State Budget Released, Governor Expected to Veto
Yesterday afternoon, the conference committee finally released the General Assembly’s budget proposal. The news for affordable housing was mixed. The first year of the biennium retained flat funding for the NC Housing Coalition priorities, included a new affordable housing fund through the Department of Commerce, but called for a drastic cut in the second year of the biennium.
|FY 19-20||FY 20-21|
|Housing Trust Fund||$7.66 M||$7.66 M|
|HOME Match||$3 M||$3 M|
|WHLP*||$20 M||$ 0 M|
|CDBG-NR||$10 M||$10 M|
|(NEW) Affordable Housing Matching Funds*||$2.5 M||$ 0 M|
Outside of the Finance Agency’s budget, Commerce retained $10 million of the state’s CDBG allocation for Neighborhood Revitalization that was part of the Coalition’s work in previous sessions. The agency was also appropriated an additional $2.5 million designated as affordable housing matching funds for nonprofits. The origin of these funds was a bill sponsored by Representatives Hardister (R-Guilford) and Beasley (D-Mecklenburg) and Senator Blue (D-Wake).
The House will vote on the budget today, with the Senate voting tomorrow. The Governor should have the budget on his desk by Friday and he is expected to veto. The Senate should recess next week and override the veto the week after. The question is whether or not the House will be able to sustain a veto override. Stay tuned as we learn more.
Welcoming our new Director of Housing Policy
I am excited to announce that after a search that included submissions from across the county, we have hired a new Director of Housing Policy. Please join me in welcoming Pamela Atwood. It is her third day, and she is already hard at work at the General Assembly.
Pamela comes to the Coalition with a background in housing policy and advocacy, sustainable development, urban planning, and real estate. She has an incredible wealth of knowledge not only about housing policy, but also about the practice and pressures of organizations engaged in developing affordable housing. Pamela began her career as a policy analyst with the Southern California Association of Non-Profit Housing, advocating for policies to reduce financing and land use barriers to the development and preservation of affordable housing. Pamela’s resume also includes working with Global Green USA to assist local governments and public agencies across the country to develop and implement sustainable design and construction policies and criteria. Along with her public policy experience, Pamela has worked as a project coordinator/LEED AP with a real estate development firm in Los Angeles and as a real estate broker in Maine, New Hampshire, and North Carolina. Pamela has a B.A. from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) where she studied Public Policy and Psychology. She is also a LEED Accredited Professional (BD+C) and holds a full real estate broker’s license in North Carolina.
Finally, each year at the NC Affordable Housing Conference breakfast, we recognize individuals who have gone above and beyond the call of duty to advocate for affordable housing. If you know someone who stands out in one of the following areas, please nominate them for an award by filling out this form. The deadline for nominations is August 16.
- Sister Barbara Sullivan Award (Volunteer of the Year): This award is given for devotion and commitment to finding viable solutions and improving housing conditions for low-income families through personal commitment and sacrifice as a volunteer.
- A. Robert Kucab Award (Professional of the Year): This award is given for making a significant impact on affordable housing through professional involvement by demonstrating efforts above and beyond normal role or duties as a housing professional.
- Bill Rowe Service to Affordable Housing Award: This award recognizes a significant commitment and impact on affordable housing over the course of a career.
- Public Official of the Year Award: This award recognizes a public official who places priority on improving housing conditions and fights for the additional resources and legislation needed to make this happen
- Louise Mack Award (Housing Counselor of the Year): This award is given to a housing counselor for their leadership in the field of housing counseling and their dedication to financial security for all North Carolinians.