Tomorrow’s (November 8) election will determine control of the House and Senate in the next Congress, and with it, the workload that lies ahead for members before the new Congress begins on January 3, 2023. Congressional leaders will be back in their offices on November 14 with the goal of finalizing a fiscal year (FY) 2023 spending package by December 16, though there is already talk that members will need to enact another, short-term continuing resolution (CR) to provide an extra week to finalize the bill.
There is also growing concern that Republicans will move to extend the FY2023 deadline into the new year if either the House or Senate flip its majority control, which would give Republicans increased opportunity to weigh in on FY2023 funding and demand cuts to assistance programs. Because the cost of housing rises every year, enacting a long-term CR (which extends the previous year’s appropriations for a specified period) effectively cuts funds for HUD’s affordable housing and homelessness programs, as does providing only flat funding.
NLIHC and our partners in the Campaign for Housing and Community Development Funding (CHCDF) are leading our annual 302(b) letter, calling on Congress to finalize an FY2023 bill and provide the highest possible allocation for HUD’s and USDA’s affordable housing, homelessness, and community development programs in the new fiscal year. Over 1,800 state, local, tribal, and national organizations have already joined, and we are aiming to reach 2,000 organizations by November 16 before re-sending the letter to appropriations leaders in Congress. Lawmakers must not pass up the chance to provide the significant funding needed to ensure the nation is moving towards safe, affordable, and accessible housing for all.
The FY2023 spending bill represents the last opportunity this year for Congress to make robust investments in affordable housing and homelessness programs. Advocates should sign their state, local, tribal, or national organization on to CHCDF’s 302(b) letter and share the letter with their networks to encourage them to join. Advocates should also contact their members of Congress and urge them to support the highest possible level of funding for HUD’s and USDA’s affordable housing and homelessness programs in FY2023, including significant funding for NLIHC’s top priorities:
- Full funding for the Tenant-Based Rental Assistance (TBRA) program to renew all existing contracts and expand housing vouchers to an additional 140,000 households.
- $5 billion for the Public Housing Capital Fund to preserve public housing, and $5.04 billion for the Public Housing Operating Fund.
- $3.6 billion for HUD’s Homeless Assistance Grants program to address the needs of people experiencing homelessness.
- $100 million for legal assistance to prevent evictions.
- $300 million for the competitive tribal housing program, targeted to tribes with the greatest needs.