WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Senator John Barrasso (R-WY), chairman of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, praised the inclusion of a key amendment to H.R. 2577, the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Appropriations Act of 2016, to boost Native housing. H.R. 2577 passed the Senate by a vote of 89-8.
The amendment 3909, offered by Barrasso, expands the eligible use of the Indian Community Development Block Grant program (ICDGB) funds from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Office of Native American Programs. The amendment will now allow ICDBG funds to be used for the construction of housing facilities for certain skilled professionals. These include law enforcement, health, educational, technical, and other skilled professionals.
“We need to empower tribes to meet their housing needs and attract skilled workers,” said Barrasso. “This amendment ensures that they have the freedom to decide how best to use these funds for their communities. I am glad the Senate moved to include this important measure.”