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ADVOCATE – October 28, 2020

HUD Publishes HOTMA HCV and PBV Proposed Rule

On October 8, 2020, HUD published a proposed rule titled: “Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act of 2016 – Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) and Project-Based Voucher Implementation; Additional Streamlining Changes” in the Federal Register. This rule largely does three things: codifies previously implemented parts of the Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act of 2016 (HOTMA), proposes to implement certain HCV and Project-Based Voucher (PBV) provisions of HOTMA, and proposes regulatory reforms unrelated to HOTMA. Comments to the proposed rule are due December 7, 2020.



ADVOCATE – October 14, 2020

House Passes Updated Version of the Heroes Act

The House Majority released an updated version of The Heroes Act in late September, addressing needs that have developed since the House passed an earlier iteration and reflecting ongoing negotiations between Democrats and Republicans. The $2.2 trillion bill passed the House of Representatives on October 1 by a vote of 214–207.



ADVOCATE – September 23, 2020

A New and Broader Eviction Moratorium

On September 4, 2020, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) published an agency order in the Federal Register that placed a moratorium on almost all evictions for non-payment of rent from the order’s publication until December 31, 2020, unless rescinded, modified or extended.



ADVOCATE – September 9, 2020

HUD Has Published “Brand New” Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing Final Rule

On August 7, HUD published a “brand new” Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) rule that is effective on September 8, 2020. After almost 10 years of rulemaking and information collection publishing, the department has elected to jettison virtually all components of its 2015 final AFFH rule and associated forms for submission of Assessments of Fair Housing (AFHs). HUD’s 2020 final AFFH rule even retreats from the department’s Analysis of Impediments (AI) approach it used since 1988 to implement its AFFH obligations.



ADVOCATE – August 5, 2020

President’s Forum: Correcting a Misleading Report

There is no question that seniors and disabled persons living in multifamily housing – subsidized and unsubsidized – face many daunting challenges during the coronavirus pandemic. Many elderly residents live alone, are frail, immobile and may not have others they can count on to help them through the difficulties they are now enduring. Many housing authorities all over the country have therefore stepped-up efforts to help this vulnerable population, notwithstanding this flawed report.


ADVOCATE – July 8, 2020

House Announces Infrastructure Package with $70 Billion for Public Housing Capital Fund

On June 18, the House leadership, including Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), House Financial Services Committee Chairwoman Maxine Waters (D-CA), and House Ways and Means Chairman Richard Neal (D-MA), announced a $1.5 trillion infrastructure package, the Moving Forward Act (H.R. 2), which represents a merger of several bills into one massive package for roads and bridges, housing, education, clean air and water, broadband and more.


ADVOCATE – June 24, 2020

HUD Updates CARES Act FAQ’s, Clarifies Eligible Uses, Timelines, More

On Friday, May 29, the HUD Office of Public and Indian Housing (PIH) issued an updated Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document, COVID-19 FAQs for Public Housing Agencies, Version 4. Organized around seven topic areas, the document is now over 40 pages. PHADA has highlighted many concerns with HUD, and the expanded section on Eligible Uses of Funds responds to many of these concerns.


ADVOCATE – June 10, 2020

HAs and Program Participants Confront Short, Medium, and Long-Term Uncertainties

Since March 2020, HAs have faced rapid changes resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic and its economic impacts. They have also benefited from steps taken by the federal government to moderate those economic impacts. However, uncertainties over medium- and long-term effects of the dramatic national economic contraction remain.


ADVOCATE – May 27, 2020

House Passes $3 Trillion COVID-19 Legislation

On May 15, the House of Representatives passed the Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions (HEROES) Act. The bill, if enacted, would be the largest legislative response from Congress to the COVID-19 emergency and contains $3 trillion in stimulus and emergency spending for federal programs, public health, and to support state and local governments.


ADVOCATE – May 13, 2020

HUD Releases Guidance on Supplemental Public Housing Funding

On April 28, HUD published PIH Notice 2020-07, “Implementation of Supplemental Guidance to the Federal Fiscal Year 2020 Operating Fund Appropriations.” The notice details the funding and flexibilities provided to housing authorities (HAs) through the CARES Act. The CARES Act included $685 million in supplemental funding for the Public Housing Operating Fund and allows full fungibility between operating and capital monies provided to HAs.


ADVOCATE – April 29, 2020

HUD Publishes Waiver Notice for Public Housing and Voucher Programs

Late on Friday, April 10, HUD published Notice PIH 2020-05 (https://bit.ly/3ahLmML) entitled, “COVID-19 Statutory and Regulatory Waivers for the Public Housing, Housing Choice Voucher, Indian Housing Block Grant and Indian Community Development Block Grant programs, Suspension of Public Housing Assessment System and Section Eight Management Assessment Program.” This Notice implements waivers authorized by the CARES Act which was enacted on March 27.


ADVOCATE – April 15, 2020

A Review of the CARES Act

On Friday, March 27 the President signed H.R. 748, the CARES Act into law, the same day it was passed by the House of Representatives. The Act is the latest federal effort to provide emergency assistance and response to the coronavirus pandemic. In addition to the relief provided to families and businesses, the Act provides supplemental appropriations for various governmental activities including the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s housing, homelessness, and community development programs.


ADVOCATE – April 1, 2020

President’s Forum: HUD Regulations, Requirements Should be Eased So HAs Can Focus on Residents’ Needs

These are unprecedented times. Dealing with the coronavirus outbreak is understandably our highest priority as we all work to preserve the health and safety of the residents and staffs in our communities. As always, PHADA can help be our voice in Washington and advocate for our needs to those at HUD and on Capitol Hill. With this in mind, I recently wrote to HUD Secretary Ben Carson on the public health crisis, and our staff sent similar communications to Congress.


ADVOCATE – March 18, 2020

HUD Issues Notice on Long Awaited Deregulation for Small Rural Agencies

The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) published a notice entitled, “Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act: Initial Guidance on Property Inspections and Environmental Reviews,” (the Act) on February 27, 2020. This long-awaited guidance implements useful provisions that can reduce administrative burdens for small, rural public housing authorities (PHAs).


ADVOCATE – March 4, 2020

President’s Budget Would Slash and Eliminate HUD Programs

On February 10 the White House released its FY 21 budget, “A Budget for America’s Future.” The Budget, while adhering to the Defense spending limits agreed to between Congress and the Trump Administration in last July’s two-year budget deal, seeks to cut Non-Defense Discretionary (NDD) spending by nearly $45 billion.


ADVOCATE – February 19, 2020

PHADA Replies to HUD’s Request for Information on Barriers to Affordable Housing

On November 22, on behalf of the White House Council on Eliminating Regulatory Barriers to Affordable Housing, HUD requested information from the public to identify barriers and possible solutions. PHADA submitted a response. Following is an excerpt of PHADA’s submitted comments.


ADVOCATE – February 5, 2020

HUD Publishes a New Proposed AFFH Rule

On January 14, 2020, HUD published a proposed rule entitled, “Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing.” This is the latest proposal in HUD’s 10-year effort to revise the affirmatively further fair housing (AFFH) rule. This proposal makes significant revisions to the requirements for HUD’s governmental grantees to complete periodic Assessments of Fair Housing (AFHs), and to the standards for assessing success in complying with AFFH policies. The public may comment on this latest proposal by March 16, 2020.


ADVOCATE – January 5, 2020

A Review of Final FY 20 HUD Appropriations

A final FY 20 appropriations package was released by House and Senate leaders on December 16, allocating $1.4 trillion in federal spending for the fiscal year that began on October 1. The legislation resolves differences between the House and Senate bills, which were put forward by each chamber earlier this year. The negotiated bill was approved on December 17 by the House on a vote of 297–120, on December 19 by the Senate on a vote of 71–23 and signed by the president on December 20, averting a government shutdown.


ADVOCATE – December 25, 2019

PHADA Comments on the New Annual Terms and Conditions for the ACC

On December 9, PHADA submitted its comments concerning HUD’s latest proposed changes to the Annual Contributions Contract (ACC). HUD made substantial changes to the language in the new ACC that could have addressed many of the concerns raised with the previous version of the ACC. However, in HUD’s notice and in a meeting with industry associations on November 19, HUD has asserted that the changes to this language do not represent changes to the policy positions the department adopted in earlier versions of the ACC.


ADVOCATE – December 11, 2019

President’s Forum: PHADA Participates in Two Important HUD Meetings

I traveled to Washington on November 18 for two separate meetings with HUD staff. The subject matters included the Annual Contributions Contract (ACC) and HUD’s “repositioning” tool for small HAs known as the Streamlined Voluntary Conversion (SVC). PHADA appreciates the outreach and cooperation of Public and Indian Housing (PIH) Assistant Secretary Hunter Kurtz and Deputy Assistant Secretary Dominique Blom and their staffs in convening these productive meetings.


ADVOCATE – November 27, 2019

HUD’s Latest Version of the Annual Terms and Conditions for the Public Housing Program (ACC)

On November 8, HUD published its latest version of a revised document laying out the terms and conditions under which HAs will operate public housing. This is the latest step in the department’s 3-year effort to implement a document replacing the 1995 version of the Annual Contributions Contract (ACC).


ADVOCATE – November 13, 2019

HUD Releases Evaluation of Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD)

On October 22, 2019, HUD released an evaluation of the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) prepared by Econometrica, Inc. under contract with HUD. The report concludes that RAD has been successful in leveraging non-public housing sources, improving physical conditions for residents and putting the properties on more stable financial footing for the future.


ADVOCATE – October 30, 2019

PHADA Submits Comments to NSPIRE Demonstration Notice

On October 18, PHADA submitted comments to HUD’s Notice describing the NSPIRE Demonstration. PHADA has been a leading voice asking for change to HUD’s REAC inspections for well over a decade and looks forward to a new protocol.


ADVOCATE – October 16, 2019

HUD Publishes a New Proposed Rule Implementing HOTMA Provisions

On September 17, HUD published a proposed rule implementing sections of the Housing Opportunities Through Modernization Act (HOTMA).


ADVOCATE – October 2, 2019

President’s Forum: PHADA’s DC Meeting

PHADA held its Legislative Forum in Washington September 8–10. As in the past, the meeting was especially timely, highlighting several important issues that we will be dealing with for some time to come. We were fortunate to hear from some influential policymakers from the Department of Housing and Urban Development including Secretary Ben Carson and Assistant Secretary R. Hunter Kurtz, as well as prominent lawmakers including Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME), who chairs the Senate’s HUD spending panel. Also on hand were Reps. David Price (D-NC) and Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL), the Chairman and ranking Republican, respectively, of the House of Representatives’ T-HUD Appropriations Subcommittee.


ADVOCATE – August 14, 2019

President’s Forum: Please Contact Congress Soon About Potential Funding Impacts

Before leaving for their August recess, the House and Senate adopted important legislation that will avert sequestration in the coming fiscal year and raise the overall spending caps for domestic discretionary programs in both FY 20 and 21. The bipartisan package will also help the government avoid a fiscal meltdown by raising the debt limit ceiling for the next two years. The latter provision is needed because the government has reached its maximum borrowing authority and would have been forced to drastically cut spending had Congress not acted.


ADVOCATE – July 31, 2019

Reversing ‘One Strike’ Policies: Fair Chance at Housing Act Introduced

On July 10, 2019, Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) and Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) introduced companion bills in the Senate and House called the Fair Chance at Housing Act. Both the sponsors and the supporters of the bills present them as part of larger criminal justice system reform efforts, and as a means of minimizing the harm caused by ‘tough on crime’ policies of the 1980s and 1990s. “This legislation is one of many steps that need to be taken to repair our broken criminal justice system,” said Representative Ocasio-Cortez in a press release.


ADVOCATE – July 17, 2019

President’s Forum: Unfinished Business Means Another Busy September

With Independence Day now behind us, we are well into the summer as Congress approaches its August recess. Between now and when lawmakers return to Washington after Labor Day, they will confront a large amount of unfinished business. This includes the need to enact a large-scale budget agreement that averts sequestration in FY 20 along with a measure that raises the debt limit ceiling, authorizing the Federal Government to continue borrowing.


ADVOCATE – July 3, 2019

LIHTC Legislation Reintroduced in Congress

Bipartisan legislation to strengthen and increase the flexibility of the Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC, pronounced lie-tek) has been reintroduced in Congress. The Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act of 2019 would build upon the proven success of LIHTC. Both S. 1703… and H.R. 3077 are comprehensive bills that would expand LIHTC, which is considered to be the primary vehicle for encouraging private investment in affordable rental housing.


ADVOCATE – June 12, 2019

House Appropriations Committee for T-HUD Releases FY 20 Funding Bill

On May 22, the House Appropriations Committee released the draft FY 20 Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies (T-HUD) funding bill, which was considered in subcommittee on Thursday, May 23. The bill provides a total of $50.1 billion for HUD, which is $5.9 billion above the 2019 enacted level and $13.4 billion above the President’s budget request.


ADVOCATE – May 29, 2019

OMB Seeks Comments on Inflation and Poverty Measures

On May 7, 2019, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) published a Notice of Solicitation of Comment in the Federal Register. OMB is seeking comment on varying methodologies for calculating inflation “and in particular how those differences might influence the estimation of the Official Poverty Measure (OPM).” The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) at the Department of Labor produces several inflation measures, including the one currently used.


ADVOCATE – May 15, 2019

HUD Proposes Rule on Non-Citizen Residency in Assisted Housing

An April 17, 2019, article in The New York Times detailed, for the first time, HUD’s intent to fundamentally change the rules regarding non-citizen residency in assisted housing. The article surprised the affordable housing industry, which had not previously been aware of the Department’s intent to amend such regulations. A draft of the proposed rule obtained by PHADA is concerning because it would separate families, disrupt current business practices....


ADVOCATE – May 1, 2019

President’s Forum: PHADA Meets with New Assistant Secretary Hunter Kurtz

On Monday, April 8, PHADA Senior Vice President John Hodge (Brunswick, ME), Vice President for Housing David Northern (Champaign County Il), Executive Director Tim Kaiser, and I had a productive meeting with Hunter Kurtz. Kurtz, who has previously worked in a few different capacities at HUD as well as the city of Detroit’s housing department, is President Trump’s nominee for Assistant Secretary for Public and Indian Housing.


ADVOCATE – April 17, 2019

GAO Issues Report on REAC’s Inspection Process

On March 21, 2019, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report on HUD’s Real Estate Assessment Center (REAC) titled, “HUD Should Improve Physical Inspection Process and Oversight of Inspectors” (www.gao.gov/products/GAO-19-254). This report was the result of an assessment required by Congress in the 2017 appropriations bill.


ADVOCATE – April 3, 2019

President’s Budget Would Slash and Eliminate HUD Programs

The President’s FY 20 Budget, A Budget for A Better America, was released on March 11. The Public Housing budget is hit hard with a $4.6 billion reduction, which is more than 60 percent of the FY 19 enacted budget. The Operating Fund, with a proposed budget of $2.863 billion, is $1.79 billion (nearly 40 percent) lower than the FY 19 enacted level of $4.653 billion. PHADA, CLPHA, and NAHRO have put forth a joint industry needs statement that estimates a $5.4 billion budget for the Operating Fund.


ADVOCATE – March 20, 2019

HUD Holds First REAC Listening Session, Releases Outline for New Inspection Protocol

On February 21, HUD held the first of a series of listening sessions concerning new and planned changes to the REAC inspection protocol in Philadelphia. PHADA President John Clarke and a number of PHADA trustees, members, and staff were in attendance at the meeting. In addition to reviewing the ill-conceived change to the inspection notification period, HUD staff unveiled the outline of an inspection Demonstration to be piloted in Region 3 later this year.


ADVOCATE – March 6, 2019

A Look at the Final FY 19 Spending Deal

Congress passed a full year spending package for FY 19 for the remaining seven appropriations bills, including T-HUD, and President Trump approved it slightly before the expiration of the existing continuingesolution (CR) on February 15. The other five appropriations bills had been previously enacted through two spending packages before the start of the fiscal year on October 1.


ADVOCATE – February 20, 2019

PHADA Has Serious Concerns With HUD’s Proposed ACC Changes

In the spring of 2018, HUD began to implement a new Consolidated Annual Contributions Contract (CACC) for public housing. A number of PHADA members expressed serious concern with the document and with the method HUD proposed to use to implement the new contract.


ADVOCATE – February 6, 2019

House Passes FY 19 Appropriations for HUD

On Wednesday, January 23, the House passed an FY 19 appropriations bill (H.R. 648) for HUD and other agencies. The bill reflects the agreements reached by the House and Senate late last year. If passed by the Senate and signed by the President, the bill would provide full-year funding for the Department…


ADVOCATE – January 9, 2019

President’s Forum: Shutdown, Fiscal Uncertainty Dictate Need for Reserves

As this edition of the Advocate went to print, subject to change at any time, the federal government is partially shut down including the Department of Housing and Urban Development. This means the brand new 116th Congress may have to deal with the shutdown and figure a way to finalize FY 19 appropriations (months after the October 1 deadline) while beginning work almost immediately on the FY 20 budget.



HUD Pursues Changes to REAC Inspection Protocols

Along with other groups representing the public and multifamily housing industries, PHADA attended a meeting at HUD on November 29, 2018, billed to discuss improvements to the physical inspection process. To demonstrate the importance of the issue, the Department’s Chief of Staff Andrew Hughes led a contingent of principal aides to Secretary Carson in attending the meeting.



PHADA Comments on HUD’s Proposed Moving to Work Expansion Operations Notice

On November 26, PHADA submitted comments on HUD’s recent version of its Operations Notice applicable to the 100 agency Moving to Work (MTW) expansion authorized in the 2016 appropriations statute. HUD had published an initial version of this notice in January 2017 which was broadly critiqued at the time.



President’s Forum: Changes Coming in Congress

I noted in my late August column that, due to retirements and other factors, we could expect a lot of personnel changes in Congress even before the votes were counted. Now that Election Day has come and gone, the political lay of the land we will be dealing with for the next two years is much clearer.



PHADA and Member HAs Join with HUD to Address Landlord Participation in the Voucher Program

As part of an effort by HUD to increase landlord participation in the Housing Choice Voucher Program, HUD asked PHADA to convene an expert panel of its members in late October to address programmatic barriers, incentives and other ways to attract and retain landlords.



HUD Reverses Course on Unfair ACC

In important news, Dominique Blom, HUD’s Acting Assistant Secretary for PIH, informed the Directors of PHADA, NAHRO, and CLPHA on October 15 that HUD will pull back its revised version of the Annual Contributions Contract (ACC). PHADA has been strongly advocating this action since the spring...



President’s Forum: Another Year, Another CR

October 1 has now come and gone, and with that, we are now in federal fiscal year 2019. For the first time in years, Congress was able to complete work on time on a large portion of the overall federal budget. In fact, Politico reported that the mammoth $854 billion spending bill signed into law... 



PHADA Announces Launch of New Website



President’s Forum: Big Changes Coming in Congress



Groups Continue to Raise Concerns with HUD on the New Annual Contributions Contract


ADVOCATE – JULY 25, 2018

President’s Forum: Please Ask Your Reps. to Join Public Housing Caucus


ADVOCATE – JULY 11, 2018

PHADA Raises Concerns with the New Annual Contributions Contract


ADVOCATE – JUNE 27, 2018

Senate Appropriations Committee Marks-up Its FY 19 T-HUD Appropriations Bill


ADVOCATE – JUNE 13, 2018

HUD Publishes Three New Assessment of Fair Housing Notices – Likely to Extend AFH Delays


ADVOCATE – MAY 30, 2018

House T-HUD Marks Up FY 19 Appropriations Bill



Presidents Forum: Why Congress Increased the Capital Fund



Additional Policy and Program Provisions in Final 2018 Appropriations Law Are Noteworthy



President Trump Signs Massive Spending Bill



Presidents Forum: Proposed Budget Includes Flawed, Misleading Assumptions



PHADA Advocates to Appropriators for FY 2018 Funding



Congress Reaches a Two-Year Budget Deal



PHADA Submits Comments In Response to HUD’s Proposed FSS Performance Measurement System



Congress Passes Major Tax Reform Legislation