May 22, 2019

House Appropriators Release FY 2020 Funding Levels for Key Housing Programs

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The fiscal year 2020 (FY20) appropriations process is in full swing, with the House moving swiftly in hopes of passing all 12 spending bills by the end of June. Affordable housing and community development advocates and stakeholders got their first look at two key bills today. 

The House Appropriations Subcommittees on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development (THUD) and Agriculture (Ag) both released their draft FY20 spending bills. Lawmakers overall provided strong funding levels for housing and community development priorities, again rejecting the drastic cuts proposed in the President’s budget request.

The draft THUD legislation would fund HUD at $50.1 billion in FY20 — $5.9 billion (13%) above current levels and $13.4 billion above the White House's proposal. Many vital affordable housing and community development programs saw robust increases, including HOME Investment Partnerships, Community Development Block Grants (CDBG), and the Section 4 Capacity Building Program. Tenant-Based Rental Assistance and Project Based Rental Assistance both received allocations that would likely be enough to cover all existing contract renewals.

House THUD FY 2020 Proposed Funding Levels

An in-depth breakdown of FY20 funding levels for housing and community development programs can be found on Enterprise’s updated budget chart. Some House THUD proposed funding levels include:

  • $1.75 billion for the HOME Investment Partnership Program, $500 million over FY19 enacted levels. This program was proposed for elimination in the President’s budget request.

  • $3.6 billion for Community Development Block Grants (CDBG), $300 million over FY19 levels. This program was proposed for elimination in the President’s budget request.

  • $23.81 billion for Housing Choice Vouchers, $1.21 billion over FY19 enacted levels and $1.59 billion over the President’s FY20 request.

  • $12.59 billion for Project-Based Rental Assistance, $843 million over FY19 levels and $569 million over the President’s FY20 request.

  • $40 million for the Section 4 Capacity Building for Affordable Housing and Community Development Program, $5 million over FY19 levels. This program was targeted for elimination in the President’s budget request.

The legislation also prevents the enactment of a number of harmful policy proposals put forth by the Administration, including language that would prevent HUD from implementing a proposed rule to prohibit “mixed-status” families — households whose members have different citizenship and immigration statuses — from living in public and other subsidized housing.

FY 2020 House Ag Bill 

The proposed Ag bill would also increase funding for critical USDA Rural Housing Service programs. The legislation includes a $5 million increase for Section 515 to $45 million, another program slated for elimination in the President’s budget.

The Housing Demonstration Preservation Program under the Multifamily Housing Revitalization Program account saw a large increase to $40 million, $15.5 million over FY19. Section 521 Rental Assistance (RA) would get the full $1.375 billion calculated by USDA as necessary to renew all current RA contracts, level with the President’s request and $44 million (3%) over FY19.

Next Steps to Increase Funding Levels

Both House subcommittees will mark up their bills tomorrow, May 23. The Senate has yet to schedule mark ups for their related bills. Enterprise applauds the subcommittees’ support for these critical programs, but it won’t be possible for increased funding levels like the ones proposed in House legislation to be enacted without raising the budget caps that currently require across the board cuts in FY20.

Enterprise urges lawmakers and the Administration to quickly negotiate a bipartisan deal to increase the budget caps and provide robust funding affordable housing and community development programs in FY20.

For more information on the FY20 appropriations process, subscribe to Community Developments, Enterprise’s daily email providing a quick overview of affordable housing and community development news, and Capitol Express, our more in-depth biweekly newsletter.

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