Affordable Housing, Announcements, Homelessness, State News, Supportive Housing

Legislature Follows Governor’s Lead: Strong Support for Housing Programs

 

The General Assembly’s 2015-2017 biennial budget and revenue package, adopted in the legislative session’s waning hours, provides abundant new resources for affordable and supportive housing creation, along with vital support services for the residents who will enjoy that new housing.

The budget follows closely Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s robust housing blueprint proposed in February, providing housing or housing-related services for veterans, people with disabilities and low-moderate-income residents across Connecticut. 

The budget provides only a portion of the resources for key state housing programs. The capital side of the spending plan, encompassed in the legislature’s bond package, was not adopted during the regular legislative session, which ended at midnight June 3. It is widely expected that the bond package, along with bills implementing programs funded in the budget, will be voted on in a special session later in June.

“We deeply appreciate the extensive time and deep thought Gov. Malloy, Speaker Sharkey, Senate President Looney and their budget officials and committee chairmen gave to the housing portion of the budget,” said David Fink, policy director for the Partnership for Strong Communities. “Once again, Connecticut’s leaders have proven they understand that an affordable home with needed services is the foundation of both individual opportunity and the state’s economic growth.” 

The budget adopted by the House and Senate, which Gov. Malloy is widely expected to sign into law, would continue the momentum Gov. Malloy and the General Assembly sparked over the last several years by providing:

  • $1 million in FY 2016 and $2 million in FY 2017 for support services provided by the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (DMHAS) and another $900,000 in FY 2016 and $1.8 million in FY 2017 for Department of Housing (DOH) rental subsidies to support a total of 200 new units of supportive housing related to the Governor’s Second Chance Initiative, specifically for the Connecticut Collaborative on Re-Entry (formally known as FUSE) which is designed to serve those who frequently cycle through the criminal justice system and homeless shelter services. 
  • $1 million in FY 2016 and $1 million in FY 2017 to DMHAS for wraparound services for chronically homeless individuals as part of the Governor’s Zero: 2016 initiative. 
  • $1 million in each year to maintain the Homeless Youth Program in the Department of Children and Families.
  • $1.1 million in FY 2016 and $1.15 million in FY 2017 to DOH for the non-profit housing tax abatement program.
  • $527,000 in FY 2016 and $541,000 in FY 2017 to DOL for the Veterans’ Opportunity PILOT, a job training and subsidized employment program for veterans who have been homeless or at risk of homelessness.
  • Up to $20.3 million in Community Investment Act funding over the biennium, of which 25% is authorized for housing and homelessness programs.
  • $1.43 million in each year to the Department of Labor to provide funding for the expansion of the Integrated Basic Education and Skills program as part of Gov. Malloy’s Second Chance Initiative.
  • $1.5 million in FY 2016 and $3 million in FY 2017 to DMHAS for grants to organizations that provide acute care and emergency behavioral health services, care coordination, access to information and referrals to healthcare and social service programs.
  • $138,000 in each year for supportive housing services at Jefferson House in New Britain and Horace Bushnell Apartments in Hartford.
  • Funding in the Office of Policy and Management for a Land Value Taxation pilot program in three municipalities yet to be determined. 

 

 
 

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