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House Passes Tax Bill with Housing Credit Expansion By Wide, Bipartisan Margin

The House of Representatives passed the Tax Relief for American Families and Workers Act (H.R. 7024), which would significantly increase Housing Credit resources over the next two years.

Last night, the House of Representatives passed the Tax Relief for American Families and Workers Act (H.R. 7024), which would significantly increase Housing Credit resources over the next two years. The bill is the result of a deal struck by House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Jason Smith (R-MO) and Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden (D-OR) after months of negotiation.

Speaker of the House Mike Johnson (R-LA) brought the bill to the floor under suspension of the rules, a process by which he could fast-track the vote by bypassing the House Rules Committee, limiting debate, and prohibiting amendments on the floor. However, this procedure requires a two-thirds majority of the members voting to pass. In the end, the vote well exceeded that threshold, passing 357 – 70 with five members not voting. Support for the bill was strong in both parties, with 169 Republicans voting in favor compared to just 47 opposed. Democrats voted for it by a 188 to 23 margin.

The bill includes two provisions that would allow state housing finance agencies to finance more affordable rental homes with the Housing Credit. As NCSHA previously has reported, the legislation would restore the 12.5 percent increase in Housing Credit authority that expired in 2022, applicable for calendar years 2023, 2024, and 2025, and lower the bond financing threshold to 30 percent for properties financed with bonds that have an issue date before 2026, effective for buildings placed in service after 2023. Novogradac estimates these two provisions would finance 202,573 additional rental homes, supporting 304,190 jobs and generating $34.3 billion in wages and business income and $11.9 billion in federal, state, and local tax revenue.

During the debate on the legislation earlier in the evening, multiple members speaking in support of the bill brought up the importance of its affordable housing provisions, including Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act sponsors Representatives Darin LaHood (R-IL), Suzan DelBene (D-WA), Jimmy Panetta (D-CA), and Don Beyer (D-VA).

Next, the bill will go to the Senate for consideration. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) supports the legislation, but Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has not yet signaled his position. As of this writing, we do not know the process by which the Senate will consider the bill, including whether the Senate Finance Committee will hold a markup, as some committee members have requested.

Published on February 1, 2024 by Jennifer Schwartz on https://www.ncsha.org/

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