FY2017 Omnibus Spending Bill Agreement

On Monday, May 1st, an agreed to fiscal year 2017 omnibus appropriations bill was released. The spending deal would fund the Federal government through September 30, 2017. This omnibus must still be voted on in the House and Senate and then be signed by the President but there is optimism and agreement among the parties involved.

The omnibus provides the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) with $38.8 billion for fiscal year 2017, which is a 1 percent increase over fiscal year 2016 levels. Below is a brief breakdown of a few of the HUD program areas. The NAHRO Policy Team will continue to analyze the omnibus and will provide a deep dive analysis once the omnibus becomes law.

Public Housing (PH)

The omnibus funds the PH Operating Fund at $4.4 billion, which is $100 million less than fiscal year 2016.

The PH Capital Fund is funded at $1.9415 billion, an increase of $41.5 million from fiscal year 2016. This capital funding includes set-asides of $35 million for Resident Opportunities and Self-Sufficiency (ROSS), $25 million for new Competitive Lead-Based Paint Hazard Grants, $21.5 million for Emergency Capital Needs, $15 million for Jobs Plus Pilot, and $10 million for PH Financial and Physical Assessment Activities.

Section 8

Tenant-Based Rental Assistance is funded in the omnibus at $20.292 billion, which is an increase of $663 million more than fiscal year 2016. This amount includes set-asides for Section 8 Housing Assistance Payment Renewals funded at $18.355 billion, Ongoing Administrative Fees at $1.640 billion, Special and Ongoing Administrative Fees at $10 million, Tenant Protection Vouchers at $110 million, and new Incremental Vouchers at $57 million. The Mobility Demonstration program is not funded in the FY2017 omnibus appropriation bill.

Community Development

The Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and the HOME Investments Partnerships Program (HOME) have flat funding at $3 billion and $950 million respectively.

The Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA) is funded at $356 million, an increase of $21 million from FY2016 and the Homeless Assistance Grants are funded at $2.383 billion, an increase of $133 million over FY2016 levels.

Other Rental and Service Programs

The Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) program is funded at the same level as FY2016, $75 million.

Section 8 Project-Based Rental Assistance increased $196 million from FY 2016 levels to $10.816 billion.

The Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) program did not receive any additional funding but the cap on the number of units eligible for the program was increased from 185,000 to 225,000 and the RAD program was extended from 2018 to 2020.

The Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation (NeighborWorks) was funded at $140 million with $5 million to be used for a multi-family rental housing program.

The United States Interagency Council on Homelessness is funded at $3.6 million and is extended to October 1, 2018.

Affordable Housing Accreditation Board Looking for Input on Standards and Guidlines

The Affordable Housing Accreditation Board (AHAB) is an independent, non-profit organization with the mission to establish a comprehensive accreditation system that recognizes excellent governance, quality management, and best practices in affordable housing programs.

AHAB’s accreditation standards and evaluation methods are designed to cover a wide range of affordable-housing provider types in order to increase the likelihood that the provider’s mission, structure, financial resources, and leadership will result in delivering quality, affordable housing and services to residents within their communities.

In 2012, AHAB began developing, with feedback from our colleagues, an accreditation system for the affordable housing industry that recognizes good management, quality programs, and best practices. AHAB believes the Accreditation Standards and Guidelines serve as the framework for the indicators that will be used for the accreditation process.

AHAB has developed a survey tool to provide feedback on the Accreditation Standards and Guidelines. AHAB needs your critical eye to examine if these are an acceptable foundation for an excellent accreditation program. The Standards are divided into eight general areas with associated Guidelines. Conceptually, upon “go-live” there will be an application process, a comprehensive review of initial documentation, and a site visit by reviewers. The reviewers will utilize more specific Indicators that demonstrate successful achievement of the Standards and Guidelines.