NLIHC and the Campaign for Housing and Community Development Funding (CHCDF) sent a letter on October 14 to Congressional appropriations leaders, urging them to provide the highest possible funding for HUD’s and USDA’s affordable housing, homelessness, and community development programs. The letter was signed by 1,800 national, state, and local organizations from across the country.
Congressional leaders left Capitol Hill and will likely not be back until after the November elections, but Congressional and appropriations staff will continue discussions over a final fiscal year (FY) 2023 spending bill throughout the month of October. Congress will need to enact a final spending bill by December 16, pass another continuing resolution (CR), or risk a government shutdown. Because CRs maintain the previous year’s appropriated level of funding – and because the costs of housing and development programs rise every year – long-term CRs and government shutdowns have serious consequences for affordable housing, homelessness, and community development programs. Increased funding is needed from year to year to maintain the number of people being served by these vital programs.
The FY2023 spending bill represents the last opportunity this year for Congress to make robust investments in affordable housing and homelessness programs. Lawmakers must not pass up the chance to provide the significant funding needed to ensure the nation is moving towards safe, affordable, and accessible housing for all.
Advocates should contact their members of Congress and demand the highest possible level of funding for affordable housing and homelessness in FY2023, 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.
Additionally, Congress is expected to enact a tax extenders package before the end of the year. Many tax provisions are only authorized for a set number of years, forcing Congress to periodically reevaluate and decide whether to extend expiring tax provisions. With a number of tax provisions up for extension at the end of the year, the tax extenders package represents an opportunity to make needed legislative changes to the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) program so that it better serves households with the lowest incomes. NLIHC is urging Congress to include the following LIHTC reforms in any tax extenders package:
- Provide incentives to serve extremely low-income households and people experiencing homelessness, as well as reforms to encourage affordable housing development in tribal nations and rural areas so that LIHTC better serves communities with the greatest affordable housing needs.
- Eliminate the “Qualified Contract” loophole, ensure data transparency, and clarify and strengthen nonprofits’ right of first refusal to ensure long-term affordability.
- Extend vital renter protections to tenants living in LIHTC properties.
Learn more about key reforms needed to ensure LIHTC is serving households with the lowest incomes here.
In addition to pushing Congress for robust funding for affordable housing and homelessness programs in FY2023, advocates should continue contacting their members of Congress to urge them to include these provisions in any tax extender package moving forward. Use NLIHC’s Fall and Winter 2022 Advocacy Toolkit to help create your message to Congress, and visit our Take Action page for more ways to get involved!