Senate Appropriators Provide Modest Increases for Affordable Housing

Last week, the Senate Appropriations Committee unanimously advanced its Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development (THUD) spending bill, which would provide $44.5 billion in net discretionary funding for HUD, an increase of $1.8 billion above FY 2018 levels and $900 million above the House FY 2019 THUD bill. The Senate bill would:

  • Increase funding for Section 8 Housing Choice Vouchers to $22.8 billion, which is $800 million above FY 2018 levels and $325 million above the House bill. The Senate provides $20.5 billion for Voucher Renewals, which is the amount needed to fully renew all existing contracts.
  • Increase funding for the Public Housing Capital Fund to $2.775 billion, which is $25 million above FY 2018 levels and the House bill, as well as increase the Public Housing Operating Fund to $4.756 billion, a raise of $206 million over FY 2018 levels and the House bill.
  • Increase funding for Project-Based Rental Assistance (PBRA) to $11.747 billion, level with the House bill and $800 million above FY 2018 levels. Both the Senate and House provide funding levels that are expected to be enough to renew all existing PBRA contracts.
  • Level fund the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program at $3.3 billion, same as the House bill.
  • Level fund the HOME Investment Partnerships Program at $1.362 billion, which is $162 million above the House bill.
  • Level fund the Section 4 Capacity Building Program at $35 million, same as the House bill.
  • Level fund Section 202 Housing for the Elderly at $678 million, same as the House bill.
  • Increase funding for the Office of Lead Hazard Control and Healthy Homes to $260 million, an increase of $30 million over FY 2018 levels and the House bill.

The spending bill will now head to the full Senate for a floor vote. Congress has until the end of the fiscal year in September to either pass its spending bills or a Continuing Resolution to fund the government on a short-term basis.

The affordable housing industry applauds the bipartisan effort of the House and Senate THUD Subcommittees to address the vast and growing need for affordable housing nationwide. For more information on the Senate bill and FY 2019 appropriations, see Enterprise’s blog post.

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