The NLIHC-led Disaster Housing Recovery Coalition of more than 700 organizations provided a comprehensive set of policy recommendations that advocates can use with state governors to ensure that Community Development Block Grant–Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) Action Plans provide a fair and equitable recovery. These recommendations draw from those the DHRC submitted to Congress, FEMA, and HUD in September 2017 in the aftermath of the devastating hurricanes and wildfires, and they reflect steps state governments can take to ensure that disaster recovery resources reach all impacted households, including those with the lowest incomes who are often the hardest-hit by disasters and have the fewest resources to recover afterwards.
A separate set of recommendations specific to the Puerto Rico CBGB-DR Action Plan was submitted to HUD in written testimony by NLIHC President and CEO Diane Yentel, on behalf of the DHCR, in response to a week-long series of public information sessions held on the island. These recommendations highlight the unique challenges in Puerto Rico, including the large number of homeowners without clear title, the need for alternative methods to accept public input, and the widespread and high rates of poverty, particularly in rural and mountainous regions.
All of the recommendations emphasize the need for deploying recovery funding to ensure all households – including homeowners, renters, and people experiencing homelessness – receive the housing assistance they need to get back on their feet, providing investments in public infrastructure and environmental remediation to meet the needs of low income people and communities, and adopting transparent data collection and reporting standards.