The Biden-Harris Administration announced a set of proposals designed to help narrow the racial wealth gap and reinvest in distressed communities. The administration says it will launch an interagency effort to address inequity in home appraisals and publish next week in the Federal Register a proposed rule on countering housing practices with discriminatory effects and an interim proposed rule on HUD’s Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing. The administration plan also includes using the federal government’s purchasing power to grow federal contracting with small disadvantaged businesses by 50 percent.
The administration’s announcement provides new information regarding President Biden’s American Jobs Plan proposals to create jobs and build wealth in communities of color. These include:
- A new $10 billion HUD Community Revitalization Fund to support community-led civic infrastructure projects that create innovative shared amenities, spark new local economic activity, provide services, build community wealth and strengthen social cohesion
- A new Neighborhood Homes Tax Credit to attract private investment in the development and rehabilitation of affordable homes for low- and moderate-income home buyers and homeowners.
- $5 billion for the Unlocking Possibilities Program, which would award flexible funding to jurisdictions that take steps to reduce barriers to producing affordable housing and expand housing choices for people with low or moderate incomes.
- A new $15 billion Reconnecting Neighborhoods Program for competitive grants for planning, technical assistance and capital investments to support the planning, removal or retrofitting of existing transportation infrastructure that creates a barrier to community connectivity, including barriers to mobility, access or economic development.
- Establish a new $5 billion Thriving Communities Program to support communities’ efforts to eliminate persistent transportation barriers and increase access to jobs, schools and businesses.
- $30 billion in new Small Business Administration initiatives that would reduce barriers to small business ownership and success. These initiatives would increase access to capital by establishing a new direct loan program for the smallest businesses, developing new loan products to support small manufacturers and businesses that invest in clean energy, and launching a new Small Business Investment Corporation that will make early-stage equity investments in small businesses with priority for those owned by socially and economically disadvantaged individuals.