ERIC Number: ED246171
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1983-May-10
Reference Count: N/A
Block Grants and Their Civil Rights Implications, Series (B)--Background.
McKay, Emily; Schroyer-Portillo, Janet
Federal block grants, in contrast to categorical programs and revenue sharing, allow states and localities considerable flexibility in meeting needs within broad functional areas; but, they are also designed to assure that funds are spent to pursue national objectives. Before 1981, block grants included varying levels of recipient accountability requirements. These requirements tended to increase over time. Then, in 1981, Congress approved nine new block grants. These incorporated all but one of the five block grants that were already existing. The new block grants were narrower than grants proposed by President Reagan, but they reduced the number of programs and funding levels by as much as 34 percent. Since 1982, the Reagan Administration has made further proposals to consolidate the grants and to reduce federal intervention; Congress hasn't yet (as of 10 May 1983) considered these proposals. Critics worry about negative effects of the new block grants, especially problems of targeting, non-discrimination, and meeting the needs of low-income persons and others requiring special services. Opponents also fear that, with less federal oversight, state and local governments will not be as inclined to pursue civil rights. Although all the recent block grants include some civil rights provisions, none provides the assurance of the narrower categorical programs. (KH)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: National Council of La Raza, Washington, DC.