NLIHC, the National American Indian Housing Council (NAIHC), and the United Native American Housing Association (UNAHA) – NLIHC’s first Tribal partner – have published a fact sheet on the “Native American Housing Assistance and Self-Determination Act” (NAHASDA) Reauthorization, which has been included in the “National Defense Authorization Act” (NDAA; S.Amdt.1078 to S.Amdt.935) passed by the U.S. Senate. NAHASDA grants represent the largest – and, in some rural and remote areas, only – source of affordable housing funding for Native communities. However, NAHASDA has not been reauthorized in a decade. As a result, its programs are in desperate need of updates. The fact sheet urges Congress to reauthorize and fully fund Tribal housing programs to address the dire affordable housing needs in Native communities.
Originally passed in 1996, NAHASDA is the primary federal statute governing the development, operation, and maintenance of housing in Tribal communities. Called “the backbone of Indian housing,” NAHASDA grants can be used for affordable housing activities that primarily benefit low-income Indian families living on Indian reservations and Alaska Native communities or in other Indian areas. Since its creation, Tribes and Alaska Native governments have used Indian Housing Block Grant (IHBG) funding to build or acquire almost 41,500 affordable homes and restore an additional 105,000 affordable homes on Tribal lands and Alaska Native communities.
Congress has failed to reauthorize NAHASDA since 2013, and the program is in dire need of updates and increased funding. The Association of Alaska Housing Authorities found that HUD funding for Native American housing has decreased by 29% when accounting for inflation, remaining at less than 2% of the overall HUD budget. NLIHC and many other organizations are urging Congress to reauthorize NAHASDA, and advocates are encouraged by the inclusion of the Reauthorization bill in the annual defense bill (see Memo, 8/14).
Additionally, the National American Indian Housing Council is calling on Tribal members and advocates to take action by urging their members of Congress to sign a letter in support of NAHASDA Reauthorization. The letter, co-authored by Representatives Tom Cole (R-OK) and Sharice Davids, (D-KS), the co-chairs of the Congressional Native American Caucus, asks leaders in the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Financial Services and the House Committee on Armed Services to “support the inclusion of the NAHASDA amendment in the FY24 NDAA package.”
Read the NAHASDA Fact Sheet at: https://nlihc.org/sites/default/files/2023-10/NAHASDA-reauthorization.pdf
Tribal leaders can contact their members of Congress in support of NAIHC’s call to action at: https://p2a.co/X9saac3