Contact Congress and Voice Support for Full Funding of Project-Based Section 8 Contracts
The Presidents budget proposal for fiscal year (FY) 2014 includes approximately $10.27 billion dollars in funding for the Project-Based Section 8 program. While this sum is considerably higher than the appropriation level set in FY 2013, the FY 2014 request is impacted by the FY 2013 Continuing Resolution, resulting in a $1.2 billion shortfall in the program due to sequester funding levels. As a result, all contracts will not be funded for the full 12 months during the remainder of FY2013 and into FY 2014.
If sequestration were repealed, the $10.27 billion dollar sum would be sufficient to fully-fund contract renewals. However, as a repeal of sequestration is unlikely; an estimated $11.5 billion dollars will be necessary to fully fund contract renewals, and to close the shortfall caused in the FY 2013 appropriations.
The Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development (T-HUD) appropriations bill for FY 2014 has yet to be released. In order to ensure that full funding for contract renewals appears in the T-HUD appropriations bill for FY 2014, NAHMA strongly encourages members to contact their Congressional Representatives and Senators. Please ask them to convey their support to the chair and ranking member of both T-HUD subcommittees for the $11.5 billion dollars in funding for the Project-Based Section 8 program in FY 2014. The T-HUD subcommittees are attached to the appropriations committees, and all T-HUD appropriations bills are written in the subcommittees.
Below are several talking points that may be used in your communication with Representatives and Senators:
· Under sequestration, HUDs current FY 14 budget request for project-based Section 8 is $1.2 billion short of the $11.5 billion necessary to fully fund the 12-month contract terms at the time of renewal.
· When HUD does not have sufficient appropriations to obligate funding for the entire 12-month contract terms at the time of the renewals, it short-funds the contracts.
o Short funding wastes administrative time of HUD staff that would have to process funding multiple times for the same property.
· I am asking the Representative / Senator to contact [House T-HUD Chairman Tom Latham (R-IA) & Ranking Member Ed Pastor (D-AZ) or Senate T-HUD Chairman Patty Murray (D-WA) & Ranking Member Susan Collins (R-ME)] and request $11.5 billion for project-based Section 8 because:
o The federal government must honor its contracts with property owners.
o Short-funding the contracts jeopardizes the efficient management, financial solvency, and physical health of PBS8 properties.
§ FHA-insured properties could default without the contract funds to pay their mortgages.
§ Properties accumulate numerous late fees to lenders and service providers as a result of having insufficient funds to make mortgage and utility bill payments.
§ Property staff suffer lay-offs as a result of insufficient funding.
§ Rehabilitation and renovation plans are put on hold when funding is erratic.
o Short-funding is a budget gimmick that does NOT save the government moneyit pushes the need into the next fiscal year.