WASHINGTON, DC – The National Housing Conference (NHC) commends acting director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency Joseph Otting on releasing over $376 million for affordable housing through the Capital Magnet Fund and Housing Trust Fund. “This is a big deal,” said NHC President and CEO David Dworkin. “Twice OMB and the White House have tried to zero out these essential programs, which are both effective and cost taxpayers nothing,” Dworkin said, adding, “Moving forward with these much-needed programs is the right thing to do.”
In February, NHC and its diverse coalition of members wrote to Otting to urge continued allocations to the Capital Magnet Fund (CMF) and the national Housing Trust Fund (HTF). Signatories included Atlanta Neighborhood Development Partnership, Capital Magnet Fund Coalition, Enterprise Community Partners, LeadingAge, Local Initiatives Support Corporation, National Multifamily Housing Council, and Stewards of Affordable Housing for the Future, among others.
“These programs are effective tools in creating affordable housing supply and are funded by a de minimis fee on new business, currently 4.2 basis points, and not through federal appropriations. They have broad bipartisan support and failure to continue to fund them will result in an even greater need for government spending to address the shortage of affordable housing in the future,” the letter said.
The CMF was created in the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 (HERA). It’s a competitive program administered by the Treasury Department and is open to community development financial institutions and non-profit housing organizations like Habitat for Humanity to develop, preserve, rehabilitate, or purchase affordable housing, as well as related economic development activities such as day care centers, community health clinics and workforce development centers. “Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have been accruing CMF and HTF dollars on a quarterly basis during 2018 and any suspension of the distribution will result in the dollars being ‘swept’ by the U.S. Department of the Treasury. Leaving the CMF and HTF dollars to be allocated as intended by Congress will have no impact on their financial condition.”
About NHC: The National Housing Conference has been defending the American Home since 1931. Everyone in America should have equal opportunity to live in a quality, affordable home in a thriving community. NHC convenes and collaborates with our diverse membership and the broader housing and community development sectors to advance our policy, research and communications initiatives to effect positive change at the federal, state and local levels. Politically diverse and nonpartisan, NHC is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization.