Call Your Representative TODAY to Oppose the Bill’s Treatment of the National Housing Trust Fund in the House Appropriations
The proposed FY16 appropriations bill for HUD passed today by the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies (THUD) would eviscerate the National Housing Trust Fund. The bill:
- Transfers all funding that is supposed to go to the National Housing Trust Fund (NHTF) into the HOME program.
- Forbids Congress to put any other funding into NHTF.
The House Appropriations Committee press release on the proposed THUD bill states that the bill will provide level funding of $900 million for the HOME program, but fails to mention that it would do so only by raiding the NHTF.
The House Appropriations Committee will consider the THUD bill when they reconvene after their recess next week. Please reach out to your Representative before May 12 and urge him or her to oppose the bill’s treatment of the NHTF.
When you contact your Representative, share with him or her that:
- The NHTF is the only federal program that provides new money specifically to expand the supply of rental housing that is affordable for extremely low income (ELI) households. Nationwide, there is a shortage of 7.1 million rental housing units that are available and affordable for ELI families. In most of the country, ELI is less than the federal poverty level. The shortage of rental housing that extremely low income households can afford is the reason so many people are homeless in the United States.
- The funding for the NHTF is a dedicated source of revenue on the mandatory side of the federal budget, and as such, is not subject to annual appropriations. Funding for the NHTF is based on an assessment of 4.2 basis points of the annual volume of business of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. This is a reliable, predictable stream of funding that is supposed to be separate from HUD appropriations. It is not subject to sequestration.
As an appropriated program, HOME has suffered deep cuts in recent years, including cuts dictated by sequestration. Its FY15 appropriation of $900 million is less than half of the FY10 appropriation. The Appropriations Committee should not be managing the sequester cuts to HUD programs by raiding mandatory funds that have a dedicated purpose.
- Neither program is funded anywhere near what is required to address the unmet housing need.
HOW YOU CAN TAKE ACTION
If your Representative sits on the Appropriations Committee, tell him or her to oppose the THUD Appropriations bill’s treatment of the NHTF. Urge your Representative to remove all references to the National Housing Trust Fund when the bill is marked up in full committee after next week’s recess.
To find out if your Representative sits on the Appropriations Committee, visit http://appropriations.house.gov/about/members/.
To find contact information for your Representative, call the Congressional switchboard at 877-210-5351, or visit NLIHC's website and enter your zip code on the right side.