Mayor Carlos Gimenez’s plan to cut Miami-Dade charity grants by 10 percent doesn’t amount to huge savings, but it has already brought significant controversy.
Funding for so-called Community Based Organizations often gets outsized attention in yearly budget debates, since the program subsidizes hundreds of non-profits performing key social services. Soup kitchens, domestic-abuse centers, troubled-youth programs and dozens more categories of charities receive money under the county’s $19 million CBO program.
Gimenez proposed a 10-percent cut to all CBO grants for the budget year that starts Oct. 1. Combined with a short list of de-funded grants, the total savings amounts to $2.6 million, according to budget documents released last week.
[Don’t see a chart? Click here for a link.]
This Dade Data chart shows proposed funding for all 374 CBO grants listed in the mayor’s budget. The interactive chart is sorted by each group’s total 2015 funding, with multiple grants combined. But it’s interactive, and you can re-sort the chart by clicking each column. Miami-Dade’s budget office provided a list of 2014 recipients slated to lose funding in 2015, either because the county opted not to award the money or because they declined the CBO grant. We’ve included those notations when a grant was reduced to zero in the mayor’s proposal.
Gimenez’s plan for CBOs sparked this budget season’s first marathon public hearing, when Commissioner Dennis Moss rallied fellow CBO leaders to speak en masse at a June 25 commission finance meeting. Moss runs the Richmond Perrine Optimist Club, No. 13 on the list of 2015 recipients with a proposed allotment of $247,000. (Moss said he no longer receives a salary from the non-profit, given its financial difficulties.)
The top recipient is the Institute for Child and Family Health, which provides healthcare, drug counseling and educational help to low-income residents. The group received $1.27 million in grants this year, and is looking at a $128,000 cut next year.
On Tuesday, commissioners convene a public hearing before voting to set the maximum property-tax rates for 2015. County Hall watchers expect CBO representatives to pack the chambers once again.