2003 Adopted Resolutions
71st Annual Meeting

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WHEREAS, according to HUD, over 5 million renter households have severe housing needs. These households contain renters with incomes below 50 percent of area median income who pay more than half of their income for rent or live in severely substandard housing; and

WHEREAS, progress in assisting these households is diminished by the substantial shortage of affordable housing. Between 1997 and 1999, the number of units with rents affordable to households with incomes below 50 percent of area median income dropped by 1.1 million, a loss of 7 percent; and

WHEREAS, one answer to this crisis is to produce more affordable housing using effective federal housing programs such as the HOME Investment Partnerships (HOME) Program; and

WHEREAS, housing is at the core of strong communities; promoting neighborhood stability, improved educational opportunity, employment stability, and building assets for families; and

WHEREAS, the HOME program provides direct formula grants to jurisdictions to fund a wide-range of affordable housing activities. HOME's flexibility allows communities to use the program funds in combination with other Federal, State, and local funds. Since 1992, the program has expanded the supply of decent, safe, affordable housing, strengthened public-private partnerships in developing affordable housing, and improved the lives of low-income people and their neighborhoods; and

WHEREAS, the majority of HOME funds have been committed to housing that will be occupied by very low-income people and a substantial amount will assist families with incomes no greater than 30 percent of median income; and

WHEREAS, since 1992, HOME has helped to develop or rehabilitate over 718,000 affordable housing units for low- and very low-income families; and

WHEREAS, HOME funds also helps low- and moderate-income families realize the dream of homeownership by providing for the construction and rehabilitation of housing as well as providing the down payment and or closing cost assistance. Since, 1992 HOME funds have been committed to 140,700 homeowner units, with an additional 270,258 households receiving homebuyer assistance; and

WHEREAS, HOME is cost effective and provides the gap financing necessary to attract private loans and investments to projects. For each HOME dollar, $2.92 of private and other funds has been leveraged since the program's inception; and

WHEREAS, we greatly appreciate the increased $111 million in formula funding for the program in FY 2003. However, with the 2000 Census data, approximately 20 new participating jurisdictions will become eligible to receive HOME funds in FY 2004, thereby, eroding this increase,

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the U.S. Conference Mayors supports increased funding for the HOME program formula to at least $2.25 billion in FY 2004; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the U.S. Conference of Mayors supports additional funding within the HOME program for increased housing production to meet the nation's affordable housing shortage.