On September 21, 2016, HUD will publish a final rule titled “Equal Access in Accordance with an Individual’s Gender Identity in Community Planning and Development Programs” in the Federal Register. The final rule, which builds upon HUD’s February 2012 Equal Access Rule, will add a new section to HUD’s general program regulations (24 CFR Part 5) requiring HUD CPD program recipients and subrecipients to provide transgender persons and other persons who do not identify with the sex they were assigned at birth with access to program benefits, services and accommodations in accordance with their gender identity.
The final rule will also amend HUD’s definition of “gender identity” so that it more clearly reflects the difference between actual and perceived gender identity and eliminate the current prohibition on inquiries related to sexual orientation or gender identity. Additionally, the final rule makes a technical amendment to the definition of “sexual orientation” to conform with the Office of Personnel Management’s current definition.
Elsewhere in the Federal Register, HUD will be requesting public comment on a proposed document entitled “Equal Access Regardless of Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity, or Marital Status” for owners or operators of CPD-funded shelters, housing, facilities, and other buildings to post on bulletin boards and in other public spaces where information is typically made available.
A link to the proposed document, as well as deeper analysis of the final rule, will be forthcoming for NAHRO members.
HUD has released its list of PHAS High Performers for Federal Fiscal Year (FY) 2017 Capital Fund calculations. For the Department’s preparations for calculating the Capital Fund formula for FY 2017, the Department is using the FY 2015 PHAS designations to determine which PHAs are on the High Performer bonus for the 2017 formula calculations. PHAs should validate whether they are on the High Performer list by reviewing the Capital Fund Calculation spreadsheet (available on the Office of Capital Improvements website).
PHAs that believe there is an error in the calculation of their PHAS score for FY 2015 must email an explanation of the error to the Real Estate Assessment Center (REAC) at PHAS@hud.gov no later than October 31.
Tomorrow, HUD will publish in the Federal Register two notices dealing with the Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) program. The first is a proposed information collection highlighting a series of interviews for landlords and tenants in areas served by the five PHAs that participated in the Small Area Fair Marker Rents (SAFMR) Demonstration. The second is guidance for the rule that excludes certain individuals enrolled in an institution of higher education from receiving Section 8 funds.
- Small Area Fair Market Rent Demonstration – HUD is evaluating the SAFMR demonstration. To assist in this evaluation, HUD is looking at how “voucher holders and landlords perceive the shift from traditional area-wide FMRs to SAFMRs.” HUD will interview 70 tenants and 35 landlords in the areas served by the five PHAs in the SAFMR demonstration.
- Eligibility of Independent Students for Assisted Housing Under Section 8 of the U.S. Housing Act of 1937; Additional Supplementary Guidance – Prior appropriations acts stated that if a college student “is under the age of 24, is not a veteran, is unmarried and does not have dependent child” or is ineligible or has at least one parent that is ineligible for assistance, then no Section 8 assistance can be provided for that student. This notice updates the list of items that PHAs, owners, and managers “are required to verify when determining whether a student’s income alone should be used to determine Section 8 eligibility.” The notice also reduces “barriers for vulnerable youth to receive assistance and continue their education.”
The SAFMR Demonstration pre-publication notice can be found here.
The Eligibility of Independent Students for Section 8 Assistance Guidance pre-publication notice can be found here.