Washington, DC – (RealEstateRama) — The Senate Committee on Ways and Means (SWM) released its FY2018 state budget proposal(link is external). The budget includes strong investments in affordable housing and homelessness prevention resources.
In a letter(link is external) filed with the budget proposal, Senator Karen Spilka, Chair of the Senate Committee on Ways and Means, wrote:
“[T]here can be no security for individuals and families without access to reliable housing. The persistence of homelessness, particularly amongst families with children, offends our very notion of a Commonwealth, where all citizens are guaranteed by the Massachusetts Constitution, ‘the power of enjoying in safety and tranquility their natural rights, and the blessings of life.’ We therefore suggest significant investment in a number of housing initiatives, including accelerating the distribution of rental vouchers for families facing housing emergencies. We believe that our investments to prevent homelessness support best practices in putting individuals and families on the path towards stability.”
CHAPA thanks Chairwoman Spilka and other members of the SWM Committee for their continued support for these programs that help to make sure everyone in the Commonwealth has a healthy, safe, and affordable place to call home.
- MRVP – $100 million, including eligibility language addressing cliff effects
- AHVP – $5.5 million to provide rental assistance for persons with disabilities
- RAFT – $18.5 million more for this transitional assistance
- Housing Consumer Education Centers – $2.7 million to support the regional housing agencies
- HomeBASE – $32.6 million for assistance for homeless families or families facing homelessness
- Housing Court – $1 million and language to authorize the expansion of Housing Court statewide
- Unaccompanied Homeless Youth – $2.5 million for services and housing for homeless young adults
- Interagency Coordination for Low Income Families – An outside section requiring state agencies to coordinate resources that serve extremely low-income households
For a full overview of CHAPA’s budget priorities, including a detailed language analysis, please click here.
The Senate will debate its budget next week to finalize its proposal. Amendments to the SWM budget are due by the close of business on Thursday, May 18th. CHAPA will be asking you to reach out to your State Senator to have them co-sponsor amendments to support our affordable housing, homelessness prevention, and community development priorities.