Affordable housing bill unanimously clears key Senate committee hurdle
Housing Alliance of Pennsylvania rally at the Capitol. (Photo by Sarah Anne Hughes)
A bill that expands the state’s affordable housing trust fund passed a Senate committee unanimously Wednesday.
The legislation, introduced by Sens. Art Haywood, D-Philadelphia, and Elder Vogel, R-Beaver, allows for more dollars to be allocated to the Pennsylvania Housing Affordability and Rehabilitation Enhancement Fund (PHARE), which in turn provides money to affordable housing projects across the state.
Haywood told the Senate Urban Affairs & Housing Committee that the Pa. Housing Finance Agency is “overwhelmed with strong applications” for housing trust fund dollars.
At the moment, the amount of revenue from the realty transfer tax that can flow from the General Fund to the housing trust fund is capped at $25 million. The legislation lifts that cap, but does not guarantee additional funding will be available.
“If there is extra money, there’s extra money,” Vogel said.
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