NAHRO Statement on the Return of Congress


WASHINGTON, January 15-- National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials (NAHRO) Executive Director Saul N. Ramirez issued the following statement on the reconvening of the 110th Congress for its second session:

"Legislators will face a number of important challenges during the second session of the 110th Congress. The most immediate of these we believe will be addressing the needs of families facing foreclosure due to questionable lending practices in the "sub-prime" market and easing current restraints on credit availability. Local housing agencies have met and will continue to meet the needs of families who have fallen victim to these forces. We stand ready to help!

NAHRO and its more than 21,000 members nationwide also urge Congress in this second session to:

  • resource current programs designed to meet housing and community development needs, most of which have been under funded in recent years;

  • complete the unfinished business of the first session, including expeditious passage of: a GSE reform bill including new affordable housing production; legislation reforming the Section 8 program; and legislation reauthorizing the HOPE VI program; and

  • act on legislation designed to preserve and strengthen the long-term physical and financial integrity of public housing.

The nation's existing inventory of federally-assisted affordable housing is a necessary and irreplaceable asset that must be preserved. Today, over 17 million households experience severe cost burdens for housing, and over 2 million families live in substandard and inadequate housing. Production of new affordable housing is necessary to meet the increasing, well-documented demand for decent, safe and affordable housing directly impacting lower-income families and increasingly challenging the middle class. Finally, now more than ever, states, cities and counties are looking to the federal government to be a reliable partner in ongoing efforts to preserve and strengthen America's communities.

NAHRO looks forward to working with this Congress to meet the housing and community development challenges before us!"