Monday, May 1, 2017

Congress reaches agreement on omnibus appropriations bill for FY 2017

by Kaitlyn Snyder and Rebekah King

Last night, the House Rules Committee dropped the omnibus spending bill that would fund the federal government for the remainder of FY 2017, through September 30, 2017. Many programs saw slight increases in funding compared to last year, but overall funding is essentially flat, especially when considered relative to rising housing costs. Notably, this budget does not include requests by President Trump to zero out Choice Neighborhoods and SHOP and to fund CDBG at $1.5 billion.

The chart below shows HUD and USDA funding for selected programs for the newly released FY 2017 omnibus, President Obama’s FY 2017 budget request and enacted funding levels going back to FY 2014. Red numbers indicate decreases compared to FY 2016 enacted levels, green numbers indicate increases, blue numbers indicate increases from FY 2016 but lower-than-historical levels and black numbers indicate flat funding.

Also included in the bill are provisions that:
  • Extend the sunset provision for the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness to Oct. 1, 2018 (p.1631);
  • Raise the Rental Assistance Demonstration cap to 225,000 units (p. 1624);
  • Appropriate $15 million for  the Jobs Plus program within the public housing funding (p.1562); and 
  • Continue allowing private owners of Section 8 properties to make Family Self-Sufficiency programs (already available in participating public housing properties) available to residents. (p.1567)

The bill does not include the expansion of RAD to Section 202 Project Rental Assistance contracts.

Congress needs to vote on the package by Friday, May 5, when the short-term continuing resolution expires.

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