Washington, D.C. – The Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC) launched a bipartisan Housing Commission yesterday in Washington, D.C. After providing an overview of the Commission, former Secretaries of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Henry Cisneros and Mel Martinez, also a former U.S. Senator, former Senator Kit Bond, and former Senator and BPC Founder George Mitchell, participated in a panel discussion with former U.S. Representative Rick Lazio and take questions from the audience.
The Commission will develop consensus recommendations on the most effective way to meet the future housing needs of an increasingly diverse American society. BPC’s Housing Commission will include some of the nation’s leading housing experts and will develop a comprehensive, politically viable plan for consideration by the administration and Congress.
About the Bipartisan Policy Center: Founded in 2007 by former Senate Majority Leaders Howard Baker, Tom Daschle, Bob Dole and George Mitchell, the Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC) is a non-profit organization that drives principled solutions through rigorous analysis, reasoned negotiation, and respectful dialogue. With projects in multiple issue areas, BPC combines politically-balanced policymaking with strong, proactive advocacy and outreach. For more information, please visit our website: http://www.bipartisanpolicy.org.
About Henry Cisneros: Henry Cisneros is the former HUD Secretary and current executive Chairman of CityView. Throughout his career in politics and business, Cisneros has remained actively involved with creating housing revitalizing our nation’s cities. He has and continues to serve on corporate boards, as well as chairing and serving on several non-profit boards to promote Latinos and fair housing policies. He has authored, edited and collaborated on several books, and is an in-demand public speaker. As executive chairman of CityView, he devotes his efforts to improving the urban environment through CityView’s investment funds. Prior to establishing CityView, he served as Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development under President Clinton and was the four-term Mayor of San Antonio, Texas. Cisneros is the only former HUD secretary to remain working in housing.
Cisneros has built up CityView to be one of the nation’s top institutional investment firms focused on urban real estate, in-city housing, and metropolitan infrastructure, working with both residential housing and commercial real estate developers. His vast knowledge of cities and government, in addition to his numerous relationships built over a lengthy career, have been crucial to CityView’s development and success. Today, CityView is one of the nation’s premier institutional investment firms focused on urban real estate, in-city housing, and metropolitan infrastructure. Founded in 2000 by Cisneros, the company has generated more than $2 billion in urban investment in 45 communities across the United States. CityView currently manages multiple funds, all focused on urban solutions. Among its largest investors are pension systems for employees of the State of California (CalPERS), the City of Los Angeles (LACERS), the County of Los Angeles (LACERA), and the Los Angeles Fire and Police Plan (LAFPP). Combined, CityView’s three funds have invested in more than 20 metropolitan areas in 13 states across the country.
Before he was the Executive Chairman at CityView, Cisneros served as the 10th Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) under President Bill Clinton from 1993 to 1997. Cisneros was credited with initiating the revitalization of many of the nation’s public housing developments and with formulating policies that contributed to achieving the nation’s highest ever homeownership rate. In his role as the President’s chief representative to the nation’s cities, Cisneros personally worked in more than 200 U.S. cities in every one of the 50 states. With his position, he inherited the massive undertaking to oversee the implementation of the HOPE VI program, which represented a dramatic turnaround in public housing policy and one of the most ambitious urban redevelopment efforts in the nation’s history. Cisneros also seized the goal of the Clinton administration to widen homeownership opportunities among the country’s most under-represented groups — young adults, minorities and low- to moderate-income families. Policies set in motion by Cisneros’ administration allowed homeownership to soar to more than 67 percent.
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