Recap of 10/23 National HoUSed Campaign Call

In the most recent (October 23) call for the national HoUSed campaign, we were joined by Sonya Acosta of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP), who shared an analysis of housing voucher renewal costs in fiscal year (FY) 2024. We heard from NLIHC’s Sarah Abdelhadi, who gave an overview of recent updates to the Rental Housing Programs Database and discussed an accompanying report with CBPP, State and Local Investments in Rental Housing. Jessica Bellamy of Louisville Tenants Union and Dr. Erin Feichtinger of Women’s Fund of Omaha provided field updates, and NLIHC’s Sarah Saadian shared policy updates.   

CBPP’s Sonya Acosta discussed a recent analysis evaluating the funding required to renew all existing Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) contracts. Based on available data, the analysis indicates that funding provided for HCV renewals in both the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate draft FY24 spending bills will come up short for renewing all existing vouchers: the House funding level would result in 40,000 fewer households served, and even the higher level of funding provided by the Senate bill would still result in the loss of 6,000 vouchers. Cost and leasing data so far this year suggest at least the full $27.84 billion provided in the President’s budget request will be required to renew all existing HCVs in FY24.

NLIHC’s Sarah Abdelhadi discussed updates to the Rental Housing Programs Database (RHPD) and an accompanying report with CBPP, State and Local Investments in Rental Housing. The RHPD is a publicly available collection of information on state and locally funded programs that create, preserve, or increase access to affordable rental housing. Created to better understand the ways state and local governments use their own financial resources to close the gap between available federal funding for rental housing and the unmet needs of renters in their communities, the RHPD helps housing advocates, state and local agencies, policymakers, and other interested parties learn about initiatives around the country that can serve as models for programs in their own communities. The accompanying report provides a comprehensive overview of rental housing programs included in the updated RHPD. As of August this year, 353 active rental housing programs had been identified – including 281 state-funded programs and 72 locally funded programs – across 48 states, the District of Columbia, and 41 of the largest U.S. cities.

Jessica Bellamy with Louisville Tenants Union discussed her organization’s Homes Guaranteed campaign, a national campaign to bring the Union’s organizing methodology and skills to other tenants and to create a national space for conversations on rent control. The group is also working on an anti-displacement ordinance, which would create protections for residents and small business owners living in areas that are vulnerable to displacement due to gentrification.

Dr. Erin Feitchtinger with Women’s Fund of Omaha recounted how Nebraska had recently accepted its second allocation of pandemic emergency rental assistance (ERA) from the U.S. Department of the Treasury (Treasury). Most state and local ERA recipients accepted the second round of funding when it was first made available in 2021, but Nebraska’s governor at the time refused to accept the funds. During the state’s 2022 legislative session, Nebraska advocates worked to introduce legislation that would require that the governor accept the second round of ERA funds from Treasury. The bill passed but was vetoed by the governor. It was then reintroduced in January 2023 and finally enacted in July. Over 2,000 applicants across 71 counties in the state have requested assistance since funds began being disbursed at the beginning of October.

NLIHC’s Sarah Saadian discussed the latest news from Capitol Hill, including the continued search (now resolved) for a new House Speaker and harmful amendments in the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development (THUD) appropriations bill. Sarah called on advocates to contact their senators and representatives to urge them to expand – not cut – investments in affordable, accessible homes through the FY24 spending bill, including opposing any harmful amendments that would further cut HUD funding, undermine fair housing and racial equity, or prevent marginalized people from accessing the resources they need.

National calls take place every other week. Our next call will be held on November 6 at 2:30 pm ET. Register for the call at: