Shelters plead for more money - 13abc.com Toledo (OH) News, Weather and Sports

Shelters plead for more money

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Toledo City Council has two weeks to pass a balanced budget  but homeless shelters say they need more money.

Tuesday, several emergency shelters said, without more money, the people that rely no shelters will be tossed out onto the street.

Family House is a shelter that keeps a family together during hard times.

Rhonda Fanning's husband and three kids are staying here after they were evicted from their apartment.

Rhonda told 13abc reporter Bill Hormann, "Had we not had this place to go, we'd probably be on the street, somewhere."

But now, 103 families have their own rooms– free of charge– as they work to get back on their feet.

"We have 36 rooms for 36 families at Family House."

Tuesday, at a council hearing, the executive director of Family House said the organization needs another $68,000 to maintain operations and it hopes council will fill any gap left by the federal government Community Development Block Grant losses.

Renee Palacios told councilmembers, "If there's more reduction of funds is we're going to have to shut down rooms."

Saint Paul's Community Center also needs help.

Marcia Langenderfer told council it St. Paul's may need $71,000 from the city to continue its food program, telling members, "Without food, without meals, people don't survive."

But Toledo has budget issues.  Taxpayers will pay more in assessed taxes because of this winter's snow and ice removal.  City Departments are getting cut 2 percent across the board.  And Tuesday, Local 7 got a 2.5 percent pay hike, a $235,000 expense.

But councilman Jack Ford (D) who chaired Tuesday's hearing said, if the federal government cuts back support to shelters Toledo would be pound foolish to not help.

Ford told 13abc, "If you don't find a way to meet the need you end up paying for it in another aspect in the continuum anyway."

And while Rhonda Fanning may be down she's not out.

She's studying to get a business degree.  Her husband is a longshoreman and a place like Family House gives them hope.

Rhonda says, "Without (Family House) and without their resources, we'll be stuck out there in a worse situation than we are now."

Jack Ford says a place like Family House will not get all the money it wants.   Toledo cannot afford to fill everyone's cup.  But he believes community leaders will step up and help these groups that help so many people.

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