This week, congressional leaders have been negotiating what will be included in a final omnibus fiscal year (FY) 2023 budget bill. The bill could include a pivotal piece of bipartisan disaster recovery reform legislation: the “Reforming Disaster Recovery Act” (S.2471/H.R. 4707).
The bipartisan bill is a top priority for NLIHC and its Disaster Housing Recovery Coalition (DHRC). If enacted, it would permanently authorize a key disaster recovery program that provides states and communities with the long-term resources needed to rebuild affordable housing and infrastructure after a disaster. The bill also includes important safeguards and tools to help ensure that federal disaster recovery efforts reach the lowest-income and most marginalized survivors, who are often hardest hit by disasters and who face the longest, steepest paths to recovery.
Congress needs to hear from you! If you have a Republican senator, please call them today and urge them to ask Minority Leader Mitch McConnell to include the Reforming Disaster Recovery Act in the final FY2023 budget omnibus package.
The bipartisan Reforming Disaster Recovery Act – introduced by Senators Brian Schatz (D-HI), Susan Collins (R-ME), Todd Young (R-IN), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), and Bill Cassidy (R-LA), as well as Representative Al Green (D-TX) – would formally authorize the Community Development Block Grant-Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) program to ensure these critical resources reach survivors and their communities more quickly after a disaster and are better targeted to those with the greatest needs. CDBG-DR is a vital tool that provides flexible, long-term resources needed to rebuild after a disaster and to prepare for future harm. The lack of formal authorization and congressional inaction, however, has led to unnecessary delays that harm survivors and communities. Without additional safeguards and transparency provisions laid out in the Reforming Disaster Recovery Act, recovery and mitigation efforts can be inconsistent and steer funding away from those most in need.
The 2019 version of the bill was unanimously passed out of the U.S. House of Representatives’ Committee on Financial Services and was approved by the House of Representatives through a bipartisan vote. HUD and the Government Accountability Office under the past two administrations have agreed that permanently authorizing the CDBG-DR program would vastly improve how the country’s most important long-term disaster recovery program operates.
You can access the NLIHC fact sheet for the bill here.
The support of Minority Leader McConnell is needed if the legislation is to be included in a year-end budget bill. If you have a Republican Senator, please call them today and urge them to ask Minority Leader McConnell to include the bill in the FY2023 Budget Omnibus!