Action Alert: ACTION Campaign Letter to Congressional Leadership on Housing Credit Priorities for COVID-19 Relief

As Congress prepares for the next COVID-19 relief package, the ACTION Campaign is sending a letter to Congressional leadership stressing the importance of enacting our Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (Housing Credit) priorities as part of the immediate relief needed due to the impact of the pandemic. This is a member opt-out letter closing at 10 am EST on Wednesday, May 6. Please email Krista D’Alessandro at kdalessandro@enterprisecommunity.org if:

  • your organization would not like to be listed; or

  • your organization is not yet an ACTION member but would like to join the coalition and sign-on to the letter.

The letter reiterates ACTION’s immediate Housing Credit relief priorities in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic:

  • Enacting a minimum 4 percent Housing Credit rate; and

  • Lowering the “50 percent test” Bond financing threshold for 4 percent Housing Credit developments.

It also includes additional proposals to support further economic recovery using the Housing Credit:

  • Increasing the annual Housing Credit allocation by 50 percent; and

  • Providing additional basis boosts for vulnerable properties impacted by COVID-19.

The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the severe shortage of affordable housing in the United States, and developments nationwide are now threatened due to significant gaps in financing, construction moratoriums, and a number of other barriers. Before the pandemic, one in four renters were already paying more than 50 percent of their income on rent. Now, with 30 million individuals having just lost their jobs, the need for affordable housing is greater than ever.

Click here to read the ACTION letter, and please connect partner organizations to the ACTION Campaign who are not yet members to help strengthen our advocacy work.

Minimum 4 Percent Housing Credit Rate Could Finance 126,000 Additional Rental Homes From 2020-2029

Novogradac has updated its estimate on the impact of enacting a minimum 4 percent Housing Credit rate, one of ACTION’s key priorities for COVID-19 relief. It estimates that enacting a minimum 4 percent Housing Credit rate could finance nearly 126,000 additional affordable rental homes from 2020 to 2029. The estimate is higher than previous Novogradac research suggested — just 66,000 units over an earlier 10-year period — because Novogradac updated the baseline it uses for this research to account for the sustained increased use of private activity bond authority for multifamily housing bonds. The record-low floating rate for bond-financed Housing Credit properties also contributes to the large difference between the current and previous estimates of the impact of a minimum rate.

Click here to read Novogradac’s findings and the importance of enacting a minimum 4 percent Housing Credit rate.

Krista D'Alessandro is the tax policy analyst at Enterprise Community Partners. The ACTION Campaign is co-chaired by Enterprise and the National Council of State Housing Agencies.

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