Senate Considers Revised FY 2016 THUD Spending Bill

Published by Peter Lawrence on Thursday, November 19, 2015 - 12:00am

The Senate is considering a revised fiscal year (FY) 2016 Transportation-HUD (THUD) spending bill. This revised bill was made possible by the passage of the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015, which increased the discretionary spending caps for FY 2016 by $50 billion, equally divided between defense and nondefense spending.

As noted in a Senate Appropriations Committee press release, the bill provides an extra $1.624 billion from the FY 2016 THUD bill approved by the Senate Appropriations Committee this summer, $934 million of which is provided for HUD.

That extra funding would go to only two HUD programs: $834 million for the HOME Investment Partnerships program, which had been virtually proposed for elimination from the Senate Appropriations Committee-approved version of the bill, and another $100 million for the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program.

As reflected in the revised bill, HOME would receive $900 million, providing level funding from FY 2015, but $150 million less than the president’s FY 2016 request. The House FY 2016 THUD bill also provides $900 million, but also transfers $133 million from the Housing Trust Fund to reach that amount. Neither the revised nor the committee-approved bills include such a transfer.

CDBG would receive $3 billion in the revised bill, equal to FY 2015 and the House FY 2016 bill, but $200 million more than the FY 2016 request.

At the time of this writing, the Senate suspended action on the revised bill based on a lack of agreement on how to proceed on a variety of amendments, many of which had nothing to do with THUD programs. Nevertheless, these funding levels are expected to serve as the Senate’s position when it negotiates with the House on a final omnibus FY 2016 appropriations bill, which is expected to be considered in Congress before the current stop-gap funding bill expires Dec. 11.

For the details on program funding levels in the rest of the Senate FY 2016 THUD bill, see this previous post.