Murkowski Announces Housing Block Grant Award To Cook Inlet Housing Authority

Anchorage, AK – Today, Senator Lisa Murkowski announced the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is awarding the Cook Inlet Housing Authority (CIHA) in Alaska a $5 million Indian Housing Block Grant (IHBG). CIHA is one of five eligible Indian Tribes and Tribally Designated Housing Entities who, with a combined total, recently received more than $20 million from these IHBG competitive awards. These grants were made possible by the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021. The CIHA grant award will help fund two projects to create 38 new rental units and 51 supportive housing units.  

“In nearly every community I visit, I see the significant housing challenges faced by Alaskans. Through these kinds of federal investments and good partners like the Cook Inlet Housing Authority, we are making great strides in creating safe and affordable housing for thousands of individuals and families in the state.” said Senator Lisa Murkowski.

“CIHA is grateful that we are receiving these funds to house our people safely and at such a critical time for the housing issues facing our city and state. I want to thank Senator Murkowski for making housing a priority, hearing the needs of Alaskans, and her tireless efforts that are yielding results. Housing is the nexus of a healthy and productive life - families cannot work, learn, or be healthy if their home is not healthy. Senator Murkowski has taken that to heart and we thank her and her staff for their work,” said Carol Gore, President/CEO of the Cook Inlet Housing Authority.

In January 2017, HUD released a study entitled, “Housing Needs of American Indians and Alaska Natives in Tribal Areas: A Report from the Assessment of American Indian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian Housing Needs.” Among the findings, the study found that housing conditions for tribal households are substantially worse than other U.S. households, with overcrowding in tribal areas being especially severe, especially in Alaska. In Alaska, for example, overcrowding is more than twice the rate for tribal areas overall, with 36 percent of households experiencing overcrowding. 

Murkowski is a strong advocate for expanding affordable housing opportunities in Alaska. Through her role on the Senate Appropriations Committee, Murkowski played a key role in negotiating a bipartisan budget deal that made substantial investments into affordable housing initiatives including the Indian Housing Block Grant program under the Native American Housing Assistance and Self Determination Act (NAHASDA) in addition to formula-based funding. 

Currently, as Vice Chairman of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, Murkowski is leading a bipartisan effort to reauthorize and improve the NAHASDA program to expedite the construction of homes, provide housing vouchers for American Indian and Alaska Native Veterans, and incentivize public-private partnerships.  

For more information about the HUD Indian Housing Block Grant Competitive Grant Program, click here.