A bill in the Ohio House presents a great opportunity for the State to expand access to safe, decent, affordable housing at a time when need has grown exponentially. House Bill 237 would adjust county recording fees – the traditional source of funding for the Ohio Housing Trust Fund.
However, the current version of bill would cut the Ohio Housing Trust Fund (OHTF) out of any revenue increase at the same time that Ohioans are struggling with record-breaking housing costs and the economic fallout from the pandemic. Worse yet, the proposed shift to digitize county recorders’ documents could actually reduce the per-page fee revenue flowing to the OHTF.
This proposal would upset historic precedent that equally divides recording fee revenue between county governments and the OHTF. Three separate study committees going back to the 1990s all recommended using dividing document recording fees equally to fund the OHTF – an idea that was implemented in 2003.
COHHIO and other members of the Home Matters to Ohio coalition are urging the House Finance Committee to adopt an amendment to HB 237 that would restore the 50-50 split between counties and the OHTF and pass the amended bill to the Ohio Senate. Please contact your State Representative – especially if they serve on the House Finance Commitee – and ask them to restore the Ohio Housing Trust Fund to House Bill 237.
Restoring the OHTF to HB 237 will provide greater certainty for revenues in the long-term so that Ohio’s local homelessness and housing agencies can continue stabilizing the lives of Ohioans living in very precarious and unhealthy circumstances.
Read more about the Ohio Housing Trust Fund