Rep. Kweisi Mfume (D-Md.-07) recently introduced the “Witness Security and Protection Grant Program Act of 2023,” which, if passed, would provide local and state governments $30 million a year for five years, to help reinforce witness protection services for witnesses’ of homicides, felonies, serious drug charges, gang crimes or organized crimes. (Photo Courtesy of Twitter/Kweisi Mfume)

By Office of Congressman Kweisi Mfume

WASHINGTON, DC – Congressman Kweisi Mfume (MD-07) voted to secure more than $23,965,000 in Community Project Funding for Maryland’s 7th Congressional District in the final 2023 appropriations government funding package today. A listing of each project is found below. The legislation now heads to the President’s desk to be signed into law.

Under rules established by the U.S. House of Representatives and its Appropriations Committee, each House member may request funding for a limited number of community projects for the fiscal year. For the last year, Congressman Mfume successfully fought to ensure all his submitted projects received momentous federal investment from the U.S. House and worked with Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen to bolster their support for the legislative initiatives in the U.S. Senate.

“My work throughout the past year on this substantial Community Project Funding has been a critical priority for me because real dollars that will go directly to organizations deserving of federal backing for the work they do each and every day in our communities were at stake,” said Congressman Mfume.

“The high volume of competitive applications I received for the fiscal year 2022 funding made it difficult to narrow down all the applications my Office received for 2023 funding. Rest assured that the organizations receiving this game-changing funding through my efforts are ready to build on the profound successes they have already demonstrated. I look forward to seeing these organizations leverage the federal investments for the benefit of our neighbors,” he concluded.

Congressman Mfume championed funding for all 15 projects he submitted this year. The deserving organizations work tirelessly on the ground in Maryland’s 7th Congressional District, and their work encompasses a range of services from job training to housing assistance and veterans assistance. The projects receiving the fiscal year 2023 round of funding follows.

  • Arena Playhouse Capital Improvement Project
    $4,000,000 to support Arena Players Incorporated Capital Campaign which will renovate the organization’s current three-story theatre and office building.
  • National Great Blacks In Wax Museum, Inc.
    $2,008,580 for facility upgrades and capital renovations.
  • Maryland Center for Veterans Education and Training (MCVET)
    $3,000,000 to upgrade facilities.
  • East Baltimore Development, Inc. (EBDI)
    $2,300,000 to repair and upgrade public roadways, update lighting and storm drainage, and support the creation of a much-needed grocery store in an East Baltimore food desert.
  • Afro Charities – Historic Upton Mansion
    $2,000,000 to renovate the Historic Upton Mansion in West Baltimore which will house the AFRO American Newspapers archive, and the Afro Charities community outreach headquarters.
  • Morning Star Baptist Church Five Star Program
    $2,300,000 to create a vibrant multi-use community space, known as “The Star Community Family Life Center.”
  • Park West Health System Capital Expansion Project for Integrated Behavioral Health
    $1,000,000 to integrate new behavioral health programming and to physically expand and renovate the Park West Belvedere location of the Park West Health System.
  • Center for Urban Families
    $750,000 to provide Baltimore residents, many of whom are returning citizens, with job readiness programming and support.
  • Druid Heights Maggie Quille Center
    $1,500,000 to the Druid Heights Community Development Corporation to assist with the total renovation of the Druid Heights Maggie Quille Center and increase the services and programs within the Druid Heights community.
  • Sanaa Center Arts Project – Pennsylvania Avenue
    $750,000 to fund the construction of the Sanaa Center, a stand-alone building with offices, art-making spaces, indoor and outdoor performance spaces, and art incubation services. 
  • Juanita Jackson Mitchell Legal Center
    $1,750,000 to restore Juanita Jackson Mitchell’s office and create the Juanita Jackson Mitchell Legal Center, which will provide office space for legal and social services to victims of domestic violence from the Rebuild, Overcome, and Rise (ROAR) program.
  • Permanent Housing on East Baltimore Street
    $750,000 to the Helping Up Mission to create affordable permanent housing for formerly incarcerated individuals seeking to re-enter society as contributing members.
  • CASA – Baltimore Center Workforce Development
    $573,045 to support the creation of a Baltimore Center for Workforce Development to prepare adults for the job hiring process and provide life skills training to support workers in their job search.
  • Green & Healthy Homes Baltimore Initiative
    $750,000 to renovate 75 homes in Baltimore City to improve energy efficiency and health outcomes.
  • Gwynns Falls Mighty Park
    $535,000 to transform 6 contiguous vacant lots into a vibrant community park in the Gwynns Falls area of Southwest Baltimore.

For full descriptions of these projects, please visit Congressman Mfume’s congressional website here.

Community Project Funding – Additional Information

  • Projects are restricted to a limited number of federal funding streams, and only state and local governments and eligible non-profit entities are permitted to receive funding.
  • Additional information on the reforms governing Community Project Funding is available here.
  • Project funding was included in the final 2023 appropriations government funding package. A detailed summary of this package is available here.

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