Ranking Member Waters Introduces Bill to Preserve Public Housing, Protect Tenants

Representative Maxine Waters (D-CA), Ranking Member of the Committee on Financial Services, introduced the “Public Housing Tenant Protection and Reinvestment Act of 2017” on June 29. The bill seeks to preserve public housing and transform neighborhoods by authorizing full funding for public housing and providing additional funds to address the significant backlog of capital needs. The bill would require that, when public housing must be demolished or sold, the units affected would have to be replaced on a one-for-one basis, reinstating a provision that Congress eliminated in 1995. The bill also increases tenant protections to help ensure that residents who choose to may stay in their communities when public housing is redeveloped.

In a press statement, Ms. Waters said “We must renew our commitment to serving those most in need by fully funding the public housing program, implementing one-for-one replacement of each demolished public housing unit, and by providing the necessary financial tools to rehabilitate and preserve this important public asset. Despite the hostile posture of the Administration toward important housing programs, I vow to continue the fight every day for vulnerable families.” 

The bill is supported by the NLIHC, the National Alliance of HUD Tenants (NAHT), and the National Housing Law Project (NHLP):

 “NLIHC applauds Representative Waters for reintroducing this critical piece of legislation to preserve public housing, transform neighborhoods, and protect tenant rights,” said Diane Yentel, president & CEO of NLIHC. “This bill will ensure public housing continues to serve as a bridge out of poverty for millions of people. We hope Congress acts quickly to enact these protections and ensure full-funding for public housing programs that will help families facing challenges obtain adequate and affordable housing.”

The bill’s original cosponsors include Representatives Nydia Velázquez (D-NY), Stephen Lynch (D-MA), Al Green (D-TX), Gwen Moore (D-WI), Keith Ellison (D-MN), and Juan Vargas (D-CA).

Read a summary of the bill at: http://bit.ly/2tqXuJv

Review the text of the bill at: http://bit.ly/2uohutJ

Read a section-by-section analysis of the bill at: http://bit.ly/2tp2oqS

Basic information about public housing is available on page 4-8 of NLIHC’s 2017 Advocates’ Guide: http://bit.ly/2slUrTJ