October 4 Advocate: PDF Version
Download a PDF version of the Advocate here. Read More..
Current Spending Bill Goes Through December 8
Averting a government shutdown, Congress and the Administration acted on some key spending items in the House and Senate’s first week back in session. On Sept. 8, the House passed (by a vote of 316-90) H.R. 601, Continuing Appropriations Act, 2018 and Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Requirements Act, 2017, a spending package that the Senate approved (by a vote of 80-17) the previous day after revisions to increase funding in the original House bill. Read More..
President’s Forum: A Report on the Legislative Forum
PHADA held its annual Legislative Forum in Washington September on 10–12. The meeting was productive from both an organizational and policy standpoint. We heard from influential congressional and HUD staff and many of our members fanned out across Capitol Hill to meet with their own Representatives, Senators and their staffs. We also heard about the drastic effects of Hurricane Harvey from PHADA Trustee Tory Gunsolley, the Executive Director in Houston, which was ravaged by the storm. I thought I would take this opportunity to report some of the meeting highlights below. Read More..
HUD Reorganization Plan Encompasses Rent Reform, Potential Staff Cuts, New Flexibilities
HUD has been unsuccessful thus far in getting its rent reform proposals through Congress, but a draft reorganization plan filed with the Office of Management and Budget shows the Trump Administration will continue to push the issue next year by proposing comprehensive rent reform legislation. Other changes in the works include new administrative flexibility for HUD and housing authorities, the potential closure of some field offices that could result in staff reductions, and better monitoring of programs to reduce financial risk. Read More..
Hurricane Disaster Relief and Recovery Funds Enacted and Implemented
At the time of publication, the Federal government made disaster declarations for areas affected by Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and other ongoing disaster response efforts in Texas, Louisiana, Florida, Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Read More..
The New Moving to Work Performance Measures Report
In the just released second of two research publications, Abt Associates reports on performance measure for assessing MTW agency success in fulfilling the statutory goals for the program. The firm identified 19 measures and applied them to MTW agencies and to non-MTW agencies matched on several dimensions to MTW agencies. Abt Associates reports that on almost all measures, MTW agencies outperform non-MTW agencies by modest but significant margins. Read More..
PHADA, CLPHA, and NAHRO Request Operating Fund Eligibility Data from HUD
On April 24, 2017, PHADA, CLPHA and NAHRO met with HUD staff regarding questions and concerns related to sudden significant decreases in Operating Fund eligibility for a number of housing authorities (HAs) nationwide. These decreases in eligibility are due to overly optimistic and unrealistic assumptions of increases in tenant rental income and utilities expense-level savings. As a follow-up to this meeting, PHADA sent a letter to HUD requesting additional information and specific eligibility data on May 17, 2017 to verify accuracy of the data and any methodologies utilized by HUD. Read More..
HUD News: New Leadership and Breaking News
The U.S. Senate confirmed President Trump’s nomination of Pamela Patenaude to serve as Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). HUD Secretary Ben Carson welcomed the Senate’s action and said it comes at a critical time as the Department prepares to support the long-term recovery following Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. Read More..
HUD Reports on Worst Case Housing Needs for a Growing Number of Renter Households
HUD issued its biennial report to Congress on August 9. The report, Worst Case Housing Needs, provides national data and analysis of the critical problems facing low-income renters. According to HUD, severe housing problems are on the rise, with 8.3 million households having worst case needs in 2015, up from 7.72 million in 2013. These households are defined as very low-income renters (incomes below 50 percent of the area median income or AMI) who do not receive government assistance and who pay more than half their gross income towards rent, live in severely substandard housing, or both. In 2015, the majority of households with worst case housing needs had severe housing cost burdens while only two percent living in severely inadequate conditions. Read More..
HUD Provides “Technical Corrections” to PBV Provisions from HOTMA
The Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act of 2016 (HOTMA) contains provisions including but not limited to the Section 8 Project-Based voucher (PBV) program, which PHADA supported. The act’s PBV provisions are among the most important for additional affordable housing preservation, revitalization and development opportunities to assist low-income households. Among other PBV provisions enacted, are measures allowing HAs to increase the overall percentage of their vouchers for project-basing and to increase the percentage of PBV-assisted units within each project. Earlier this year, HUD issued nine “technical corrections” to its previous notice regarding the PBV program. Read More..
PHADA’s New Website Update: Login to the Member Dashboard
As PHADA continues to transition some of the static pages of our legacy website to the new website platform, those new pages will take advantage of the latest technologies to provide a more interactive user experience. Current interim pages include Membership, Conferences, and Jobs in Housing. Soon, all 2017 Advocate issues and Breaking News stories will be migrated to the new platform, as well. Read More..