HUD has released a notice in the Federal Register announcing an expedited review process for relief from HUD regulatory and/or administrative requirements for PHAs that are located in counties that have received Presidentially-declared Major Distaster Declarations (MDD). PHAs located in areas that received MDDs in CY 2018 may request waivers of HUD requirements and receive expedited review of such requests.
The Notice includes descriptions of the flexibilities that are currently available to MDD PHAs under statutes and/or regulation, certain HUD requirements that, if waived, may facilitate an MDD PHA’s ability to participate in relief and recovery efforts, and environmental review waivers.
NAHRO is keeping our members and all individuals impacted by Hurricane Florence in our thoughts, and are wishing for a safe and rapid recovery. To everyone impacted by the hurricane, please stay safe!
HUD will release two new Notices of Proposed Information Collection in the Federal Register tomorrow. The first notice is a 60-Day Notice of Proposed Information Collection titled Public Housing Reform Act: Changes to the Admission and Occupancy Requirements. The second is a 30-Day Notice of Proposed Information Collection titled Assessment of Additional Resource Needs for Smoke-Free Policy. HUD posted a 60-Day Notice of Proposed Information Collection regarding an assessment of its smoke-free policy in January, 2018. NAHRO’s comments can be found here (members only).
HUD has announced it will be hosting a public meeting of the Moving to Work Research Advisory Committee on October 10 from 1:00 pm to 3:30 pm Eastern Time. The Committee meeting will be held via conference call and is open to the public and accessible to individuals with disabilities.
The meeting will discuss the third cohort of the Moving to Work (MTW) expansion, which focuses on work requirements for public housing and Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) residents. HUD is looking for feedback from the advisory committee on research design, random assignments, and specific policies.
On September 5, HUD announced that it is awarding $4.8 million in Choice Neighborhood Planning Grants to six communities. The grants, funded through HUD’s Choice Neighborhoods program, will help local leaders craft comprehensive, homegrown plans to revitalize and transform neighborhoods.
Choice Neighborhoods is focused on three core goals: replacing distressed public and assisted housing, improving the outcomes of people living in assisted housing, and creating the conditions necessary for public and private reinvestment in distressed neighborhoods.
On September 5, HUD announced that it is awarding $18 million to 20 public housing agencies through their Lead-Based Paint Capital Fund Program. The funds are used to ensure public housing developments that were tested and abated over twenty years ago remain lead-free. In FY 2017, Congress appropriated $25 million to be available for competitive grants to PHAs to evaluate and reduce lead-based paint hazards in public housing. According to HUD, “[w]hile lead-based paint was banned for residential use in 1978, many older homes may still contain hazards that require proper cleanup.” Grants are available for risk assessments, abatement, and interim controls as defined in Section 1004 of the Residential Lead-Based Paint Hazard Reduction Act of 1992. These grants are subject to normal PHA regulations.
A list of PHAs receiving awards can be found in HUD’s press release.
On August 27, HUD’s Office of Community Planning and Development (CPD) published notice CPD-18-10, titled “Suspension of 24-Month Commitment Requirement for Deadlines Occurring in 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020.” The FY18 omnibus contained a hard-fought provision, first included in the FY 2017 omnibus, which suspended the HOME program’s statutory 24-month commitment requirement for HOME funds that are set to expire in 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020. The commitment requirement was widely viewed as a difficult and unnecessary deadline for participating jurisdictions (PJs) to meet.
HUD has awarded on $5 million to 22 public housing agencies across the country for Emergency and Security Improvements. The FY18 omnibus provided $21.5 million for grants to PHAs for emergency capital needs resulting from unforeseen or unpreventable emergencies and natural disasters, excluding presidentially declared emergencies and natural disasters under the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Act. This included a set-aside of $5 million reserved for safety and security emergencies. HUD’s Capital Fund Emergency Safety and Security Program supports public housing authorities as they address the safety of public housing residents. These grants may be used to install, repair, or replace capital needs items including security systems/surveillance cameras, fencing, lighting systems, emergency alarm systems, window bars, deadbolt locks and doors.
HUD’s press release can be found here.
On August 8, HUD’s Office of Community Planning and Development posted Notice CPD-18-09, “Requirements for HOME Homebuyer Program Policies and Procedures.” The Notice provides guidance to HOME Investment Partnerships Program (HOME) participating jurisdictions (PJs) on requirements for the homebuyer program. Requirements include: homebuyer underwriting standards, responsible legal standards, and standards for refinancing and subordination of HOME loans. PJs must implement these requirements for all homebuyers who receive HOME assistance of purchase a unit developed with HOME funds.
The Notice also includes guidance on the housing counseling requirements for the HOME Homebuyer Program, including the use of HUD-approved counselors and housing counseling agencies.
On July 26, HUD posted a notice in the Federal Register implementing Public Housing income limits as required by the Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act of 2016 (HOTMA). HOTMA places the threshold for over-income families as those with incomes over 120 percent of area median income (AMI) for the most recent two consecutive years. If a family meets this threshold, public housing authorities (PHAs) have the option of either charging the higher of the fair market rent for the unit or the monthly subsidy (operating and capital fund), or terminating the tenancy within 6 months. Language in HOTMA also provides the Secretary the discretion to establish different income limitations based on local construction costs or unusually high or low incomes, vacancy rates, or rents.