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Engel Cosponsors Legislation to Make More Affordable Housing

Engel Cosponsors Legislation to Make More Affordable Housing

Congressman Eliot L. Engel today cosponsored the Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act, H.R. 3077, bipartisan legislation that would expand and improve the low-income housing tax credit to make more affordable housing available.

“Access to safe, affordable housing is essential for every American,” said Rep. Engel. “New York has some of the highest housing costs in the country. A minimum wage worker in New York has to spend 95 hours working per week in order to afford a modest one-bedroom apartment. This is unacceptable. I am pleased to cosponsor the Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act which will help address our state’s housing crisis by encouraging the development of affordable housing units.”

The low-income housing tax (LIHTC) is a joint federal-state program that helps encourage the development of new affordable housing units and the rehabilitation of older ones. Since the program’s creation in 1986, LIHTC has helped develop or preserve nearly 213,000 homes in New York, including about 6,800 units in NY-16.

The Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act would increase the amount of credits awarded to states by 50%, leading to the construction of more than 384,000 more units than without the enactment of H.R. 3077. In New York, this legislation would lead to the development of 15,425 additional affordable homes.

H.R. 3077 builds on Congressman Engel’s prior work to improve access to affordable, safe housing. Engel is an original cosponsor of the Public Housing Emergency Response Act, H.R. 4546, which would provide the New York City Housing Authority with $32 billion to address its extensive backlog of repairs, including damaged elevators and water fixtures. In addition, he is an original cosponsor of the Lead Free Future Act, which would dedicate $12 billion over the next five years to address major sources of lead exposure in public housing.