Shaheen-led Bipartisan Bill to Increase Access to Rural Housing Passes U.S. Senate
WASHINGTON – The U.S. Senate unanimously passed bipartisan legislation introduced by U.S. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Jerry Moran (R-KS) and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) to extend the loan window for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Section 524 Rural Housing site loan program. The Section 524 program provides loans to non-profits and local and tribal governments to acquire and develop land to be subdivided into building sites for low and moderate-income families. This legislation would extend the loan repayment window from two years to five years, increasing flexibility for borrowers.
“New Hampshire is in the midst of an affordable housing crisis, ranking fourth in the nation for lack of housing,” said Senator Shaheen. “Extending the term of loans for affordable rural housing construction will make these loans more effective and help more Granite State families purchase homes. I’m pleased to see this bipartisan legislation pass the Senate, and I thank Senators Moran and Klobuchar for their leadership on this bill.”
The loan window extension program is also supported by various housing organizations and leaders. It now heads to the U.S. House of Representatives to be passed.
Senator Shaheen is a leader in the Senate working to combat homelessness and housing instability by helping to ensure Granite Staters have the resources they need to thrive. Recently, Shaheen introduced bicameral bills that would help preserve and revitalize manufactured housing communities and protect the rights of residents of manufactured housing communities. As a senior member of the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee and Chair of the Commerce, Justice, Science Appropriations Subcommittee, Shaheen worked to include key provisions from her Strategy and Investment in Rural Housing Preservation Act in the FY 2024 Agriculture and Related Agencies Appropriations Act. Shaheen’s standalone legislation would ensure that hundreds of thousands of low-income tenants in rural areas are able to maintain access to safe and affordable housing. Shaheen also led the New Hampshire congressional delegation in securing more than $350 million in Emergency Rental Assistance Funds for the state.