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September 29, 2020

News Release: House Democrats Release Updated Version of The Heroes Act

House Democrats today released an updated version of The Heroes Act, addressing needs that have developed since the House passed an earlier iteration and reflecting negotiations between Democrats and Republicans. 

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September 24, 2020

A Blueprint for Change: NYCHA Unveils Ideas to Invest in Its Properties and People

To ensure that public housing is here for New Yorkers for generations to come, New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) Chair and CEO Greg Russ unveiled A Blueprint for Change, a set of ideas that outlines potential ways that NYCHA can invest in its properties, residents, and organization. These proposals will also create jobs for residents while generating economic activity that will help New York City recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

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September 04, 2020

There is a New Eviction Moratorium

On September 4, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued an order under its authorities due to the COVID-19 pandemic to impose a national moratorium on evictions through December 31, 2020. The moratorium will apply to all rental housing and may preclude the eviction of a mortgagor in default after foreclosure proceedings as well. The order prevents, “… any action … to remove or cause the removal of a covered person from a residential property …” but does not preclude foreclosu...

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August 24, 2020

Granite State Isn't Immune to Structural Racism

We find ourselves in a perfect storm with multiple flashpoints: a once-in-a-lifetime pandemic and a centuries-old struggle for justice. One is a public health emergency that has lasted for months and promises many future challenges: COVID-19. The other is the most insidious, long-standing public health emergency which has lasted for hundreds of years: Racism.

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August 05, 2020

PHADA Trustee Mary Mayrose Named Executive Director of the Lynchburg Redevelopment and Housing Authority

The Lynchburg Redevelopment and Housing Authority (LRHA) Board of Commissioners has announced the appointment of Mary E. Mayrose, currently the Executive Director of the Phenix City Housing Authority, to the position of Executive Director of the Lynchburg Redevelopment and Housing Authority. Mayrose succeeds Dawn Fagan who resigned earlier this year.

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August 05, 2020

PHADA Small PHA Committee Holds Virtual Meeting

On July 1, 2020, PHADA’s Small PHA Committee held its first virtual meeting via Zoom. While there were no action items before the committee, there was discussion of a variety of items.

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August 05, 2020

PHADA Position Paper: FY 21 Appropriations

The FY 21 federal budget process, which began on February 10 with the release of the White House budget, was sidelined while Congress focused instead on several supplemental funding packages to address the effects of COVID-19. The Administration’s proposed budget, while adhering to the Defense spending limits agreed to between Congress and the President in the July 2019 two-year budget deal, seeks to cut Non-Defense Discretionary (NDD) spending by nearly $45 billion. The HUD budget would be cut...

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August 05, 2020

Out of Reach: The High Cost of Housing

The National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC) recently released its 2020 report, Out of Reach, The High Cost of Housing. Published annually since 1989, the report details the gap between actual wages and what wages people need to earn to afford their rents, both at the national and local level

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August 05, 2020

Fair Housing Rules Gain National Attention

In recent weeks, HUD’s efforts to amend Obama administration rules implementing the Fair Housing Act and related court decisions have garnered attention from a surprising set of institutions.  POLITICO  reported an interchange between Bank of America’s Vice Chairperson and Federal Housing Commissioner Brian Montgomery concerning a possible amended disparate impact rule.  The New York Times  reported reactions to HUD’s efforts to amend that rule from Citi Bank, Wells Fargo, and JP Morgan Cha...

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August 05, 2020

Eviction Prevention Toolkit Provided by HUD as Eviction Moratorium Ends

On July 2, HUD’s Office of Public and Indian Housing released the Eviction Prevention and Stability Toolkit, a collection of information and resources for public housing authorities and Housing Choice Voucher program landlords on ways to stabilize families and reduce evictions during and after COVID-19. The release of the toolkit comes in anticipation of the July 24 end of the federal moratorium on evictions in federally supported housing included in the CARES Act. HUD’s Eviction Prevention and ...

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August 05, 2020

HUD Publishes Voucher Mobility Demonstration Notice

On July 15, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) published a  notice  to implement the voucher mobility demonstration which was funded in the Fiscal Years 2019 and 2020 Appropriations Acts. The 2019 Act also contained the authorizing legislation. The notice invites interested housing authorities (HAs) to apply for funding made available through the Acts – a total of $50 million. In many ways, the notice validates PHADA’s concerns that the statutory language allowed the Secretary...

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August 05, 2020

President’s Forum: Correcting a Misleading Report

“Nationwide, more than 1.6 million older adults live in low-income housing subsidized by the Department of Housing and Urban Development – most in apartment buildings with shared common spaces, elevators, staircases, mailrooms, hallways and laundry rooms where the coronavirus might lurk. Most of these seniors have endured a life of disadvantage, have chronic illnesses such as diabetes and heart disease, and lack financial reserves to draw upon.  Yet in the midst of the pandemic, this population...

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July 08, 2020

Highlights from Two Recent PHADA Webinars

On June 17, PHADA held a webinar entitled “CARES Act Accounting, Eligibility, and Reporting” to update our members on the best ways to track and report how they are spending CARES Act funds. Speakers included Jason Casterline, CPA & Managing Director of BDO PHA Finance, PHADA Trustee Bryan Hoffman, Executive Director of Lebanon County Housing Authority (PA), and David Weber, Policy Analyst for PHADA. Arlene Conn of the Association’s policy team moderated the panel. The speakers shared a wealth ...

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July 08, 2020

Choice Mobility and the Mobility Demonstration

In recent weeks, HUD has taken steps concerning a mobility demonstration authorized and funded by Congress in 2019 and 2020, and in evaluating the impact of the choice mobility option in Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) conversions.

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July 08, 2020

Industry Recommendations for FY 21 Budget

The National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials (NAHRO), the Public Housing Authorities Directors Association (PHADA), the Council of Large Public Housing Agencies (CLPHA) and the MTW Collaborative are pleased to release joint funding recommendations for Office of Public and Indian Housing and Office of Housing programs administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. These programs provide resources essential to ensuring that seniors, families, veterans, an...

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July 08, 2020

House Financial Services Committee Hearings on Possible Eviction Crisis

The House Financial Services Committee, led by Chair Maxine Waters (D-CA), was busy during the month of June holding multiple virtual and hybrid hearings on a variety of topics. Between June 3 and June 25, six separate hearings were held. The full list, with links to videos of the hearings, can be found on the  Financial Services Committee website . On June 10, the Subcommittee on Housing, Community Development, and Insurance held a hearing titled “The Rent Is Still Due: America’s Renters, CO...

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July 08, 2020

HUD Releases On-Line Section 3 Training Curriculum

On June 17, HUD’s Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity (FHEO) launched a new on-line, self-paced training curriculum, “Understanding Section 3.” The full notice from FHEO is available online. The new training curriculum is structured around fundamentals of the law, current regulations, and reporting requirements. It is a straightforward presentation of a complex topic. It focuses on high-level rules and guidelines and practical use of the SPEARS reporting system. It does not, however, a...

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July 08, 2020

HUD’s Office of Inspector General Announces the Department’s Management Challenges Associated with the COVID-19 Pandemic

In April 2020, a few weeks after passage of the CARES Act, HUD’s Office of the Inspector General published a COVID-19 Oversight Framework that described areas of the Act affecting HUD that the IG believed would deserve oversight attention.

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July 08, 2020

Looking Ahead: Funding and Other Considerations for the Voucher Program

In typical years, both the House and Senate Appropriations Committees would have completed work on funding bills for the Department of Housing and Urban Development. This year, the coronavirus has delayed committee work on the bills in both chambers of Congress. In fact, coronavirus’ effects have been felt in virtually every industry, including affordable housing, and will play a large part in the operation of the Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) program at least through the end of Fiscal Year 2021...

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July 08, 2020

President’s Forum: The Latest on the FY 21 Budget

The Senate had planned to mark up some bills right around now, but that timetable has been delayed because of contentious debate on potential police reforms. The House still plans to start up its process after Independence Day.

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July 08, 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. At the press conference, where the ambitious House plan was reveale...

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June 24, 2020

News Brief: Reminder to Apply for Voucher Set-Aside Funding

In response to PHADA’s request, the deadline for most categories of voucher set-aside funding has been extended to July 15. In its  initial notice , the Department set deadlines of May 15 for five of the categories for which HAs can request additional funding including portability, project-based vouchers, and lower-than-average leasing. This extension was requested as many agencies were in the midst of planning for and responding to COVID-19 in their communities. Given the escalating per-unit-co...

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June 24, 2020

HUD News: HUD Provides Remaining $2.96 Billion CARES Act Funding for Homeless Populations

HUD Secretary Ben Carson announced the allocation of $2.96 billion in Emergency Solutions Grants (ESG) funding to support homeless Americans and individuals at risk of becoming homeless because of hardships such as job loss, wage reduction, or illness due to COVID-19. This funding is in addition to $1 billion of ESG grants announced within a week of President Trump signing the CARES Act.

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June 24, 2020

News Brief: PBRA Funding Update

On May 28,  HUD issued a memo  to Project- Based Rental Assistance (PBRA) stakeholders on the allocation of CARES Act funding which was appropriated to assist owners in responding to COVID-19 and to ensure the continued operations of PBRA properties. The CARES Act included $1 billion in funding, and thus far HUD has allocated $800 million to approximately 16,500 properties to cover decreased tenant payments and vacancy payment claims. No action is necessary for owners to access these funds which...

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June 24, 2020

National Affordable Housing Accreditation Awarded to Keene Housing, Keene, NH

Keene Housing is the nation’s sixth affordable housing provider to receive AHAB accreditation. The designation of “Accredited Affordable Housing Organization” reflects Keene Housing’s commitment to meeting high performance standards established by the affordable housing industry and to providing quality, well-managed housing.

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June 24, 2020

“2020 Picture of Preservation”

The Public and Affordable Housing Research Corporation (PAHRC) and the National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC) recently released a joint report entitled “2020 Picture of Preservation.” Federally assisted affordable housing provides stability for 4.9 million low-income renter households, but the need for affordable rental homes still far outweighs the supply. The report notes that the United States faces a shortage of approximately seven million affordable rental homes for the lowest-incom...

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June 24, 2020

HUD Releases PBV FAQ for non-RAD Conversions

On May 27, HUD posted on its website a document titled,  Project Based Vouchers (PBVs) FAQs . In fact, the document only addresses “questions (FAQs) pertaining to project-basing as a repositioning tool.” This document only applies to PBVs when used as part of a conversion of a public housing property approved by the Special Applications Center (SAC) via “a Section 18 demolition/disposition (Notice PIH 2018-04); a Section 22 Streamlined Voluntary Conversion (SVC)(Notice PIH 2019-05); a Section 3...

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June 24, 2020

Affordable Housing Critical Needs Magnified by COVID-19

With over 40 million Americans filing unemployment claims due to COVID and 10.8 million households paying more than half their income towards rent, the massive need for affordable homes has reached further urgency. The ACTION Campaign, of which PHADA is a member, has been advocating for the last several months for legislative and regulatory intervention to ensure the continued viability of Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) properties currently in service and also in the construction and deve...

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June 24, 2020

HAs Face Uncertainties in Real Estate Markets

In addition to general economic uncertainties resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, HAs face issues developing in real estate markets that may present challenges and opportunities in the medium term. These uncertainties involve potentially significant changes in commercial real estate, owner occupied residential real estate, and residential rental real estate that includes multifamily housing properties.

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June 24, 2020

Treating the Virus of Racial Injustice

The image of a Minneapolis police officer pressing his knee down on the neck of a handcuffed African American man, George Floyd, while three other officers stand by is so repulsive that millions of us cannot get it out of our minds. In the wake of this outrage, Americans and people throughout the world are experiencing shock, grief, and anger. It is therefore no wonder why so many people are protesting to try and end the racial injustice that persists in our great but flawed nation.

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June 24, 2020

Confronting the Threat of Post-Moratorium Evictions

In the midst of the spread of COVID-19, federal, state, and local governments and court systems instituted varying restrictions on evictions to protect renters who may have lost income due to the shuttering of businesses. These moratoria are diverse and cover some or all facets of the eviction process, from notice to enforcement. Although the federal moratorium is in effect through July 24, many of the state and local moratoria have already begun to expire. Renters and landlords are expected to...

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June 24, 2020

President’s Forum: Please Review HUD, PHADA Info on CARES Act Eligibility Issues

As usual for the last few months, much of this newsletter centers around the COVID-19 pandemic, focusing on information HAs need to know to address their local situations. I wanted to briefly highlight a few different things that may be helpful to your agencies.

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June 24, 2020

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

Housing Agencies, Version 4 (https://bit.ly/2MV1PwU). 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. Most significantly, HUD has confirmed and reiterated throughout the FAQ Section 6 on Eligible Uses of Funds (EU questions on pages 32–40) that CARES Act Supplemental Operating Funds may be used for any normally eligible operating expenses. F...

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June 10, 2020

Agencies “Prepare For, Prevent, and Respond to” the Spread of the Coronavirus

On March 27, the CARES Act was signed into law to provide emergency assistance in response to the coronavirus pandemic. In addition to other efforts to protect the health and well-being of all Americans and to combat the spread of the virus, the Act provided supplemental appropriations to the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), among other governmental agencies. This supplemental funding included $125 billion to preserve voucher rental assistance for seniors, the disabled, and lo...

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June 10, 2020

OCC Goes It Alone, Issues Final CRA Rule

In a highly unusual move, on May 15 the Office of the Controller of the Currency (OCC) issued a final rule implementing provisions of the Community Reinvestment Act without the participation of the two other cognizant agencies, the Federal Reserve Board (the Fed) and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC). The day after issuing this final rule, the Department of the Treasury announced Controller Otting’s resignation, effective May 29. First Deputy and Chief Operating Officer Brian P. ...

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June 10, 2020

Research Shows Continued Loss of Low-Cost Rental Housing

In September of 2019 researchers at the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University  published a working paper  that detailed the long-term loss of low-cost rental units in the United States. That paper utilized Census data for the years 1990-2017 to illustrate the decrease in rental units at several cost thresholds and the accelerated losses between 2000 and 2017.  Newly available data  show the decline continued in 2018, further reducing the affordable housing options available for ...

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June 10, 2020

HEROES Bill Sets Stage for Next Legislative Package

On May 15, the House of Representatives passed a $3 trillion COVID-19 relief package, with Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) leading the way to a 208-199 vote, with only one Republican, Rep. Peter King of New York, supporting the legislation. The Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions (HEROES) Act (H.R. 6800) is the fifth appropriations bill to address the COVID-19 crisis and the largest to date, with $3 trillion in spending for federal programs, public health, and state and local g...

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June 10, 2020

President’s Forum: PHADA Welcomes New Trustees

In late 2015, the PHADA Board of Trustees held a strategic planning retreat in Charleston, SC. Of those who attended, it is generally agreed this was the most productive of such meetings the association’s leadership has conducted. Among other important things we did in Charleston was to plan for the day that many members would be coming to the end of their professional careers and transitioning to retirement. We have seen the growing trend all around us. Many Executive Directors, HA staff, HUD ...

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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. Federal policies seem to presume a relatively brief period of distress and a rapid return to pre-pandemic circumstances. Unfortunately, medium, and long-term impacts on the ...

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May 27, 2020

HUD News: PIH “Wednesday Webinar” Series

PIH is hosting a new “Wednesday Webinar” series intended to explain and discuss common issues related to public housing repositioning. The webinars will be held on Wednesdays from 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm EST beginning May 13. PIH encourages PHA directors, staff, residents, board members, and others working with PHAs to develop and execute a repositioning strategy to participate

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May 27, 2020

HUD News: Secretary Carson Congratulates Brian Montgomery on Deputy Secretary Confirmation

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson today applauded the confirmation of Brian D. Montgomery to serve as Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). As the second most senior official at HUD, Montgomery will manage the day-to-day operations of the agency and will advise and assist the Secretary in leading the Department’s nearly 8,000 employees.

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May 27, 2020

Recap of PHADA’s Current Events Panel Discussion Webinar

On May 7, PHADA held a Current Events Panel Discussion webinar to update our members on the latest developments around COVID-19 affecting the housing industry. Hundreds of our members joined us for the webinar and we received positive feedback on the content presented.

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May 27, 2020

HUD Releases Report on Assisted Rental Units

The Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD’s) Office of Policy Development and Research (PD&R) released a report entitled “Characteristics of HUD-Assisted Renters and Their Units in 2017” in March 2020. The report is the ninth in a series of studies dating back to 1989 that utilize American Housing Survey (AHS) information to characterize the 4.5 million assisted rental units and their occupants in 2017. The report examines rental unit location, year-built, size, structure type and ...

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May 27, 2020

Minimum 4 Percent LIHTC Rate Could Finance 126,000 Additional Affordable Units Over the Next Decade

Novogradac, the tax advisory firm, previously estimated that a hard four percent Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) rate could result in the production of 66,000 additional affordable homes over the next decade. In late April Novogradac revised this estimate upward by 60,000 units for a new projection of 126,000 additional affordable rental units from 2020 to 2029. The estimate is higher because Novogradac updated the baseline it uses for this research to account for the sustained increased ...

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May 27, 2020

HUD Releases Guidance for Multifamily Housing Programs

Since mid-March, the Office of Multifamily Housing Programs has been updating a document titled “Questions and Answers for Office of Multifamily Housing Stakeholders” (Q&A) to provide guidance on operating during the COVID-19 emergency. The latest update was issued at the start of May and includes updates on the eviction moratorium, income calculations, and management of properties.

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May 27, 2020

PHADA Advocacy Helps Address a CARES Act Spending Problem

On March 28, 2020, Congress and the President enacted the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act providing supplemental appropriations for the public housing Operating Fund ($685 million), Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) administrative fees ($850 million), and Housing Assistance Payments ($400 million). On April 28, HUD published Notice PIH-2020-07 concerning Operating Fund supplemental appropriations and Notice PIH 2020-08 concerning HCV program administrative fees.

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May 27, 2020

President’s Forum: Current Lay of the Land in Washington

As tens of millions of Americans are now out of work, Congress has stepped up and appropriated trillions of dollars to deal with the huge economic losses caused by the coronavirus. Meanwhile, the Federal Reserve is injecting trillions of additional dollars into the economy through historically low interest rates and loans to U.S. businesses. The unemployment rate now stands at almost 15 percent, the highest since the Great Depression. Unfortunately, it appears it will continue to rise in the co...

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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.

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May 13, 2020

In Memory of Steven Love

Steven Love, a longtime PHADA member and well respected housing advocate in New York City and Washington, passed away last month as a result of lingering health problems. Love was 75 years old and was living on Long Island with his family at the time of his death.

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May 13, 2020

PHADA Congratulates the 2020 Bollinger Scholarship Winner, TyJon Demetrius Goodlow (Atlanta, GA)

PHADA is pleased to announce the winners of its annual Scholarship Programs.  TyJon Demetrius Goodlow  of Atlanta, GA, has been awarded the 2020 Stephen J. Bollinger Memorial Scholarship. A high school senior, TyJon writes that “aside from the common notion that a school is only a place for book academia, school is also a resource for other social tools as well. For instance, at my institution of high school learning, I obtain a plethora of soft skills, not taught by an instructor, that are a...

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May 13, 2020

HUD’s HCV Landlord Strategy Guide Could Help Improve Your Voucher Program

HUD has released the first chapter of its  HCV Landlord Strategies Guide  as part of an effort to increase landlord participation in the Housing Choice Voucher Program. The chapter is thorough, visually appealing and includes many “tips” for how to conduct landlord outreach activities. The education and outreach activities will help public housing authorities (HAs) when considering how to undertake such activities and how to strategically focus staff and resources to retain good landlords and re...

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May 13, 2020

COVID-19 Operational Impacts and HUD’s Waivers

In response to the ongoing pandemic, HAs have had to navigate multiple new sets of requirements, recommendations, and guidance.

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May 13, 2020

PAHRC Hosts Series of Housing Impact Webinars

The Public and Affordable Housing Research Corporation (PAHRC) is a nonprofit research center dedicated to promoting the national conversation about the importance of affordable housing. Each year, they produce a number of research reports that examine key themes in affordable housing and provide updated statistics on the supply of housing assistance, those receiving assistance, and the impact on residents and communities. 

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May 13, 2020

President’s Forum: CARES Act Funding and Waivers a Lifeline

It has become cliched already, but it is still on point to declare these unprecedented times. No one knows for sure when we will turn to “normal,” but it seems that may be quite a way off in the future.So many Americans are struggling at this time, facing dangerous health risks on a daily basis. In addition, tens of millions have lost their jobs or large portions of their income. At the same time, our role has become even more important to the millions of low-income families and people we serve...

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May 13, 2020

HUD Issues Guidance for Voucher Program Admin Fees Funding Under CARES Act

On April 28, HUD Issued  PIH Notice PIH-2020-08 , providing guidance for HCV and Mainstream Programs Administrative Fee spending under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) (Public Law 116-136), which was enacted on March 27, 2020.

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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 (see the April 15 issue of the Advocate for more on the C...

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April 29, 2020

PHADA Continues to Monitor Effects of COVID-19

As reported in the last newsletter, the effects of COVID-19 on both housing authorities (HAs) and their residents and communities must continue to be monitored in order to mitigate adverse effects. PHADA has and will continue to discuss actual and potential impacts with HAs in order to advocate appropriately and timely on your behalf to Congress and the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) throughout this crisis. To date, the association has successfully advocated for additional fu...

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April 29, 2020

PHADA Submits Comments on Community Reinvestment Act Proposed Rule

The Community Reinvestment Act requires banks to provides services and extend credit to the communities they serve. As reported in the January 25 issue of the  Advocate   the notice of proposed joint rulemaking was issued by the Office of the Controller of the Currency (Department of the Treasury) and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), but the Federal Reserve Board has not signed on to the proposed rule. Many, including the National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC) and ...

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April 29, 2020

Industry Letter to Congress

On April 8, PHADA, NAHRO, CLPHA, and the MTW Collaborative sent a letter to Congress, initiated by NYCHA and signed by 777 housing authorities across the U.S., calling for additional funds to help meet the needs of HAs and their residents during the COVID-19 emergency.

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April 29, 2020

Update and Analysis on LIHTC

On March 25, HUD released, “ Understanding Whom the LIHTC Program Serves: Data on Tenants as of December 31, 2017 ,” which summarizes data received from state housing finance agencies (HFAs) administering the Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC). Under the Housing and Economic Recovery Act (HERA) of 2008, HFAs are required to submit certain demographic and economic information about tenants in LIHTC units to HUD. Findings in two key areas, income and rent burdens, show similar numbers betwee...

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April 29, 2020

Calls for Emergency Expansion of Rental Housing Assistance Raise Questions about How to Deliver

In his groundbreaking, Pulitzer-Prize winning book, Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City, Matthew Desmond posits expanding Section 8 Voucher Assistance to all extremely low-income households. That was in March of 2016. In arguing that we could afford this expansion, he cites a 2013 Bipartisan Policy Center estimate that it would cost an additional $22 billion annually. He compared this amount favorably to a multitude of other expenses and tax provisions, including the home mortgage ...

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April 29, 2020

President’s Forum: A Former Colleague Serving in Congress Asks What We Need

As you may know, Rep. Steven Palazzo (R-MS) is a former housing professional, having worked at the Biloxi, Mississippi HA for several years. He has been a strong advocate in Congress for deregulation, sponsoring the Small Housing Authority Reform Plan (SHARP) legislation a few years back. Some key provisions of SHARP were ultimately signed into law and implemented by HUD (see the  March 18  Advocate ).

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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. PHADA, other associations, and HAs encouraged...

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April 21, 2020

PIH Answers HA's SEMAP Question

I have read through PIH Notice 2020-05 and part 11.b. SEMAP. We understand PIH will not issue new SEMAP scores until FYE March 31, 2021. However, if we are a 3/31 FYE, do we need to complete and send to our field office our SEMAP submission for our FYE March 31, 2020? Or do we not need to submit anything for SEMAP until after next year’s FYE?

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April 15, 2020

The 2020 Census Is Here

Right now, our nation is conducting the once-a-decade census with the goal to count every person living in the United States once, only once, and in the right place. The U.S. Constitution requires a census every 10 years to count the entire country. Everyone is required to respond to the 2020 Census and count everyone living in their household. No matter where you live, it is important that you are counted in the 2020 Census. Each response matters and answering the census helps guide how billio...

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April 15, 2020

Non-Profits May Be Eligible for Deferred, Forgivable Loans Under the CARES Act

Division A, Title I of the CARES Act is titled Keeping American Workers Paid and Employed Act. This provision authorizes $349 billion for loans under Section 7(a) of the Small Business Act (15 USC 636(a)) and makes non-profit organizations eligible for such loans. The loans are designed to cover the cost of payroll; continuation of group health care and related benefits; employee salaries, commissions, or similar compensations; mortgage payments; rents; utilities; and interest on debt incurred ...

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April 15, 2020

Impacts of the Pandemic on Small Housing Authorities and Residents

There is no question that COVID-19 could adversely affect every housing authority and their residents across the nation. Since the start, PHADA has advocated on your behalf urging the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and Congress to act in response to coronavirus. In addition to additional emergency federal funding, the Association urged Secretary Carson to implement broad and immediate support and regulatory relief in order to slow the spread of the virus and to protect vulner...

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April 15, 2020

Relief Sought for LIHTC During the COVID-19 Crisis

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act is a $2.3 trillion relief package to address the COVID-19 crisis. It provides $12.4 billion in new appropriations for HUD programs, including significant funding for public and assisted housing programs (see page 1) but was short on funding or provisions to assist renters and managers of Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) units.

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April 15, 2020

PHA Common Practices in Response to the Coronavirus Pandemic

In the spirit of finding ways to accomplish the mission in times of unprecedented disruption, PHADA is providing this summary of some common practices adopted by member agencies and shared with us. As always, follow the directives of state and local officials, and use your best judgment in responding to the unique situations in your locality and at your agency while focusing on the core mission of providing housing and housing assistance. HUD advises and requests agencies, to the extent possibl...

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April 15, 2020

HUD Publishes Notice of FY 20 HCV Funding

On March 31,  PIH Notice 2020-04 , “Implementation of the Federal Fiscal Year (FFY) 2020 Funding Provisions for the Housing Choice Voucher Program” was issued. Required by law to be issued by March 1, 2020, the Notice outlines how HUD will implement the HCV provisions of the FY 20 appropriations law, including renewal funding, administrative fees, and new incremental funds. The FY 20 appropriations bill contained only a few new provisions compared to FY 19. Therefore, the major changes in the N...

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April 15, 2020

HUD Issues Important Update to Frequently Asked Questions for Public Housing Agencies

On Monday, March 30, HUD released an updated COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) document on their website. While many important questions regarding waivers are deferred until a formal waiver notice is issued, many questions are clearly answered in this document. 

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April 15, 2020

President’s Forum: PHADA Bolsters Efforts with HUD & Congress to Address Crisis

I hope all PHADA members, your families, residents and communities are coping as best as possible under very difficult circumstances. I wanted to take this opportunity to let you know what the association is doing to help HAs as we address the unfolding crisis gripping so many of our communities. PHADA’s staff in Washington is in regular communications with HUD headquarters, advocating for the resources and flexibility we need to operate right now. Similarly, PHADA has been coordinating with NA...

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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...

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April 02, 2020

Committee Releases Answers to Frequently Asked Questions About the CARES Act

On April 1, the House Financial Services Committee, led by Chairwoman Maxine Waters (D-CA), released a document with answers to frequently asked questions regarding financial services provisions in H.R. 748, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), legislation that was passed into law to provide relief to those who are impacted by the Coronavirus pandemic. 

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April 01, 2020

Bollinger Foundation Seeks Nominations for Scholarship Grants

where the deceased or surviving parent worked or works in the field of public housing, community development, or economic development. Grants are primarily awarded for educational expenses, including educational needs, school materials, and college tuition.

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April 01, 2020

HUD Issues Important Notice on March and April Operating Funds

Housing authorities (HAs) now have access to Operating Fund subsidies for the final one-third of March and all of April in eLOCCS. HAs may have noticed that the three obligations they have received this year have all been for different amounts due to a variety of factors. First, the federal government was funded through continuing resolutions (CRs) at the start of FY 20. The timing and amount of funds HUD had available did not align with the Department’s monthly disbursement schedule which resu...

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April 01, 2020

HUD Secretary Defends the Administration’s Budget Before House and Senate

HUD Secretary Ben Carson testified on March 4 and March 12 before the House and Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies regarding the FY 21 Budget. The Budget, which was released in February, includes $8.6 billion in cuts, a 15.2 percent reduction to public and assisted housing programs from FY 20 enacted levels.

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April 01, 2020

PHADA Launches COVID-19 Resource Webpage

PHADA continues to monitor the rapidly changing situation related to the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19). We understand that concerns for health, safety, and the impact on housing authorities’ staff and residents across the US, among a myriad of regulatory and funding issues, are affecting our members.

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April 01, 2020

NYU Study Evaluates Public Housing Repairs and Resident Health

New York University’s (NYU) Furman Center discussed public housing repairs and resident health in their blog  The Stoop  in early February. The blog discusses a new study that explores whether transferring ownership to private developers, and subsequent housing renovations, led to improvements in residents’ health over a three-year period. The article notes that there is an abundance of research that has shown that poor housing quality can expose residents to health hazards such as lead and mol...

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April 01, 2020

Research Shows the Effects of Small Area Fair Market Rents

Relocation Act, the Uniform Act, or the URA, the original Uniform Relocation Assistance and Real Property Acquisition Policies Act of 1970 provides important protection and assistance for people affected by federally funded projects. Congress enacted this law to ensure that people whose real The final 2019 issue of  Cityscape  features a symposium of research on various elements of Small Area Fair Market Rents (SAFMRs) grouped into two categories: research on HUD’s SAFMR Demonstration and res...

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April 01, 2020

PHADA Comments on Proposed Rule Updating Uniform Relocation Act Regulations

Notice of Proposed Rulemaking: Uniform Relocation Assistance and Real Property Acquisition for Federal and Federally Assisted Programs. Also known as the Uniform Relocation Act, the Uniform Act, or the URA, the original Uniform Relocation Assistance and Real Property Acquisition Policies Act of 1970 provides important protection and assistance for people affected by federally funded projects. Congress enacted this law to ensure that people whose real property is acquired, or who have to move as...

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April 01, 2020

PHADA Comments on HUD’s Proposed AFFH Rule

On March 16, PHADA submitted comments concerning HUD’s proposed changes to its AFFH rule. That proposal would amend the department’s Assessment of Fair Housing (AFFH) process implemented in a final rule published in 2015. This proposal makes significant changes to HUD’s AFFH processes consistent with PHADA’s comments prior to 2015 and in response to a 2018 Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking. Unfortunately, this proposed rule also includes significant deficiencies in supporting HUD’s and progr...

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April 01, 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. 

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March 18, 2020

IRS Publishes Population Figures to Calculate LIHTC and PAB Caps for 2020

On March 2, the Internal Revenue Service published population figures to calculate 2020 limits for low income housing tax credit (LIHTC) and private activity bonds (PABs). The formula for LIHTC cap for each state is the greater of: 1) the population multiplied by $2.8125 or 2) $3,217,500. For PABs it is the greater of: 1) the population multiplied by $105 or 2) $321,775,000. For the 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, the population figures for calculating the Credit Ceiling, t...

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March 18, 2020

PHADA Representatives Meet with REAC to Discuss PHAS Changes

POn March 4, 2020, PHADA staff participated in a conversation with staff from the Real Estate Assessment Center (REAC) on the future of the Public Housing Assessment System (PHAS). Also representing the industry were staff from NAHRO. To provide on-the-ground perspectives and expertise, PHADA asked Bryan Hoffman, Executive Director of the Lebanon (PA) Housing Authority and Jason Casterline of BDO to attend the meeting along with staff, and their attendance and participation are appreciated. PHA...

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March 18, 2020

Industry Recommendations for FY 21 Budget

The National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials (NAHRO), the Public Housing Authorities Directors Association (PHADA), the Council of Large Public Housing Agencies (CLPHA) and the MTW Collaborative are pleased to release  joint funding recommendations for Office of Public and Indian Housing and Office of Housing programs administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. These programs provide resources essential to ensuring that seniors, families, veterans, a...

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March 18, 2020

PHADA “HUDdles” with Secretary Carson on Credit Reporting of Rental Payment Data

PHADA policy analysts Arlene Conn and David Weber met with HUD leadership in a February 24 stakeholder “HUDdle” on the subject of credit reporting for public housing residents. A recent report (http://bit.ly/2VPnoVp) from the Policy and Economic Research Council (PERC) through HUD’s Policy Development and Research (PD&R) unit’s Research Partnership program studied the effects of public housing authority (HA) reporting of rent payments made by public housing residents as a means to either create...

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March 18, 2020

HUD Launches Housing Choice Voucher Data Dashboard

In an effort to help public housing authorities (HAs) improve operations of their Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) programs, HUD recently made public a version of its HCV Data Dashboard. This version provides an overview of national and state level data on voucher program leasing and related data. The tool organizes data collected from HAs through the regular reporting mechanisms and data held by HUD. While the dashboard will be updated on a monthly basis, the data will typically be two months behi...

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March 18, 2020

PAHRC Releases Research Spotlight

The Public and Affordable Housing Research Corporation (PAHRC), an independent, nonprofit research center of HAI Group dedicated to promoting the importance of affordable housing, released its recent research spotlight. The spotlight, A Platform to Learn: How Housing Programs Can Support the Educational Needs of Children Living in Publicly Supported Homes, examines the educational needs of children living in publicly supported homes, assesses school quality and how to promote school success, an...

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March 18, 2020

HUD Proposes New Rules for Faith Based Organizations

On February 13, HUD published a proposed rule entitled “Equal Participation of Faith-Based Organizations in HUD Programs and Activities: Implementation of Executive Order 13831,” the latest in a string of rules and Executive Orders dating back to 2001 when the George W. Bush administration established a White House Office of Faith Based and Community Initiatives. The current proposal is responsive to Executive Order 13831 establishing a White House Faith Based and Opportunity Initiatives. HUD’s...

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March 18, 2020

President’s Forum: Budget Action Moves to Capitol Hill

My last column focused on President Trump’s proposed budget for FY 21, which starts on October 1. Overall, the Administration’s plan would cut $8.6 billion from HUD’s current budget, a total of roughly 15 percent. As reported in the  March 4  edition of the  Advocate , the controversial proposal would eliminate the Public Housing Capital Fund, CDBG, and HOME programs.

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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).

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March 17, 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. 

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March 04, 2020

Report Shows Dramatic Increases in Homeless Children

In January 2020, the National Center for Homeless Education at The University of North Carolina at Greensboro issued a report showing that children who experienced homelessness at some point in the prior three years increased by 15 percent between the 2015–2016 school year and the 2017–2018 school year. Sixteen states saw increases of 10 percent or more. The number of students in unsheltered situations increased by 137 percent. More than 1.5 million public school students nationwide said they w...

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March 04, 2020

PHADA Submits Comments on Proposed Information Collection on Project Based Vouchers

On December 26, 2019, HUD published in the Federal Register a 60-Day Notice of Proposed Information Collection: Project Based Vouchers (PBV) Online Form. HUD’s intent is to fill a gap in existing HUD data, which currently only collects tenant-level data and HA level data on project based vouchers. HUD does not currently collect property level data on this program that allows local housing authorities to attach tenant-based Housing Choice Vouchers to specific units. While the data may be useful ...

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March 04, 2020

Deadline for AFFH Rule Comments Approaching

HUD published a proposed rule significantly amending its 2015 final AFFH rule that had established a framework for HUD grantees to submit Assessments of Fair Housing. PHADA described elements of that proposed rule in the Advocate of February 5. PHADA has continued to review the proposed rule and will prepare and submit comments by the March 16 deadline.

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March 04, 2020

HUD Budget Proposes Separate Line Item for Moving to Work Agency Funding

For the first time since the inception of the Moving to Work (MTW) Demonstration Program in 1996, HUD is proposing to create a separate budget line item within HUD’s budget for the MTW program. No additional funding is proposed, and both the justifications narrative and the proposed legislative language state that existing MTW agencies will continue to be funded based upon their current funding agreements and are assured that they will not receive less funding than they would have received if t...

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March 04, 2020

New Policy Provisions in FY 21 HUD Budget

The President’s FY 21 budget has received a lot of attention for what was not included – sufficient funding to maintain housing assistance for millions of households or for housing authorities (HAs) to serve them. However, there were policy provisions that reveal the Department’s priorities and should cause careful contemplation.

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March 04, 2020

President’s Forum: A Closer Look at the Proposed Budget

President Trump’s proposed budget was released on February 10. With its publication, the debate in Congress on FY 21 spending begins in earnest. There will be many budget hearings and other forums in the coming weeks, along with a great deal of media and public scrutiny. PHADA has included extensive coverage and analysis in this edition.

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March 04, 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” (http://bit.ly/3bZilY2). 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.

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