HUD publishes HOTMA implementation notice

HOTMA implementation notice

On Wednesday in the Federal Register, HUD’s Office of Public and Indian Housing (PIH) published a notice implementing several of the provisions of the Housing Opportunity through Modernization Act (HOTMA) that impact the housing choice voucher (HCV) and project-based voucher (PBV) programs, in addition to requesting comments on both current and future implementing requirements. The HOTMA implementation notice is broken down topic-by-topic, followed by specific questions for comment in each corresponding section. The first sections of the notice address:

  • Allowing PHAs to approve tenancy and commence HAP payments when a unit fails HQS, but only if it has non-life-threatening deficiencies.
  • Authorizing occupancy prior to inspection if the unit passed under an alternate inspection within the previous 24 months.
  • Amending the definition of units owned by the PHA so that the unit is PHA-owned only if unit is in a project that is: owned by the PHA, owned by an entity wholly controlled by the PHA, or owned by an LLC or limited partnership in which the PHA or entity wholly controlled by the PHA holds a controlling interest in the managing member or general partner.

The notice also addresses numerous statutory changes to the project-based voucher (PBV) program set forth under HOTMA, covering implementation requirements for the following:

  • Changing the terminology in the statute from “structure” to “project.”
  • Changing the PHA HCV program limitation on PBV vouchers from a 20 percent funding limitation to a 20 percent unit limitation calculation and allowing for additional project-basing of vouchers by raising the limit an additional 10 percent for homeless families, families with veterans, supportive housing for persons with disabilities or elderly persons, or in areas where vouchers are difficult to use.
  • Changing the income-mixing cap on the number of PBV units in a project to be the greater of 25 units in a project or 25 percent of the units in a project (the project unit cap), and making changes to the categories of PBV units that are excepted from this project unit cap.
  • Allowing the PHA to provide for an initial PBV contract of up to 20 years and to further extend that term for an additional 20 years.
  • Allowing the PHA to establish a selection preference for families who qualify for voluntary services, including disability-specific services, offered in conjunction with assisted units, provided that the preference is consistent with the PHA plan.
  • Allowing the PHA to attach assistance to structures in which the PHA has an ownership interest or control without following a competitive process.
  • Allowing PHAs to project-base HUD–VASH and FUP vouchers in accordance with statutory and regulatory requirements of the PBV program without additional requirements for approval by HUD.

The implementing requirements set forth in today’s notice become effective April 18, 2017. Comments on the specific questions posed in the notice are due by March 20.

Got questions about HOTMA? All of NMA’s HCV classes have been updated for the new payment standard rules. Register at least 45 days in advance for most seminars and you’ll receive a 10 percent discount. (The discount does not apply to seminars hosted by housing authorities or associations.)

Affordable housing news 1/13/17

Bloomberg: Wall Street, America’s new landlord, kicks tenants to the curb

Brookings: 3 opportunities for Ben Carson as the next HUD secretary

Chicago Business: What Chicago learned from privatizing some affordable housing

Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies: Housing policy in the next administration

Homelessness Law: The top 5 threats to people experiencing homelessness

NCSHA: Senate banking committee holds nomination hearing for Carson

Next City: Ben Carson on 5 big issues facing U.S. cities

Next City: NYC releases design guidelines for public housing

NHC: Placing housing costs in context

NLIHC: 115th Congress begins 2017 term with flurry of legislative activity

NLIHC: Families with vouchers are underrepresented in low-distress neighborhoods

New York Times: D.C. homelessness doubles national average as living costs soar

Rooflines: Carson tries to please everyone in confirmation hearing, mostly succeeds

Rooflines: Take the best of public housing, and make more

Urban Wire: What is the Obama administration’s legacy on housing?

Urban Wire: Is Ben Carson ready to handle America’s rental housing crisis?

Urban Wire: How a voucher program sparked interest in housing homeless veterans

Urban Wire: The role of housing in stabilizing children’s lives

Washington Post: America’s concern for the poor is about to be tested

Affordable housing news 11/18/16

CBPP: Housing voucher reform will boost efficiency and opportunity

CBPP: Veterans’ homelessness cut in half since 2010

Chicago Business: CHA tests new timer on housing vouchers

Chicago Tribune (via Planetizen): Chicago to co-locate libraries and public housing

CityLab: Fighting loneliness with public living rooms

CMHA: [VIDEO] VASH vouchers: How veterans and their families are housed

Curbed: Low-income housing doesn’t hurt property values, says report

Curbed: The affordable housing crisis is a rural issue, too

Delaware Public Media: Delaware becomes third state to end veteran homelessness

Fast Company: In cities across the country, voters passed affordable housing measures

HUD: Renters more likely to be food insecure than homeowners

HUD: HUD and VA announce additional VASH funding

Next City: D.C. mayor says city’s taking affordable housing to “next level”

Rooflines: 74% of U.S. households who are eligible do not receive Section 8 assistance

Best Practices in Managing VASH Vouchers

Moving to Work panel session at The Housing Conference
NMA director of program management Michele Lazdowsky will be presenting a session on VASH at The Housing Conference

Michele Lazdowsky, NMA’s director of program management, will be presenting a session this year at The Housing Conference on best practices in managing VASH vouchers. Michele is a strong leader with over two decades of housing experience in the areas of compliance, HCV operations, inspections, management, project-based programs, public housing, state housing operations, and the VASH program.

Best Practices for Program Success

Best Practices in Managing VASH Vouchers
Presenters, Michele Lazdowsky and Becky Gligo

Leasing our nation’s veterans has recently been a top priority for HUD, as well as for many PHAs awarded funding under the HUD–Veterans Affairs (VA) supportive housing (HUD-VASH) program, which provides special vouchers for homeless veterans. As a PHA, you don’t get paid an administrative fee for unleased VASH vouchers — so the sooner a veteran is leased, the sooner fees are earned for you to administer the program. In working with PHAs and the VA through the Housing First initiative, we’ve discovered some best practices to quickly and effectively lease up homeless veterans. In this session, presenters Michele Lazdowsky and Becky Gligo will share those best practices and discuss what your agency needs to know in order to run a successful VASH program.

Interested in learning more about VASH? Make an appointment to talk with one of our experts at The Housing ConferenceMichele, Becky, and other industry experts are available for limited free one-hour Q&A sessions with registered conference attendees. Don’t delay, signups close this Friday! Register online or email for more information.

Agenda now available for 2016 national conference

The Housing Conference, September 19–20, 2016, in San Antonio, TexasJust one week left for early bird pricing! Register by June 30 to receive the best rates for The Housing Conference.

The updated agenda is now available here. Industry experts will present sessions and panels on the latest topics in affordable housing, including:

  • Affirmatively furthering fair housing (AFFH) final rule
  • Community partnerships
  • Community Development Block Grants (CDBG)
  • Creating an ongoing leasing plan
  • Family self-sufficiency and resident opportunities
  • Insurance for development projects
  • Rent reasonableness
  • Technology strategies
  • Strategies for success in HCV audits
  • Upcoming legislation
  • New inspection protocol for the voucher program
  • Best practices in managing portability
  • Best practices in managing VASH vouchers
  • Best practices in preventing shortfall
  • Best practices in public housing unit turnover and vacancy tracking
  • RAD post-closing operational transition for PBRA and PBV
  • What to consider before applying for the MTW program

Presented by NMA and HAI Group, this year’s conference in San Antonio, Texas, will also feature a roundtable panel session with NMA Housing Awards winners.

The Housing Conference

Visit our website to register!

Affordable housing news 3/18/16

If you’re interested in the status of voucher utilization and funding, the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP) announced earlier this week that it will be hosting a free webinar next Wednesday, April 6, at 2:30 p.m. eastern time (11:30 a.m. Pacific time):

As of the end of 2015, state and local housing agencies had restored about half of the nearly 100,000 housing vouchers that they had cut after sequestration in 2013, and many were poised to restore additional vouchers in 2016. Some agencies that could be assisting additional families are instead leaving funds on the table unspent, however. Webinar panelists will provide a status update on voucher utilization and funding, discuss steps that housing agencies can take to improve utilization, and briefly assess the funding outlook for 2017.

Click here to register for the webinar. In other news:

NeighborWorks: More than 20 cities and states across the country have declared an end to veteran homelessness

NLIHC: Senate subcommittee holds hearing on FY17 HUD budget request

It’s the first weekend of daylight saving time—enjoy the sunshine! We’ll be back next week with more affordable housing news and analysis.

President Obama releases proposed 2017 HUD budget

Proposed 2017 HUD budget

Yesterday the Obama administration released its proposed budget for federal fiscal year (FFY) 2017.

In a news release, Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Julián Castro praised the HUD portion of the budget for its focus on securing quality housing for Americans, ending homelessness, making communities more resilient, protecting people from housing discrimination, and providing critical rental assistance:

HUD’s proposed budget was built on the values that we uphold as Americans. That our entire nation benefits when our children grow up in a community that’s full of promise, not problems. When a hard-working family is able to responsibly buy their first-home, put down roots, and build wealth. When homeless veterans are able to get the housing they need to succeed in the very nation they risked so much to protect. When every person gets a fair shot and a fair shake to achieve their dreams.

What does the Obama administration propose for the housing choice voucher (HCV) and public housing programs in 2017? The proposed budget for HUD requests a total of $20.9 billion for the HCV program, or not quite 1 percent less than it requested for 2016. The total breaks down this way:

  • $18.4 billion for voucher renewals, or 0.6 percent more than was requested for 2016
  • $110 million for tenant protection activities, 27 percent less than was requested for 2016
  • $2 billion for administrative fees, or 3 percent less
  • $110 million for renewal of vouchers for persons with disabilities under Section 811 of the Cranston-Gonzalez National Affordable Housing Act, or 2 percent more
  • $60 million for the supportive housing program for homeless veterans, a 20 percent decrease from the amount provided the past several years
  • $88 million for new vouchers for families with children who are experiencing homelessness
  • $15 million for a new housing choice voucher mobility demonstration

As for the public housing program, the HUD portion of the proposed 2017 budget includes these requests:

  • $1.87 billion for the capital fund, or about 5 percent less than requested for 2016
  • $4.6 billion for the operating fund, or 0.7 percent less than was requested for 2016
  • $200 million for Choice Neighborhoods, or 20 percent less

For the consolidated family self-sufficiency (FSS) program, the proposed budget includes $75 million for family self-sufficiency coordinators, 12 percent less than requested for 2016.

You will find the president’s message to Congress here, a slide presentation of the proposed HUD budget here, a brief summary of it here, a press release about it here, links to the congressional justifications for the various parts of it here, and the appropriations language submitted to Congress here.

To stay updated on the latest program information, subscribe to the PIH Alert and receive a daily email with news and analysis for PHAs and housing professionals.

FY 2016 omnibus spending bill released

CongressEarly this morning, Congress released the text of the omnibus spending bill, H.R. 2029. The omnibus bill funds all 12 appropriations bills for FY 2016, including Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies. Highlights of the bill as it stands are:

  • Vouchers would be funded at $19.629 billion, $65 million of which would go to new vouchers. All new vouchers are HUD-Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH) vouchers.
  • The HOME program would be funded at $950 million for FY 2016, a $50 million increase in funding from 2015.
  • Public housing operating and capital funds would be funded at $4.5 billion and $1.9 billion, respectively.
  • One hundred new Moving to Work (MTW) agencies would be authorized over seven years. Contracts of existing MTW agencies would also be renewed under their current terms until FY 2028.

Congress is currently operating under a continuing resolution (CR), passed last Friday, which keeps the government funded through the end of today, December 16. For this reason, it is likely that Congress will pass another CR today to avoid shutdown until December 22. As for the omnibus funding bill, Congress is expected to pass that later this week.

Friday news roundup 8/14/15

The Atlantic (via CSSP): The number of people living in high-poverty areas nearly doubled between 2000 and 2013

Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies: Despite declines in homelessness, family homelessness persists

The HUDdle: Ex-homeless veteran thanks HUD for housing

NCHSA: HOME coalition organizes nationwide grassroots effort to save HOME

NHC: Every neighborhood can be a good neighborhood

New York Times: A year after Ferguson, housing segregation defies tools to erase it

Next City: Are community land trusts the answer for cities seeking neighborhood stability?

Washington Post (via CSSP): Census tracts where poverty is concentrated have skyrocketed since the 1970s