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Proposed tax overhaul hurts affordable housing in GOP districts, California treasurer says

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Bakersfield). (J. Scott Applewhite / Associated Press)
House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Bakersfield). (J. Scott Applewhite / Associated Press)

Low-income housing programs on the chopping block in the House GOP’s proposed tax ovehaul created nearly 10,000 new homes in the 14 Republican-held congressional districts in California over the last four years, according to new data released by state Treasurer John Chiang.

Chiang, who has been advocating for the preservation of the programs, argued that California cannot afford to lose any low-income housing funding as the state continues to face a housing affordability crisis.

“As the list of projects shows, this is not an abstract issue, or one that impacts only one region or a small number of Californians,” Chiang wrote in a Thursday letter to House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Bakersfield). “It is broad-based and affects constituents like yours and those in congressional districts across the state. We all have seen the tangible benefits of these vital programs; now we must come together to save them.”

The House GOP plan would effectively eliminate part of a tax credit program that reduces what companies owe in taxes in exchange for investing in low-income housing projects. In addition, it would do away with a federal bond program that also funds housing developments.

The two programs have helped subsidize the production of two-thirds of all the affordable housing built or preserved in the state.

With the corporate tax rate cut from 35% to 20% under the GOP plan, businesses also will have less incentive to invest in the surviving tax credit program, reducing their value and the amount of housing those credits could subsidize.

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