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NAHMA Grassroots Action Alert: Urge Members of Congress to Provide Full Funding for Affordable Housing Programs

On Thursday, December 12, the House of Representatives passed the Bipartisan Budget Act, which sets overall discretionary spending for fiscal year 2014 at $1.012 trillion and $1.014 trillion for FY 2015. The Senate is expected to also pass the bill this week. With this new budget, the lawmakers on both the Senate and House Appropriations Committees will soon be drafting the necessary appropriations bills for all federal programs, including multifamily housing under HUD and USDA-Rural Development. At this time, NAHMA is encouraging all members to contact their Congressional representatives and urge them to pursue full funding for HUD’s Project-Based and Tenant-based Section 8 programs, and for full funding for contract renewals in the USDA-Rural Development Section 521 Rental Assistance (RA) program.

The appropriations bills will be written by lawmakers who are members of the appropriations committees. If your representatives are not a member of either of these committees, it is important that you ask them to convey their support for full-funding in multifamily housing programs. Please use NAHMA Maps to find your members of Congress.

· Click here for a full list of the House of Representatives’ Appropriations Committee

· Click here for a full list of the Senate Appropriations Committee

(Below is some information to help your message):

Project and Tenant-Based Section 8

In FY 2014, $11.5 billion is necessary to fully fund the 12-month contract terms for properties assisted through Project-Based Section 8.

· If HUD does not have sufficient appropriations for the entire 12-month contract terms at the time of the renewals, it must “short-fund” the contracts. Short-funding the contracts jeopardizes the efficient management, financial solvency, and physical health of PBS8 properties. It could also cause staff layoffs.

· At the very least, lawmakers cannot allow the appropriations to fall below the initial Senate figure of $10.27 billion.

Tenant-based Section 8 will require $19.9 billion in FY 2014.

· Approximately 2.1 million households receive rental assistance through this program.

USDA-Rural Development Section 521 Rental Assistance

For FY 2014, Congress must provide full-funding, or at least $1.05 billion, for contract renewals in the Section 521 RA program.

Congress must also direct RHS to retroactively compensate owners whose contracts were not renewed in September of FY 2013 as a result of the funding shortfall.

· The FY 2013 sequester caused significant harm to the RA program. Providing full funding and retroactive compensation will bring security and confidence back to the participating properties.

NAHMA is encouraging members to contact their Senators and Representatives and urge them to pursue full funding for these multifamily housing programs. The federal government must honor its contracts with property owners and put an end to uncertainty in these housing assistance programs. Please use NAHMA Maps to find your members of Congress and their contact information.

** The Bipartisan Budget Act does not remove sequestration- instead, the next two fiscal years will receive sequester relief. At this time, NAHMA is urging members to place focus on the upcoming a

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