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Opportunity Zone Target Investment Surges to Nearly $43 Billion Nationwide

The amount of capital targeted for investment in designated Opportunity Zones increased dramatically in the past month, according to analysis by NCSHA based on the most recent edition of its Opportunity Zone Fund Directory, released today. The 163 funds included in the current directory expect to raise nearly $43 billion in Opportunity Zone investment, up from $29 billion last month and nearly triple the amount anticipated at the start of 2019. This directory includes 20 new funds and details on fund size and geographic and investment focus for all the funds listed.

President Trump Signs Executive Order Establishing Council Focusing on Regulatory Barriers to Affordable Housing

On June 25, President Trump signed an Executive Order to establish the White House Council on Eliminating Barriers to Affordable Housing Development, headed by Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson with members including the Secretaries or their designees from the departments of Treasury, Agriculture, Transportation, Energy, Labor, and Interior, and the Environmental Protection Agency.

Bipartisan Congressional Leaders Introduce Bill to Address Loss of Housing Credit Properties to Qualified Contracts

Today, Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Todd Young (R-IN) and Representatives Joe Neguse (D-CO), Don Beyer (D-VA), and Jackie Walorski (R-IN) introduced the Save Affordable Housing Act of 2019, which would significantly reduce, and ultimately eliminate, the loss of Low Income Housing Tax Credit (Housing Credit) properties before the end of their affordability periods due to qualified contracts. Senators Benjamin Cardin (D-MD) and Sherrod Brown (D-OH) joined Senators Wyden and Young as original cosponsors of the Senate bill. NCSHA strongly supports this legislation. 

JCHS Report Sheds Light on Lack of Affordable Housing Production

Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies on Tuesday released its annual report, “The State of the Nation’s Housing 2019.” The report examines the state of the housing market in 2018, finding that, while it improved in many respects over the previous year, including household growth and formations, the continued — and worsening — production shortfall has led to an increasing number of low- and moderate-income families who lack access to affordable housing options.

House Financial Services Committee Advances Flood Insurance Reauthorization and Other Housing-Related Bills

On May 12, the House Financial Services Committee advanced a series of housing-related measures – including bills to reauthorize and reform the National Flood Insurance Program, make FHA single-family loans more affordable and sustainable, and block HUD from implementing proposed rules that would bar families with mixed immigration status from housing assistance and alter HUD’s Equal Access Rule.

FHFA Report Requests New Authorities; Urges Congress to Pass GSE Reform

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) earlier today requested that Congress grant it the authority to charter new government-sponsored mortgage guarantors to compete with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The proposal was included in FHFA’s 2018 Report to Congress, which summarizes FHFA’s 2018 examinations of Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the Federal Home Loan Banks.

$29 Billion in Anticipated Opportunity Zone Investment Identified by NCSHA

NCSHA released an updated edition of its Opportunity Zone Fund Directory today, with details on 143 Qualified Opportunity Funds established to invest in high-poverty neighborhoods designated as Opportunity Zones. The directory includes 13 new funds and details on each fund’s size, investment focus, and geographic focus.

HUD Releases Housing Counseling NOFA for FY 2019

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) on May 24 issued a Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA) for its Housing Counseling Grant program for fiscal year (FY) 2019. All HUD-approved counseling entities, including state HFAs, are eligible to apply.

House Subcommittee Convenes to Mark Up FY 2020 USDA Appropriations Bill

The House Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies met Thursday to mark up a proposed Fiscal Year 2020 appropriations bill for the Department of Agriculture, the Food and Drug Administration, and related agencies.

HUD Secretary Carson Defends Administration Agenda at House Committee Hearing

On May 21, the House Financial Services Committee held a hearing on “Housing in America: Oversight of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development,” in which HUD Secretary Ben Carson testified and answered questions regarding HUD policies and program oversight.