The U.S. Senate passed its fiscal year (FY) 2024 Transportation, Housing and Urban Development (THUD) spending bill on November 1, along with two other funding bills in a so-called “minibus” bill. The minibus passed, with broad bipartisan support, on a final vote of 82-15, and with no problematic amendments related to HUD. While the U.S. House of Representatives also planned to vote last week on a draft THUD FY24 spending bill – and several damaging HUD-related amendments – the bill stalled after opposition from House Republicans over proposed cuts to the U.S. Department of Transportation, and particularly to funding for Amtrak. Because of their narrow majority in the House, Republicans can only afford to lose a handful of votes if they hope to pass legislation without bipartisan support. House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) plans to bring the bill and its amendments to the floor this week.
House Republicans proposed significant cuts to – and even the elimination of – many HUD programs in their draft FY24 THUD spending bill. However, thanks to the hard work of advocates and our congressional champions, both the House and Senate FY24 draft bills provide increased funding for many of NLIHC’s priorities, including Housing Choice Vouchers (HCVs), native housing, and Homelessness Assistance Grants. Still, because of dramatic rent increases last year, neither bill provides sufficient resources to renew all existing HCV contracts. At the Senate’s funding levels, an estimated 6,000 vouchers would be lost upon turnover, and under the House proposal, 40,000 vouchers would be lost upon turnover.
Advocates should contact their representatives as soon as possible and urge them to support the highest level of funding possible for affordable housing and homelessness programs and to OPPOSE any harmful amendments to:
- Cut federal investments in affordable housing and homelessness, including:
- Eliminating funding for the Housing for Persons with AIDs (HOPWA) program from Rep. Davidson (R-OH)
- Cutting in half funding for Community Development Block Grants from Rep. Grothman (R-WI)
- Reducing HUD funding by $4.95 billion from Rep. Rosendale (R-MT), by 0.8% by Rep. Ogles (R-TN), or to FY19 levels from Rep. Buck (R-CO)
- Cutting funding for fair housing activities from Rep. Brecheen (R-OK)
- Cutting funding to the HUD Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity from Rep. Brecheen (R-OK)
- Prevent HUD from advancing racial equity offered by Rep. Self (R-TX) and expressing concern about HUD’s Diversity Council by Rep. Grothman
- Weaken HUD’s Equal Access rule and allow shelters to discriminate against transgender individuals experiencing homelessness from Rep. Norman (R-SC)
- Express support for drug testing HUD residents from Rep. Strong (R-AL)
- Express support for studies on “marital demographics” in assisted housing from Rep. Grothman (R-WI)
- Limit access to shelter for migrant households from Reps. Malliotakis (R-NY) and Burgess (R-TX)
Tell Congress that it cannot balance the federal budget at the expense of people with the lowest incomes!
- Contact your senators and representatives to urge them to expand – not cut – investments in affordable, accessible homes through the FY24 spending bill and to oppose any harmful amendments that would make it more difficult for people with the greatest needs to access accessible, affordable homes.
Join over 2,100 organizations by signing on to a national letter from the Campaign for Housing and Community Development Funding (CHCDF), calling on Congress to oppose budget cuts and instead to support the highest level of funding possible for affordable housing, homelessness, and community development resources in FY24