Washington, D.C. – Former U.S. Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell and former U.S. Senator Christopher “Kit” Bond, co-chairs of the Bipartisan Policy Center Housing Commission, issued the following statement in response to the recent introduction of H.R. 4717:
“The Low-Income Housing Tax Credit is our nation’s most effective program supporting the preservation and construction of affordable rental homes. By leveraging the resources of the private sector, the Housing Credit has helped finance some 2.6 million affordable rental units since it was first created in 1986. Remarkably, the aggregate foreclosure rate experienced by Housing Credit properties over this period is less than one percent. With rents rising throughout the country and with the shortage of affordable rental housing now at crisis levels, the need for the Housing Credit has never been greater.
“We commend Representatives Pat Tiberi (R-OH) and Richard Neal (D-MA) for their leadership in introducing H.R. 4717, bipartisan legislation that would make permanent the 9-percent credit for new construction and create a new 4-percent credit rate floor for investment in existing developments. By establishing permanent floors on the credit rates, H.R. 4717 will introduce much-needed certainty into the marketplace that will encourage additional private investment in rental housing that is affordable to our nation’s low-income families. We urge the House Ways and Means Committee to act favorably on H.R. 4717 and do so as expeditiously as possible.”
BPC’s Housing Commission consists of 21 members who bring to the table a diverse range of viewpoints, professional experiences, and expertise in housing and related fields. Senators Mitchell and Bond co-chair the group with former HUD Secretary Henry Cisneros and former HUD Secretary and U.S. Senator Mel Martinez. The commission continues to elevate housing to the top of the national policy agenda through a series of bold recommendations that respond to the most critical challenges in housing today. On September 15-16, 2014 the commission will host the New Directions in National Policy 2014 Housing Summit in Washington, DC.