New York State 2012-13 Budget
Affordable Housing Highlights
NEW YORK (March 29, 2012) - Governor Andrew Cuomo and the Legislature have reached a three way agreement on the FY2012-13 State Budget and the Legislature is poised to pass the final parts of the plan within the next few hours. The new fiscal year begins April 1. The housing part of the Budget is very favorable to supportive housing and the popular nonprofit networks known as the Neighborhood and Rural Preservation Companies. The affordable housing program highlights are below.
Local Assistance Funding for Affordable Housing:
The final Budget will more than restore full funding to the community based nonprofit organizations under the Neighborhood Preservation Companies program (NPCs) and Rural Preservation Companies program (RPCs). According to the Budget, NPCs will be funded at $10.072 million - this includes a restoration of the $8.479 million cut that had been proposed plus an additional $1.593 million over 2011's funding level. The RPCs will be funded at $4.204 million - this includes a restoration of the $3.539 million cut that had been proposed plus an additional $665,000 over 2011's funding level. This is the first increase in funding in five years for these two programs.
• The Budget will increase funding for the Rural Rental Assistance Program (RRAP) which provides State funded rental subsidies to approximately 4,700 low income occupants of rural housing projects partially financed by the US Department of Agriculture. The program will receive an additional $4.798 million under the new Budget bringing the total appropriation to $19.6 million.
• The Budget includes an agreement to continue to assist homeowners through the Subprime Foreclosure Prevention Program. The Budget provides $9 million for the continuation of mortgage foreclosure counseling services to be administered by NYS Homes and Community Renewal over the next 6 months until proceeds from the National Mortgage Servicing Settlement Agreement are realized. At that time, additional services will be financed with proceeds from the Settlement Agreement under the administration of the State Attorney General's office.
Supportive Housing Programs:
• Medicaid Redesign Team (MRT) Supportive Housing Development Program - The Budget includes $60 million for the MRT Supportive Housing Fund. Following the recommendations of the MRT, the budget establishes and funds a new Supportive Housing Development Program that will provide service funding, rent subsidies and capital dollars to create supportive housing for high-cost Medicaid recipients. The new fund will be funded with $60 million of State general funds this year, and $75 million of State general funds in each of the following two years, with funding originating in the NYS Department of Health, to be distributed to HCR, OTDA, OMH, OASAS, OPWDD and the DOH AIDS Institute. It also allows the fund to grow to $150 million annually if the State can convince the federal Center for Medicaid and Medicare Services to provide matching funds.
• The State's draft spending plan envisions approximately one-third of this year's fund going to scattered-site rental and service subsidies, another third going to capital development of supportive housing units at NYS Homes and Community Renewal, and as much as $14.5 million to OTDA Homeless Housing Assistance Program (HHAP) for upstate projects, with the rest going to specific projects including $7 million to provide capital funding for the development of community-based permanent housing for residents of Goldwater/Coler Hospital. Further details will follow in the coming weeks.
• Community Reinvestment in Supportive Housing - In addition to the $60 million in funding this year, the budget authorizes a new, ongoing community reinvestment vehicle, the Supportive Housing Development Reinvestment Program. This new program will redirect savings achieved by closing nursing home and hospital beds to build and operate new supportive housing in the community for high-cost Medicaid recipients.
• NYS Supportive Housing Program (NYSSHP) & NYS Solutions to End Homelessness Program (STEHP) - The budget also increases funding for NYSSHP and STEHP by $1.5 million each, a total of $3 million in additional funding to the Homeless Housing and Prevention Services Program.
Capital Budget for Affordable Housing:
The Budget calls for the expansion of the State Low Income Housing Tax Credit Program. The Division of Housing and Community Renewal is authorized to allocate an additional $8 million annually in each of the next two years in aggregate credit awards to taxpayers who develop qualifying housing projects for low-income New Yorkers. Credits are given in equal installments for a ten-year period.
• The Budget also calls for $32.2 million for the Low-Income Housing Trust Fund Program - same as 2011, which provides grants of up to $125,000 per unit to construct or renovate low-income apartment projects.
• The Budget includes $25 million for the Affordable Home Ownership Development Program - same as 2011, which provides grants of up to $40,000 per unit to construct or renovate homes for low and moderate- income families.
• The Budget includes $6.4 million for the Public Housing Modernization Program - same as 2011, which subsidizes repairs at 74 State-supervised public housing projects across the State. A total of $400,000 will be reserved for capital activities aimed at reducing illegal drug activities at these projects.
• The Budget includes $7 million for the Homes for Working Families Program - same as 2011, which combines State funds with other available public and private sector moneys, Federal Low Income Tax Credit proceeds and non-State supported bond funds to construct affordable rental housing for low- and moderate-income households.
• The plan calls for $400,000 for the Housing Opportunities for the Elderly Program (also known as RESTORE) - same as 2011, which provides grants to low-income elderly homeowners for emergency home repairs.
• The Budget includes $1 million for the Access to Home Program - same as 2011, which provides funding for home adaptations for individuals with disabilities to enable them to continue to live in their own residences and avoid institutional care.
• The New York Main Street Program, which provides financial resources and technical assistance to communities to revitalize historic downtowns, mixed-use neighborhoods, commercial districts and village centers was increased by $3 million, to $5.2 million.
• The Budget also funds two programs that have been in existence for many years, but infrequently funded; the Urban Initiatives and the Rural Area Revitalization programs will each be funded at $4 million this year. Both are administered by NYS Homes and Community Renewal.