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Low-income families could face housing crunch


WASHINGTON – Nov. 7, 2013 – The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a non-partisan Washington advocate for housing issues, says sequestration – the automatic cuts to government programs after lawmakers couldn’t find agreement – will start impacting low-income housing families in 2014.

Douglas Rice, writing for the Center, says “state and local housing agencies are facing substantial shortfalls in funding to renew the Housing Choice Vouchers that more than 2.1 million low-income households use to rent modest private-market housing at an affordable cost.”

He says many agencies that distribute housing funds are cutting back, but so far it’s only impacted families who leave the program. He estimates that 40,000 to 65,000 fewer families will receive housing funds this year.

But more families will be impacted in 2014, he says, as work-arounds to stretch current funds run out, assuming the federal government doesn’t enact anything to mitigate the sequestration cuts.

“Under that scenario, we estimate that between 125,000 and 185,000 low-income families will lose assistance by the end of 2014 (compared to December 2012),” Rice says.

Rice says Congress will have to provide $17.7 billion for voucher renewals in 2014 to avoid an impact to low-income renters.

© 2013 Florida Realtors®

Related Topics: Workforce housing