While positive in many ways, the Administration’s 2017 budget request still falls short due to larger budget constraints, despite increased dollars proposed for the homeless which are badly needed and which NAHRO supports. While we recognize the ongoing need to continue the effort to get the nation’s fiscal house in order, we believe that providing a decent and affordable home in a neighborhood of quality for every American family is fundamental to who we are as a nation. NAHRO believes that the bipartisan effort to pass long-overdue housing reforms in HR 3700 by a House vote of 427-0 should also embolden the Congress, in a bipartisan manner, to provide a responsible level of funding for housing and community development programs in FY 2017. The need for these funds is well-documented; they will help many more low- and very-low-income families who need a safe, decent place to call home now!
The House Appropriations Committee on Wednesday, May 13 approved its FY 2016 Transportation, Housing and Urban Development (T-HUD) spending bill by a party-line vote of 30-21.
Fifteen amendments were introduced and five were approved, though unfortunately none of the approved amendments pertained to housing or community development. An amendment that was offered by Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) to remove language from the bill that would effectively eliminate the National Housing Trust Fund and fund HOME at the President’s request of $1.06 billion was rejected because the additional spending was not offset by other cuts. NAHRO supported the amendment.
We need all NAHRO members to call Congress today, Tuesday, November 18, to ask lawmakers to push for an FY 2015 full-year omnibus spending package that funds the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development (T-HUD) spending bill at Senate levels.
To participate, visit NAHRO’s Advocacy Action Center for step-by-step instructions on how to contact your member of Congress and talking points.
Or, follow these simple directions:
- To find your Representative’s number, go to www.house.gov.
- To find your Senators’ numbers, go to www.senate.gov.
- Ask to speak to the Legislative Assistant who handles appropriations.
- Identify yourself, your organization, and your location.
- Let him/her know that your organization depends on the certainty of full-year funding and that the House’s FY 2015 T-HUD bill does not provide adequate funding for programs upon which your community relies. Ask that your legislator to push for an omnibus spending package that funds T-HUD at Senate levels.
- Thank the staff person for their consideration and time.
Once you’ve called your three legislators, email Tess Hembree (firstname.lastname@example.org) to let her know how your conversations went.
Don’t forget – tomorrow is the omnibus write-in day. Visit the NAHRO’s Advocacy Action Center to send pre-drafted letters to your members of Congress.
Thank you so much for your participation. Without your support for an omnibus that includes T-HUD, it’s possible that FY 2015 may be funded entirely by continuing resolution.