Housing

Congressman Cohen is a strong advocate for fair housing policies and increased federal investment in affordable housing. Mindful of the Great Recession of 2008, during which Memphis and the nation suffered an unprecedented foreclosure crisis, Congressman Cohen strongly supports efforts to prevent predatory practices in the home mortgage loan industry to protect future or current homebuyers and homeowners, respectively.

Congressman Cohen introduced the Housing Accountability Act, alongside Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL), which would hold property owners of low-income, federally-subsidized housing facilities accountable for poor living conditions. Working across the aisle, some of the important provisions of the Housing Accountability Act were passed by the House and Senate and signed into law, increasing the accountability of landlords managing federally subsidized housing facilities to prevent chronic, persistent issues that threaten the health and safety of tenants.

In 2015, after a long multi-year, the Congressman was pleased to announce that Memphis, among nine nationwide finalists, was awarded a $30 million federal grant from the Choice Neighborhood program to redevelop Foote Homes and bring much needed revitalization to Memphis. The Choice Neighborhoods program was an initiative of the Obama Administration that sought to transform neighborhoods of poverty into viable, mixed-income areas with access to economic opportunities. The program endeavored to do so through the revitalization of severely distressed public and assisted housing by leveraging and investing in well-functioning services, effective schools and education programs, public assets, public transportation and improved access to jobs.

Congressman Cohen has worked to shed light on the mismanagement of several low-income, public housing facilities in Memphis including Goodwill Village, Tulane, and the Warren Apartments. Congressman Cohen wrote to then-Secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Julian Castro, to launch an investigation. Even after a change of management, persistent maintenance concerns remain at several properties which led Congressman Cohen to write to current HUD Secretary Ben Carson, demanding to know what steps the Trump Administration would be taking to bring property managers of poorly maintained public housing facilities in compliance with federal law.

More on Housing

May 7, 2021 Press Release

MEMPHIS – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09) today announced that Memphis will receive $15,502,585 and Shelby County will receive $6,812,110 in Emergency Rental Assistance. The funding, in coordination with the U.S. Department of the Treasury, the White House American Rescue Plan Implementation Team and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, will help prevent evictions and ensure basic housing security for households affected by the pandemic and its economic fallout.

Congressman Cohen made the following statement:

April 8, 2021 Press Release

MEMPHIS – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09) today announced that Memphis and Shelby County will receive a total of $15,103,245 from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to help create affordable housing for people experiencing or at risk of experiencing homelessness. The funding is part of $4.925 billion authorized by the American Rescue Plan that President Biden signed into law last month. Memphis will receive $13,545,982 and Shelby County will receive $1,557,263. This supplemental funding is being allocated through the HOME Investment Partnerships Program.

March 30, 2021 Press Release

MEMPHIS – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09), a senior member of the Judiciary Committee, today released a statement after the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals on Monday refused to stay a Memphis District Court judge’s order allowing the resumption of evictions:

March 26, 2021 Press Release

MEMPHIS – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09) today reintroduced the Housing Accountability Act, legislation that would hold property owners of low-income housing accountable for poor living conditions. Specifically, the legislation would require residents of private properties that have Section 8 Housing Assistance Payment (HAP) contracts to be surveyed twice a year to determine the existence of persistent problems with a property’s physical condition or management. Senator Marco Rubio of Florida reintroduced identical legislation in the Senate earlier this week.

March 10, 2021 Press Release

MEMPHIS – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09) today voted for and the House passed the Senate amendment to the American Rescue Plan Act, a $1.9 trillion measure addressing the coronavirus pandemic and its unprecedented economic consequences. The measure now goes to President Biden who is expected to sign it into law. 

Today’s vote on passage was 220 to 211. 

Congressman Cohen made the following statement: 

March 1, 2021 Press Release

MEMPHIS -- Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09) today re-introduced the Emergency Eviction Enforcement Act to protect vulnerable tenants from evictions during a national emergency or public health crisis.

Congressman Cohen made the following statement:

February 25, 2021 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09) today announced that Memphis will receive $ $14,579,939 and Shelby County will receive $1,603,845 in funding from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Both Memphis and Shelby County will receive Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funding totaling  $6.7 million and $1.1 million respectively and HOME Investment Partnerships (HOME) funding totaling $3.7 million and $430,000 respectively.

February 24, 2021 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09) today announced that the Memphis Housing Authority will receive $6,869,040 and the Millington Housing Authority will receive $207,199 from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Capital Fund Program.

January 11, 2021 Press Release

MEMPHIS – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09) today congratulated the Memphis Veterans Affairs Medical Center for being named one of 12 in the nation selected to establish a Fisher House so that families of Veterans can be close to their loved ones during hospitalization. Congressman Cohen wrote a letter strongly supporting the medical center’s efforts during the evaluation process.

Congressman Cohen made the following statement: