The strong Senate HUD appropriations bill is the direct result of the efforts by housing advocates across the nation and congressional champions Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) and Jack Reed (D-RI).
Overall, the bill provides HUD programs with more than $12 billion above the president’s FY19 request and more than $1 billion above the House bill. The Senate Committee clearly rejected the calls to drastically cut housing investments – in the form of funding cuts, harmful rent increases, rigid work requirements, and de-facto time limits – proposed by the White House and members of Congress.
Funding to renew all existing rental assistance contracts and increased funding for about $22, $22.8 billion for voucher funding including funding for 7,600 new vouchers for veterans and youth aging out of the foster care system
$1.36 billion for the HOME Investment Partnership program
$3.37 billion for Community Development Block Grants (CDBG)
According to U.S. Senator Susan Collins (R-Maine), “This bipartisan bill is the product of considerable negotiation and compromise. I worked closely with Ranking Member Reed in drafting this bill, and we received input from 70 Senators with more than 800 requests, all of which we carefully evaluated.”
She is the chairman of the Senate THUD Subcommittee.
More specifically, Collins claims, “The funding in this legislation will allow us to invest in our nation’s infrastructure, while fully funding the renewal of housing assistance for low-income seniors and other vulnerable populations, such as teenagers and veterans who are homeless.”
While these funding levels in the Senate Appropriations bill are very encouraging, now is the time to continue to advocate that Congress enact the increased funding levels to help end homelessness and create much needed new affordable housing. If you are passionate about influencing funding levels and public policy change, you should attend our 2018 Congressional Reception.
On July 25th, a Congressional Reception will be held at the Dirksen Senate Auditorium in Washington D.C. This event will allow New Jersey Residents who are working poor, below the poverty line and or impacted by homelessness to urge their elected officials in Washington to make No Cuts to Housing and remind them that Opportunity Starts at Home.