Appropriations leaders in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate announced on December 15 that they had reached a deal on a fiscal year (FY) 2023 spending package. The news comes on the heels of Congress enacting another continuing resolution (CR) to extend the appropriations deadline to December 23.
With a deal reached, appropriations staff are working to finalize and release legislative text for the spending bill today (December 19). NLIHC will continue to monitor the latest updates and provide an analysis of the housing and homelessness provisions in the omnibus spending package as soon as it is available.
After months of negotiations and weeks of stalemate, Senate Appropriations Chair Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Ranking Member Richard Shelby (R-AL), and House Appropriations Chair Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) announced on December 15 that they had reached a bipartisan, bicameral deal on an FY23 spending package. House Appropriations Ranking Member Kay Granger (R-TX) was absent from the talks, given House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy’s (R-CA) objection to enacting an FY23 spending bill this year.
Much of the recent stalemate was rooted in disagreements over how much to provide for non-defense discretionary (NDD) programs, which include HUD’s and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) vital affordable housing, homelessness, and community development programs. Democrats were seeking equal increases in both defense and NDD spending, which would mean a roughly 10% increase to NDD programs over FY22 enacted levels, while Republicans wanted less funding for NDD spending, pointing to the existence of funding from the COVID-19 relief bills, bipartisan infrastructure package, and “Inflation Reduction Act” as evidence that additional NDD spending is not needed.
With an agreement reached, appropriators are expected to release the legislative text of the FY23 omnibus as soon as today (December 19). The bill will then need to pass the Senate with at least 60 votes before moving on to a vote in the House, where only a simple majority will be needed to send the bill to President Biden’s desk for his signature.
NLIHC will continue to monitor progress on the FY23 spending package and will provide an analysis of the housing provisions in the bill as soon as the bill text is available.
While progress has been made towards enacting an omnibus spending package, hopes that Congress will also be able to pass a tax extenders package by the end of the year are fading. With a number of tax provisions up for extension at the end of this year, a tax extenders package represents the best opportunity currently available to expand and make needed legislative changes to the LIHTC program.
NLIHC is urging policymakers to use the tax legislation to expand and reform the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) to better serve extremely low-income (ELI) households, who have the most acute and urgent affordable housing needs. NLIHC has released a fact sheet and call-to-action tool (see Memo, 10/31) focused on LIHTC reforms and is urging advocates to ask their members of Congress to include these reforms in an end-of-year tax extenders package.
Use NLIHC’s Take Action page to call or send an email to your members of Congress and urge them to pass an FY23 spending package with the highest possible level of funding for HUD’s and USDA’s affordable housing and homelessness programs, including significant funding for NLIHC’s top priorities:
- Full funding for the Tenant-Based Rental Assistance (TBRA) program to renew all existing contracts and expand housing vouchers to an additional 140,000 households.
- $5 billion for the Public Housing Capital Fund to preserve public housing, and $5.04 billion for the Public Housing Operating Fund.
- $3.6 billion for HUD’s Homeless Assistance Grants program to address the needs of people experiencing homelessness.
- $100 million for legal assistance to prevent evictions.
- $300 million for the competitive tribal housing program, targeted to tribes with the greatest needs.
Advocates should also contact their members of Congress and urge them to use the end-of-year tax extenders legislation to expand and reform the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) to better serve extremely low-income (ELI) households.
LIHTC is the primary funding source for financing the construction and preservation of affordable housing. While an important resource, LIHTC on its own is generally insufficient to support the construction and preservation of homes affordable to households with the lowest incomes. NLIHC is urging Congress to include the following LIHTC reforms in any tax extenders package:
- Expand the ELI basis boost to 50% for housing developments when at least 20% of units are set aside for households with extremely low incomes or people experiencing homelessness. This provision is included in the bipartisan “Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act.”
- Set aside 8% of tax credits to help offset the cost to build ELI developments where at least 20% of units are reserved for households with extremely low incomes or those experiencing homelessness.
- Designate tribal and rural communities as “Difficult to Develop Areas (DDAs)” to make them automatically eligible for a 30% basis boost and make it more financially feasible for developers to build affordable homes in these communities. These provisions are also included in the bipartisan “Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act.”
Learn more about the range of needed changes to LIHTC at: bit.ly/3fto1R1
Read the fact sheet on reforms needed for ELI households at: bit.ly/3gDnV9o
Contact your members of Congress about LIHTC reforms at: p2a.co/4qstqc5