President Obama’s Budget Offers Positive News for the Affordable Housing and Community Development Industry



Saul Ramirez, Executive Director of the National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials (NAHRO), had the following comments regarding the President's proposed Fiscal Year 2010 budget:

President Obama's Fiscal Year 2010 budget proposal represents progress for our industry. Although we are taking a cautious approach and will be analyzing the President's proposal in greater detail, upon initial review the proposed budget appears to take the first steps toward following through on NAHRO's call for a revitalization of federal housing and community development policy.

A sustained federal investment in proven housing and community development will be essential to our nation's economic recovery. NAHRO therefore appreciates the administration's commitment to funding the Public Housing Operating Fund at 100 percent of eligibility, and we are pleased that the President is following through on his promise to provide increased funding for the Community Development Block Grant program. At the same time, NAHRO will work to ensure continued funding for several important economic development programs proposed for elimination, including the Section 108 community development loan guarantee program and the Brownfields Economic Development Initiative.

The current economic crisis has highlighted our nation's acute shortage of affordable rental housing options. NAHRO is especially gratified that the President is requesting $1 billion to capitalize the Housing Trust Fund authorized under the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008. NAHRO has consistently supported the creation and funding of a new program to expand the nation's affordable housing inventory.

In the weeks and months ahead, NAHRO looks forward to working with the administration and the Congress to ensure that our nation's housing and community development needs are met.

NAHRO is a membership organization of 22,000 housing and community development agencies and professionals throughout the United States whose mission is to create affordable housing and safe, viable communities that enhance the quality of life for all Americans, especially those of low- and moderate-income. The association will issue a formal analysis and reaction to the budget in the near future.