Summer Lee Secures $12 Million for PA-12 to Fight Hunger, Homelessness, and Blight; Provide Wraparound Services, Fix Infrastructure, and Educate Against Antisemitism in House Passage of FY2024 Budget  

Mar 06, 2024
In the News
Press

**For IMMEDIATE RELEASE**

March 6th, 2024

Contact: Emilia.Rowland@mail.house.gov 

Summer Lee Secures $12 Million for PA-12 to Fight Hunger, Homelessness, and Blight; Provide Wraparound Services, Fix Infrastructure, and Educate Against Antisemitism in House Passage of FY2024 Budget  

After Progressives Held the Line Against House Extremists, Dems Finally Defeat Republican Blockage of Government Funding Package, Shutdown 

Washington, DC – Today, Congresswoman Summer Lee (PA-12) released the following statement after voting to pass six appropriations bills (Ag-FDA, CJS, EWD, Interior-EPA, MilCon-VA, and THUD) and fully fund the first half of the FY2024 budget, finally defeating Republicans’ attempt to block government funding that nearly forced a government shutdown and held up Lee’s $12 million in community project funding for PA-12. The bill is now headed to the Senate for final passage by Friday. 

Congress has until March 22nd to pass the remaining six appropriations bills for fiscal year 2024, which is expected to fund Lee’s 15th and final CPF, $450,000 for job training at the Trade Institute of Pittsburgh. With the additional $12 million secured today, Lee has now delivered $1.3 billion in federal investments for Western PA in her first term.

Congresswoman Lee said, “After months spent holding the line against Republicans who forced us to the brink of economic catastrophe, the House finally voted to fund the government, passing the first half of the bipartisan negotiated FY24 budget. I voted ‘YES’ on the appropriations package to ensure the government can fulfill its responsibilities to the American people, protect access to food and formula for 12,000 families in Allegheny and Westmoreland countiessafeguard affordable housing for 400,000 Pennsylvanians, and deliver desperately needed new investments for PA-12. 

“After fighting tirelessly for many many months,” Lee continued, “I am especially proud to have officially secured more than $12.6 million for 15 community projects to fight hunger, homelessness and blite; provide job training, provide mental health, trauma care and wraparound services, fix infrastructure, and educate against antisemitism. Thank you to the hardworking folks at each community org and municipality below for your partnership to deliver these transformational investments to solve problems and make life better in our community. This is the power of people – good government, and real democracy in action.”

In December, Congresswoman Summer Lee hosted a zoom press call with local organizations for whom she helped secure the $12.6 million in community project funding as part of the FY2024 budget – discussing the enormous need and impact of the investments. Find descriptions of each of the projects, quotes from receiving organizations here, as well as the full video.

Full descriptions for each of the projects also listed below: 

$1,700,000 for theTri-COG Land Bank Modular Houses on Blighted Land Project in McKeesport: This project will recover plots of abandoned, blighted and demolition land in the McKeesport Area School District and transform them into sustainable and permanently affordable homeownership opportunities. This funding will improve the McKeesport Area School District community, a distressed community, by remediating seven blighted properties, creating permanently affordable homeownership opportunities, help stabilize property values, and help spur neighborhood revitalization. Disclosure letter: HERE

$1,000,000 Granted for Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank Truck Package: to distribute more than 33 million pounds of food annually to 400,000 individuals including low- to moderate-income individuals and others in need of food assistance living in areas of high need in Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Cambria, Fayette, Greene, Indiana, Lawrence, Somerset and Washington counties in Pennsylvania. The program will purchase and build eight mobile food banks that will regularly recover fresh food from regional Pennsylvania farms and retailers and deliver it to a network of over 1,000 community partners. Disclosure Letter: HERE

$1,000,000 Granted for YMCA of Greater Pittsburgh: The YMCA of Greater Pittsburgh will use this funding for the Northside community to rehabilitate the Allegheny YMCA building to make it ADA accessible, address unworkable infrastructure, and allow the facility to directly address the needs of the surrounding community through upgraded space to provide childcare, before/after school enrichment, senior supports, and community health and wellness in a low-income community. Additionally, to ensure the Allegheny YMCA is truly available to all, it will continue to provide membership and program subsidies to low-income Northside residents. Disclosure letter: HERE

$959,757 Granted for the Allegheny County Sanitary Authority Storm Sewer Project: ALCOSAN and Homestead Borough are addressing several important issues with this project.  First, the local elementary school does not have a standard play area for their young students to enjoy recess.  The current play area is asphalt surrounded by a chain-link fence. This project will renovate the grounds to a landscaped, green space that can be used by the children. Second, the teacher parking lot will be re-configured and built with permeable pavers to capture rainfall.  Third, under the parking lot, a stormwater storage unit will be constructed to capture stormwater and slowly release the water to the combined sewer system thereby reducing combined sewer overflows to the Monongahela River. This project will help Homestead Borough achieve its regulatory compliance related to combined sewer overflow abatement. Disclosure letter: HERE

$500,000 Granted Urban Redevelopment Authority – Ground Floor Commercial Activation in Affordable Housing: to build affordable ground floor or street-level housing and commercial in mixed-use Low Income Housing Tax Credits-financed projects across the City of Pittsburgh. This project will address housing affordability, support entrepreneurship and small business, as well as attract and retain businesses. This project would also provide critical funding towards mixed-use developments with affordable housing and neighborhood-serving commercial components that will otherwise experience significant funding gaps. Disclosure letter: HERE

$1,000,000 Granted for Tree of Life Educational Space Rebuild: to create a community gathering and education space to teach about antisemitism and identity-based hate in the new Tree of Life building. This project will be a critical space to educate on antisemitism, revitalize a community hub that has sat empty for 5 years since the antisemitic attack, and will create a positive economic impact in the community by attracting visitors, students, and educators from around the world. Disclosure Letter: HERE

$1,666,279 Granted For Homewood Fields and Community Complex in Pittsburgh (City of Pittsburgh) to construct a state-of-the-art sports and community performance space, which will include a field house, amphitheater, and community gathering space. This project will function as a key anti-violence strategy in Homewood, a neighborhood which consistently experiences high levels of youth violence. More importantly, the new park will provide the foundation for intensive collaboration between the city’s anti-violence initiatives and key Homewood community institutions committed to helping young people invest in their own lives and value the lives of others, through violence interruption, job training, coaching, and interventions with spectators and parents. Disclosure letter: HERE

$461,197 Granted for Jubilee Kitchen Facility Expansion and Renovation Project. Jubilee Association, Inc. will renovate a homeless prevention program in a low-income community by expanding and renovating their current facility to address significant safety, accessibility, and space issues. This project will give the facility greater space to meet food, clothing, and counseling needs and improve facility safety to continue providing necessary services preventing homelessness and offering high-quality, affordable childcare for low-income families providing their children pathways to a brighter future. Disclosure letter: HERE

$966,000 Granted For City of Pittsburgh Criminal Justice Diversion Program: The City of Pittsburgh seeks funding to support its Criminal Justice Diversion Program, also known as Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion (LEAD), which is a program situated within the Office of Community Health and Safety. The LEAD initiative for the City of Pittsburgh will provide people with substance use disorder and mental and behavioral health challenges with person-centered social services and intense case management. This initiative will help relieve police of a role they feel unsuited for and permit them to focus on violent crime, by preventing unnecessary, and harmful criminal-legal system engagement and instead will promote and support individual agency, particularly in communities of color. Disclosure letter: HERE

$850,000 Granted for the McKeesport Duquesne Bridge Preservation: Pennsylvania Department of Transportation will perform bridge preservation and maintenance activities on the McKeesport-Duquesne Bridge that will extend service life and maintain a safe and reliable crossing over the Monongahela River and multiple railroads. The McKeesport-Duquesne Bridge connects several low-income and minority environmental justice communities on either side of the Monongahela River. On the Southern side of the bridge, more than 50% of the households are low-income. On both sides of the river are communities that are made up of 75% minority populations. PennDOT will cover the required match, which will be App. 581 State highway funds. Disclosure letter: HERE

$547,000 Granted for Extended Support for 10.27 Healing Partnership to respond to and address the ongoing trauma from the 2018 Synagogue Mass Shooting in the lead-up to and in the aftermath of the trial. The goal of this project is to deepen the effectiveness of community-based work initiated by the initial investment from the federal government after the attack, focused on victim support, healing, and increasing the capacity of community partners to navigate trauma and resiliency following this horrific mass casualty event and the ongoing threat of antisemitism, white supremacy, and gun violence Disclosure letter: HERE

$500,000 Granted for Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh – Larimer Food Incubator & Community Kitchen. The Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh will repurpose the vacant and former Larimer School building to build a full-service community kitchen, event space and small business food incubator. This funding will support commercial development of the neighborhood by transforming 9800 square feet of the former school auditorium. This project will bring the Larimer community up to par with neighboring communities that have seen rapid development in recent years. This will be an economic catalyst for the community through job creation, support for small local businesses, food preparation and safety classes, training programs, and health and wellness programs. Disclosure letter: HERE

$500,000 Granted to Westmoreland County – 4th Street Bridge Improvement in Irwin: Westmoreland County will replace a roadway bridge that runs over the Norfolk Southern Railway in Irwin. This project will reconnect the town with the main road that has been divided by the railroad for over 100 years and closed to traffic since 2014. Funding through this request will expedited project execution by adding to funds previously secured through the Southwest Pennsylvania Commission (SPC) Transportation Improvement Plan (TIP) Disclosure letter: HERE

$500,000 Granted for SR 2046, Streets Run Road Resurfacing in Whitehall: Pennsylvania Department of Transportation will rehabilitate the entire length of S.R. 2046 to combat deteriorating, poor pavement quality that is at an increasing risk of landslide. This road connects commercial, industrial, and residential properties in the municipality of Whitehall. The ongoing Curry Hollow Road expansion will put further demand on this crucial corridor that links the Baldwin Borough to the City of Pittsburgh, as well as Jefferson Hospital and the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC). Disclosure letter: HERE

Lee also worked with Senator Bob Casey to advance an additional $2M through these appropriations bills for the following projects in the district:

  • $500,000 for the Kingsley Association to make modifications to the Association’s current facility to allow the community center to meet the needs of the people with disabilities in the City of Pittsburgh and the broader region. 
  • $1,000,000 for the Urban League of Greater Pittsburgh to expand their facility to accommodate a Digital Innovation Center to address the community’s need for job and apprenticeship training and to support the educational development of K-12th grade youth.
  • $564,000 for the City of Clairton to rehabilitate a building that will house the Clairton Public Library, which will provide free internet access, accessible reading spaces and bathrooms, and event spaces to host community events, meetings, and training.

Since taking office in January 2023, Lee, who serves on the House Oversight Committee and Space, Science and Technology Committee, has delivered historic levels of federal investment totaling over $1.2 Billion brought back to Western PA, including over $200 million for infrastructure, over $50 million for affordable transit, and over $500 million to keep clean energy manufacturing at home in Pennsylvania. These investments will help improve Western Pennsylvania’s infrastructure and transit, ensure cleaner air and drinking water, lower housing costs, fund research institutions, fuel clean manufacturing, fund STEM innovation and entrepreneurship, boost workforce development, and create thousands of good paying union jobs.  Lee and her team have also delivered casework and constituent services to over 1,850 constituents with issues ranging from helping our seniors and disabled community access Medicare and social security to helping folks secure housing and helping families with immigration support and passports.

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