Congressional Momentum Grows for MTW Expansion

Momentum appears to be growing in Congress for an expansion of the MTW program. In late June, the Senate Appropriations THUD Subcommittee approved a spending bill that included an expansion of the program to 300 PHAs from the current 39.

Meanwhile, in an unexpected move, Rep. John Carney (D-DE), a member of the House Financial Services Committee, introduced a bill on July 7, 2015, that would expand the MTW program to 60 agencies. Read More >

OMB Urges Senate To Downsize Its MTW Goal

Office of Management and Budget Director Shaun Donovan wrote a letter to Sen. Thad Cochran, Chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, in which he raised concerns about the Senate’s use of sequestration funding levels in the THUD appropriations legislation approved by Cochran’s committee in June.

The letter was essentially another shot across the bow from the Democratic Administration to the Republican-controlled Congress that President Obama won't agree to the congressionally proposed funding levels that use the reduced amounts of the Budget Control Act of 2011.

Donovan went into specifics about the Administration's view of how sequestration-based spending would negatively impact domestic programs. In one section of his letter Donovan, a former HUD Secretary, singled out the Administration's disagreement with the Senate on MTW policy.

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HUD Issues Final AFFH Rule

HUD released its much-anticipated Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule on Wednesday, July 8, 2015, to copious news-media coverage and widespread, initial positive reaction from a broad range of public officials, housing advocates and industry groups.

Furthering fair housing and deconcentrating poverty are goals supported by CLPHA and, indeed, widely embraced. But the details of the final rule bear close scrutiny. In the past, CLPHA expressed its concerns to HUD when the agency made its proposed AFFH rule available to the public that the rule was overly burdensome and an unfunded mandate. CLPHA intends to provide our members with a full analysis of the final AFFH rule shortly.

CLPHA also plans to provide analysis of the Supreme Court's recent "disparate impact" case with a specific focus on what it means for our members that the high court ruled that housing discrimination doesn't have to be intentional to be illegal.

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CLPHA Submits SAFMR Comments To HUD

CLPHA earlier in July submitted comments to HUD in response to the agency’s Small Area Fair Market Rents Notice of Proposed Rulemaking urging that the program be made voluntary while stressing the Council’s position that HUD lacks evidence to support its proposal.

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CLPHA Summer 2015 Membership Meeting Roundup

CLPHA would like to thank everyone who contributed to our successful members' meeting in San Diego last month. We especially want to thank the San Diego Housing Commission,  its Executive Director Richard C. Gentry, and SDHC staff members for hosting our  information-packed meeting in their beautiful city with great generosity and professionalism. 

Read further for a roundup of the June 17-June 19, 2015 meeting which included panels on how PHAs are sustaining their real estate portfolios in a time of significant financial challenges; PHA strategies to help their senior residents age in place, and SDHC's approach toward providing housing for homeless people in San Diego.  

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HUD Notice Updates PBV-VASH Rules

On June 12, HUD published Notice PIH 2015-10 (HA), “Project-Basing HUD-Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing Vouchers,” which revises and supersedes Notice PIH 2011-50. The new notice makes the following policy changes:

•    In considering the challenges faced by HUD-VASH voucher holders in leasing up in the local rental market, as part of determining whether to approve a request to project-base, “HUD will no longer consider the most recent leasing indicator under SEMAP, since the leasing of HUD-VASH vouchers is dependent on referrals from the Veterans Affairs Medical Center (VAMC) or Community-Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC), and the unit months and budget authority associated with these vouchers are not included in the SEMAP leasing indicator.”

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