WISCONSINREPORT.COM (05/06/08) - Wisconsin U.S. Senator Russ Feingold (D-WI) is urging his Senate colleagues to support a national affordable housing trust fund to help create affordable housing for families facing severe housing costs around the country. In a letter to the Senate Banking Committee, Feingold called on the committee to pass the bipartisan National Affordable Housing Trust Fund Act of 2007 introduced by Senators John Kerry (D-MA) and Olympia Snowe (R-ME) as part of broader housing legislation. The proposal would help low income families by providing housing solutions.
A national affordable housing trust fund would provide sources of funding to produce, rehabilitate, and preserve affordable housing for low income families across America.
Last year, Feingold introduced the Affordable Housing Expansion and Public Safety Act which called on Congress to create a national affordable housing trust fund.
A national affordable housing trust fund would also support ongoing state and local affordable housing efforts, including the housing trust fund recently created in Milwaukee.
“I continue to hear from Wisconsinites concerned about the lack of affordable housing,” Feingold said.
“We have to address the rising demand for safe, affordable housing so our most needy families do not continue to pay the price for our inaction," Senator Feingold continued.
"A real investment in affordable housing can serve as the foundation for improving the lives and communities for many Americans,” he said.
Feingold’s efforts to implement a national affordable housing trust fund is part of legislation he introduced last year to boost the availability of affordable housing for Americans.
Feingold’s Affordable Housing Expansion and Public Safety Act would urge Congress to create a national affordable housing trust fund, authorize 100,000 new Section 8 vouchers to help with rental payments, expand funding for the production and rehabilitation of affordable housing, and reauthorize a grant program to combat violent and drug-related crime in public housing.
In 2006, the city of Milwaukee created a housing trust fund to provide a permanent source of funding to build and rehabilitate affordable housing in the city.
“Hundreds of local housing trust funds have been created in cities and states throughout the country, including in my state of Wisconsin,” Feingold wrote in the letter to the Senate Banking Committee.
“A national housing trust fund can play a critical role in supporting ongoing affordable housing efforts at the state and local level,” Feingold explained.