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.

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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

HUD Provides $179 Million to States for Disaster Recovery

Earlier this week, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Ben Carson announced an additional $178.5 million to help hard-hit areas in several states recover from severe flooding that occurred in 2015 and 2016. State grant recipients include Florida, West Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Texas. This new allocation will be provided through the Community Development Block Grant – Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) Program, where HUD has previously provided nearly $947 million in these areas for recovery efforts. The CDBG-DR grants will support a wide range of activities, including housing redevelopment, business assistance and infrastructure repair.

Below is the full list of grantees for this announcement and their allocations to date:

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Application Deadline for 2017 ConnectHome Nation Cohort is July 31st

As NAHRO previously reported, EveryoneOn, in partnership with HUD, has announced the expansion of the ConnectHome pilot program. First unveiled in 2015, ConnectHome is a White House initiative aimed at narrowing the digital divide within 28 pilot communities (which includes participation from 23 NAHRO member agencies). ConnectHome tested the impact of cross-sector collaborators using non-government resources in order to accelerate the adoption and utilization of broadband technology by families living in HUD-assisted housing.

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The FY 2017 Continuum of Care Program Competition is Now Open

On July 14, HUD announced the publication of the FY 2017 Continuum of Care (CoC) Program Competition Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA), making available approximately $2 billion in FY 2017 for the CoC Program. The CoC Program is a HUD administered program designed to promote a community-wide commitment to the goals of ending homelessness and provides funding for efforts by nonprofit providers, States, and local governments to quickly re-house individuals and families experiencing homelessness. As of July 18, the FY 2017 CoC Consolidated Application and project applications are available in e-snaps.

The submission deadline is Thursday, September 28, 2017 at 8:00 PM EDT.

Listed below are a number of highlights and special considerations for the FY 2017 competition. More information can be found on HUD’s FY 2017 CoC Program Competition: Funding Availability Page.  Continue reading