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Policy Update 3-4-20

Pamela Atwood, Director of Housing Policy

Around the State

General Assembly – Budget Update and a New Committee
The General Assembly remains out of session and the focus of late is on the recent primary elections. There has been some talk of potential mini-spending bills in lieu of an enacted budget. With the election behind us, some activity is expected in the coming month on what to expect in the Short Session. The Coalition continues to monitor the GA and will let members know of any housing funding.

Of note, there is a newly formed committee in the House – the House Select Committee on Residential Planning & Permitting. The committee is charged with reviewing current local residential permitting and planning processes with the ultimate goal of streamlining permitting and creating uniformity across the state. The group’s first meeting was last Thursday, February 27th. The Coalition will also be tracking the work of this committee and its impact on affordable housing.

Hurricane Recovery –  Housing RSF & Florence CDBG-DR Action Plan
Next Wednesday, March 10th, the Housing Recovery Support Function (RSF) task force will be meeting and unveiling their Housing Recommendations. The report and recommendations are the result of almost a year of meetings, research, and analysis. The Coalition is the lead agency on the task force and Executive Director, Samuel Gunter is the lead facilitator of the group. The meeting will take place at the Archdale Building (512 N.Salisbury Street, Raleigh, NC) from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. 

A reminder that the Florence CDBG-DR Action Plan is out now and comments are still being accepted. On our March 3rd Housing Call, our guest was Tracey Colores from the NC Office of Recovery & Resiliency (NCORR), who spoke to us about the housing related programs outlined in the Action Plan. You can read more about what the plan contains in our recent blog post.

Comments can be submitted until March 8th at 5pm.

Submit comments by email to:

Submit comments by USPS mail to:
ReBuild NC
Attn: Florence Comments
P.O. Box 110465
Durham, NC  27709


Housing Bills Making it out of Committees
The House Committee on Financial Services approved four housing related bills last Thursday, February 27th:

  • H.R. 5187 – Housing is Infrastructure Act: Invests over $100 billion in affordable housing and community development programs
  • H.R. 149 – Housing Fairness Act of 2019: Would authorize additional funding for fair housing enforcement, make needed reforms to fair housing programs, and reinstate HUD’s 2015 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) rule
  • H.R. 5931– Improving FHA Support for Small-Dollar Mortgages Act of 2020: Directs HUD to report on barriers to making Federal Housing Administration (FHA) single-family mortgage insurance available for mortgages under $70,000
  • H.R. 4351Yes in My Backyard Act: Calls on localities to review and potentially remove discriminatory land use policies that build barriers and prevent further construction of affordable housing.

The Transportation and Infrastructure Committee approved H.R. 2914  (The Housing Survivors of Major Disasters Act) which addresses the significant title-documentation challenges that have resulted in thousands of eligible disaster survivors being wrongfully denied FEMA assistance. These challenges have been common in many disaster-impacted areas such as North Carolina where owners of heir property are unable to provide documentation to verify ownership, an eligible requirement to receive many forms of disaster recovery assistance.


CityLab – “For Those Living in Public Housing, It’s a Long Way to Work”

Journal of the American Planning Association, “Affordable Housing, Disasters, and Social Equity: LIHTC as a Tool for Preparedness and Recovery,

Economic Policy Institute – “State of Working America Wages in 2019”

National Housing Law Project – “Fair Chance Ordinances: An Advocates’ Toolkit 

Recommended read

Housing Recovery Activities in the Florence CDBG-DR Action Plan

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