Billionaire Michael Bloomberg served as Mayor of New York City from 2001-2013. His campaign touts his record as Mayor, pointing to the drop in crime, economic growth with creation of 400,000 jobs, improved air quality and mass transit, and supporting anti-poverty programs that became national models. He does not have a specific affordable housing plan, but his campaign points to his oversight of affordable housing construction and preservation in the city. The campaign also notes his support of inclusionary zoning and foreclosure assistance.
This resource focuses on active 2020 Presidential Candidates. Recent changes or additions to Michael Bloomberg's housing policy proposals may not be reflected in this resource.
The Bloomberg plan would use regulations and incentives to reduce discrimination because of source of income. Bloomberg also proposes navigator services that would help low-income renters find housing, fill out applications and provide information on available services. He would enforce HUD Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rules and tie federal funding to local progress on reducing segregation. He would also expand Fair Housing Act protections and enforce fair housing laws. Bloomberg also proposes emergency financial services to help people stay in their homes and avoid eviction. In addition, he would expand federal grants for city eviction prevention programs and support efforts to provide tenants with counseling and legal help.
Bloomberg’s goal is to cut homelessness in half within four years. He proposes increasing funding to $6 billion per year for homelessness programs, about double current spending. Bloomberg would also increase federal support for “housing first” strategies, including rapid rehousing. These approaches place homeless persons immediately in permanent housing, often using vouchers. Clients receive services to stabilize their situation. He would also expand permanent supportive housing, and provide grants to cities that implement effective homelessness prevention programs.
Energy retrofits would get increased funding in the Bloomberg plan, with more funding for the Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP) and the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). He proposes a targeted downpayment assistance program to help low-income renters buy homes, and to promote greater access to basic financial services. Bloomberg would direct Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) to target lending for purchase of homes costing less than $70,000. He also has a goal to create 1 million new African-American homeowners. He would promote this goal through a new $10 billion Housing Fairness Commission, and by updating credit scoring requirements. Finally, Bloombert proposes expanding Fair Housing Act protections and enforcing fair housing laws.
Bloomberg would make Section 8 Housing Choice Vouchers (HCV) a right for anyone earning less than 30% of area median income. This would serve 4 million additional families, doubling the current number served. He would also make it easier for people with vouchers to move to areas of opportunity that have good schools, jobs and public transit. Bloomberg also promotes regional administration of vouchers so that clients have a better chance to move to neighborhoods of opportunity.
Federal programs that produce or rehabilitate affordable housing would receive increased funding under the Bloomberg plan. These include the Public Housing Capital Fund, the HOME program, the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program, the Capital Magnet Fund, and the National Housing Trust Fund.
Bloomberg would also expand the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC). In addition, he would “supercharge” public housing upgrades to address a serious backlog of repair needs. He would do this by streamlining the Rental Assistance Demonstration application process and other measures to more quickly approve project upgrades.
In addition, the Bloomberg plan would provide grants for investing in neglected and under-capitalized neighborhoods. It also addresses improving small rentals with a tax credit for upgrades to properties with 1-4 rental units. In many cases, these properties cannot qualify for the financing to make important health and safety improvements because the repairs cost more than the building will be worth once the work is done. The tax credit allows lenders to take the risk in funding these repairs.
Bloomberg supports raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour. He also supports raising the Earned Income Tax Credit. In addition, he proposes increasing the Child Tax Credit and making it wholly refundable.
New federal infrastructure funds for areas that have undertaken progressive zoning reforms would be prioritized under Bloomberg’s plan. He also proposes a $10 billion competition for cities that support affordable housing development in neighborhoods of opportunity.
The Bloomberg plan proposes expanding the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC). He also proposes incentives for LIHTC projects that are located in areas of opportunity with good schools, jobs and transit.
Bloomberg would provide funding to help seniors make their homes more accessible so that they can better age in place.
Increased funding for the Public Housing Capital Fund is proposed in Bloomber’s plan. The Capital Fund pays for major repairs and upgrades to public housing. These include replacing roofs and boilers, upgrading fire alarm and sprinkler systems, adding accessibility features and improving energy efficiency.