HAC News

HAC News: October 17, 2014

HAC News Formats. pdf

October 17, 2014
Vol. 43, No. 21

• USDA unable to spend all single-family appropriations in FY14 • HUD has Jobs Plus funds available • Rule changes suggested for Section 202 and 811 programs • 2015 DDAs and QCTs announced • Final Fair Market Rents set • HUD publishes new OCAFs • Most children in HUD-assisted renter households still live in high-poverty neighborhoods • Rural Voices wonders “What does affordable housing mean to you?” •HAC analysis of mortgage data now available • Farmworker housing and health conference set for November • Webinar to cover protecting seniors and other RD tenants from displacement • REGISTER FOR CONFERENCE BEFORE OCTOBER 31!

October 17, 2014
Vol. 43, No. 21

USDA UNABLE TO SPEND ALL SINGLE-FAMILY APPROPRIATIONS IN FY14. HAC’s analysis of USDA RD data for FY14 determined that 90% of Section 502 direct loan funds were obligated. (See HAC News, 9/17/14.) Very low-income borrowers received 33.2% of the obligations, consistent with past RD difficulties in meeting the requirement to loan 40% of its Section 502 direct dollars to VLI households, and all the unobligated FY14 funds were in the VLI setaside. A 2010 HAC report examined possible reasons and solutions to achieve the 40% requirement. Other FY14 obligation levels include 80% for Section 502 guaranteed loans, 53% and 98% for Section 504 loans and grants, and 73% for Section 523 self-help grants. Well over 100% of the amounts appropriated for Section 514/516 farmworker housing and Section 533 Housing Preservation Grants were obligated, along with 96% of Section 515 loans and 112% of Section 542 vouchers. A percentage could not be calculated for the MPR rental preservation program. HAC’s early analysis is posted now and a more detailed report will be published also. Contact Michael Feinberg, HAC, 202-842-8600.

HUD HAS JOBS PLUS FUNDS AVAILABLE. Public housing agencies can apply by December 17 for grants to provide job support to public housing residents. Contact Anice Chenault, HUD, JobsPlus@hud.gov.

RULE CHANGES SUGGESTED FOR SECTION 202 AND 811 PROGRAMS. HUD’s proposal would implement statutory amendments made in 2011 to both programs, and would “streamline” the programs. Comments are due December 8. Contact Alicia Anderson, HUD, 202-708-3000.

HUD PROPOSES REGULATIONS ON DEMOLITION AND DISPOSITION OF PUBLIC HOUSING. Comments are due December 15 on updates that would increase HUD’s oversight of demolition and disposition of public housing and make other changes. Contact Kathleen Szybist, HUD, 401-277-8310.

2015 DDAS AND QCTS ANNOUNCED. For the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit program, HUD designates Difficult Development Areas every year, and this year is also making new designations of Qualified Census Tracts to incorporate recent income and poverty measures. Contact Michael K. Hollar, HUD, 202-402-5878.

FINAL FAIR MARKET RENTS SET. FMRs for FY15 are used for HUD’s voucher and moderate rehabilitation programs, and to calculate Flat Rents for public housing. Contact local HUD program staff.

HUD PUBLISHES NEW OCAFS. These operating cost adjustment factors will be used to adjust Section 8 rents in some HUD-assisted properties, effective February 11, 2015. Contact Stan Houle, HUD, 202-402-2572.

MOST CHILDREN IN HUD-ASSISTED RENTER HOUSEHOLDS STILL LIVE IN HIGH-POVERTY NEIGHBORHOODS. The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities reports that only 15% of children with HUD rental assistance live in low-poverty neighborhoods, while 18% are in extreme-poverty neighborhoods. Families with vouchers are more likely to escape concentrations of poverty than those in public housing or receiving Section 8 project-based aid, but a quarter of a million children in the Housing Choice Voucher program do live in extreme-poverty neighborhoods. “Creating Opportunity for Children: How Housing Location Can Make a Difference” states that this problem exists in nearly every state and in rural as well as urban areas, though it is most prevalent east of the Mississippi and in California.

RURAL VOICES WONDERS “WHAT DOES AFFORDABLE HOUSING MEAN TO YOU?” The fall issue of HAC’s magazine presents the perspectives of rural families, the challenges they faced when living in unaffordable or substandard conditions, and how they used federal resources to obtain quality housing. Sign up online for email notices when new issues are published, or request one free print subscription per organization from Dan Stern, HAC, 202-842-8600.

HAC ANALYSIS OF MORTGAGE DATA NOW AVAILABLE. “Rural Mortgage Activity Declines,” a Rural Research Note, is now available on HAC’s site and is also covered in a story on the Daily Yonder. (See HAC News, 10/1/14.)

FARMWORKER HOUSING AND HEALTH CONFERENCE SET FOR NOVEMBER. “Farmworker Housing Quality and Health: A Transdisciplinary Conference” will be held November 11 in Arlington, VA. Registration is $70.

WEBINAR TO COVER PROTECTING SENIORS AND OTHER RD TENANTS FROM DISPLACEMENT. The National Housing Law Project will offer a free webinar on October 21 at 2:00 pm Eastern time/11:00 am Pacific on “Prepayments, Maturing Mortgages, and Foreclosures: Protecting Seniors and Others from Rural Development Rental Housing Displacement.

REGISTER FOR CONFERENCE BEFORE OCTOBER 31! Register online for the National Rural Housing Conference 2014: Re-tool, Rebuild, Renew, in Washington, DC, December 3-5 with pre-conference activities December 2. Until October 31, the rate is $350 for nonprofits and government, $400 for for-profits. Contact HAC staff, registration@ruralhome.org.