HAC News: August 30, 2018
HAC News Formats. pdf
August 30, 2018
Vol. 47, No. 18
Rental Housing for a 21st Century Rural America to be released by HAC on Sept. 6 • Community Reinvestment Act comments requested • Court dismisses fair housing challenge • USDA launches broadband web page • HAC sets webinar on veterans’ supportive housing for September 12 • State of Homelessness in America data online • Members sought by August 31 for new USDA Rural Workforce Innovation Network • USDA considers changes to interest cap and regulations for guaranteed loans • Census Bureau plans to reach hard-to-count groups in 2020 evaluated • Area Agencies on Aging develop services and programming tailored to rural clients • Senate committee narrowly approves Consumer Financial Protection Bureau nomination • Young people eligible for the FOCUS Climate Gap Year, deadline August 31
HAC News Formats. pdf
August 30, 2018
Vol. 47, No. 18
Rental Housing for a 21st Century Rural America to be released by HAC on Sept. 6.
The report, subtitled A Platform for Preservation, presents HAC’s examination of the loss of USDA-financed rural rental housing. HAC conducted a comprehensive assessment of USDA’s multifamily housing investments to better understand this issue and inform strategies that preserve this resource for rural communities and residents. Register for a live-streamed release event on September 6. For more information, contact Lance George, HAC.
Community Reinvestment Act comments requested.
On August 28 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued a call for input on its regulations implementing the Community Reinvestment Act, which requires banks to help meet the credit needs of the communities they serve. OCC’s notice says it is building a new framework to transform or modernize its CRA rules. In the past the three agencies that regulate banks and thrifts have developed CRA regulations together, but for this change OCC is acting on its own. OCC is part of the Treasury Department, which released a report in April identifying possible CRA changes. Comments will be due in mid-November, 75 days after the notice is published in the Federal Register. For more information, contact Vonda J. Eanes, OCC, 202-649-5470. In 2015-2016, HAC conducted one of the few analyses of CRA specifically in rural America; the three resulting reports are available here, here, and here.
Court dismisses fair housing challenge.
On August 17 a federal judge dismissed a suit filed by the National Fair Housing Alliance, Texas Low Income Housing Information Service, and Texas Appleseed that challenged HUD’s withdrawal of the assessment tool intended to help local governments meet their obligations to affirmatively further fair housing. The judge ruled the plaintiffs did not prove they were harmed by the tool’s withdrawal, and therefore they lacked legal standing to challenge HUD’s action.
USDA launches broadband web page.
The new page offers information about existing USDA broadband programs and the e-Connectivity pilot program currently in development. It includes ways for internet service providers and users to share feedback.
HAC sets webinar on veterans’ supportive housing for September 12.
The first of two free webinars on the subject will provide an overview of the HUD-VASH program for veterans who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless. Topics will include who is eligible for services and how to make a referral for a veteran to be assessed for admission, how HUD-VASH vouchers are allocated, and the difference between tenant-based and project-based HUD-VASH vouchers. Register online. For more information, contact HAC staff, 404-892-4824.
State of Homelessness in America data online.
Maps, charts, and narrative from the National Alliance to End Homelessness show trends in homelessness, homeless assistance, and at-risk populations at the national and state levels.
Members sought by August 31 for new USDA Rural Workforce Innovation Network.
USDA’s Rural Development Innovation Center invites organizations to join a national network of public-private partners to support rural workforce development and skills management. Email RD.Innovation@osec.usda.gov by August 31.
USDA considers changes to interest cap and regulations for guaranteed loans.
USDA requests comments by October 16 as it considers raising or eliminating the maximum allowable interest rate cap on Section 502 guaranteed loans. Comments are due October 22 on proposed changes to the Section 502 guaranteed regulation. For further information, contact Kate Jensen, USDA, 503-894-2382.
Census Bureau plans to reach hard-to-count groups in 2020 evaluated.
The Government Accountability Office reports the Census Bureau will use a variety of outreach strategies to reach people in hard-to-count groups such as minorities, rural residents, and homeless persons. 2020 Census: Actions Needed to Address Challenges to Enumerating Hard-to-Count Groups recommends administrative changes to improve Census Bureau efforts for 2020 and the future.
Area Agencies on Aging develop services and programming tailored to rural clients.
An issue brief from the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging reports that rural AAAs have smaller budgets and fewer staff than non-rural AAAs. There are no statistically significant differences in program offerings based on geography, though rural AAAs are less likely to provide some services, such as adult day care. Rural AAAs Structure and Services includes case examples of innovation by rural agencies, including home repair and housekeeping services that help seniors in rural Maine to age in place.
Senate committee narrowly approves Consumer Financial Protection Bureau nomination.
The Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee passed the nomination of Kathleen Kraninger to serve as director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau by a 13-12 party-line vote on August 23. Consideration by the full Senate has not yet been scheduled.
Young people eligible for the FOCUS Climate Gap Year, deadline August 31.
U.S. rural (and urban) young people can apply by August 31 for a FOCUS Climate Gap Year, “a hands-on leadership program for young people interested in exploring the world, and immersing themselves in climate impacts and solutions.”
HAC offers Section 502 packaging training in September.
This three-day advanced course trains experienced participants to assist potential borrowers and work with RD staff, other nonprofits, and regional intermediaries to deliver successful Section 502 loan packages. The registration fee is $750. The training will be held September 24-26 in Liverpool, NY. For more information, contact HAC staff, 404-892-4824.
Nominate local and national leaders for HAC awards by SEPTEMBER 14.
HAC is still accepting nominations for its 2018 Cochran/Collings National Service and Skip Jason Community Service Leadership Awards. The awards will be presented at the 2018 HAC Rural Housing Conference in December. Past awardees are listed on HAC’s site. Complete the online nomination form. For more information, contact Lilla Sutton, HAC, 202-842-8600.
Save the date for the 2018 HAC Rural Housing Conference!
The conference will be held December 4-7 at the Capital Hilton in Washington, DC. The HAC News will announce when conference registration opens and when the hotel room block is available for reservations.
Need capital for your affordable housing project?
HAC’s loan funds provide low interest rate loans to support single- and multifamily affordable housing projects for low-income rural residents throughout the U.S. and territories. Capital is available for all types of affordable and mixed-income housing projects, including preservation, farmworker, senior, and veteran housing. HAC loan funds can be used for pre-development, site acquisition, site development, and construction/rehabilitation. Contact HAC’s loan fund staff at email@example.com, 202-842-8600.
Please note: HAC is not able to offer loans to individuals or families. Borrowers must be nonprofit or for-profit organizations or government entities (including tribes).