The New Jersey Legislature has passed a $50.6 billion budget for fiscal year (FY) 2023 providing an unprecedented level of investment in ensuring housing affordability. Among other provisions, the budget preserves full funding for New Jersey’s Affordable Housing Trust Fund, further expands funding for affordable housing production, creates a new child tax credit for low-income families, and provides additional tax relief for low- and moderate-income renters to help offset the costs of rent increases. The budget includes an allocation of $2.3 billion in federal “American Rescue Plan Act” (ARPA) funds. New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy signed the budget into law on June 30, and it took effect on July 1.
The budget invests $100 million in the Affordable Housing Trust Fund and $15 million in funding the Neighborhood Revitalization Tax Credit program. Ensuring funding for these programs was the statewide priority of the HouseNJ campaign launched earlier this year by the Housing & Community Development Network of New Jersey (HCDDNJ), an NLIHC state partner (see Memo, 2/28). The HouseNJ campaign urges lawmakers at the state and federal levels to ensure housing security and stability for all New Jersey residents by investing in transformative housing resources, in part by drawing on New Jersey’s allocation of ARPA funds.
“The FY2023 state budget is historic, providing the highest level of investment for housing affordability, security, and stability ever in our state,” said Staci Berger, president and CEO of HCDNNJ. “Housing affordability has long been a problem for our residents, and the pandemic has exacerbated this crisis. We applaud Governor Murphy, Lieutenant Governor Oliver, Senate President Scutari, Speaker Coughlin, and the members of the Legislature for passing a budget that includes transformational, once-in-a-lifetime investments to address housing scarcity.”
In addition to investing in these priorities, the FY2023 budget will dedicate $305 million to creating more than 3,000 new affordable homes across 43 developments statewide through the new Affordable Housing Production Fund. The budget allocates $2 billion for the Affordable New Jersey Communities for Homeowners and Renters (ANCHOR) – Property Tax Relief Program. ANCHOR is expected to provide new relief for more than 900,000 renters with incomes up to $150,000, who will receive $450 each year to help offset rent increases caused by increasing property taxes. The budget also creates a new Child Tax Credit (CTC) for families making up to $80,000 a year. The credit is inclusive of taxpayers without Social Security numbers who use individual tax identification numbers. The refundable CTC will provide a maximum of $500 annually per child under the age of six for taxpayers making $30,000 or less, with rates adjusting for household incomes up to $80,000. Another $170 million will be used to remediate lead paint hazards in homes and apartments across the state.
For more information about the HouseNJ campaign and the advocacy that led to these investments in affordable housing, please contact Nina Rainiero, director of communications for the Housing & Community Development Network of New Jersey, at [email protected].