Congress Grants Extension for Rural Communities
Last week Congress passed the Continuing Resolution, which funds the government for remainder of the fiscal year. Within that bill was an extension of the exiting rural housing definition, which will ensure that more than 900 communities continue to have access to rural housing programs. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is required under federal law to revise the list of communities eligible for rural housing loans following each decennial census. However, following every census since 1980, Congress has grandfathered in existing communities. NAR championed this issue and sent many communications to Congress over the last year. The bill that just passed will provide an extension through September 30, 2013. NAR will continue to work with Congress to update the definition of "rural" in order to retain vital RHS housing programs in more than 900 rural communities.