Press Releases

Washington, DC – Today, Representative Scott Peters (CA-50) and members of San Diego’s congressional delegation urged Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Martha Fudge to revisit the flawed formula used to allocate federal homeless services dollars.

In 2022, despite having the nation’s eighth largest homeless population, the San Diego region received the 14th highest level of Continuum of Care (CoC) funding. Based on the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) formula, which has not been updated since 1977, the CoC funding formula prioritizes factors like the age of housing, which puts newer cities, like San Diego, at a disadvantage.

“This funding disparity hurts the San Diego region’s homeless assistance providers, who do an excellent job providing services to those in need of aid,” the letter says. “However, they are limited in what they can do with the funding allocated by the current CoC formula.”

Congressman Peters first contacted HUD about the funding disparity in March 2013, shortly after taking office. At that point, the San Diego region had the third-highest homeless population in the country, but received the 18th highest level of federal homelessness funding. In July 2016, HUD agreed to explore an update to the funding formula that took into account factors like a region’s homeless population, poverty rate, and the availability and affordability of housing. Unfortunately, the Obama Administration was unable to finalize the update.

“We are hopeful that the Biden Administration will build upon the Obama Administration’s efforts and will reopen the public comment period on changes to the CoC formula,” the letter says.

The letter was also signed by Representatives Sara Jacobs (CA-51), Mike Levin (CA-49), and Juan Vargas (CA-52).

Full text of the letter here.

                               Timeline of Congressman Peters’ advocacy to change the funding formula:

  • March 2013: Sent a letter to then-HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan advocating for an update to the Continuum of Care funding formula.
  • November 2013: Sent a letter with Representatives Juan Vargas and Susan Davis asking HUD to open a comment period focused on revisions to the funding formula.
  • September 2014: Sent a letter to then-HUD Secretary Julian Castro advocating for a funding formula update.
  • January 2015: Met with then-Assistant Secretary of Veterans Affairs Chris O’Connor and advocated for an update to the funding formula.
  • February 2015Call with officials from HUD and the Department of Veterans Affairs to discuss ending veteran homelessness and revising the federal funding formula
  • May 2015Met with Secretary Castro on Capitol Hill to discuss the funding formula disparity and to advocate for an update and the chance for San Diego's input on the process.
  • June 2015: Had a call with Secretary Castro to continue advocating for an update to the funding formula.
  • October 2015: During a visit to San Diego, Secretary Castro announced his intention to reopen public comment on the funding formula.
  • February 2016: Sponsored an amendment to H.R. 3700  requiring the HUD Secretary to reopen the public comment period on the Continuum of Care funding formula.
  • May 2016: Announced a commitment from Secretary Castro to reopen the public comment period on the CoC funding formula no later than June 21.
  • June 2016: Spoke with Secretary Castro about his plan to provide detailed approaches to replace the formula by mid-July.
  • July 2016: Announced that HUD was considering four options to replace the funding formula.  
  • August 2017: Sent a letter to then-Secretary Ben Carson following the change in administrations to request the status of the funding formula revision. 
  • During the Trump Administration, Rep. Peters focused on stopping cuts to housing vouchers and services for homeless veterans.