The Consolidated Appropriations Act approved last week held some positive signs for affordable housing advocates, as it preserved key federal housing money and grant programs. The bill included level funding for the Community Development Block Grants at $3 billion and the Home Investment Partnerships Program at $950 million, according to Vernon Patch. The bill also increased funding for homelessness assistance.
Despite the Trump administration’s directives to cut funding for domestic priorities … Republicans joined with Democrats in rejecting those harmful cuts. There is little doubt that many of the domestic priorities that Americans rely on will come under attack again during future budget negations with the White House, but I hope the bipartisan framework passed in the House today can serve as a model as we begin to get a very late start on the 2018 budget,” said Representative Joe Courtney of Connecticut’s second district.
The bill appropriated $38.8 billion for the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), according to the House of Representatives Appropriations Committee summary. Here are specifics about Federal housing money from that summary:
Section 8 and Public Housing – Included in the bill is $27.5 billion for Public and Indian Housing. This is an increase of $623 million above the fiscal year 2016 enacted level and $760 million below the requested level. This level will continue assistance to 2.2 million low-income households.
Office of Housing – Other housing programs are funded at $11.5 billion – an increase of $259 million above the fiscal year 2016 enacted level. The bulk of this increase is needed to continue assistance to those currently served by these programs. Project-Based Rental Assistance is funded at $10.8 billion; Housing for the Elderly is provided with $502 million; and Housing for Persons with Disabilities receives $146 million.
Administrative Payments to Public Housing Agencies –This is trimmed by $427 million below the Obama administration’s request for FY 2017. It also includes a provision prohibiting HUD from guaranteeing mortgages seized by eminent domain.
Community Planning and Development – The bill contains $6.8 billion for Community Planning and Development programs – $152 million above the fiscal year 2016 enacted level.
Community Development Block Grants – Funded at $3 billion.
HOME Investment Partnerships Program – Funded at $950 million.
Grants for Homeless Assistance – Funded at $2.4 billion, an increase of $133 million over current level.