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Office Of The Vice President

For Immediate Release January 13, 1998
                           VICE PRESIDENT GORE 

                FY99 Budget Includes Expansion Of Credit 
                To Help Provide More Affordable Housing

CHICAGO -- Citing the need to empower communities and help provide more affordable housing for low-income Americans, Vice President Al Gore today (1/13) announced an unprecedented expansion of the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) in the Administration's Fiscal Year 1999 budget.

President Clinton and I are committed to helping those who live in distressed communities, Vice President Gore said after touring a Chicago South Side area, the North Kenwood neighborhood. Americans of all income levels deserve safe, affordable housing. The expansion of the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit will help us meet that goal by providing incentives to the private sector to create quality rental housing for low-income Americans, which, in turn, will help bring new businesses to the area.

Vice President Gore was joined during the walk through the North Kenwood neighborhood by Chicago Mayor Richard Daley, U.S. Senators Carol Moseley-Braun and Richard Durbin, U.S. Rep. Bobby Rush (D-1st), Local Initiatives Support Corporation Representative Paul Grogan, and community developers and activists.

Estimating that the expansion will help build an additional 150,000-180,000 affordable housing units over the next five years, Vice President Gore said the proposal will increase the LIHTC cap by 40 percent.

For those who question whether federal policy can make a difference or if there is hope for distressed communities, the answer is here in North Kenwood, Vice President Gore said. After suffering 50 years of neglect and less than 10 years after the first bricks were laid on a housing credit development, we can see the results -- 2,000 new homes for people of all incomes and ages, new commercial development, and new hope and confidence for the future.

The expansion of the LIHTC builds on President Clinton's and Vice President Gore's call to permanently extend the credit; it is a key part of their agenda to empower communities. Vice President Gore chairs the Community Empowerment Board, which helps bring together the public and private sectors to create jobs and invest in our nation's most distressed urban and rural areas.