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Trump’s government shutdown & Jan. 15 notice from HUD to Public Housing Authorities
by Lynda Carson (tenantsrule [at] yahoo.com)
Wednesday Jan 16th, 2019 5:06 PM
Section 8 voucher tenants (Housing Choice Voucher program tenants) and public housing tenants across the nation are being terrorized by fears of what will happen if they face major rent increases, or eviction if the government shutdown continues.
Trump’s government shutdown & Jan. 15 notice from HUD to Public Housing Authorities

By Lynda Carson - January 16, 2019

As Trump’s partial government shutdown places millions of low-income, disabled, and elderly renters at risk in the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) subsidized housing programs, the renters in HUD’s housing assistance programs and the USDA’s rural housing programs are very concerned that they may face major rent increases, or eviction if the shutdown continues.

In an email from Shanice Wilson in Houston, Texas, it said, “Just wanted to ask is there any update about Houston housing authority such as February payment.”

A different email from a concerned mother named Joan Healy asks, “Does the Santa Clara Housing Authority have reserve funds to put into housing for those holding Section 8 vouchers that will last during the government shutdown?  My son who is disabled holds a voucher.  What will happen to him if the shutdown continues?”

Section 8 voucher tenants (Housing Choice Voucher program tenants) and public housing tenants across the nation are being terrorized by fears of what will happen if they face major rent increases, or eviction if the government shutdown continues. Section 8 landlords are also very concerned that the housing assistance payments (HAP), may be delayed.

As some renters in the USDA’s rural housing programs face threats of higher rents and eviction by their landlords, on January 15, the Housing Assistance Council (HAC), posted a message on their website saying that, “Unofficial word from USDA: February Rental Assistance payments will be made.” Additionally, reportedly the USDA will reopen about half of its Farm Service Agency offices around the country and call back around 2,500 employees for at least three days starting Thursday.

The January 15, Notice From HUD To PHAs About February HAP Payments:

The latest guidance that HUD provided yesterday (Jan. 15) about the Section 8 voucher program (Housing Choice Voucher Program) to Public Housing Authorities (PHAs) across the nation, states that housing assistance payments (HAP) will go out on time in February.

However, it also said that HUD recognizes that it is possible that these funds might not cover your monthly HAP needs as a result of additional leasing or costs. Meaning that it is possible that some PHAs will have to delay payments in February to some Section 8 landlords (Housing Choice Voucher landlords), if there is a lack of HUD funding.

See Jan. 15, HUD notice below:

---------- Forwarded message ---------

From: HUD Office of Public and Indian Housing
Date: Tue, Jan 15, 2019 at 11:28 AM

Subject: Accessing HUD-held Housing Assistance Payment Reserves During Partial Government Shutdown

To: Public Housing Authorities

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING 
AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT
WASHINGTON, DC 20410-5000

GENERAL DEPUTY ASSISTANT SECRETARY 
FOR PUBLIC AND INDIAN HOUSING

Dear Executive Director,

The Department is providing additional information about the Department’s contingency plan so that public housing agencies (PHAs) administering the Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) program may access their HUD-held Housing Assistance Payment Reserves (HHR) under certain circumstances due to the lapse in appropriations that began on December 22, 2018.

Housing Assistance Payments (HAP) renewal funds and Administrative Fees were paid to your agency for the month of January and are scheduled to be paid on time for February. These payments should cover your previously contracted HAP needs. However, HUD recognizes that it is possible that these funds might not cover your monthly HAP needs as a result of additional leasing or costs.

In accordance with HUD’s contingency plan, the Office of Public and Indian Housing (PIH) will allow access to your HHR funds in situations where the failure to act “would result in an imminent threat to the safety of human life or the protection of property.” PHAs may request their HAP reserves from HUD under the following circumstances:

1. To protect families that are at imminent risk of termination of assistance; and/or

2. PHAs that were eligible to receive a payment for January 2019 and did not receive it (e.g., first time RAD payments for a project) and need reserves to ensure that the property owner(s) receive(s) a HAP payment to continue assistance and protect the residents at the property.

Please note that these reserve funds may not be used for any other purpose than HAP funding.

In order to request an additional payment covered by the HHR, please contact Robert Boepple, Director of the Financial Management Center (FMC) at Robert.H.Boepple [at] hud.gov. The request should include the amount of additional payment, supporting monthly leasing projections, as well as a point of contact email and phone number. The PHA must also detail any cost savings measures that have been taken to date as outlined in PIH Notice 2011-28 to decrease the possibility of a shortfall.

PHAs should also review PIH Notice 2013-28 Guidance on the Use of Outside Sources of Funds in the HCV Program, to ensure proper adherence to the requirements of this Notice.

Please be assured that HUD will work with you to the greatest extent possible during this period to protect the health and safety of families.

Many thanks,

Dominique Blom

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Additionally, in the latest January 16 message posted on the website of the National Low-Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC), housing leaders warn of the government shutdown’s impact on affordable housing and communities during national call in day.

At this point, it does not appear that HUD will have enough funds after February 28, to cover its subsidized housing programs if Trump's government shutdown continues after February 28.

Lynda Carson may be reached at tenantsrule [at] yahoo.com

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Comments  (Hide Comments)

by Lynda Carson
Wednesday Jan 16th, 2019 10:51 PM
Additional Important Links: Effects of Trump's government shutdown on housing assistance programs, and the low-income, elderly, and disabled renters.

(LC)

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(IndyBay)
Mon Jan 14 2019 (Updated 01/16/19)
Trump Shutdown Takes Increasing Toll

https://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2019/01/14/18820382.php

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Government shutdown, evictions

https://news.google.com/search?q=government%20shutdown%20evictions&hl=en-US&gl=US&ceid=US%3Aen

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January 16, 2019. For immediate release.

Housing Leaders Warn of Shutdown’s Impact on Affordable Housing & Communities During National Call

https://nlihc.org/press/releases/11501

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January 15, HUD notice to PHAs

http://www.nahro.org/sites/default/files/searchable/HUD-Guidance-Accessing-HUD-Held-Reserves-1-15-19.pdf

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January 14, 2019
Government Shutdown Continues into Fourth Week with No End in Sight

https://nlihc.org/article/government-shutdown-continues-fourth-week-no-end-sight

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Affordable Housing Leaders Demand End to the Government Shutdown & Passage of Full-Year Spending Bills

Date Published: 
January 8th, 2019

https://www.clpha.org/news/2019/affordable-housing-leaders-demand-end-government-shutdown-passage-full-year-spending-bills

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HUD funds available for February but not March

https://nahroblog.org/2019/01/04/hud-funds-available-for-february-but-not-for-march/

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January 14, 2019
Government Shutdown Continues into Fourth Week with No End in Sight

https://nlihc.org/article/government-shutdown-continues-fourth-week-no-end-sight

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FY 2019 - Updated Budget Chart for Selected HUD and USDA Programs:

https://nlihc.org/sites/default/files/NLIHC_HUD-USDA_Budget-Chart.pdf

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List of Section 8 project-based projects with expired or expiring contracts…

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1NpFtoOOEe0wGy7AN2NkyhvIiunzeDDxn/view

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Campaign for Housing and Community Development (letter)

January 8, 2019

As of January 5, HUD failed to renew 650 rental assistance contracts that had expired in
December prior to the shutdown. The 650 contracts that HUD didn’t renew in December
will affect roughly 21,500 low-income households. Roughly two-thirds of these
households are elderly or who have disabilities; on average, these households have
incomes of less than $13,000 per year. HUD is determining whether it has any available
funds that could be obligated to renew these contracts and working through the
processing of these contracts to determine what could be signed if funding is available.

The number of expiring contracts will increase as time goes on, as HUD anticipates
approximately 500 additional contracts (affecting another 20,000 households) will
expire and be up for renewal in January and 550 in February. Without additional
funding, HUD cannot renew these contracts or obligate funds –doing so would be in
violation of the Antideficiency Act.

Click below for more…

https://nlihc.org/sites/default/files/CHCDF_Letter_re_Government_Shutdown_010819.pdf

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EXPIRED OR EXPIRING
HUD PROJECT-BASED
RENTAL ASSISTANCE CONTRACTS
(DECEMBER 2018 TO FEBRUARY 2019) (BY STATE)

https://nlihc.org/sites/default/files/Shutdown-by-State.pdf

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Map: Impacts of Shutdown

https://nlihc.org/issues/budget/shutdown-map

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Last updated 1/15/19
Impacts of Government Shutdown on Affordable Housing Programs

January 15, 2019

https://nlihc.org/sites/default/files/FY19_Shutdown_Factsheet.pdf

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Seniors, Families, and Others Risk Losing Housing as Shutdown Continues

January 9, 2019 at 5:00 PM

https://www.cbpp.org/blog/seniors-families-and-others-risk-losing-housing-as-shutdown-continues

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(National Alliance of HUD Tenants)
Trump’s Shutdown Threatens 3.4 Million Low Income Tenants with Displacement: Take Action NOW to Save Our Homes!

Posted by Carey Cabrera · January 10, 2019 1:21 PM

https://www.saveourhomes.org/blog

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Unofficial word from USDA: February Rental Assistance payments will be made

January 15, 2019

http://www.ruralhome.org/whats-new/menu-policy/1638-unofficial-word-from-usda-february-rental-assistance-payments-will-be-made

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PHADA position papers…

https://www.phada.org/Legislation/Position-Papers

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Find elected officials

http://cqrcengage.com/nlihc/lookup?0

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Because of the shutdown, more than 1,000 affordable housing contracts have expired (Jan. 8, 2019)

https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/white-house/because-shutdown-more-1-000-affordable-housing-contracts-have-expired-n955971

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Shutdown Causes Confusion Among Landlords and Tenants Relying on Federal Rental Assistance

Jan. 15, 2019

https://www.wnyc.org/story/shutdown-casues-confusion-among-landlords-and-tenants-relying-federal-rental-assistance/

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