Congressional leaders are negotiating the final Build Back Better plan, likely looking to shrink the overall plan to meet demands of moderate members of Congress. The current plan includes $330 billion for affordable housing but leaders are reportedly considering eliminating this housing funding.
We asked all of our partner organizations and elected officials to please sign on to this letter to the New York Congressional delegation calling on them to preserve the $330 billion in housing funding, including funding for rental assistance, public housing and expanding affordable rental and homeownership housing supply. The deadline to add your organization was Thursday, Oct. 7, 2021 at 1 p.m. We sent the letter with more than 150 partners signed on. See the text of the letter with all of the signatories below and the final version sent to the NY Delegation here.
Dear Majority Leader Schumer and Members of the New York Congressional Delegation,
The New York Housing Conference and the undersigned organizations ask you to ensure that $330 billion in HUD funding for affordable housing and expansion of the Low Income Housing Tax Credit remains in the final Build Back Better reconciliation package.
New York and the nation as a whole are experiencing a housing and homelessness crisis, and the funding currently in the bill mark the first time in decades we have a plan even approaching the scale of the need. It is an opportunity to meaningfully address a crisis in which 90,000 New Yorkers are homeless on a given night and the majority of low-income households pay more than half their income in rent – and we cannot afford to miss it.
The funding includes $90 billion for rental assistance, which would bring 70,000 new vouchers to New York. This would provide housing stability to tens of thousands of households in New York that are currently struggling. NYHC research found that new voucher holders would be predominantly Black and Hispanic and the program would assist single female-headed households and those with children.
The bill also includes $80 billion for public housing, which could address virtually all of New York City Housing Authority’s $40 billion in capital needs. As you know, NYCHA residents are currently living with health hazards including mold, lead paint, and lack of heat in the winter and this funding could finally fix those conditions. It is not clear when we will have another chance to provide NYCHA residents with the dignity they deserve.
Lastly, the current bill provides necessary funding to increase affordable housing supply, through HUD programs and the Low Income Tax Credit. This includes $37 billion for the Housing Trust Fund, $35 billion in Home funding and funding for other HUD programs. Changes to the Low Income Housing Credit, our nation’s most important housing financing program, include lowering the 50% test for 4% LIHTC, a critical policy change that will unleash housing supply. This coupled a 50% expansion of the 9% Low Income Housing Tax Credit and other provisions would produce over 82,000 units of housing over the next decade in New York state.
New York has a deficit of almost 650,000 affordable and available rental units and this funding would help reverse this desperate situation. There are also new homeownership tools that would help New York address racial disparities in homeownership and wealth and strengthen communities.
We are at a critical moment. If we do not implement the housing funding in the bill, we may not get another chance – and America’s housing crisis will likely become too big to solve before that chance arises. We are asking you to protect this vital funding so we can finally have the resources to fight this crisis.
New York Housing Conference
Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer
New York State Assemblymember Steven Cymbrowitz
New York State Assemblymember Linda Rosenthal
New York City Councilmember Robert Cornegy, Jr.
New York City Councilmember Brad Lander
New York City Councilmember Stephen Levin
New York City Councilmember Farah Louis
All Souls Unitarian Church NYC Peace & Justice Task Force
Ascendant Neighborhood Development Corporation
Association for Community Living
Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corp
Benchmark Title Agency
The Bridge, Inc.
Brooklyn Community Services
Bronx Pro Group
Care For the Homeless
Catholic Charities Progress of Peoples Development Corporation
Center for NYC Neighborhoods
Center for Urban Community Services
Central Nassau Guidance
Children’s Rescue Fund
Church of St. Paul and St. Andrew
Citizen Action of New York
Citizens’ Committee for Children
Citizens Housing & Planning Council
City Construction Partners
Citywide Council of Presidents Inc
The Coalition for Community Advancement: Progress for East New York
Coalition for the Homeless
Concern for Independent Living
The Community Builders, Inc
Community Access, Inc.
Community League of the Heights. Inc
Community Preservation Corporation
Community Service Society of New York
Community Voices Heard
Corporation for Supportive Housing (CSH)
Cypress Hills Local Development Corporation
Da Homeless Hero
DC 37 Municipal Employees Legal Services
Designing the We
The Dorothy Day Guild
Emergency Shelter Network
Enterprise Community Partners
Fifth Avenues Committee
Forsyth Street Affordable Housing
Gateway Hudson Valley
Geto & de Milly, Inc.
Good Old Lower East Side
Habitat for Humanity New York City And Westchester County
Henry Street Settlement
Highbridge Community Development Corp.
Homeless Services United
Housing Visions Unlimited, Inc.
Housing Rights Initiative
The Hudson Companies
Hudson River Housing
Human Development Services of Westchester, Inc.
Human Services Council
Interfaith Assembly on Homelessness and Housing
Institute for Community Living
JCTOD Outreach, Inc. (dba) Johnson Park Center (JPC)
The Jewish Board
Lakeview Health Services, Inc.
The Legal Aid Society
Liberty Resources, Inc.
Lutheran Social Services of New York
Joseph’s House & Shelter, Inc.
Margert Community Corporation
MBD Community Housing Corp.
National Alliance to End Homelessness
Neighborhood Care Team, Inc
Neighborhood Coalition for Shelter, Inc.
Neighborhood Housing Services of Queens
Neighborhood Restore HDFC
New Destiny Housing
New York Appleseed
New York State Council of Churches
New York State Rural Advocates
Odyssey House, Inc.
Open New York
Options for Community Living
Phoenix House of NY
Pratt Center for Community Development
Property Resources Corporation
Providence House, Inc.
Rebuilding Together NYC
Redeemer Presbyterian Church
Rehabilitation Support Services
RiseBoro Community Partnership Inc.
SCO Family of Services
Selfhelp Community Services, Inc
Services for the Underserved
Settlement Housing Fund
Sisters of Charity of New York
Sisters of Charity Housing Development Corporation
Southern Tier Environments For Living, Inc
Southern Tier Independence Center
Supportive Housing Network of New York
St Dominic’s Family Services
St. Nicks Alliance
St Paul and St Andrew Methodist Church
Transitional Services Inc.
University Neighborhood Housing Program
United Neighborhood Houses of New York
Unity House of Troy, Inc.
Urban Architectural Initiatives
Violence Intervention Program
Volunteers of America – Greater New York
Warren Washington Association for Mental Health, Inc.
West Side Federation for Senior and Supportive Housing
Witness to Mass Incarceration Inc
YWCA of Rochester and Monroe County