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BALTIMORE, MD - MAY 07: Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake (L) and U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD) (R) sign a poster during a news conference in front of the burned CVS in the Sandtown neighborhood May 7, 2015 in Baltimore, Maryland. Community leaders joined the mayor to kick off the One Baltimore campaign, a public-private initiative to support efforts to rebuild communities and neighborhoods after the riot that was caused by the death of Freddie Gray. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images) ORG XMIT: 553072105
BALTIMORE, MD - MAY 07: Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake (L) and U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD) (R) sign a poster during a news conference in front of the burned CVS in the Sandtown neighborhood May 7, 2015 in Baltimore, Maryland. Community leaders joined the mayor to kick off the One Baltimore campaign, a public-private initiative to support efforts to rebuild communities and neighborhoods after the riot that was caused by the death of Freddie Gray. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images) ORG XMIT: 553072105 (Alex Wong / Getty Images)

WASHINGTON -- Rep. Elijah E. Cummings and Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski introduced an emergency spending bill that would direct $1.2 billion in funding to address challenges faced by inner-city neighborhoods, an effort to reverse what they described as decades of disinvestment.

The legislation, announced on Thursday, has no chance of passing in the current Congress -- which is struggling to address regular annual funding bills to keep the government running, let alone a supplemental spending bill. The measure is an effort by the two Democrats to lay down a marker on what they think is needed.

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Though the announcement from the lawmakers makes no mention of the Baltimore riots this year, the bill is clearly a response to underlying social and economic disparities that were brought to the fore at the time.

"The people who live in our most distressed neighborhoods deserve a government on their side," Mikulski, the top-ranking Democrat on the Senate Appropriations  Committee, said in a statement.

The bill would increase the Community Development Block Grant program by $500 million. Democrats say the program is vital to revitalizing city neighborhoods. Conservative Republicans have long targeted the program over concerns that the money is spent indiscriminately.

The legislation also includes $265 million for workforce training programs, and $30 million to eliminate lead paint often found in older city homes.

"Deep, systemic, and pervasive economic challenges unnecessarily limit the lives of too many inner-city residents in this nation," Cummings, the top Democrat on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, said.

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