H.R. 2441: Threat to National Housing Trust Fund

by Emily Kaplan

When the National Housing Trust Fund was created in 2008 as part of measures to reform Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the initial source of funding was to come from the two Government Sponsored Enterprises.  Provisions of the bill that created the National Housing Trust Fund also state that it may be funded by alternative sources of revenue – a provision that became essential to the National Housing Trust Fund’s existence following the conservatorship of Fannie and Freddie in 2008.  When it became clear that Fannie and Freddie will never be in a position to provide funds for the National Housing Trust Fund, alternative funding options were considered, including $1 billion that was included in the President’s FY12 budget that would be offset by a cut elsewhere, most likely in a tax bill.

On July 6, 2011, Representative Ed Royce (R-CA) introduced H.R. 2441, the Housing Trust Fund Elimination Act of 2011.  The bill, which was marked up in committee on July 12, 2011 and passed with a vote of 18-14, calls for the termination of the National Housing Trust Fund and the requirement that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac make annual allocations for such a Fund.  Representative Al Green (D-TX) introduced an alternative amendment to H.R. 2441 that would preserve the National Housing Trust Fund as a program, but eliminate the requirement that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac make annual contributions to fund the program. The Capital Markets and GSEs Subcommittee voted 17-15 to reject the Green amendment.   

While the JCPA has not taken a formal position on these new pieces of legislation, we have fully supported the creation and funding of the National Housing Trust Fund in the past.  On page 7 of JCPA’s Policy Compendium, you may find further information about our position on affordable housing issues and the National Housing Trust Fund.

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