Two bills introduced in the House during the 114th Congress include the United for Homes Proposal: H.R. 1662 the Common Sense Housing Investment Act and H.R. 2721 the Pathways Out of Poverty Act.
H.R. 1662 the Common Sense Housing Investment Act
Representative Keith Ellison (D-MN) introduced H.R. 1662, the Common Sense Housing Investment Act of 2015 on March 26, 2015. The bill:
- Lowers the cap on the amount of a mortgage for which interest can be deducted from $1 million to $500,000, and allows home equity loans and second homes under the $500,000 cap.
- Converts the mortgage interest deduction to a 15% non-refundable mortgage interest tax credit.
- Phases these changes in over five years.
- Directs the resulting revenue of approximately $196 billion over ten years to the National Housing Trust Fund ($109 billion), the LIHTC ($14 billion), Section 8 ($54 billion), and the Public Housing Capital Fund ($18 billion).
H.R. 1662 currently has six co-sponsors:
- Rep. John Conyers (D-MI)
- Rep. Donna Edwards (D-MD)
- Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA)
- Rep. Bobby Rush (D-IL)
- Rep. Bobby Scott (D-VA)
- Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-FL)
H.R. 2721 the Pathways Out of Poverty Act of 2015
Barbara Lee (D-CA) introduced H.R. 2721, the Pathways Out of Poverty Act of 2015 on June 10, 2015. The comprehensive anti-poverty bill includes H.R. 1662, the Common Sense Housing Investment Act, along with expanded primary education, criminal justice reform, renters tax credits, expansion of the TANF program, and other elements.
How to Support these Bills
Encourage your Representative to co-sponsor the bill. Contact your representative and tell the staffer whom you speak to that you want your Representative to co-sponsor H.R. 1662 and H.R. 2721 so that everyone can access decent, affordable housing.
Alert other housing advocates in your state to the need for co-sponsors. Send an email alert to your network urging them to ask their Representatives to co-sponsor the bill as well.
Advocate in person. Include talking points on this legislation and the United for Homes campaign in your lobby visits and conversations with Representatives and their staffs during Congressional recess or when you're in Washington, D.C.