A House Banking subcommittee yesterday approved a $22.6 billion housing authorization bill for fiscal 1986 that more than doubles the Reagan administration's budget request for the Housing and Urban Development Department and requires the HUD secretary to inform Congress when the Office of Management and Budget orders changes in departmental regulations or procedures.
The bill also requires HUD and the Agriculture Department to continue collecting racial and ethnic data on beneficiaries of their housing programs. The OMB earlier this year ordered HUD to delete portions of forms that asked the applicant for such data.
The bill also continues Urban Development Action Grants, which the administration had sought to abolish.
The bill makes a number of changes in the way U.S. public housing is funded, and authorizes several new programs, including a $200 million revolving fund for nonprofit groups to help low-income people become homeowners.
The bill would give HUD just over $15 billion in budget authority next year -- the administration had sought $6.9 billion -- and outlays of $13.8 billion. For assisted housing programs, the bill would provide $18.5 billion in budget authority and $16.9 billion in outlays.
All these figures, including the overall total, are well within the targets set by the House budget resolution. However, that resolution differs substantially from the Senate's, and conferees from the two chambers are having a difficulty reconciling them.
The subcommittee bill's requirement that HUD report regulation and procedural changes imposed by the OMB caused particularly sharp objections from some Republicans. Under it, the department would have to report quarterly to the Senate and House Banking committees "a detailed summary of all changes required by OMB that prohibit, modify, postpone or disapprove such rule or regulation, notice or handbook in whole or in part."
Rep. Steve Bartlett (R-Tex.) objected during debate earlier this month that the provision would mean "we get between" two executive agencies, and that it might be unconstitutional.
An amendment by Rep. John Patrick Hiler (R-Ind.) to strike the provision was rejected on a voice vote.