New York, NY – January 9, 2024 – The State of New York continues to face a widely acknowledged and worsening affordable housing crisis that demands a set of comprehensive solutions. After the failure to advance such a package in last year’s session, we urge lawmakers this year to redouble their efforts, keep the momentum, and advance all measures that will address this crisis. 

To that end, we applaud the Governor’s proposal of a new enforcement unit to address pervasive and illegal source-of-income (SOI) discrimination. Rapid response to discrimination complaints in a manner that facilitates housing for residents is the best possible outcome. For this new unit to be successful, it must be paired by an increase to the State’s Fair Housing Testing, Education and Networking Program to $8 million annually. Nonprofit fair housing testing organizations field the majority of housing discrimination complaints in New York, and this funding is necessary to deepen their work and expand their impact.

We are also encouraged by the Governor's proposed ban to preclude insurance providers from considering tenants’ source of income and whether properties include affordable housing in offering insurance or factoring in pricing. This is a necessary first step in addressing a far broader set of concerns with insurance costs and availability in affordable housing, and we look forward to partnering with all State stakeholders at advancing comprehensive solutions.

The State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA) has been weaponized against affordable housing projects, delaying or contributing to killing them altogether. We are pleased that the Governor has cited this process as a potential barrier to housing and that plans are underway to further study SEQRA in a way that encourages housing while not sacrificing necessary environmental oversight.

While not the comprehensive proposal of last year’s Housing Compact, the above proposals represent important steps in the right direction, and we encourage serious consideration of these measures by the Legislature.

There are additional measures that should advance in this year’s session. These include:

  • The Housing Access Voucher Program (HAVP): This vital rental assistance program would be a game-changing new tool available to those experiencing homelessness or who are housing insecure. Its passage and funding at $250 million would be immediately impactful in many areas of the State without robust rental assistance resources.
  • The conversion of around 9,000 New York State Supportive Housing Program contracts to Empire State Supportive Housing Initiative, bolstered by an additional $32 million to bring these units up to full funding.
  • Funding to preserve New York’s at-risk stock of USDA 515 housing, much of which is approaching the end of its regulatory period, bringing potential loss of affordability.

New Yorkers cannot wait another year for a serious tackling of our affordable housing crisis at the State level. The time is now.


About Enterprise Community Partners

Enterprise is a national nonprofit that exists to make a good home possible for the millions of families without one. We support community development organizations on the ground, aggregate and invest capital for impact, advance housing policy at every level of government, and build and manage communities ourselves. Since 1982, we have invested $64 billion and created 951,000 homes across all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands – all to make home and community places of pride, power and belonging. Join us at