Why New Market Tax Credits Matter: Three Success Stories

New Markets Tax Credits (NMTC) help localities build stronger neighborhoods by investing in housing, schools, and other vital projects that are targeted at helping low-income communities. Between 2003 and 2015, $42 billion in direct NMTC authority has generated almost $80 billion in capital for local businesses and revitalization projects. NMTC investment has resulted in the creation or retention of over 750,000 jobs, and the financing of over 178 million square feet (sq. ft.) of commercial real estate and almost 14,000 affordable housing units. NMTCs are a proven and effective tool for generating private-sector investments in communities in need. This is one in a series of articles that show how public housing authorities (PHAs) and community development agencies have successfully used federal tax credits and tax-exempt bonds to build and/or preserve public housing and affordable housing and to increase the sustainability of communities.  Continue reading

HUD Issues 19 CPD Waivers to Help Disaster Recovery

In order to aid communities and accelerate disaster recovery for those impacted by Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria, HUD has announced a package of 19 regulatory and administrative waivers for the following Community Planning and Development (CPD) programs:  The Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program, HOME Investment Partnerships (HOME) Program, Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA) Program, and Emergency Solutions Grant (ESG) Program.

According to HUD, this waiver package represents the largest collections of regulatory and administrative waivers ever issued by the Department at one time. State and local grantees located in major disaster declared areas can now access a waiver through a new simplified notification process. HUD’s flexibilities include: Continue reading

HUD Guidance on Sub-awarding Homeless Assistance Funds to PHAs and Local Redevelopment Authorities

Today, the HUD Office of Community Planning and Development (CPD) published a new notice (CPD-17-01) that provides guidance on how Emergency Solutions Grants (ESG) Program funds can be sub-awarded to Public Housing Agencies (PHAs) and Local Redevelopment Authorities (LRAs). On July 29, 2016, President Obama signed into law the Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act of 2016 (HOTMA) which included language, first proposed by NAHRO, that amended the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (42 U.S. 11373(C)) to permit local governments receiving ESG funding to sub-award their ESG funds to PHAs and LRAs for eligible ESG activities. This change saves grantees from having to go through a costly and time-consuming procurement process if they wish to devolve their funds to any PHA or LRA. This change became effective upon enactment of HOTMA last year and required no regulatory rulemaking. This new notice provides additional guidance on the allowable sub-awards to PHAs and LRAs and the key requirements (e.g. consistency with the Consolidated Plan) that apply to sub-awarded funds

What to Know About the CDBG Disaster Recovery Program

Last month, President Trump signed H.R. 601 into law, providing $15.25 billion in disaster relief for victims of Hurricane Harvey. Of the amount, $7.4 billion goes to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to help meet immediate needs, and $450 million to the Small Business Administration (SBA) for disaster-relief loans. The remaining $7.4 billion goes to the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) program for disaster relief and long-term recovery. This blog will explain what the CDBG-DR program is and how funds will be allocated and administered to disaster impacted communities.

Continue reading

Pamela Patenaude Confirmed as HUD Deputy Secretary

Yesterday, the Senate confirmed Pamela Patneaude, by an 80-17 vote, to serve as Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Ms. Patenaude had previously served as former HUD Assistant Secretary for Community Planning and Development under President George W. Bush and as the director of housing policy at the Bipartisan Policy Center. She is currently the president of the J. Ronald Terwilliger Foundation for Housing America’s Families. As Deputy Secretary, Ms. Patenaude will handle the day-to-day operations of HUD, as well as lead the Department’s Disaster Management Group (DMG), playing a primary role in coordinating the long-term efforts of 16 program and support offices within HUD.

In a press release on Ms. Patneaude’s confirmation, NAHRO CEO Adrianne Todman states:

“NAHRO is pleased that the Senate has confirmed Ms. Patenaude as HUD Deputy Secretary. Her extensive experience with affordable housing and community development issues, both in the non-profit sector and at HUD, will be an asset to the department. We look forward to working with her to advance HUD’s mission to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all.”

HUD Webinar on Procurement Requirements for CDBG Disaster Recovery Programs

On September 19, 2017 at 1:00 PM EDT, HUD will host a webinar titled “Buying Right: CDBG-DR and Procurement A Guide to Recovery,” which will focus on procurement requirements for the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Disaster Recovery programs. This webinar will cover the latest procurement guidance under the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Uniform Guidance as provided in 2 CFR Part 200. This 1.5 hour webinar is designed for all CDBG and CDBG-DR grantees, especially staff charged with purchasing goods and services.

Participants will learn:

  • Roadmap of the procurement process
  • Procurement methods for different types of goods and services
  • Best practices to ensure compliance with the Uniform Guidance requirements
  • Common pitfalls in procuring goods and services by grantees

Register for the webinar here.

HUD Releases 2018 QCTs and DDAs for the LIHTC Program

On September 11, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) published a Notice in the Federal Register designating its statutorily mandated list of qualified census tracts (QCTs) and difficult development areas (DDAs) for the purposes of the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) program. Under LIHTC, projects located in QCTs and DDAs are eligible to receive up to a 30 percent basis boost while receiving Housing Credits. The 2018 QCTs and DDAs will be effective for LIHTCs allocated after December 31, 2017, and for bond-financed  properties where the tax-exempt bonds are issued and the building is placed in service after December 31, 2017.

HUD publishes QCT and DDA designations annually. While this Notice provides specific details on the methodology in determining 2018 QCTs and DDAs, the full listings and other historical data can be accessed at: https://www.huduser.gov/portal/datasets/qct.html.

HUD, IRS Announce Disaster Assistance for Victims of Hurricane Harvey

Earlier this week, HUD announced that the Department will expedite federal disaster assistance to the State of Texas and provide support to homeowners and low-income renters that are left without a home due to Hurricane Harvey.

Currently, President Trump has issued a disaster declaration for 18 counties in Texas: Aransas, Bee, Brazoria, Calhoun, Chambers, Fort Bend, Galveston, Goliad, Harris, Jackson, Kleberg, Liberty, Matagorda, Nueces, Refugio, San Patricio, Victoria and Wharton. More counties may be added at a later date.

HUD’s disaster assistance will include: Continue reading

HUD Reports Worst Case Housing Needs Increased in 2015

Yesterday, HUD released the sixteenth edition of the Worst Case Housing Needs: 2017 Report to Congress which finds that in 2015 there were 8.3 million unassisted very low-income households in the U.S. that were experiencing “worst case housing” by spending more than half of their income on rent, living in severely substandard housing conditions, or both. “Very low-income households” are those earning no more than 50 percent of the area median income (AMI). Overall, the number of households with worst case needs have increased by 41 percent since 2007 and by 8 percent since 2013.

A few highlights of the report include the following: Continue reading

Tell Your Senators to Support LIHTC!

In 2015, supporters of the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) achieved a major victory with the permanent authorization of the 9 percent LIHTC rate, but a 4 percent housing credit rate remains unauthorized. Senators Maria Cantwell (D-WA) and Orrin Hatch (R-UT) have introduced S.548, The Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act, to permanently authorize the 4 percent rate and expand the program’s overall allocation authority by 50 percent, allowing more public housing agencies (PHAs) and local redevelopment authorities (LRAs) to access the credit.

Affordable housing stakeholders should take action today and support Sen. Cantwell and Sen. Hatch’s critical legislation by asking your senators to join the bill as co-sponsors and urging them to include this bill in any tax reform agreement that is reached. Help NAHRO achieve its goal of sending 2,500 letters to members of Congress in August.  Continue reading