Kay Winfree, Primary Deputy Attorney General for the State of Maryland
Targeting the $25 Billion National Foreclosure Settlement and its implications for Maryland was the major theme of the Baltimore Field Office of HUD's 3rd Annual congressional briefing. The event, very well attended by congressional staffers from the Maryland Delegation (Senators Mikulski and Cardin and Congressmen Harris, Ruppersberger, Sarbanes, Bartlett, Cummings and Hoyer), representatives of community organizations, HUD Baltimore's division directors and advocacy group representatives, was held at the 10 S. Howard Street main office location. Also in attendance were field office directors from Washington, D.C. (Marvin Turner) and Richmond, VA (Carrie Schmidt).
Presided over by Field Office Director Carol B. Payne, the primary agenda item focused on an interagency conversation regarding the Bank Settlement from a national perspective and the $1-billion Maryland portion of the Foreclosure Settlement. A panel, representing national and state perspectives, featured Engram Lloyd, Housing Officer, National Homeownership Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Carol Gilbert, Assistant Secretary, Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development; and Kay Winfree, Primary Deputy Attorney General for the State of Maryland in the Office of Attorney General Douglas Gansler.
Engram Lloyd, Housing Officer, National Homeownership Center
Each brought the knowledge of their particular offices to bear on the conversation with Engram Lloyd setting the stage with the national perspective and HUD's national involvement; Assistant Secretary Gilbert spoke expectantly about the role of homeownership counseling in the smooth dispensation of the state's portion of the settlement, and Chief Deputy Attorney General Winfree spoke positively regarding the Attorney General's expectation of using all the state's settlement dollars to relieve those who have been injured. The Attorney General plans to hold at least 30 sessions on the settlement in communities around the state, the first of which will be held in conjunction with Congressman Elijah Cummings' annual homeownership event scheduled for June 16, 2012.
In addition to the settlement discussion, Mike Kelly, Legislative Liaison for the Baltimore Metropolitan Council, presented information on the Baltimore region's successful sustainability planning grant and the strategic connections between foreclosure prevention, the foreclosure settlement and community sustainability. Fair Housing's Regional Analysis of Impediments and local collaboration are central to the Baltimore Metropolitan Council's planning efforts. The congressional staffers were enlightened about this grant because they were not aware of it and the regional implications for impact from the national investment.
Carol Gilbert, Assistant Secretary, Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development
In her presentation, Director Payne connected health, education and employment as a means of introducing Choice Neighborhoods, another successful national grant which is taking root in Baltimore. She made the connection between the three hallmarks in building communities of choice and their impact on sustainable housing and communities. Both these projects are helping to create critical infrastructure for Baltimore and the State of Maryland.
HUD Baltimore's Bill Tamburrino, Director of Public Housing, and Charlie Halm, Community Planning and Development Director, spoke about the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) funding and the successes and areas of concern for that effort. Tamburrino reported 100% utilization of the funding to public housing authorities during the timeframe allotted to dispense the funds. Halm highlighted the successful projects that were undertaken by his grantees and their expedient and expeditious use of the funding to build their developments. However, Charlie Halm also cautioned about the decrease in funding trends for 2010 and 2011 and what that fact would mean to the ability to construct more projects.
Advocacy participation included African American representation by the NAACP and Hispanic representation from the Hispanic enclave and organizations in East Baltimore. Community leaders Kelly Little, Executive Director of Druid Heights Community Development Corporation, and Pamela Johnson, Manager, Main Street Organization at Pennsylvania Avenue, were also in attendance. A light repast was served. The event featured excellent evaluations from those gathered for the event.
For more information, email
J. C. Shay, HUD Senior Management Analyst, or call (410) 209-6587.