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Extend the New Issue Bond Program

Treasury should extend the existing authority of the New Issue Bond Program so that it remains available through at least the end of 2012.

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Our still-ailing housing markets need all the first-time homebuyers and affordable rental housing investors we can find. The New Issue Bond Program, which the Department of the Treasury launched in 2009 to help state and local housing finance agencies continue financing housing for working families during the housing crisis, is set to expire at the end of 2011. The program’s imminent expiration threatens access to affordable rental housing and homeownership for many of those hardest hit by the housing crisis.

Fortunately, Treasury has the authority to extend the program beyond its current deadline. With half of all American renters devoting more than a third of their income to housing alone, and with private lenders writing off struggling communities and households that the housing finance agencies are uniquely able to serve, Treasury should extend the existing authority of the New Issue Bond Program so that it remains available through at least the end of 2012.

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