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Housing Call: July 19, 2022

Federal updates

  • Senator Joe Manchin threw a wrench in weeks of reconciliation package discussions by withdrawing support for climate action and tax increases for large corporations and wealthy Americans. Both were key elements of the Democrats’ agenda that they hoped to include in a reconciliation package before the midterms. Senator Manchin said he will only back provisions targeted at lowering prescription drug costs for seniors and a two-year extension of subsidies for health insurance premiums. He wants to see another month of inflation numbers before he considers any other priorities. Democrats may take that deal, despite it falling far short of what they set out to accomplish. Manchin stressed that he isn’t ruling out climate action and increased taxes on wealthy Americans, but that he won’t support a bill with these priorities between now and August recess. Housing advocates were already concerned that investments in affordable housing would be left out of the slimmed-down package, and these latest developments are further indications of that outcome. Chances of the LIFELINE Act being included are equally slim.
  • The House is set to consider its first set of FY2023 spending bills this week. Lawmakers hope to clear all 12 budget proposals, including the bill that funds HUD programs, before August recess. However, House and Senate appropriators have not reached a bipartisan deal on the FY2023 budget yet, so the House’s spending levels won’t be set in stone.


State updates

  • Governor Roy Cooper signed the budget into law early last week, citing support for education and workforce spending, as well as ongoing negotiations about Medicaid expansion. The budget was passed with bipartisan votes in the NC General Assembly and includes increased funding for affordable housing. The legislature is set to return in the fall, but the specifics of what that looks like is still uncertain.
  • While the City of Charlotte passed a policy banning source of income discrimination in city-funded properties, the enforcement of the new measure is being reworked. The council is expected to vote on the policy’s enforcement at its August meeting: Why Charlotte’s new housing discrimination policy won’t be enforced yet | Charlotte Observer
  • Durham Housing Authority officials will name a new downtown affordable housing community for Joyce Thorpe Nichols, the first woman and the first Black woman to graduate from Duke University’s physician assistant (PA) program. She was the first African American female PA in the country. She once lived in the city’s oldest public housing complex and served on the board of the Durham Housing Authority’s (DHA) Board of Commissioners. The planned four-story building is expected to be completed by spring of next year and will serve seniors with incomes between 30-80% of the area median income: New Affordable Housing Project in Durham Will Be Named for Medical Pioneer Who Lived in Public Housing | Indy Week
  • Every bed is currently full at the Durham Rescue Mission’s emergency housing shelter for women and children. Many people staying at the shelter are working on a full-time basis, but still cannot find an affordable place to live: ‘Housing crisis is really starting to show its crunch’: CEO of Durham homeless shelter says it has reached full capacity | WRAL
  • The Town of Cornelius created its first Affordable Housing Plan, aimed at helping town employees afford to live where they work. According to the town’s new plan, 90 percent of the people who work in the town do not live there. Leaders think by providing more affordable housing options, they’ll improve traffic, the economy, and the overall culture of the town: Cornelius working toward affordable housing so people can afford to live where they work | Queen City News
  • As planning for Wake County’s new Bus Rapid Transit system continues, Raleigh residents say a rezoning proposal with density bonuses in transit corridors won’t be enough to combat gentrification: Vision for Raleigh Transit Corridors Spark Affordable Housing Concerns | Indy Week

Reports, events, resources

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Housing Call: July 12, 2022

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