June 20, 2012
On June 19, the House Appropriations Committee approved the FY 2013 Transportation-HUD appropriations bill
. The Committee rejected an amendment to cut the HOME Investment Partnerships program (HOME) by $200 million and an amendment to increase the project-based Section 8 account by $1.2 billion. The funding levels for HUD programs remained unchanged from the June 7 Subcommittee-passed bill, which NCSHA described in a June 8 post
Representative Jeff Flake (R-AZ) offered an amendment to decrease by $200 million the proposed $1.2 billion funding level for HOME. The amendment was rejected by voice vote.
Flake stated that funding for HOME should not be increased above its FY 2012 funding level of $1 billion before the additional oversight provisions included in the FY 2012 HUD funding bill are implemented and the HOME Proposed Rule is finalized. Subcommittee Chairman Tom Latham (R-IA) spoke in opposition to the amendment, saying that the members have all heard from communities and from advocates for low-income persons that HOME is very important. He stated that HOME is important to both urban and rural areas, that it provides essential gap financing in Housing Credit developments, and that program reforms are being finalized. Latham added that HOME has already received significant cuts, with its funding level approximately 45 percent less than its FY 2010 level. Subcommittee Ranking Member John Olver (D-MA) also spoke in strong opposition to the amendment, adding that HOME is one of the few programs available for production and that funding for HOME would also help to provide needed jobs.
Representative Barbara Lee (D-CA) offered an amendment to increase funding for the project-based Section 8 account by $1.2 billion to $9.88 billion. The amendment did not include an offset for the increased spending and was defeated by voice vote.
The amendment would have brought the program funding level equal to that included in the Senate Appropriations Committee-passed bill, S. 2322
, and would have allowed HUD to renew for a full 12 months all contracts expiring in FY 2013. Lee stated that the increased funding level was needed to prevent an attempt to balance the budget on the backs of the poor and vulnerable and to prevent increased uncertainty for private owners and increased cost to government. Lee added that no offset for the funding increase should be required since the overall funding allocation to the Subcommittee is less than it would be if the House had used the higher overall spending level included in the Budget Control Act.
Latham opposed the amendment because it did not include an offset and because the funding level in the Subcommittee-passed bill is equal to the amount requested by the Administration. Olver spoke in strong support of the amendment, stating that funding contract renewals for less than a full 12 months has been tried and it didn’t save any money and was expensive to fix. Olver added, however, that if the amendment were agreed to, the appropriations bill would be unable to advance because it would be above the Subcommittee’s allocated funding amount.
Representative Steve LaTourette (R-OH) offered an amendment to eliminate the provision in the Neighborhood Stabilization Program (NSP) that limits to 10 percent the amount of funding that can be used for demolition. He withdrew the amendment as it is authorizing language and under the jurisdiction of the House Financial Services Committee.
As reported in NCSHA’s June 8 blog post, the bill would provide the following FY 2013 funding levels:
- $1.2 billion for the HOME program, $200 million more than the Senate Committee-passed bill, the Administration’s Budget request, and its FY 2012 funding level.
- $8.7 billion for project-based Section 8, $1.2 billion less than the Senate Appropriations Committee-passed bill, equal to the Administration’s FY 2013 Budget request, and $640 million less than its FY 2012 funding level.
- $17.2 billion for Housing Choice Voucher renewals, $257 million less than the Senate Appropriations Committee-passed bill, equal to the Administration’s FY 2013 request, and $4 million less than the FY 2012 funding level. It also includes $1.58 billion for administrative fees, equal to the Senate Committee-passed bill and the Administration’s requested level and $225 million more than the FY 2012 enacted level.
- $3.3 billion for the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program, $244 million more than the Senate Committee-passed bill and $396 million more than both the Administration’s request and its FY 2012 funding level of $2.9 billion.
- $2 billion for homeless assistance grants, $146 million less than the Senate Committee-passed bill, $231 million less than the Administration’s request, and $99 million more than enacted in FY 2012.
- $165 million for the Section 811 Housing for Persons with Disabilities program, $15 million more than the Senate Committee-passed bill and the Administration’s request and equal to its FY 2012 funding level.
- $425 million for the Section 202 Housing for the Elderly program, $50 million more than the Senate Committee-passed bill, $50 million less than the Administration’s request, and $50 million more than its FY 2012 funding level.
The schedule for moving the FY 2013 Transportation-HUD appropriations bill to the House floor is unclear. To date, the House has approved five of its 12 FY 2013 appropriations bills. The Senate has not yet passed any FY 2013 appropriations bills.