GHURA set to weather uncertainties - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

GHURA set to weather uncertainties

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by Jolene Toves

Guam - The partial government shut down has agencies dependent on federal funding thrown for a loop. One agency that is hoping to keep afloat is the GHURA. While the world watched as the United States' government agencies shut down on October 1, it begged the question how the Guam Housing and Urban Renewal and its participants would be affected.

GHURA director Michael Duenas told KUAM News, "In terms of the overall 2014 budget at this point we are able to weather a lot of uncertainties for the next month or two. Our Public Housing Program has some reserves that can carry us through not indefinitely but hopefully to the end of the impasse."

Duenas says community planning and development programs which include the Community Development Block Grant and the Home Investment Partnership Block Grant as well as a little over $1 million of funding for the homeless grants were included in the previous year's appropriation.  "So here we are in Fiscal Year 2014 the funding for those grants that I cited earlier are coming out of the Fiscal Year 2013 period so we will be okay in terms of the impasse for now," Duenas said.

While as of now GHURA can keep afloat amid the U.S. Government shutdown Duenas says it also depends on how it affects the operations of the federal government. He said, "If they are not able to maintain the systems that process the payments for the grantees then yes we will see an impasse there as well."

The worst-case scenario, he said, "Basically we probably be seeing that GHURA will eventually have to start implementing its furlough policy that is again the worst case scenario if the impasse continues beyond a month."

GHURA is monitoring the situation and will let the community know of any hiccups to be expected as a result. 

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