On June 10, Representative Barbara Lee (D-CA) introduced H.R. 2721, the “Pathways Out of Poverty Act of 2015,” a comprehensive anti-poverty bill that includes major initiatives on housing, education, nutrition, jobs, and tax credits. Ms. Lee introduced a similar measure last Congress.
Ms. Lee’s bill includes the Common Sense Housing Investment Act, H.R. 1662, which was introduced by Representative Keith Ellison (D-MN) in March (see Memo, 3/31). Both bills would fund the National Housing Trust Fund (NHTF) from revenues created by modifications to the mortgage interest deduction. Mr. Ellison’s bill and H.R. 2721 would convert the mortgage interest deduction into a mortgage interest tax credit, and the bills would reduce the value of mortgages for which taxpayers paying mortgage interest can receive the tax credit from $1 million to $500,000. These modifications would generate more than $230 billion over ten years. Both measures would direct 60% of these monies into the NHTF, with the rest to the Public Housing Capital Fund, Section 8, and Low Income Housing Tax Credit programs.
H.R. 2721 has 41 original cosponsors. Because of its broad nature, the bill has been referred to ten House committees, including the House Financial Services Committee, which has oversight of housing policy issues, and the House Ways and Means Committee, which has jurisdiction over tax policy.
The text of H.R. 2721 is at https://www.congress.gov/114/bills/hr2721/BILLS-114hr2721ih.pdf
More information about H.R. 1662 is at http://nlihc.org/unitedforhomes/legislation.
More information about mortgage interest deduction reform is at http://nlihc.org/unitedforhomes