Sen. Kissel Lauds Passage of PILOT Funding for Affordable Housing

April 3, 2008

Bill restores affordable housing funding to Enfield
State Senator John A. Kissel, R-Enfield, today hailed a measure that will provide nearly $4 million in funding to the state’s Moderate Rental Housing PILOT program. According Sen. Kissel, House Bill 5031, AN ACT CONCERNING PAYMENT IN LIEU OF TAXES FOR PUBLIC HOUSING AND THE LOW AND MODERATE INCOME TAX ABATEMENT PROGRAMS, of which he is a cosponsor, will provide the town of Enfield with over $130,000 in PILOT funding to assist with the efforts to provide affordable housing to low-income families. The legislation, which passed both the House and Senate unanimously today, now heads to Gov. M. Jodi Rell for her signature.

“I am very excited that we passed this legislation here today in a bi-partisan manner,” said Sen. Kissel, who in February testified on the bill before the legislature’s Housing Committee. “We did everything possible to restore this funding and we found a way to get it done. I am very pleased. This is very good news for the town of Enfield.”

House Bill 5031 transfers a total of $3,908,890 from the Department of Social Services (DSS) Housing/Homeless Services account to Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) to fund the Moderate Rental Housing PILOT program and the Housing Tax Abatement program in FY 08. The funds being transferred were designated in the adopted budget to fund Rental Assistance Program (RAP) certificates; however, these funds would not be spent this fiscal year and would otherwise lapse.

“The PILOT Program has been a crucial part in keeping rents relatively low, and when the state failed to adequately fund it, preliminary calculations indicated that base rents at moderate rental housing programs would have to be raised by $90 per month. Fortunately, in Enfield, we were able to cut that number in half and raise the rent by only $45 per month. However, for a low income family struggling to pay their bills and put food on the table, $45 per month is still a heavy burden,” said Sen. Kissel. “The loss of PILOT funding hurts the lowest income families because it raises only the base rate and since rents are calculated based on a sliding scale, only the families with the least amount of income pay the base rate. Restoring this funding helps the people who need it most.”