HAC News

HAC News: August 19, 2015

HAC News Formats. pdf

August 19, 2015
Vol. 44, No. 17

• USDA launches “all hands” effort to spend Section 502 direct • The Home Depot Foundation seeks proposals for rural veteran housing projects • 2015-2017 housing goals set for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac • HUD issues voucher portability final rule and Section 8 renewal guidebook • RA management requirements continue • MPR funding notice corrected • RD letter tells how to reconcile Section 538 and Section 515 for preservation • Mortgage disclosures date delayed • Disaster staffing toolkit available for multifamily housing • SAMHSA offers rural homelessness webinars • USDA reports on child poverty in nonmetro counties • Hurricane Katrina tenth anniversary approaches • Two HAC trainings offered September 15-16

HAC News Formats. pdf

August 19, 2015
Vol. 44, No. 17

USDA LAUNCHES “ALL HANDS” EFFORT TO SPEND SECTION 502 DIRECT. Unable to use all of its Section 502 direct funding in the last few years, the agency has taken steps to facilitate loan processing before FY15 ends on September 30. A letter from RD Under Secretary Lisa Mensah reminds all Rural Development employees of temporary measures available, including obligation of loans subject to obtaining acceptable appraisals and (for new construction) plan certifications. Overtime is authorized for staff to process applications. The agency also seeks help from local partners, including submission of new applications. Funds were divided among states earlier in the fiscal year but are now available in all states on a first-come, first-served basis. More details are posted on HAC’s website. Contact a state or local USDA RD office.

THE HOME DEPOT FOUNDATION SEEKS PROPOSALS FOR RURAL VETERAN HOUSING PROJECTS. Awards will go to nonprofits, tribally designated housing entities, and housing authorities serving veterans at or below 80% of area median income in rural areas. Projects may be new construction or rehab, temporary or permanent housing, in progress or beginning within 12 months. Concept papers are due October 30. Contact Shonterria Charleston, HAC, 404-892-4824.

2015-2017 HOUSING GOALS SET FOR FANNIE MAE AND FREDDIE MAC. The Federal Housing Finance Agency established identical benchmarks for both Fannie and Freddie in all categories, requiring the housing finance entities to purchase mortgages on affordable single- and multifamily properties. There are no specifically rural goals, but for the first time there is a goal for rental units in small multifamily properties (five to fifty units). Contact Ted Wartell, FHFA, 202-649-3157.

HUD ISSUES VOUCHER PORTABILITY FINAL RULE AND SECTION 8 RENEWAL GUIDEBOOK. The regulation is intended to improve the Housing Choice Voucher program’s portability process for voucher holders to move between jurisdictions. Contact Becky Primeaux, HUD, 202-708-0477. The updated guidebook is effective November 5, 2015.

RA MANAGEMENT REQUIREMENTS CONTINUE. An Unnumbered Letter dated July 2, 2015 confirms the National Office must approve all transfers of Section 521 Rental Assistance. Contact Stephanie White, USDA, 202-720-1615.

MPR FUNDING NOTICE CORRECTED. A USDA notice rectifies small errors in the announcement of available Multifamily Preservation and Revitalization funds (see HAC News, 8/5/15). The deadline remains December 1. Contact a Housing Programs Specialist at a USDA RD State Office.

RD LETTER TELLS HOW TO RECONCILE SECTION 538 AND SECTION 515 FOR PRESERVATION. An Unnumbered Letter dated July 30, 2015 addresses the procedural differences between the two programs when a Section 538 guaranteed loan is being used to preserve a property with a Section 515 loan. Contact Tammy S. Daniels, RD, 202-720-0021.

MORTGAGE DISCLOSURES DATE DELAYED. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosures rule takes effect October 3, 2015 rather than August 1. Contact Pedro De Oliveira, CFPB, 202-435-7700.

DISASTER STAFFING TOOLKIT AVAILABLE FOR MULTIFAMILY HOUSING. The toolkit, released by Enterprise Community Partners and HUD, is intended to help organizations develop comprehensive disaster staffing plans to protect buildings, engage residents, and continue business operations in the event of a disaster. The toolkit and other resources are online.

SAMHSA OFFERS RURAL HOMELESSNESS WEBINARS. The federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration is holding several free webinars through the end of August. Register online.

USDA REPORTS ON CHILD POVERTY IN NONMETRO COUNTIES. The Economic Research Service found nonmetro child poverty increased from 19% in 2000 to 26% in 2013. Rates tended to be higher in counties with high proportions of minority residents. “Understanding the Geography of Growth in Rural Child Poverty” and a gallery of charts link the rise to weak job markets and increases in single-parent families, noting also that changes in family structure could be connected to job market problems.

HURRICANE KATRINA TENTH ANNIVERSARY APPROACHES. The Times-Picayune offers information on the August 29, 2015 disaster and commemoration events; Census Bureau data indicate changes in population, housing stock, and more; and a HUD press release summarizes the department’s recovery efforts.

TWO HAC TRAININGS OFFERED SEPTEMBER 15-16. The cost is $75 each for these courses in North Charleston, SC. Register online for Sharpening Your Skills: Financial Management for Rural Nonprofits or Utilizing the LIHTC Program: Creating and Preserving Affordable Housing. Contact Shonterria Charleston, HAC, 404-892-4824.