Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) reintroduced updated legislation to help address Nevada’s affordable housing crisis. Her HOME Investment Partnerships Reauthorization and Improvement Act would significantly increase the amount of federal funds available for affordable housing across the country. Companion legislation is being introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives by Representatives Joyce Beatty (D-Ohio) and John Garamendi (D-Calif.-08).
“We have to do more to address our affordable housing crisis and increase the supply of affordable homes for Nevada families,” said Senator Cortez Masto. “The HOME program delivers critical funding to help communities build new housing units, support rental assistance, and support new homebuyers – but it needs to be updated to meet today’s needs. My legislation reauthorizing, improving and expanding this vital program will ensure more Nevadans have a quality, affordable place to call home.”
“Hardworking Nevada families are feeling the squeeze of inflation and sky-rocketing housing prices,” said Senator Rosen. “I’m helping introduce this legislation with Senator Cortez Masto to make housing more affordable and accessible for Nevadans. I’ll always do everything I can to lower costs.”
“Families across Ohio and the United States are facing a daunting affordable housing crisis that demands creative, collaborative solutions,” said Representative Beatty. “For more than three decades, the HOME program has provided essential gap funding for states and communities across the nation to address their most pressing housing challenges. I am proud to join Senator Cortez Masto and Congressman Garamendi in leading this legislation to authorize ample funding for HOME for the next five years and to make critical improvements to the program that will ensure more American families have access to safe, affordable housing.”
“Hardworking Californians face a drastic shortage of affordable housing options,” said Representative Garamendi. “Minimum wage workers have to work an 88-hour week on average to afford a modest one-bedroom rental at a fair market rate. This legislation reauthorizes the HOME Investment Partnership Program for the first time since 1994 to bring this crucial program into the 21st century and provide states and local governments with the funding to construct and rehabilitate affordable rental housing as well as provide homeownership opportunities for working families. I’m thankful to Senator Cortez Masto for introducing the companion legislation in the Senate, and we will work tirelessly until this legislation becomes law.”
“At Nevada HAND, we are dedicated to creating thriving communities by building high-quality, affordable homes. We proudly support the HOME Investment Partnerships Reauthorization and Improvement Act of 2024. With its increased authorization levels and focus on homeownership assistance, this legislation enables our state to more effectively address the diverse housing needs in Nevada. This act represents a forward-thinking approach to affordable housing, aligning seamlessly with our long-standing mission to provide not just homes but foundations for thriving communities across our state,” said Wally Swenson, Vice President of Corporate Affairs for Nevada HAND.
“Neighborhood Housing Services of Southern Nevada believes that housing is the essential foundation for individuals and families to lead healthy and sustainable lives. As CEO, I have personally witnessed the history of HOME funds being administered by NHSSN. We have helped empower many families who thought they could not own a home.” said Michelle Merced, CEO and President of Neighborhood Housing Services of Southern Nevada.“The use of HOME funds has created a vehicle to build generational wealth and to bridge the gaps for people to achieve their dreams. HOME Funds allowed NHSSN to help future homeowners but the funds also fill a need to serve our community and local nonprofits. NHSSN uses HOME funds to develop projects like The Golden Rule (affordable rental housing for low-income seniors) and for projects that help offset the lack of affordable rentals throughout Southern Nevada. HOME funds are a tool and a catalyst to help us with our vision to build better neighborhoods block by block! HOME funds allow us to create spaces where dreams flourish and futures are shaped.”
The HOME Investment Partnerships Program (HOME) is the largest federal affordable housing block grant and has helped state and local housing agencies support a wide variety of housing needs, from financing new construction and home repairs to funding down payment and rental assistance. It provides additional funding to housing developments financed by the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit, helping the program serve more extremely low-income people including seniors, veterans, and people with disabilities. Since 1992, the HOME program has helped Nevada construct 4,891 affordable housing units and 3,130 rental units, while providing 810 households with homebuyer assistance and 8,831 households with funding for rehabilitation projects.
The program was last re-authorized in 1994 and needs critical updates to better address today’s housing crisis. Cortez Masto’s HOME Investment Partnerships Reauthorization and Improvement Act would reauthorize the HOME program and make a number of needed improvements. Specifically, it would:
- Authorize $5 billion in HOME funding for fiscal year 2024 and boost the funding for the program five percent annually through 2028. Cortez Masto’s legislation would address chronic underfunding of the affordable housing investment program, which received only $1.5 billion in 2023.
- Improve HOME’s ability to provide downpayment assistance to homebuyers and home repair assistance to homeowners.
- Enable HOME funds to support Community Land Trusts and other shared equity homeownership programs.
- Increase access to HOME funds for nonprofits and provide state and local governments loan guarantee options that would allow them to leverage their future HOME funds for investments today.
The legislation is cosponsored by Senators Tina Smith (D-Minn.), John Fetterman (D-Penn.), and Jacky Rosen (D-Nev.). It is also supported by National Council of State Housing Agencies, Institute of Real Estate Management (IREM), National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals (NAHREP), National Association of Realtors (NAR), Enterprise Community Partners, National Apartment Association, National Multifamily Housing Council, National NeighborWorks Association, National Community Development Association, National Alliance of Community Economic Development Associations, National Association of Local Housing Finance Agencies, Council of State Community Development Agencies, National Coalition for Asian Pacific American Community Development (National CAPACD), Local Initiatives Support Corporation, Grounded Solutions Network and Habitat for Humanity.
Senator Cortez Masto has been a leader in the fight to lower housing costs and keep Nevadans in their homes. As Attorney General, she led the fight to hold Big Banks accountable for the foreclosure crisis, delivering $1.9 billion to homeowners in Nevada. Last year, she secured $4.8 million from the Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco to support Nevada affordable housing organizations, and cut through red tape to make it easier to build affordable housing across the state. She helped create the Preservation and Reinvestment Initiative for Community Enhancement (PRICE) grant program in 2022 to help preserve and revitalize manufactured housing in eligible communities, and is working to make it permanent. She is also a sponsor of the Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act and the Neighborhood Homes Investment Act to help build more affordable housing.