On Thursday, March 16th, President Trump released the "America First - A Budget Blueprint to Make America Great Again". The budget does not include many details, but is more an outline of President Trump’s spending proposals. House and Senate appropriations committees will review the budget proposals and will develop the final budget documents for the President's signature.
Of interest to NAR, the budget would cut $6.2 billion from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development; and proposes eliminating the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program, Choice Neighborhoods, HOME Investment Partnership program and Self-help Housing programs (SHOP). These programs provide resources for states and local communities to provide downpayment assistance, home renovation, rental assistance and development. The budget does make provisions to continue the FHA mortgage insurance program.
In addition, the budget cuts nearly $1 billion from the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), including:
- $190 million in federal funding for flood maps to “instead explore other more effective and fair means…”; without flood maps, communities and property owners would not know where to insure or build, potentially putting taxpayers on the hook for increased post-disaster financial assistance.
- $667 million in FEMA grants for states and local governments to mitigate (elevate, flood proof, relocate, buyout) properties and communities out of harm’s way.
It also proposes a new user fee for NFIP policyholders to “ensure the cost of Government services is not subsidized by taxpayers”
The budget focuses largely on defense spending and border security. Congress is beginning to consider the FY2018 budget, and will take this proposal into consideration. NAR will work with Congressional Appropriators to advocate for adequate funding for programs important to REALTORS®.