Senator Elizabeth Warren’s (D-MA) “American Housing and Economic Mobility Act” now has companion legislation in the House of Representatives, introduced by Representatives Cedric Richmond (D-LA), Gwen Moore (D-WI), Barbara Lee (D-CA), and Elijah Cummings (D-MD). The bill proposes new solutions to the ongoing affordable housing crisis in America by expanding or improving several vital programs, including a major increase in funding to the national Housing Trust Fund (HTF) to build and preserve homes for the lowest income households in America.
Among its provisions, the bill would:
- Invest $445 billion in the HTF over 10 years.
- Expand the Fair Housing Act to ban housing discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, and source of income (protecting households who depend on Housing Choice Vouchers).
- Provide $10 billion for new competitive grants to communities that remove local barriers to housing development and work toward inclusive zoning.
- Invest $2 billion in HUD’s Indian Housing Block Grants to create 200,000 new affordable homes on tribal lands.
- Expand USDA rental housing programs in rural communities by $523 million.
- Provide $25 billion to the Capital Magnet Fund to further investment through Community Development Financial Institutions.
- Assist homeowners who lost significant wealth because of the financial crisis of the Great Recession by providing $2 billion for households underwater on their mortgages.
“The American Housing and Economic Mobility Act is a comprehensive bill aimed to combat the affordable housing crisis that continues to plague our nation. Having stable, affordable housing is life-changing and brings the promise of economic freedom to all,” said Representative Richmond. “This legislation aims to provide that for millions of American families, namely African American communities who have been historically and systematically left without stable housing. I applaud the work of Senator Warren on introducing this bill in the Senate and am honored to carry the torch in introducing it in the House.”
Senator Warren, who introduced the “American Housing and Economic Mobility Act” in the Senate in September (see Memo 10/1) stated, “I’m excited to fight alongside Representatives Richmond, Lee, Cummings, and Moore for bold new legislation that confronts the shameful history of government-backed housing discrimination and is designed to benefit those families who have been denied opportunities to build wealth because of the color of their skin.”
NLIHC enthusiastically supports this bold bill, applauding its major new investments in the HTF. NLIHC’s report Getting Started shows how the HTF is being used by states to build, rehabilitate and preserve homes for extremely low-income households with incomes at or less than 30% of area median or less than the federal poverty line. More than 1,880 organizations nationwide have signed on to a letter calling on Congress to expand the HTF. Join these efforts and endorse the National Housing Trust Fund campaign today!
A video of the press conference announcing the legislation, at which NLIHC President and CEO Diane Yentel gave remarks, is viewable on Senator Warren’s Facebook page.
For more information on the “American Housing and Economic Mobility Act,” see NLIHC’s fact sheet at: https://bit.ly/2N0Aibg
View NLIHC’s press statement on the introduction of the House companion to the “American Housing and Economic Mobility Act” here.
Read the House version of the legislation at: http://bit.ly/2QQjuJV
Read the Senate version of the legislation at: https://bit.ly/2Qb4vGt
Read a press release from Senator Warren on the introduction of the bill at: http://bit.ly/2SHEpMI
Read a press release from Representative Richmond on the introduction of the bill at: http://bit.ly/2SGrLgT