Lead-Based Paint Final Rule Compliance

On June 20, PHAs received an informational Power Point from HUD Field Offices regarding compliance with HUD’s Lead-Based Paint Final Rule. PHAs must comply with HUD’s Lead-Based Paint Final Rule by July, 13. The final rule amends HUD’s lead-based paint regulations on reducing blood lead levels in children under age 6 who reside in federally-owned or -assisted housing that was built pre-1978, and formally adopts the revised definition of “elevated blood lead levels” (EBLLs) in children under the age of 6 in accordance to the guidance of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). HUD’s Power Point can also be found in NAHRO’s Public Housing Resource Center (members only). For more information on HUD’s Lead-Based Paint Final Rule, click here (members only).

NAHRO and Community Action Partnership Release Survey Findings

NAHRO and Community Action Partnership (the Partnership) are pleased to announce the release of the NAHRO and Community Action Partnership Survey Findings report. Community Action Partnership is a national, 501(c)3 nonprofit membership organization that provides technical assistance, training and other resources to Community Action Agencies, nonprofit and public groups funded by the Community Services Block Grant (CSBG), a federal program that allocates funding to states to combat poverty across the United States. Conducted in the Spring of 2017, the survey examines and assess crossover between the nation’s existing network of Community Action Agencies, Public Housing Agencies, and Local Redevelopment Agencies.

Nationally, Housing Authorities help over 4.8 million families and individuals by providing safe, decent, affordable housing for families in need. Community Action Agencies provide critical programs to more than 15 million people with low-incomes every year. Services provided by Community Action Agencies and local Housing and Redevelopment Agencies play an indispensable role in helping combat poverty. NAHRO and the Partnership hope to grow a new and exciting relationship to help address poverty in communities across the nation by strengthening partnerships between these essential and in many cases indispensable organizations. We believe that the mission of Public Housing Agencies and Community Action Agencies is strengthened through collaboration, and when the programs and services of Community Action Agencies are available to public housing residents, localities are in a far better position to combat poverty.

HUD Re-Publishes CY 2017 Administrative Fee Rates

HUD has published the administrative fee rates for the Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) Program in the Federal Register in a notice titled “Notice of Annual Factors for Determining Public Housing Agency Administrative Fees for the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher, Mainstream, and Moderate Rehabilitation Programs.” HUD had previously published these fee rates in February on the website of the Office of Housing Choice Vouchers. The rates remain the same as those published in February.

What has changed is that HUD has calculated a proration factor for administrative fees of 74% for January to March of this year. (This is not mentioned in the notice published in the Federal Register, but PHAs should have received notices informing them of this from HUD.) HUD hopes to raise that number as the year progresses by supplementing it with unobligated funds. NAHRO continues to stress the importance of the administrative fee to the proper running of the HCV program to appropriators in Congress.

Finally, it is not too late to apply for a blended administrative fee or a higher administrative fee as the deadline for applying to both has been extended to Friday, June 23.

The full notice can be read here.

HUD Releases New FSS Resources

HUD has released their new in-depth guidebook providing practical information and guidance on how to run an effective Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) program. The guide, Administering an Effective Family Self-Sufficiency Program: A Guidebook Based on Evidence and Promising Practices will benefit all service coordination programs (ROSS, FSS, Multi-Family FSS, Multi-Family Service Coordinators, Jobs Plus, Choice Neighborhoods “People” component and others), and also comes with and online FSS training. HUD recommends utilizing the “Get Credit” function of the training, as “it is possible that the training will be mandatory for eligibility for future FSS NOFA funding.”

HUD also announced the release of the Family Self-Sufficiency Guidebook for Owners of Project-Based Section 8 Developments and the new Multifamily FSS page on the HUD Exchange.

All resources can also be found on the FSS Resource Library page on HUD Exchange.

NAHRO Submits Regulatory Reform Comments to HUD

On June 14, NAHRO submitted its comment letter to HUD’s request for comment on Reducing Regulatory Burden; Enforcing the Regulatory Reform Agenda Under Executive Order 13777.

NAHRO identified many regulations that would make good candidates for streamlining. Each of the regulations met at least one of the following reasons for streamlining:

(a) The regulation results “in the elimination of jobs, or inhibits job creation”;

(b) The regulation is “outdated, unnecessary, or ineffective”;

(c) The regulation imposes “costs that exceed benefits”; or

(d) The regulation creates a “serious inconsistency or otherwise interferes with regulatory reform initiatives and policies.”

The regulations listed are non-exhaustive. NAHRO’s comment letter is a start of a conversation between the Department and NAHRO. Given the limited time to compile this list, NAHRO expects to identify additional avenues for further regulatory streamlining, which we will share with the HUD.

NAHRO’s comment letter is organized into three sections: Public Housing and Section 8 recommendations; Community Planning and Development; and recommendations on cross-cutting programs and initiatives. Within each major section are topic headers with NAHRO’s recommendation on each topic.

Deadline Today for HUD’s VAWA 2013 Emergency Transfer Plan Requirements

As NAHRO previously reported, HUD published a final rule last year that provides expanded housing protections for survivors of violence and fully codifies the provisions of the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act (VAWA) of 2013 into HUD regulations. Most of the final rule’s requirements became effective on December 16, 2016, but covered housing provider are also required to comply with rule’s emergency transfer plan provisions (and be able to begin making transfers) no later than today – June 14, 2017.

Last month, NAHRO policy staff conducted a webinar that discusses compliance with HUD’s final rule and the requirements for completing an emergency transfer plan and providing emergency transfers. This recording is available for purchase online at NAHRO’s Digital Store.

HUD Extends Deadline to Apply for Higher Administrative Fee Rates

Yesterday, HUD sent an email extending the deadline to apply for higher administrative fee rates to Friday, June 23, 2017 at 5 pm ET. Earlier, HUD had extended the deadline for applying for Blended Administrative Fee Rates to the same date. The application method remains the same as noted in Notice PIH 2017-07 titled “Guidance related to (1) Eligibility for Potential Shortfall Funding Under the Calendar Year (CY) 2017 Housing Assistance Payments (HAP) Renewal Set-Aside for the Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) Program and (2) CY 2017 Administrative Fees.”

Click below for additional details on how to apply.

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HUD Publishes FY 2017 CPD Formula Allocations

Today, HUD released the FY 2017 allocations for the Department’s Office of Community Planning and Development (CPD) formula grant programs: Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), HOME Investment Partnerships (HOME) program, Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA) , Emergency Solutions Grants (ESG), and Housing Trust Fund (HTF).

For FY 2017, states and local communities across the nation will receive approximately $3.0 billion in CDBG, $958 million in HOME, $320 million in HOPWA, $270 million in ESG, and $219 million in HTF funding. These amounts reflect approved grant reductions and reallocated funds for the CDBG and HOME programs.

The CPD allocations can be found online here.

2017 National Housing Conference Annual Policy Symposium

The National Housing Conference (NHC) hosted the 2017 Annual Policy Symposium on June 9, 2017. The keynote speaker was Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Ben Carson. While the Secretary discussed several topics, he also mentioned his support to lift the cap on units for the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) program. Secretary Carson noted it would help leverage funds to provide more affordable units using public-private partnerships. He also discussed the importance of homeownership and recent data that shows an upward trajectory of homeowners. Secretary Carson noted concerns that “millennials may become a lost generation for homeownership, excluded from the American dream and punished as an unintended byproduct of the financial crisis from 2008.” He urged stakeholders to do more to find reasonable and affordable pathways with investors and lenders in order for more individuals to join the housing market. One solution mentioned was the Housing Opportunity through Modernization Act of 2016 (HOTMA), which allows the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) to lower the owner occupancy minimum from 50 to 30 percent to allow more individuals to use FHA loans to attract more millennials to buy condos.

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HUD Releases Detailed Operating Fund Subsidy Calculation for June

HUD has released it’s detailed calculation of Operating Fund subsidy for June 2017. PHAs can examine the details to HUD’s calculation in determining Operating subsidy for June at the PHA level. In June, HUD is increasing the proration for the Operating Fund from 85 percent to a 92.89 percent proration.

The proration represents a cumulative amount for the year. Since PHAs received payments based on a lesser yearly proration for the first few months of the year, June’s payment will be greater to compensate for the initial underfunding. This is known as a “true up.” As such, many PHAs may see a significant increase in Operating Fund subsidy in June as a result of this true up.

The July payment will more accurately represent the new monthly amount under the new proration. The letter notes that there may be minor proration fluctuations and that “[t]he final proration will be established after final eligibility is determined for all projects.”