Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Housers must unite to face the challenges of 2017

by Chris Estes, 
National Housing Conference

I hope you had a safe enjoyable holiday season! All of us here at NHC wish you a happy and successful 2017.

With the new year comes the launch of our new logo, which you may have noticed in the banner of this email. After NHC and its research affiliate, the Center for Housing Policy were combined in 2013, we undertook a strategic planning effort to renew the organization’s work and strategies. Coming out of this effort, NHC launched a rebranding process to ensure that how we talk about ourselves matches our work plan and role in the affordable housing and community development sector.

What you’ll notice first, along with our updated logo, is that all of our future research publications will be published exclusively by NHC. This streamlined approach will help our relatively small organization stand out in a crowded D.C. advocacy landscape.

This positioning comes at a time in which a broad-based coalition of affordable housing organizations is needed more than ever. USDA and HUD housing programs will face pressure from both deficit reduction and other spending and tax cuts. Adding to that uncertainty will be tax reform efforts impacting the Low Income Housing Tax Credit program.

It will be critical for our community to have a national voice and coalition-building organization that can advocate for bipartisan solutions. There are will be many opportunities for reform and needed change, as well as for informed dialog on what to protect.

NHC will build on our How Housing Matters conference and Solutions for Affordable Housing convening of December 2016. How Housing Matters highlighted the significant evidence and success in cross-sector partnerships that improve outcomes in education, economic opportunity and health through affordable housing. We are committed to working with other national partners on keeping this evidence and practice at the forefront of future policy and budgetary discussions at all levels of government going forward.

At Solutions for Affordable Housing we featured discussions about the future of major housing issues as well as what we can learn from innovations at the local and state levels. These include important issues like the many connections between housing and opportunity and the future of public housing, as well as the National Flood Insurance Program and the impact of the lack of access to credit on homeownership, which have received less attention.

Going forward these issues represent coalition-building opportunities for NHC and our member-partners to engage with the new Congress and presidential administration as we work to improve the environment for affordable housing in this country.

We look forward to being a consistent source of information for our members over the coming year and to partnering on important policy opportunities with other national, state and local housing groups across the housing continuum. These are all reasons why being a member and supporter of NHC is so valuable. We thank you for your support and hope you will continue to help NHC in our work in 2017!

No comments: