Cantwell Fights for Extension of Tax Credit Program

April 26, 2010
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U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA) is asking for a one-year extension of the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit Exchange, which was part of the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). The Exchange makes it easier for states to access needed capital to move forward on stalled housing construction projects to create more affordable rental housing.

“Affordable housing continues to be a major concern and challenge across our nation and here in Washington,” said Cantwell, who played a key role in passing an extension of the Exchange through 2010 as part of the Senate’s second jobs bill.

The effectiveness of the LIHTC was severely hampered by the economic downturn in 2008 and 2009. The value of the credits depends on demand by the large corporate investors. In this slumping economy, that demand dropped sharply. As a result, funding gaps rose, and tens of thousands of housing units stalled for lack of private investment capital. Cantwell was instrumental in including the Exchange program in ARRA to address this absence of LIHTC private capital.