03/29/2013
IN THIS ISSUE:

CLPHA, PHADA Release 2014 Public Housing and Section 8 Funding Needs

The Council of Large Public Housing Authorities (CLPHA) and the Public Housing Authorities Directors Association (PHADA) have released their joint calculations of funding necessary for the preservation and improvement of public housing and the Housing Choice Voucher program (HCV). For federal fiscal year 2014, CLPHA and PHADA calculate $5.150 billion needed for the Operating Fund, $5.072 billion for the Capital Fund, $18.409 billion for HCV Renewal Funding, and $1.968 billion for HCV Administrative Fees.

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HUD Secretary Speaks to CLPHA About Priorities for Next Four Years

CLPHA's Summer Executive Directors Meeting opened on March 14 with a keynote address from Secretary Shaun Donovan on HUD's priorities for the next four years. He spoke of the Promise Neighborhoods initiative that aims to better integrate systems at the federal and local levels, noting that housing authorities already engage in this kind of alignment. Urging CLPHA members to continue working alongside HUD to achieve legislative reform through AHSSIA, the Secretary highlighted the stakeholder agreement as crucial to the success of this reform and to MTW expansion. He also confirmed the Department's commitment to providing regulatory relief, particularly in light of sequestration, which is creating hardships for housing authorities and other HUD programs serving vulnerable populations.

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Working Across Silos, Partnering for Aligned Interests: Perspectives from HUD, HHS, the White House

On March 14, panelists from HUD, HHS, and the White House discussed federal efforts at systems alignment and highlighted opportunities for housing authorities to engage in cross-sector initiatives, such as the recently announced Promise Zones. This panel began a conversation about the ways in which they can “break down silos,” and it was part of CLPHA’s recently begun initiative to increase services and systems alignment for assisted housing residents. The purpose of the initiative is to reaffirm the role housing authorities play in improving the lives of low-income communities.

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CLPHA Members Hear from Hill Staff and Budget Experts

Congressional staff from the House Financial Services Committee addressed CLPHA members on March 14. The panel included: Clinton Jones, majority professional staff (General Counsel); and Dominique McCoy, minority professional staff (Senior Counsel). A panel addressing federal budget issues followed the authorizing panel and included: Joseph Carlile, minority professional staff of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development (THUD); Michelle Enger, Housing Branch Chief with the Office of Management and Budget (OMB); and Doug Rice, Senior Policy Analyst at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP).

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Congressman Gary Miller Addresses CLPHA Members

On March 15, Congressman Gary Miller (R-CA) addressed CLPHA members, encouraging them to continue educating Congress about the vital work they do and how they are impeded by administrative burdens. He spoke of his years working for reforms that would provide greater flexibility for housing authorities, and he argued that any agency meeting the necessary criteria should be able to have MTW authority. Congressman Miller stated that the one-size-fits-all approach of our federal housing programs does not allow housing authorities to tailor their approach to serving the specific situations of their local communities. Later this year, he will reintroduce his bill to allow broad expansion of MTW, to increase housing authorities’ ability to help their residents become more self-sufficient.

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CLPHA Members and HUD Team Discuss RAD Experiences and Implementation

The March 15 panel discussion on RAD provided CLPHA members from San Buenaventura, Vancouver, and Cuyahoga with the opportunity to share their experiences with the program and gave HUD's RAD team the opportunity to share information about the program’s implementation. Pat Costigan confirmed Secretary Donovan's commitment to making RAD work for housing authorities and noted that there is flexibility to revise program features now that the competition period has closed. He also explained that HUD will honor the rent levels set forth in PIH Notice 2012-32 despite sequestration. Member member panelists expressed appreciation for the RAD team’s assistance and flexibility during the application and conversion processes, and each member explained why their housing authority decided to participate in program and described the particulars of their RAD deals.

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PIH Assistant Secretary and HUD Staff Discuss Sequestration and Streamlining

CLPHA’s Spring Meeting closed with a visit from PIH Assistant Secretary Sandra Henriquez and HUD staff. Assistant Secretary Henriquez opened the conversation by stating that in light of the current budget situation, it’s “time to go big or go home,” indicating that she wants to be thinking in terms of changes that will significantly improve housing authority operations. Many of the updates from the HUD staff focused on the impacts of sequestration and the Department’s efforts to do what they can to streamline requirements in the face of its challenges.

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CLPHA and Stakeholders to Present April 3 Webinar on Rental Assistance Reform

Register now for a Webinar on rental assistance reform scheduled for Wednesday, April 3 at 4PM EDT. Presenters include Sunia Zaterman (CLPHA), Barbara Sard and Will Fischer (CBPP), Michelle Kitchen (NAHMA), Hilary Swab (NHT), and Barbara Burnham (LISC). Funding cuts under sequestration accentuate the urgency of enacting the broadly-supported set of rental assistance reforms considered by Congress for a number of years, most recently in the 2012 AHSSIA draft language. Twenty national groups have called on the Senate Banking Committee to act on similar legislation early in 2013. This Webinar will review the key changes stakeholders are seeking, and highlight what participants can do to advance the goal.

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PNA Sample Size Clarification from HUD

The St Paul Public Housing Agency posed a question to HUD about the required sample size for scattered site properties in the physical needs assessment (PNA). HUD's response states that there is no required sample size for the PNA process, but the Department encourages housing authorities to rely upon their judgment and the expertise of PNA providers to establish a valid sample.

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HUD Announces FY13 Choice Neighborhoods Planning Grants

On March 25, HUD published the FY13 NOFA for Choice Neighborhoods Planning Grants to the www.grants.gov website (CFDA number 14.892). Applications are due on Tuesday, May 28. Individual grant awards may be for up to a maximum of $500,000. The NOFA and application package are available through the www.grants.gov website. 

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