HAC News

HAC News: July 23, 2014

HAC News Formats. pdf

July 23, 2014
Vol. 43, No. 14

• Congress starts recess on August 1 • Continuum of Care registration open • USDA issues nondiscrimination rule • HUD proposes revisions to PHA consortium rules • USDA hopes to speed processing of Section 502 direct loans • Meetings and webinars set to discuss Keepseagle funds distribution • HUD guidebook discusses housing-transportation strategies • Data show characteristics of HUD-assisted households • Rural Voices magazine asks, “Is the Housing Crisis Over?” • Some spaces remain in workshops on new HOME rule • Register now for upcoming HAC trainings • Nominate national or local rural housing leaders for HAC awards

July 23, 2014
Vol. 43, No. 15

CONGRESS STARTS RECESS ON AUGUST 1. Legislators will return to work on Monday, September 8.

CONTINUUM OF CARE REGISTRATION OPEN. Applicants for FY14 CoC funds must register by August 6.

USDA ISSUES NONDISCRIMINATION RULE. The final rule is effective immediately. USDA’s complaint office is now required to offer alternative dispute resolution services. Each USDA agency is required to collect, maintain and annually compile data (when provided voluntarily by applicants and program participants) on the race, ethnicity, and gender of program applicants and participants by county and state. Also, two new categories are protected: political beliefs and gender identity. Contact Anna Stroman, 202-205-5953.

HUD PROPOSES REVISIONS TO PHA CONSORTIUM RULES. The changes are intended to increase administrative efficiencies associated with forming a consortium and to help ensure maximum family choice in locating suitable
housing. Comments are due September 9. Contact Michael Dennis, HUD, 202-402-3882.

USDA HOPES TO SPEED PROCESSING OF SECTION 502 DIRECT LOANS. An Unnumbered Letter dated July 7, 2014 authorizes three temporary steps to speed processing of Section 502 direct loans before the fiscal year ends on September 30. (See HAC News, 6/25/14.) USDA Rural Development field staff can now approve and obligate 502 direct loans subject to receipt of an appraisal, make new loans rather doing loan assumptions, and refinance existing loans in some circumstances when there is a high risk of foreclosure. Contact a USDA Rural Development office.

MEETINGS AND WEBINARS SET TO DISCUSS KEEPSEAGLE FUNDS DISTRIBUTION. About $380 million from the settlement of the Keepseagle v. Vilsack suit, which charged that USDA farm loan programs discriminated against Native Americans, will be distributed to nonprofits that work with Native American farmers and ranchers. To provide input about this process, attend in-person meetings or webinars/conference calls to be held between July 30 and August 26, or email indianfarmclass@gmail.com. For general information contact the Claims Administrator, 1-888-233-5506.

HUD GUIDEBOOK DISCUSSES HOUSING-TRANSPORTATION STRATEGIES. Creating Connected Communities: A Guidebook for Improving Transportation Connections for Low- and Moderate-Income Households in Small and Mid-Sized Cities intends to provide localities with transportation strategies for residents of affordable housing. It targets places up to 250,000 population, but at least one case study is from a city of 8,500.

DATA SHOW CHARACTERISTICS OF HUD-ASSISTED HOUSEHOLDS. The National Housing Conference’s Center for Housing Policy has begun analyzing “Picture of Subsidized Households” figures recently released by HUD. Nationwide, 39% of households receiving assistance are families with children, 34% percent are non-senior disabled (there is overlap in these categories), and 33% are seniors age 62 and older. Forty-four percent are African-American, 17% are Hispanic, 4% Asian or Pacific Islander, and 1% are Native American. About 6.3% live in places with urban centers under 10,000 population or without urban centers.

RURAL VOICES MAGAZINE ASKS, “IS THE HOUSING CRISIS OVER?” Experts write about the crisis and its impact on rural America. This issue also covers CRA, foreclosures, and housing counseling, and RHS Administrator Tony Hernandez describes his priorities.

SOME SPACES REMAIN IN WORKSHOPS ON NEW HOME RULE. HUD will offer “CHDO Workshop: Understanding the 2013 HOME Final Rule” in August and September. Registration is free for CHDO staff. HUD has some travel scholarships available, funded partly by HAC. Contact Rachael Ballard, rballard@ tdainc.org, 203-241-2410.

Register now for upcoming HAC webinars:

and place-based trainings:

Nominate national or local rural housing leaders for HAC awards.
Nominations are due September 30 for the Cochran/Collings Award for national rural housing service and the Skip Jason Community Service Award. The honors will be presented at the National Rural Housing Conference in December. Complete the online nomination form or request a paper form from Lilla Sutton, HAC, 202-842-8600.