Grant funding, specifically government grant funding, are funds that are allocated by legislators to meet specific initiatives that have been selected as priorities. Government grant funding can come from the federal government or it come from state governments. Additionally, some government grant funds are allocated by the federal government to individual states based on need or merit for the state to administer and monitor. The intent of this article is to examine the sources of government grant funding in an effort to assist individuals, organizations and businesses in understanding how government grant funding is created.

Every year legislators for the federal government convene and create an annual budget. Contained in the annual budget are line items for each government grant funding program that these legislators will approve as presented, decrease, increase, or eliminate the line item all together. Each of the federal governments departmental budgets are decided on during these legislative sessions. For example, in FY 2011 the House voted to cut the US Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) appropriation by 23% sparking concern and outrage among programs that supported the mission of HUD. The National Council for State Housing Agencies posted a blog examining the proposed grant funding cut, “According to the Committee’s summary, the CR would fund federal programs under the jurisdiction of the Transportation-HUD Appropriations Subcommittee at $52.4 billion, a $15.5 billion, or 23 percent, cut from the FY 2010 enacted level and a $16.3 billion, or 24 percent, cut from the President’s FY 2011 Budget.”

State governments work in a very similar fashion in developing a budget for each of its departments to allocate in government grant funds. For example in Georgia, the General Assembly made the decision to cut all state government grant funding for domestic violence programs in 2011 to assist in balancing their budget. The Atlanta Journal Constitution posted an online article detailing the legislative grant funding cuts and the potential effects on domestic violence shelters in the state saying, “Declaring independence from an abusive relationship is becoming tougher than ever for battered women and men in Georgia. Among the many tough choices it was forced to make, the General Assembly cut funding for the state’s network of 45 domestic violence shelters and programs by 14 percent last year. The budget crunch forced shelters to limit financial assistance to victims, eliminate jobs and double up on work shifts.” For more on the article, visit: ajc.comAdditionally, once the federal government has approved a budget for government grant funds a number of these grant funds are allotted to the states to be allocated to organizations and monitored by the states. For example, the state of California is allocated Emergency Shelter Grant funds from the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The State of California then allocates these funds to local nonprofit organizations who are not receiving direct funds from HUD. For more information

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