Homes for Heroes

House approves legislation 412-9!

Last Wednesday, July 9, the House passed by a vote of 412-9 H. R. 3329, also known as the Homes for Heroes Act. The bill, sponsored by Rep. Al Green (D-TX) and cosponsored by Congress members Andrews and Sires from NJ, calls for the availability of at least 20,000 rental housing vouchers annually for homeless veterans. The act also authorizes grants to nonprofit organizations that sponsor housing projects for veterans earning less than 50 percent of the area’s median income, as well as those that assist veterans in applying for HUD programs or in obtaining housing.

It would also create a position of Special Assistant for Veterans Affairs to: (1) ensure veteran access to HUD housing and homeless assistance programs; (2) coordinate all HUD programs and activities relating to veterans; and (3) serve as a HUD liaison with the Department of Veterans Affairs.

All thirteen (13) NJ Congressional Delegation voted in favor of the Homes for Heroes Act.

The legislation has been sent to the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs. The Senate version of the bill is sponsored by Democrat Barack Obama, the Illinois lawmaker who is the party’s presumptive presidential nominee. It is also sponsored by Senators Lautenberg and Menendez.

The President has threatened to veto the bill because it requires builders of veterans housing to pay employees prevailing wage.