Join us for a call this Friday, June 24, at 2 p.m. EDT, where we will discuss outreach regarding the new Cantwell-Hatch Housing Credit expansion legislation and other tax reform developments.
Friday, June 24 @ 2:00 p.m. EDT
Participant code: 677-49-533#
Cantwell-Hatch Housing Credit Expansion Legislation
The ACTION Campaign is continuing to focus on building support for Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA) and Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-UT)’s Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act of 2016 (S. 2962), introduced in May. This bill would make significant strides towards addressing our nation’s severe shortage of affordable housing by expanding the Housing Credit, while also making the program more streamlined and flexible.
We encourage ACTION Campaign members to reach out to your Senators and encourage them to co-sponsor the Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act of 2016. In the early stages of our co-sponsor outreach, it is especially important to reach out to Republican Senators.
To help make the case for this legislation, see our new talking points and bill summary, and use our state fact sheets showing the impact of the Housing Credit in every state as well as the affordable housing needs that still remain.
Senator Cantwell is also continuing to collect stories of people who have experienced homelessness or have struggled to afford housing to strengthen the case for her new legislation.
Housing Credit Expansion in the News
Senator Cantwell continues to promote her new legislation in visits to affordable housing properties throughout Washington State, with her latest stop in Vancouver, WA. “Without using tax credits, we aren’t likely to make a dent in this issue,” Cantwell said, referring to the affordable housing crisis and the need to expand the Housing Credit. “This is one of those steps we shouldn’t wait another year to take.”
An article in Mississippi Today describes the growing affordable housing shortage in Mississippi, and says that “relief may come” from the Cantwell-Hatch legislation. According to Scott Spivey, Executive Director of the Mississippi Home Corp., "For a lot of families in Mississippi, housing costs are so high that a sick child or broken arm is the difference between being able to pay or not pay bills that month.”
Two recent op-eds also call for support for the Cantwell-Hatch bill. In The Hill, Enterprise Community Partners Senior Vice President Laurel Blatchford writes that “affordable housing is the most important support families need in order to thrive, yet no state, county or city in the U.S. has enough of it,” and urges members of Congress to sign onto the Cantwell-Hatch bill. In an op-ed in the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, Timothy Wheat of Pinnacle Housing Group calls on Congress to support the Housing Credit expansion and income averaging proposals in the Cantwell-Hatch bill, contending that “the economic vitality and societal well-being of South Florida is at stake if we do not take measurable steps to address the affordable housing crisis.”
House Tax Reform Efforts
On May 24, the House Ways and Means Committee held a hearing on Moving America’s Families Forward: Setting Priorities for Reducing Poverty and Expanding Opportunity. Though the hearing did not address the Housing Credit, the ACTION Campaign provided a submission for the record urging Congress to include an expansion of the Housing Credit as part of any effort to reduce poverty and expand opportunity through our nation’s tax code.
This week, the House Tax Reform Task Force, led by Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-TX-8), will be releasing its tax reform blueprint as part of House Speaker Paul Ryan’s (R-WI-1) “A Better Way” agenda.