Federal Issues

PIH-REAC and Multifamily (MFH) Industry Day PowerPoint Presentation

Through its Physical Inspections Line of Business, HUD’s Real Estate Assessment Center (REAC) improves housing quality by performing accurate, credible, and reliable assessments of HUD’s real estate portfolio; helps ensure safe, healthy, decent affordable housing; and promotes sound property management practices.

Continue reading

Keep Families Together – HUD Proposed Rule Separating Immigrant Families

On May 10, 2019, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) published a proposed rule that would prohibit “mixed-status” families from living in public and other subsidized housing. Mixed-status families are households that include both members who are eligible and ineligible for housing assistance based on their immigration status. Both statute and regulation allow families to live together in subsidized housing even if one family member is ineligible so long as the housing subsidy is decreased to exclude the ineligible person from the assistance. Importantly, just because a household member is an “ineligible” immigrant, it doesn’t mean that they are undocumented. Immigrants can have legal status and still not be eligible for public housing and Section 8 programs.

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President Trump Proposes Drastic Cuts to Affordable Housing Programs

National Low Income Housing Coalition Memo to Members  Mar 11, 2019

President Donald Trump’s fiscal year 2020 budget request – released today – proposes to drastically cut housing benefits that help millions of low-income seniors, people with disabilities, families with children, veterans, and other vulnerable people afford their homes. Like his other budget requests in FY18 and FY19, the proposal would reduce housing benefits for the lowest-income people by slashing federal investments in affordable homes, increasing rents, and imposing harmful work requirements on America’s struggling families. If enacted, the budget could leave even more low-income people without stable homes, undermining family stability, increasing evictions, and, in worst cases, leading to more homelessness.

Overall, the administration proposes to cut HUD by an astounding $9.6 billion or 18% below 2019 enacted levels, imposing deep cuts to affordable housing and community development, as well as other essential programs that ensure basic living standards.

NLIHC strongly urges Congress not only to reject Mr. Trump’s budget, but to significantly expand the investments in affordable homes that America’s families and communities need to thrive.

At a time when the affordable housing crisis has reached new heights and homelessness is increasing in some communities, the president’s proposal would eliminate or deeply cut essential housing and community development programs like the national Housing Trust Fund, the HOME Investments Partnership program, and public housing capital repairs.

The president would underfund rental assistance through the Housing Choice Voucher program and raise rents – by as much as three times current levels – on America’s poorest families. While the administration suggests its proposed budget would provide an increase in funding to the voucher program, this is misleading; the budget, in fact, includes cuts to housing assistance.

The budget would also impose punitive measures that would jeopardize family stability, increasing the financial burdens they face through higher rents and harmful work requirements that often push families deeper into poverty. Last year, HUD unveiled legislation to cut housing benefits through rent increases and work requirements. Learn more about President Trump’s proposed legislation to cut housing benefits, how cutting housing benefits would increase homelessness and housing poverty, and why this approach is has nothing to do with “increasing family self-sufficiency.”

“With this budget request, President Trump and Secretary Carson are making clear in no uncertain terms their willingness to increase evictions and homelessness – for the vulnerable seniors, people with disabilities and families with kids who will be unable to manage having to spend more of their very limited incomes to cover rent hikes,” said Diane Yentel, NLIHC president and CEO. “The administration callously disregards its responsibility to the millions of households living in deteriorating public housing and to low-income people and communities working to recover and rebuild after disasters by eliminating critical resources for public housing, rental housing construction and community development. This is a cruel and unconscionable budget proposal, and it should be soundly rejected by Congress.”

View FY19 Budget Chart for Selected HUD and USDA Programs

HUD Shortens REAC Inspection Notification Period

On February 20, 2019, HUD announced in a press release a new Notice that reduces to 14 calendar days (from 120-days) the advance notification inspectors will give before conducting physical inspections of public housing and private HUD-assisted multifamily housing. The intent is to reduce the lead time owners and PHAs have to make cosmetic repairs in order to secure a passing score on a REAC inspection. The Notice – PIH-2019-02/H-2019-04 – applies to all properties subject to REAC inspections. Continue reading

HUD Inspector General Identifies the Department’s Top Six Management Challenges

The HUD Office of Inspector General (OIG) issued a report on the top management challenges facing HUD in 2019, identifying six specific issues which, according to the report, “impact HUD’s ability to meet the needs of its beneficiaries and protect taxpayer dollars.” Two of the six issues relate to ensuring the availability of safe, decent, affordable housing and administering disaster recovery assistance.

Read more.

Mark Calabria Nominated as New FHFA Director

President Trump has nominated Mark Calabria to lead the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) once current Director Mel Watt’s term ends in January 2019. Calabria, currently chief economist for Vice President Mike Pence, previously served as the director of financial regulation studies at the Cato Institute as well as deputy assistant secretary for regulatory affairs at HUD during former President George W. Bush’s administration. He was also a senior aide on the Senate Banking Committee, where he was one of the lead drafters of the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008, which created FHFA. In 2015, Calabria opined that one way to pursue housing finance reform is to end Fannie Mae’s and Freddie Mac’s (the Government Sponsored Enterprises, or GSEs) housing goals, a reference to the GSEs’ mandate to serve low-income communities. He also endorsed eliminating 30-year fixed-rate mortgages and tightening homebuying standards by requiring minimum down payments of 5 percent and minimum FICO scores of 700.

Housing advocates lament departure of Patenaude, rare ally in Trump’s HUD

By Katy O’Donnell

12/21/2018 05:00 AM EDT

The surprise announcement this week that Pam Patenaude, deputy secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, would be leaving office next month has left housing advocates reeling.

Patenaude, a widely respected policy expert with over 30 years of experience in the industry, was seen as a steady hand as the No. 2 to HUD Secretary Ben Carson, whose own friends admitted he had no relevant housing experience when he took the job.

Patenaude’s successor, Federal Housing Administration Commissioner Brian Montgomery, is also a well-known figure in housing circles. But among low-income housing advocates, Patenaude in particular was seen as a rare ally in an administration that rolled back implementation of an Obama-era rule to prevent housing discrimination and twice proposed dramatically slashing HUD’s budget.

“When she became the deputy secretary of HUD, she took a personal interest in pushing and advancing fair-housing issues, and she’s been extremely helpful, I think, in blocking some of the things that might have happened,” said Lisa Rice, president and CEO of the National Fair Housing Alliance.

“Certainly a lot of negative things did happen, and those things were probably well underway before Pamela got there,” Rice added, noting that Patenaude wasn’t confirmed until September 2017.

Rice’s organization was one of a handful of civil rights groups to sue HUD this year over its decision to delay implementation of the 2015 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule, the measure aimed at combating segregation.

Diane Yentel, the president and CEO of the National Low Income Housing Coalition, agreed that Patenaude “stopped a lot of bad” during her 15-month tenure. And Adrianne Todman, CEO of the National Organization of Housing and Redevelopment Officials, lamented the departure of a strong voice capable of pushing back on the White House.

“I’m concerned about someone being able to provide the secretary with counsel on, quite frankly, some of the things that come out of the White House when it comes to public housing and the voucher program,” Todman said, calling Patenaude’s resignation “a big step backward.”

Patenaude gave no specific reason for her departure, saying she was leaving to return to her home state, New Hampshire, with her husband.

A HUD official said the department is “in good hands.”

“We have a very deep bench of political and career employees with decades of relevant experience,” the official said in an email. “Our efforts to increase the supply of housing, end homelessness, enforce fair housing laws, respond to disasters, improve the fiscal condition of HUD and ensure Americans have access to safe, sanitary, and decent housing will continue unabated.”

Rice pointed to Carson’s recent remarks about changing zoning laws to spur the development of affordable housing as evidence of Patenaude’s influence.

“She brought in a lot of community groups, civil rights groups … who helped to educate the secretary on fair housing issues and affordable housing issues. And I think that education had an impact,” Rice said. “Some of the comments that you’ve heard the Secretary making recently have been the result of Pamela’s advocacy and her commitment to helping hardworking families obtain safe and affordable housing.”

That Patenaude could be seen as an advocate for fair housing by the head of a group that sued her boss for neglecting fair housing enforcement is evidence of what National Housing Conference CEO David Dworkin called her “politically diverse relationships.”

Dworkin said Patenaude’s departure marked “a big loss under any circumstances” but that he had confidence in Montgomery, who was named as her replacement on an acting basis.

“Had the post remained vacant, or had someone less qualified than Brian been put in as acting, I would be very concerned, but Brian Montgomery is probably the one person who could fill that job in a reassuring way,” Dworkin said.

“The right person can do two jobs, and if the secretary has confidence in them that’s a big factor, and clearly the secretary has a lot of confidence in Brian, as he should,” he added.

Jesse Van Tol, CEO of the National Community Reinvestment Coalition, took it a step further: “Just candidly, I think if I were to pick between Pam Patenaude and Brian, I would pick Brian,” he said.

“Brian’s a really reasonable, pragmatic person; he deeply understands, in particular, mortgage markets,” Van Tol added. “I think he does have a concern about serving low- and moderate-income people — I think that’s where his heart is.”

Others expressed misgivings about loading up Montgomery with two jobs.

“Let’s face it, being FHA commissioner is more than a full-time job. FHA is underfunded, it is understaffed,” Rice said. “The American people are basically relying on this man, as wonderful as he is, to do two huge jobs. I just wish that Pamela was remaining. I think the secretary really needs her.”

Freddie Mac to offer loan support for shared equity home ownership

Analysis: On Nov. 5, the mortgage giant Freddie Mac is launching a new initiative: Community Land Trust Mortgages. Up until now, a major barrier for potential buyers to participate in a community land trust was getting a loan. Historically, financial institutions have been reluctant to lend money to borrowers interested in community land trusts because of the complexity of initiating and foreclosing a loan for a deed-restricted home. Deed restrictions ensure the permanent affordability of homes. Under its new program, Freddie Mac says it will make it easier for banks to engage in the process of underwriting properties with such deed restrictions. It will also standardize the process for foreclosing on such homes in case the community land trust does not exercise its right of first refusal, the right for the community land trust to be the first to purchase the property once it falls into foreclosure.

Read more.

HUD Updates Guidance for Addressing Low Multifamily Housing Physical Inspection Scores

HUD Notice H-2018-08

Servicing of Projects That Do Not Meet HUD’s Physical Condition Standards and Inspection Requirements (PCS&IR) or Fail to Certify That Exigent Health and Safety (EH&S) Deficiencies Have Been Resolved as Required.

Read more.

HUD Announces Intent to Revise REAC Scoring System

RESIDENTS HAVE A RIGHT TO LIVE IN HOUSING THAT IS DECENT, SAFE AND SANITARY

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) helps 4.7 million families to access affordable, quality housing. HUD supports these households through several rental assistance programs, primarily relying upon private owners to house these households. For example, local housing agencies own and operate approximately 900,000 public housing units. By contrast, HUD contracts with a growing number of private owners of apartment buildings to house another 1.2 million households.

Read more.

HUD Publishes FY19 Fair Market Rents

HUD announced in the August 31 Federal Register the publication of FY19 Fair Market Rents (FMRs). FMRs are used to determine payment standards for the Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) program, initial renewal rents for some expiring project-based Section 8 contracts, initial rents in the Moderate Rehabilitation Single Room Occupancy program, and rent ceilings for the HOME Investment Partnerships program and the Emergency Solutions Grants program.

Read more.

HUD Provides CDBG FAQs on Meeting National Objectives for Acquisition, Demolition, and Disposition

HUD’s Office of Community Planning and Development (CPD) issued a set of frequently asked questions (FAQs) to help Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) grantees determine whether use of CDBG for acquisition, demolition, or disposition meets one of the CDBG “national objectives.”

Read more.

NLIHC and National Women’s Law Center Publish New Factsheet on the Impacts of Housing Benefit Cuts on Women and Families

NLIHC partnered with the National Women’s Law Center (NWLC) to create a new factsheet titled Cutting Housing Assistance is a Bad Deal for Women and Families. This resource provides information on the need for affordable housing across the country, and cites statistics showing why housing assistance is particularly critical for children and women, especially women of color, domestic violence survivors, women with disabilities, and LGBTQ individuals.

Read more.

HUD Publishes Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for Streamlining AFFH

HUD published in the Federal Register on August 16 an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR), “Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing: Streamlining and Enhancements,” inviting public comment on amending the Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) rule. NLIHC previously reported that the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) at the Office of Management and Budget received a “prerule” on August 2 (see Memo8/6). OIRA concluded its review of the prerule after only five working days. Comments are due October 15.

Read more.

CPD Funding Matrix and Dashboard Reports Posted

The CPD Funding Matrix and Dashboard Reports, as of August 1, 2018, have been posted to HUD Exchange.

These reports provide funding information for each city and state that receive CPD program funds, including Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), Continuum of Care (CoC), Emergency Solutions Grants (ESG), HOME, Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA), and Housing Trust Fund (HTF).

Reports detail the size of each grant received over the past several years, as well as the total amount of funds currently available to be spent on affordable housing and community and economic development activities.

CPD  Funding Matrix Note: Based on the requirement that a grantee uses the adjusted ratio for determining its compliance with the CDBG timeliness standard of having no more than 1.5 times its annual allocation in its adjusted line of credit balance 60 days prior to the end of its current program year, HUD is in the process of updating the CDBG recapture risk column in the CPD Funding Matrix report, revised calculation is pending. In the meantime, a grantee wanting to know how much CDBG funding it may have at risk of recapture can do the following simple calculation:

{Adjusted line of credit (LOC) balance [LOC + program income + revolving loan fund balance(s)]} – {Annual allocation for current program year x 1.5} = Amount of potential reduction in next year’s grant (not to exceed actual grant amount)
Expenditures (all recipients): within 24 months from the date HUD signs the grant agreement.

Grantees with additional questions should contact their local field office.

Read more.

Administration Proposes Major Changes to the Nation’s Housing Finance System

Last month the Trump Administration unveiled a proposal to overhaul the federal government, including a number of major changes to the nation’s housing finance system.

Delivering Government Solutions in the 21st Century Reform Plan and Reorganization Recommendations (PDF)

GAO Finds Flaws in HUD Lead Mitigation Efforts

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report evaluating HUD’s lead grant and rental assistance programs. The study found that HUD lacked standards and proper oversight for identifying and mitigating lead hazards, which could be increasing child exposure to unsafe conditions.

Read more.

HUD Indefinitely Suspends AFFH Rule, Withdraws Assessment Tool

A HUD Exchange email arriving at 4:34 pm on Friday, May 18 announced that HUD would be publishing three separate notices in the Federal Register indefinitely suspending implementation of the 2015 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) rule and removing its Assessment of Fair Housing (AFH) tool for local governments.

Read more.

Advocates Publish Resident Handbook about RAD Conversions

Resident Handbook: A Guide to NYCHA RAD Conversion was published to help residents of the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) understand and influence the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) process. Although written for NYCHA residents, the Handbook can also be a useful tool for public housing residents anywhere whose homes will be converted under RAD, are in the process of converting, or already have converted.

Read more.

HUD Names New Deputy Assistant Secretary of Multifamily Housing

HUD announced that C. Lamar Seats is the new deputy assistant secretary for the Office of Multifamily Housing Programs. Mr. Seats was a managing director at M&T Realty Capital Corporation, responsible for multifamily loan production related to Federal Housing Administration, Fannie Mae, and Freddie Mac products. Prior to that, he was CEO of Bellwether Enterprise Real Estate Capital LLC, senior vice president at Enterprise Community Investment, Inc., and senior vice president of Reilly Mortgage Group.

Read more.

Ben Carson’s huge cut to housing aid won’t increase self-sufficiency

Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson has been inaccurately describing his proposals to cut housing benefits through rent increases, rigid work requirements, and de facto time limits for low income families. He has also offered an ever-changing rationale for these harmful policy changes. I’d like to set the record straight.

Read more.

Growth of Community Land Trusts Still Falls Short of Potential

Emily Thaden, Director of National Policy and Sector Strategy at Grounded Solutions Network, the national community land trust trade association, examines the state of the field in Shelterforce. In her analysis, Thaden looks not just at community land trusts, but related forms of “shared equity” housing, such as limited-equity housing cooperatives and resident-owned communities (typically used to own the land beneath manufactured housing).

Read more.

HUD Issues Notice Regarding Refinancing Section 202 Housing for the Elderly 

HUD’s Office of Multifamily Housing Programs issued Notice H 2018-02, providing guidance to owners of pre-1974 Section 202 Direct Loan properties serving the elderly that have the option of refinancing to make capital improvements and/or to reduce the interest rate. To prevent displacement of elderly residents, owners may seek Tenant Protection Vouchers (TPVs) or Senior Preservation Rental Assistance Contracts (SPRACs).

Read more.

NLIHC Creates Outline of CDBG-DR Federal Register Notice for Residents and Advocates

NLIHC has prepared a simple outline for residents and advocates to help them understand the requirements related to an Action Plan, public participation, and reporting that must be met in order to receive and use Community Development Block Grant-Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) funds. NLIHC’s outline summarizes key features to help residents and advocates better shape a CDBG-DR grantee’s Action Plan and to monitor uses of CDBG-DR over time…Read More.

New Energy & Water Efficiency Resources, Partner Triumphs and More – BBC Multifamily February Newsletter

In This Issue: Key Announcements | Access New Energy and Water Efficiency Resources! | Spotlight on Partner Energy Efficiency Successes

Read The February Issue

HUD

Programs of HUD is Now Available

Visit the HUD.gov/program_offices

CPD Funding Matrix and Dashboard Reports Posted

The CPD Funding Matrix and Dashboard Reports, as of February 1, 2018, have been posted to HUD Exchange.

These reports provide funding information for each city and state that receive CPD program funds, including Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), Continuum of Care (CoC), Emergency Solutions Grants (ESG), HOME, Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA), and Housing Trust Fund (HTF).

Reports detail the size of each grant received over the past several years, as well as the total amount of funds currently available to be spent on affordable housing and community and economic development activities.

CPD Funding Matrix Note: Based on the requirement that a grantee uses the adjusted ratio for determining its compliance with the CDBG timeliness standard of having no more than 1.5 times its annual allocation in its adjusted line of credit balance 60 days prior to the end of its current program year, HUD is in the process of updating the CDBG recapture risk column in the CPD Funding Matrix report, revised calculation is pending. In the meantime, a grantee wanting to know how much CDBG funding it may have at risk of recapture can do the following simple calculation:

{Adjusted line of credit (LOC) balance [LOC + program income + revolving loan fund balance(s)]} – {Annual allocation for current program year x 1.5} = Amount of potential reduction in next year’s grant (not to exceed actual grant amount)
Expenditures (all recipients): within 24 months from the date HUD signs the grant agreement.

Grantees with additional questions should contact their local field office.

FEMA

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Disaster Relief for Housing Cooperatives

HUD announced that $2.5 billion of Community Development Block Grant Funding (CDBG) was available through a Competitive Federal Grant from HUD to four states and New York City to address the remaining needs and promote resiliency for Sandy hurricane disaster relief – View here.

In response to a congressional request, FEMA released its report to Congress in June of 2014, confirming and stating more or less publicly that housing cooperatives are not covered by FEMA Disaster Relief. The wording in the conclusion to amend the Stafford Act is stated in a positive way.  Rep. Israel plans to meet with Department of Homeland Security Secretary Johnson.

Reverse Mortgages- Home Equity Conversion Mortgages (HECM’s)

Without Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) guidelines the institutions of the secondary market will not purchase reverse mortgages on cooperative units. We need congressional help in urging HUD to release the Housing Cooperative HECM guidelines!

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communities as the best and most economical form of homeownership.

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Federal Issues

PIH-REAC and Multifamily (MFH) Industry Day PowerPoint Presentation

Through its Physical Inspections Line of Business, HUD’s Real Estate Assessment Center (REAC) improves housing quality by performing accurate, credible, and reliable assessments of HUD’s real estate portfolio; helps ensure safe, healthy, decent affordable housing; and promotes sound property management practices.

Continue reading

Keep Families Together – HUD Proposed Rule Separating Immigrant Families

On May 10, 2019, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) published a proposed rule that would prohibit “mixed-status” families from living in public and other subsidized housing. Mixed-status families are households that include both members who are eligible and ineligible for housing assistance based on their immigration status. Both statute and regulation allow families to live together in subsidized housing even if one family member is ineligible so long as the housing subsidy is decreased to exclude the ineligible person from the assistance. Importantly, just because a household member is an “ineligible” immigrant, it doesn’t mean that they are undocumented. Immigrants can have legal status and still not be eligible for public housing and Section 8 programs.

Continue reading

President Trump Proposes Drastic Cuts to Affordable Housing Programs

National Low Income Housing Coalition Memo to Members  Mar 11, 2019

President Donald Trump’s fiscal year 2020 budget request – released today – proposes to drastically cut housing benefits that help millions of low-income seniors, people with disabilities, families with children, veterans, and other vulnerable people afford their homes. Like his other budget requests in FY18 and FY19, the proposal would reduce housing benefits for the lowest-income people by slashing federal investments in affordable homes, increasing rents, and imposing harmful work requirements on America’s struggling families. If enacted, the budget could leave even more low-income people without stable homes, undermining family stability, increasing evictions, and, in worst cases, leading to more homelessness.

Overall, the administration proposes to cut HUD by an astounding $9.6 billion or 18% below 2019 enacted levels, imposing deep cuts to affordable housing and community development, as well as other essential programs that ensure basic living standards.

NLIHC strongly urges Congress not only to reject Mr. Trump’s budget, but to significantly expand the investments in affordable homes that America’s families and communities need to thrive.

At a time when the affordable housing crisis has reached new heights and homelessness is increasing in some communities, the president’s proposal would eliminate or deeply cut essential housing and community development programs like the national Housing Trust Fund, the HOME Investments Partnership program, and public housing capital repairs.

The president would underfund rental assistance through the Housing Choice Voucher program and raise rents – by as much as three times current levels – on America’s poorest families. While the administration suggests its proposed budget would provide an increase in funding to the voucher program, this is misleading; the budget, in fact, includes cuts to housing assistance.

The budget would also impose punitive measures that would jeopardize family stability, increasing the financial burdens they face through higher rents and harmful work requirements that often push families deeper into poverty. Last year, HUD unveiled legislation to cut housing benefits through rent increases and work requirements. Learn more about President Trump’s proposed legislation to cut housing benefits, how cutting housing benefits would increase homelessness and housing poverty, and why this approach is has nothing to do with “increasing family self-sufficiency.”

“With this budget request, President Trump and Secretary Carson are making clear in no uncertain terms their willingness to increase evictions and homelessness – for the vulnerable seniors, people with disabilities and families with kids who will be unable to manage having to spend more of their very limited incomes to cover rent hikes,” said Diane Yentel, NLIHC president and CEO. “The administration callously disregards its responsibility to the millions of households living in deteriorating public housing and to low-income people and communities working to recover and rebuild after disasters by eliminating critical resources for public housing, rental housing construction and community development. This is a cruel and unconscionable budget proposal, and it should be soundly rejected by Congress.”

View FY19 Budget Chart for Selected HUD and USDA Programs

HUD Shortens REAC Inspection Notification Period

On February 20, 2019, HUD announced in a press release a new Notice that reduces to 14 calendar days (from 120-days) the advance notification inspectors will give before conducting physical inspections of public housing and private HUD-assisted multifamily housing. The intent is to reduce the lead time owners and PHAs have to make cosmetic repairs in order to secure a passing score on a REAC inspection. The Notice – PIH-2019-02/H-2019-04 – applies to all properties subject to REAC inspections. Continue reading

HUD Inspector General Identifies the Department’s Top Six Management Challenges

The HUD Office of Inspector General (OIG) issued a report on the top management challenges facing HUD in 2019, identifying six specific issues which, according to the report, “impact HUD’s ability to meet the needs of its beneficiaries and protect taxpayer dollars.” Two of the six issues relate to ensuring the availability of safe, decent, affordable housing and administering disaster recovery assistance.

Read more.

Mark Calabria Nominated as New FHFA Director

President Trump has nominated Mark Calabria to lead the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) once current Director Mel Watt’s term ends in January 2019. Calabria, currently chief economist for Vice President Mike Pence, previously served as the director of financial regulation studies at the Cato Institute as well as deputy assistant secretary for regulatory affairs at HUD during former President George W. Bush’s administration. He was also a senior aide on the Senate Banking Committee, where he was one of the lead drafters of the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008, which created FHFA. In 2015, Calabria opined that one way to pursue housing finance reform is to end Fannie Mae’s and Freddie Mac’s (the Government Sponsored Enterprises, or GSEs) housing goals, a reference to the GSEs’ mandate to serve low-income communities. He also endorsed eliminating 30-year fixed-rate mortgages and tightening homebuying standards by requiring minimum down payments of 5 percent and minimum FICO scores of 700.

Housing advocates lament departure of Patenaude, rare ally in Trump’s HUD

By Katy O’Donnell

12/21/2018 05:00 AM EDT

The surprise announcement this week that Pam Patenaude, deputy secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, would be leaving office next month has left housing advocates reeling.

Patenaude, a widely respected policy expert with over 30 years of experience in the industry, was seen as a steady hand as the No. 2 to HUD Secretary Ben Carson, whose own friends admitted he had no relevant housing experience when he took the job.

Patenaude’s successor, Federal Housing Administration Commissioner Brian Montgomery, is also a well-known figure in housing circles. But among low-income housing advocates, Patenaude in particular was seen as a rare ally in an administration that rolled back implementation of an Obama-era rule to prevent housing discrimination and twice proposed dramatically slashing HUD’s budget.

“When she became the deputy secretary of HUD, she took a personal interest in pushing and advancing fair-housing issues, and she’s been extremely helpful, I think, in blocking some of the things that might have happened,” said Lisa Rice, president and CEO of the National Fair Housing Alliance.

“Certainly a lot of negative things did happen, and those things were probably well underway before Pamela got there,” Rice added, noting that Patenaude wasn’t confirmed until September 2017.

Rice’s organization was one of a handful of civil rights groups to sue HUD this year over its decision to delay implementation of the 2015 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule, the measure aimed at combating segregation.

Diane Yentel, the president and CEO of the National Low Income Housing Coalition, agreed that Patenaude “stopped a lot of bad” during her 15-month tenure. And Adrianne Todman, CEO of the National Organization of Housing and Redevelopment Officials, lamented the departure of a strong voice capable of pushing back on the White House.

“I’m concerned about someone being able to provide the secretary with counsel on, quite frankly, some of the things that come out of the White House when it comes to public housing and the voucher program,” Todman said, calling Patenaude’s resignation “a big step backward.”

Patenaude gave no specific reason for her departure, saying she was leaving to return to her home state, New Hampshire, with her husband.

A HUD official said the department is “in good hands.”

“We have a very deep bench of political and career employees with decades of relevant experience,” the official said in an email. “Our efforts to increase the supply of housing, end homelessness, enforce fair housing laws, respond to disasters, improve the fiscal condition of HUD and ensure Americans have access to safe, sanitary, and decent housing will continue unabated.”

Rice pointed to Carson’s recent remarks about changing zoning laws to spur the development of affordable housing as evidence of Patenaude’s influence.

“She brought in a lot of community groups, civil rights groups … who helped to educate the secretary on fair housing issues and affordable housing issues. And I think that education had an impact,” Rice said. “Some of the comments that you’ve heard the Secretary making recently have been the result of Pamela’s advocacy and her commitment to helping hardworking families obtain safe and affordable housing.”

That Patenaude could be seen as an advocate for fair housing by the head of a group that sued her boss for neglecting fair housing enforcement is evidence of what National Housing Conference CEO David Dworkin called her “politically diverse relationships.”

Dworkin said Patenaude’s departure marked “a big loss under any circumstances” but that he had confidence in Montgomery, who was named as her replacement on an acting basis.

“Had the post remained vacant, or had someone less qualified than Brian been put in as acting, I would be very concerned, but Brian Montgomery is probably the one person who could fill that job in a reassuring way,” Dworkin said.

“The right person can do two jobs, and if the secretary has confidence in them that’s a big factor, and clearly the secretary has a lot of confidence in Brian, as he should,” he added.

Jesse Van Tol, CEO of the National Community Reinvestment Coalition, took it a step further: “Just candidly, I think if I were to pick between Pam Patenaude and Brian, I would pick Brian,” he said.

“Brian’s a really reasonable, pragmatic person; he deeply understands, in particular, mortgage markets,” Van Tol added. “I think he does have a concern about serving low- and moderate-income people — I think that’s where his heart is.”

Others expressed misgivings about loading up Montgomery with two jobs.

“Let’s face it, being FHA commissioner is more than a full-time job. FHA is underfunded, it is understaffed,” Rice said. “The American people are basically relying on this man, as wonderful as he is, to do two huge jobs. I just wish that Pamela was remaining. I think the secretary really needs her.”

Freddie Mac to offer loan support for shared equity home ownership

Analysis: On Nov. 5, the mortgage giant Freddie Mac is launching a new initiative: Community Land Trust Mortgages. Up until now, a major barrier for potential buyers to participate in a community land trust was getting a loan. Historically, financial institutions have been reluctant to lend money to borrowers interested in community land trusts because of the complexity of initiating and foreclosing a loan for a deed-restricted home. Deed restrictions ensure the permanent affordability of homes. Under its new program, Freddie Mac says it will make it easier for banks to engage in the process of underwriting properties with such deed restrictions. It will also standardize the process for foreclosing on such homes in case the community land trust does not exercise its right of first refusal, the right for the community land trust to be the first to purchase the property once it falls into foreclosure.

Read more.

HUD Updates Guidance for Addressing Low Multifamily Housing Physical Inspection Scores

HUD Notice H-2018-08

Servicing of Projects That Do Not Meet HUD’s Physical Condition Standards and Inspection Requirements (PCS&IR) or Fail to Certify That Exigent Health and Safety (EH&S) Deficiencies Have Been Resolved as Required.

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HUD Announces Intent to Revise REAC Scoring System

RESIDENTS HAVE A RIGHT TO LIVE IN HOUSING THAT IS DECENT, SAFE AND SANITARY

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) helps 4.7 million families to access affordable, quality housing. HUD supports these households through several rental assistance programs, primarily relying upon private owners to house these households. For example, local housing agencies own and operate approximately 900,000 public housing units. By contrast, HUD contracts with a growing number of private owners of apartment buildings to house another 1.2 million households.

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HUD Publishes FY19 Fair Market Rents

HUD announced in the August 31 Federal Register the publication of FY19 Fair Market Rents (FMRs). FMRs are used to determine payment standards for the Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) program, initial renewal rents for some expiring project-based Section 8 contracts, initial rents in the Moderate Rehabilitation Single Room Occupancy program, and rent ceilings for the HOME Investment Partnerships program and the Emergency Solutions Grants program.

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HUD Provides CDBG FAQs on Meeting National Objectives for Acquisition, Demolition, and Disposition

HUD’s Office of Community Planning and Development (CPD) issued a set of frequently asked questions (FAQs) to help Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) grantees determine whether use of CDBG for acquisition, demolition, or disposition meets one of the CDBG “national objectives.”

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NLIHC and National Women’s Law Center Publish New Factsheet on the Impacts of Housing Benefit Cuts on Women and Families

NLIHC partnered with the National Women’s Law Center (NWLC) to create a new factsheet titled Cutting Housing Assistance is a Bad Deal for Women and Families. This resource provides information on the need for affordable housing across the country, and cites statistics showing why housing assistance is particularly critical for children and women, especially women of color, domestic violence survivors, women with disabilities, and LGBTQ individuals.

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HUD Publishes Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for Streamlining AFFH

HUD published in the Federal Register on August 16 an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR), “Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing: Streamlining and Enhancements,” inviting public comment on amending the Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) rule. NLIHC previously reported that the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) at the Office of Management and Budget received a “prerule” on August 2 (see Memo8/6). OIRA concluded its review of the prerule after only five working days. Comments are due October 15.

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CPD Funding Matrix and Dashboard Reports Posted

The CPD Funding Matrix and Dashboard Reports, as of August 1, 2018, have been posted to HUD Exchange.

These reports provide funding information for each city and state that receive CPD program funds, including Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), Continuum of Care (CoC), Emergency Solutions Grants (ESG), HOME, Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA), and Housing Trust Fund (HTF).

Reports detail the size of each grant received over the past several years, as well as the total amount of funds currently available to be spent on affordable housing and community and economic development activities.

CPD  Funding Matrix Note: Based on the requirement that a grantee uses the adjusted ratio for determining its compliance with the CDBG timeliness standard of having no more than 1.5 times its annual allocation in its adjusted line of credit balance 60 days prior to the end of its current program year, HUD is in the process of updating the CDBG recapture risk column in the CPD Funding Matrix report, revised calculation is pending. In the meantime, a grantee wanting to know how much CDBG funding it may have at risk of recapture can do the following simple calculation:

{Adjusted line of credit (LOC) balance [LOC + program income + revolving loan fund balance(s)]} – {Annual allocation for current program year x 1.5} = Amount of potential reduction in next year’s grant (not to exceed actual grant amount)
Expenditures (all recipients): within 24 months from the date HUD signs the grant agreement.

Grantees with additional questions should contact their local field office.

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Administration Proposes Major Changes to the Nation’s Housing Finance System

Last month the Trump Administration unveiled a proposal to overhaul the federal government, including a number of major changes to the nation’s housing finance system.

Delivering Government Solutions in the 21st Century Reform Plan and Reorganization Recommendations (PDF)

GAO Finds Flaws in HUD Lead Mitigation Efforts

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report evaluating HUD’s lead grant and rental assistance programs. The study found that HUD lacked standards and proper oversight for identifying and mitigating lead hazards, which could be increasing child exposure to unsafe conditions.

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HUD Indefinitely Suspends AFFH Rule, Withdraws Assessment Tool

A HUD Exchange email arriving at 4:34 pm on Friday, May 18 announced that HUD would be publishing three separate notices in the Federal Register indefinitely suspending implementation of the 2015 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) rule and removing its Assessment of Fair Housing (AFH) tool for local governments.

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Advocates Publish Resident Handbook about RAD Conversions

Resident Handbook: A Guide to NYCHA RAD Conversion was published to help residents of the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) understand and influence the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) process. Although written for NYCHA residents, the Handbook can also be a useful tool for public housing residents anywhere whose homes will be converted under RAD, are in the process of converting, or already have converted.

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HUD Names New Deputy Assistant Secretary of Multifamily Housing

HUD announced that C. Lamar Seats is the new deputy assistant secretary for the Office of Multifamily Housing Programs. Mr. Seats was a managing director at M&T Realty Capital Corporation, responsible for multifamily loan production related to Federal Housing Administration, Fannie Mae, and Freddie Mac products. Prior to that, he was CEO of Bellwether Enterprise Real Estate Capital LLC, senior vice president at Enterprise Community Investment, Inc., and senior vice president of Reilly Mortgage Group.

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Ben Carson’s huge cut to housing aid won’t increase self-sufficiency

Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson has been inaccurately describing his proposals to cut housing benefits through rent increases, rigid work requirements, and de facto time limits for low income families. He has also offered an ever-changing rationale for these harmful policy changes. I’d like to set the record straight.

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Growth of Community Land Trusts Still Falls Short of Potential

Emily Thaden, Director of National Policy and Sector Strategy at Grounded Solutions Network, the national community land trust trade association, examines the state of the field in Shelterforce. In her analysis, Thaden looks not just at community land trusts, but related forms of “shared equity” housing, such as limited-equity housing cooperatives and resident-owned communities (typically used to own the land beneath manufactured housing).

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HUD Issues Notice Regarding Refinancing Section 202 Housing for the Elderly 

HUD’s Office of Multifamily Housing Programs issued Notice H 2018-02, providing guidance to owners of pre-1974 Section 202 Direct Loan properties serving the elderly that have the option of refinancing to make capital improvements and/or to reduce the interest rate. To prevent displacement of elderly residents, owners may seek Tenant Protection Vouchers (TPVs) or Senior Preservation Rental Assistance Contracts (SPRACs).

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NLIHC Creates Outline of CDBG-DR Federal Register Notice for Residents and Advocates

NLIHC has prepared a simple outline for residents and advocates to help them understand the requirements related to an Action Plan, public participation, and reporting that must be met in order to receive and use Community Development Block Grant-Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) funds. NLIHC’s outline summarizes key features to help residents and advocates better shape a CDBG-DR grantee’s Action Plan and to monitor uses of CDBG-DR over time…Read More.

New Energy & Water Efficiency Resources, Partner Triumphs and More – BBC Multifamily February Newsletter

In This Issue: Key Announcements | Access New Energy and Water Efficiency Resources! | Spotlight on Partner Energy Efficiency Successes

Read The February Issue

HUD

Programs of HUD is Now Available

Visit the HUD.gov/program_offices

CPD Funding Matrix and Dashboard Reports Posted

The CPD Funding Matrix and Dashboard Reports, as of February 1, 2018, have been posted to HUD Exchange.

These reports provide funding information for each city and state that receive CPD program funds, including Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), Continuum of Care (CoC), Emergency Solutions Grants (ESG), HOME, Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA), and Housing Trust Fund (HTF).

Reports detail the size of each grant received over the past several years, as well as the total amount of funds currently available to be spent on affordable housing and community and economic development activities.

CPD Funding Matrix Note: Based on the requirement that a grantee uses the adjusted ratio for determining its compliance with the CDBG timeliness standard of having no more than 1.5 times its annual allocation in its adjusted line of credit balance 60 days prior to the end of its current program year, HUD is in the process of updating the CDBG recapture risk column in the CPD Funding Matrix report, revised calculation is pending. In the meantime, a grantee wanting to know how much CDBG funding it may have at risk of recapture can do the following simple calculation:

{Adjusted line of credit (LOC) balance [LOC + program income + revolving loan fund balance(s)]} – {Annual allocation for current program year x 1.5} = Amount of potential reduction in next year’s grant (not to exceed actual grant amount)
Expenditures (all recipients): within 24 months from the date HUD signs the grant agreement.

Grantees with additional questions should contact their local field office.

FEMA

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Disaster Relief for Housing Cooperatives

HUD announced that $2.5 billion of Community Development Block Grant Funding (CDBG) was available through a Competitive Federal Grant from HUD to four states and New York City to address the remaining needs and promote resiliency for Sandy hurricane disaster relief – View here.

In response to a congressional request, FEMA released its report to Congress in June of 2014, confirming and stating more or less publicly that housing cooperatives are not covered by FEMA Disaster Relief. The wording in the conclusion to amend the Stafford Act is stated in a positive way.  Rep. Israel plans to meet with Department of Homeland Security Secretary Johnson.

Reverse Mortgages- Home Equity Conversion Mortgages (HECM’s)

Without Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) guidelines the institutions of the secondary market will not purchase reverse mortgages on cooperative units. We need congressional help in urging HUD to release the Housing Cooperative HECM guidelines!