Four housing bills were included in a sprawling highway bill passed by the House and Senate on December 3 and sent to President Barack Obama for his signature. The housing bills, each of which passed the House as stand-alone measures earlier this year, were added to the highway bill as amendments from House Financial Services Chair Jeb Hensarling (R-TX).
Chair Hensarling’s original amendment to the highway bill included five housing-related bills (see Memo, 11/9). All but one, the “Homes for Heroes Act of 2015” (H.R. 251), sponsored by Representative Al Green (D-TX), was included in the final conference report agreed to by the House and Senate.
The following bills were included in the final highway bill:
- The “Tenant Income Verification Relief Act of 2015” (H.R. 233), sponsored by Representative Ed Perlmutter (D-CO), permits HUD to allow public and assisted housing administrators to verify income once every three years instead of annually for low income tenants that have fixed incomes, such as income derived from Social Security payments.
- The “Housing Assistance Efficiency Act” (H.R. 1047), sponsored by Representative Scott Peters (D-CA), amends the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act to allow private nonprofit organizations to administer permanent housing rental assistance provided through the Continuum of Care Program.
- The “Preservation Enhancement and Savings Opportunity Act of 2015” (H.R. 2482), sponsored by Representative Erik Paulsen (R-MN), amends the Low Income Housing Preservation and Resident Homeownership Act of 1990 (LIHPRHA) to permit owners (including nonprofits) of multifamily developments subsidized by HUD through Section 8 rental assistance programs, supportive housing for the elderly, or supportive housing for people with disabilities to access income derived from such developments provided that the owners adhere to HUD’s affordability and compliance standards.
- The “Private Investment in Housing Act” (H.R. 2997), sponsored by Representative Dennis Ross (R-FL), authorizes the HUD Secretary to establish a demonstration program under which the Secretary may enter into budget-neutral, performance-based energy- and water-saving agreements with appropriate entities for up to 12 years.
The President is expected to sign the bill.