Obama administration noncommital on housing tax credit extension

October 20, 2009

A vacant lot owned by Toll Brothers is shown for sale in a housing development in Broomfield, Colorado August 12, 2009. (File Photo) REUTERS/Rick Wilking (UNITED STATES BUSINESS) WASHINGTON, Oct 20 (Reuters) – President Barack Obama’s top housing adviser expressed doubts on Tuesday that the United States could afford to extend a popular tax credit for first-time homebuyers beyond its expiration next month.

Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan said he was aware the program was popular with lawmakers, but said: “at the same time, I am mindful that these proposals can be very expensive, especially at a time of significant budget deficits.”

In testimony prepared for delivery to the Senate Banking Committee, Donovan pledged to “work with Congress to fashion appropriate and effective homebuyer incentives, mindful of both their benefits to stimulating new demand and their costs to the American taxpayer.”

(Reporting by Corbett B. Daly; Editing by James Dalgleish) ((corbett.daly@thomsonreuters.com; Tel: +1 202 202 904 0962; Reuters Messaging: corbett.daly.reuters.com@reuters.net)) Keywords: USA

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