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Congresswoman Maxine Waters Sounds the Alarm On Our Nation’s Worsening Housing and Homelessness During Press Conference

WASHINGTON, D.C. –  During last week’s 2024 Democratic Issues Conference, Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA), the top Democrat on the House Financial Services Committee, hosted a breakout session entitled, “Housing for All: Tackling the Affordable Housing and Homelessness Crisis.” The breakout session included Congressman Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO), the Ranking Member on the Subcommittee on Housing and Insurance, and other key housing and homelessness experts. During the panel, Members discussed the spectrum of housing challenges across the country, legislative strategies to address it, and how Members can work with their local communities to strengthen the delivery of housing resources to increase supply and lower costs.

Ranking Member Waters and Democrats, including Representatives Jim Himes (CT-04), Brad Sherman (CA-32), Steven Horsford (NV-04), Sylvia Garcia  (TX-29), Wiley Nickel (NC-13), Brittany Pettersen (CO-07) and Delia Ramirez (IL-03), continued this conversation with a press conference, calling on Congress to move urgently to pass Ranking Member Waters’ historic housing package, which would increase housing supply, improve affordability, end homelessness, and revive the dream of homeownership across the country. The legislative package includes:

The “Housing Crisis Response Act,” which represents the housing investments that were previously included in Build Back Better Act. This bill would invest more than $150 billion in fair and affordable housing investments to create nearly 1.4 million affordable and accessible homes, reduce housing costs for all, and help address stubborn core inflation;

The “Ending Homelessness Act,” which would end homelessness and significantly reduce poverty by transforming the Housing Choice Voucher program into a federal entitlement, so that every household who qualifies for assistance receives it; and

The “Downpayment Toward Equity Act,” which would help revive the dream of homeownership for all by providing $100 billion in direct assistance to help first-time, first-generation homebuyers cover downpayments, closing costs, and buydown mortgage interest rates. During her opening remarks, Ranking Member Waters also announced a brand-new initiative to work alongside Democratic Members in the House and local officials to lower the cost of development and reduce other local barriers to fair and affordable housing. During her opening remarks, Ranking Member Waters also announced a brand-new initiative to work alongside Democratic Members in the House and local officials to lower the cost of development and reduce other local barriers to fair and affordable housing. Watch the full press conference HERE.

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