The AHTCC has created a new toolkit to help you advocate for the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (Housing Credit), the nation’s primary tool for financing the development and preservation of affordable housing, and the Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act (AHCIA) to expand and strengthen this essential program. The AHCIA would develop and preserve more than 550,000 additional affordable homes than would otherwise be possible. It would also strengthen the Housing Credit to better meet the needs of hard-to-reach areas and populations, such as rural communities and veterans, more effectively preserve currently affordable homes, and streamline and simplify Housing Credit regulations. See below to learn more about advocating for the Housing Credit and the AHCIA.
Advocate for the Housing Credit and the AHCIA
The AHTCC produced a webinar on July 12 on advocating for the AHCIA. The webinar focuses on key new and returning provisions, the bill’s potential impact, and how you can effectively educate members of Congress about this important legislation. View the slides on our website and download the webinar recording.
Affordable Housing Podcast:
AHTCC Executive Director Emily Cadik was recently interviewed for the National Association of Local Housing Finance Agencies (NALHFA) Affordable Housing Podcast. Listen in as she discusses how the AHCIA would increase the production or preservation of more than 550,000 additional homes over 10 years, and how key provisions would improve the delivery of affordable housing to rural and other hard-to-reach areas. The podcast also covers the background and development of the AHCIA, as well as tips for advocating for the AHCIA.
Resources on the AHCIA:
The AHTCC and the A Call to Invest in Our Neighborhoods (ACTION) Campaign, which the AHTCC serves on the steering committee of, have developed several written resources to explain the provisions within the AHCIA. These resources include a simple one-pager explaining this year’s bill, a detailed explainer of each provision within the bill, and a document that lays out the difference between the AHCIA of 2017 and the AHCIA of 2019. See the resources here.
Send a Letter or Email to your Member of Congress
The AHTCC has developed sample letters which you can adapt to send to your members of Congress and those representing the areas in which you work. We have included separate letters customized for Senate and House members, based on whether or not they previously cosponsored the AHCIA in the last Congress (the 115th Congress). Download the sample letters here. Please contact Megan John at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions or if you need assistance acquiring contact information or customizing your letters.
Invite Members of Congress to Grand Openings and Ground Breakings
We hear from members of Congress time and time again that seeing Housing Credit properties firsthand made lasting impressions and grew their support for the Housing Credit. As Emily Cadik, AHTCC Executive Director, wrote in Affordable Housing Finance, August recess is an opportune time as most members of Congress will be in their home states and districts. Both the House and Senate will be on recess until September 8, 2019. The AHTCC can provide guidance to AHTCC members and nonmembers regarding property events. For AHTCC members, the AHTCC can assist in inviting members of Congress to events by coordinating with congressional staff and drafting invitations and talking points. To learn more, please contact Megan John at email@example.com.
Write and Op-Ed or Letter to the Editor
Local and national media outlets provide a platform to share the importance of affordable housing and the Housing Credit with a broader audience. In just the last few weeks, several published pieces have highlighted the acute affordable housing need and the AHCIA. After visiting a Housing Credit property and a manufactured home factory, Senator Mike Crapo (R-ID) wrote about the need for affordable housing in Idaho and across the country. In a Letter to the Editor published in the New York Times, Emily Cadik urges 2020 presidential candidates to support the AHCIA, and in Affordable Housing Finance she expounds on the prescient need for practitioners to advocate for the AHCIA. President and CEO of The Community Builders, Bart Mitchell, wrote about the need for affordable housing in Massachusetts, the AHCIA, and Rep. Neal’s longtime affordable housing leadership, and Chief Development Officer of Jamboree Housing, Michael Massie, wrote about the AHCIA and how it would help California renters. USA Today also ran an op-ed that called on Congress to expand the Housing Credit.
Advocate for the Housing Credit Firsthand on Capitol Hill
Joining us for our Fall Advocacy Event on September 11, 2019, in Washington, D.C. is one great way to help build support for the Housing Credit. Event participants will participate in teams led by experienced advocates, and will meet with congressional staff or Members of Congress to advocate for the Housing Credit firsthand. Participants will receive individualized itineraries and talking points, as well as all of the advocacy materials you will need to leave behind with congressional offices. Learn more about the AHTCC Fall Advocacy Event here. If you aren’t able to attend the Fall Advocacy Event but you’d like to join efforts in Washington, D.C. at a different time, please contact Megan John at firstname.lastname@example.org to coordinate your visit.
Help Your Colleagues Stay Up to Date with the AHTCC and the AHCIA
All members of the AHTCC can choose an unlimited number of the organization’s employees to benefit from the AHTCC member newsletter, policy updates, webinars, events, and additional advocacy support, such as assistance with inviting members of Congress to property events. If you are an AHTCC member but you aren’t yet receiving our content, please provide your contact information here and we’ll make sure you stay up to date. If you aren’t yet a member of the AHTCC, learn more about membership here.