On May 11th, the Senate Committee on Ways and Means released its state budget proposal for FY2022. CHAPA thanks Senate President Karen Spilka, Sen. Michael Rodrigues, Chair of the Senate Committee on Ways and Means, and other members of the Ways and Means Committee for their strong investments in affordable housing and community development programs. Read more about the budget proposal on CHAPA's website.
Next week, the Senate will debate and finalize its FY2022 state budget proposal. We are currently working to strengthen critical affordable housing, rental assistance, and homelessness prevention programs through proposed amendments to the budget, which can be found in more detail below.
Please call or email your State Senator today and ask them to co-sponsor these budget amendments!
You can use the following script in your message to your State Senator:
Hello, I am [NAME] from [CITY or TOWN] in the Senator’s district. Programs that support affordable housing, rental assistance, and homelessness prevention are important to our community. I am requesting that the Representative support and sign on to co-sponsor the following budget amendments. [LIST THE AMENDMENTS BELOW]. Thank you.
As always, thank you for your advocacy and for your support of CHAPA’s priorities. If you have any questions, please contact Eric Shupin, CHAPA’s Director of Public Policy, at 617-682-9712 or Abhi Kurve, CHAPA’s Policy Associate, at 617-910-7953.
#444 – Mass. Rental Voucher Program (MRVP) (7004-9024)
Sponsored by Sen. John Keenan
Sen. Keenan’s amendment increases the FY2022 allocations to $160 million to help meet the affordable housing need and increase the number of households who can access the program. This funding level could support an estimated 1,800 new rental vouchers.
#756 – RAFT Improvements (7004-9316)
Sponsored by Sen. Brendan Crighton
Sen. Crighton’s amendment increases funding for RAFT to $26.7 million to ensure adequate funding is available to provide emergency housing assistance for those that do not qualify for federal emergency rental assistance – such as for housing emergencies not related to COVID-19 or for mortgage payment assistance. The amendment also:
- Keeps the $10,000 maximum RAFT benefit in place after the end of the COVID-19 emergency declaration to allow those impacted by the virus time to recover, even after the end of the emergency declaration.
- Allows families with children at risk of homelessness to access the maximum benefits for both RAFT and HomeBASE, even after the COVID-19 emergency declaration ends, as they will continue to face housing instability after the emergency is lifted.
#835 – Improvements to HomeBASE (7004-0108)
Sponsored by Sen. Patricia Jehlen
Sen. Jehlen’s amendment increases funding for HomeBASE to $45 million. It also allows families with children to renew their HomeBASE assistance if otherwise facing a return to homelessness, provided that the family is eligible and remains in good standing. Finally, the amendment improves data collection with respect to race and ethnicity data on HomeBASE program participants.
#837 – Tenancy Preservation Program (7004-3045)
Sponsored by Sen. Adam Hinds
Sen. Hind’s amendment increases funding for the Tenancy Preservation Program to $1.8 million. This will allow the program to help prevent homelessness for persons with disabilities who face an eviction related to their disability.
#121 – Reducing CPA Recording Fees for Affordable Housing
Sponsored by Sen. Sal DiDomenico
Sen. DiDomenico’s amendment reduces Community Preservation Act (CPA) recording fees for affordable housing. This will help reduce the financial burden on affordable homebuyers with low and moderate incomes while having a small impact on overall fee collection for the state.