The Native CDFI Network (NCN) encourages all Native CDFI and tribal leaders to contact their U.S. Congressional representatives to gain their support as co-sponsors of the Native American Rural Homeownership Improvement Act of 2021 (S. 2092/H.R. 6331). This critical legislation is gaining momentum in both the House and Senate, and we need your help in securing additional co-sponsors to get it across the finish line and signed into law before the current Congressional term concludes in January.

This Act, which already has bipartisan support, seeks to make the highly successful demonstration project for the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Section 502 Direct Home Loan Program permanent by authorizing the USDA Secretary to use $50 million of the existing 502 Direct Loan appropriations for a national relending program specifically for Native communities. The demonstration project – implemented in 2018 – made two Native CDFIs eligible borrowers under the 502 Program and enabled them to relend to qualified families for the construction, acquisition, and rehabilitation of affordable housing on tribal trust land, and resulted in those CDFIs doubling in one year the number of home loans that USDA had provided on two Indian reservations in South Dakota during the previous decade. The project demonstrated that Native CDFIs are uniquely equipped to deploy mortgage capital efficiently and effectively in tribal communities, in part because of the supportive services they provide their clients, including homebuyer education, post-purchase and foreclosure prevention counseling, and other technical assistance.

The legislation enjoys broad and growing support from across Indian Country, including the National American Indian Housing Council, National Congress of American Indians, South Dakota Native Homeownership Coalition, Oweesta Corporation, Sovereign Council of Hawaiian Homestead Associations, and Opportunity Finance Network.

For a detailed overview of the legislation, please click here.

CALL TO ACTION: Please contact your U.S. Senate and House representatives today to ask them to join in support of this legislation as co-sponsors.

Form letters: Please download, modify, and send your Congressional representatives these co-sponsorship form letters for the House and Senate.

For House representatives to co-sponsor S. 2092, please have them contact Adam Schiff at Adam_Schiff@smith.senate.gov.

For Senate members to co-sponsor H.R. 6331, please have them contact Elizabeth Lloyd at Elizabeth.Lloyd@mail.house.gov.

Current Bill Co-Sponsors: Senators Tina Smith (D-MN) and Mike Rounds (R-SD) introduced S. 2092 in the Senate, and Rep. Dusty Johnson (R-SD) introduced this bi-partisan legislation in the House. S. 2092 is co-sponsored by Senators Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), Kevin Cramer (R-ND), Ben Ray Lujan (D-NM), Cynthia Lummis (R-WY), Brian Schatz (D-HI), Jon Tester (D-MT), John Thune (R-SD), and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA). H.R. 6331 is co-sponsored by Reps. Ed Case (D-HI), Sharice Davids (D-KS), Kai Kahele (D-HI), Teresa Leger Fernandez (D-NM), and Mark Pocan (D-WI).

For More Information: Please contact South Dakota Native Homeownership Coalition Policy Committee Facilitator Joanna Donohoe at joanna@7sistersconsulting.com or 561-762-8237.