Continued Advocacy for Affordable Housing Critical as Congress Negotiates FY 2019 THUD Affordable Housing Spending Bills
House and Senate appropriators have begun writing their fiscal year (FY) 2019 spending bills. Lawmakers in both chambers hope to see affordable housing bills move to a floor vote by next month. House Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development (THUD) Chairman Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL-25) stated that his Subcommittee could mark up its FY 2019 bill soon after they return from this week’s recess.
However, House and Senate Subcommittees have not yet received their sub-allocations, so negotiations are ongoing. It is critical that THUD appropriators continue to hear from affordable housing and community development stakeholders about the importance of funding for critical programs including the HOME Program, Tenant-Based Rental Assistance, and Community Development Block Grants.
Last week the HOME Coalition sent a letter to Congress signed by more than 1,600 national, state, and local organizations urging lawmakers to restore funding for the HOME Program to at least $1.5 billion in FY 2019. Monarch Housing Associates is proud to be one of the New Jersey organizations that signed on to the letter.
And as a reminder, from May 1 to 8, communities nationwide will participate in the annual Our Homes, Our Voices National Housing Week of Action to bring attention to the severe shortage of affordable homes and urge increased investments in solutions. As part of Our Home, Our Voices, over 80 events are scheduled in 25 states and Puerto Rico.
And planning beyond the National Housing Week of Action, it is now more than ever more necessary that there are no cuts made to federal housing programs. On Wednesday July 25, 2018, advocates from New Jersey will travel to Washington DC for the annual Congressional Reception with the messages “No Cuts to Housing” and “Opportunity Starts at Home.” Cuts are hurting our communities that serve low-income families, the homeless and those with special needs.
On the morning of July 25, 2018, buses will be leaving from various locations across New Jersey and traveling to the Congressional Reception which will be held from 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. in the Dirksen Senate Auditorium. Speakers impacted by homelessness will address their elected officials in Washington who will be invited to join their constituents at the Congressional Reception.