update the Community Services Block Grant (CSBG) program.

The CSBG program supports more than 1,000 Community Action Agencies (CAAs) that support a wide range of community-based activities to reduce poverty, including Community Action Planning Council of Jefferson County, JCEO of Clinton and Franklin Counties, Washington County L.E.A.P, Lewis County Opportunities Inc., St. Lawrence County Community Development Program, Adirondack Community Action Programs, and Warren-Hamilton Counties ACEO in New York’s 21st District. 

The Community Services Block Grant Modernization Act of 2021 (H.R. 5129) will reauthorize this critical program for another decade and make overdue updates to further reduce poverty.

“CSBG funds are critical to supporting local agencies in the North Country working to tackle poverty issues, including combating the opioid epidemic, addressing education disparities, and fighting hunger,” Stefanik said. “Locally-driven solutions are at the core of this legislation, and I am proud to work to strengthen this program, so local organizations can continue their good work addressing poverty and expanding opportunity in the North Country.”

Community Service Block Grants enable CAAs to be innovative, leverage public and private resources for their communities, and efficiently administer many programs—including Head Start, LIHEAP, nutrition assistance, weatherization, job training, housing, and assistance for those experiencing homelessness.

“Low-income communities and effective programs have a friend and an ally in Congress, and her name is Elise Stefanik,” said David Bradley, CEO of the National Community Action Foundation. “She is unwavering in her commitment to providing opportunities and tools to low-income communities since taking office. We rely on Congresswoman Stefanik’s leadership each and every week, and she has never failed to answer the call when it comes to supporting low-income communities and the nation’s network of nearly 1,000 local Community Action Agencies.”

Updates to the CSBG program include:

  • Strengthening program accountability with results-oriented performance measurements
  • Improving technical assistance provided to CAAs to enhance efficiency and service delivery
  • Promoting innovation and addressing emerging needs, including access to broadband and connected devices

Stefanik joined U.S. Representatives Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), Glenn “GT” Thompson (R-PA), Betty McCollum (D-MN), Mark DeSaulnier (D-CA), and James Comer (R-KY) in introducing this legislation.

A fact sheet with more details about the CSBG Modernization Act can be found here.