House Committee Passes Family Self Sufficiency Act

The House Financial Services Committee unanimously passed the “Family Self Sufficiency (FSS) Act” (HR 4258) on November 14. The bill, introduced by Representatives Sean Duffy (R-WI) and Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO), permanently reauthorizes the FSS, combines the FSS programs for Housing Choice Voucher holders and those in public housing, which are currently run separately, and expands eligibility to include families in privately-owned properties subsidized with HUD project-based rental assistance. The program would also offer new services for financial literacy and educational obtainment. The bill will now be voted on by the full House of Representatives.

“Growing up in public housing, I am well aware of how important it is that we provide residents with opportunities to become independent and self-sufficient,” said Mr. Cleaver. “A program like FSS helps participants access essential supportive services - putting them on a path towards success. The program has strong support nationally and has been successful in improving outcomes in my own Congressional district.”

Since its establishment, the FSS program has enabled families living in public or project-based assisted housing or using Housing Choice Vouchers to access workforce training and other resources to pursue higher paying employment opportunities. Families enrolled in the FSS program receive an interest-bearing escrow account, allowing them to save and apply those savings to work-related purchases. The FSS program has bi-partisan and bi-cameral support. The House bill mirrors the bi-partisan Senate bill introduced by Senators Roy Blunt (R-MO) and Jack Reed (D-RI) in June 2017 (see Memo, 6/19).

Read more about the House “Family Self Sufficiency Act” at:

Read a letter from NLIHC and the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities supporting the Family Self-Sufficiency Act at: