The Consolidated Plan incorporates into a single document one plan and one application for HUD's Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), Home Investment Partnership (HOME), Emergency Shelter Grants (ESG), and Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA) programs. The consolidation of planning will enable citizens and decision-makers to place their program planning in a more comprehensive context.
In Federal Fiscal Year 1995 the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development will receive $30,767,000 in Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds to use in the State's non-entitlement areas. The Tennessee Housing development Agency (THDA) will receive $12,882,000 of HOME funds. The Department of Human Services will receive $1,428,000 of ESG funds. The State will also receive $1,114,000 of 1995 HOPWA funds.
Three public hearings were conducted to record the opinions of citizens regarding observed housing and community development needs of the state. Most participants expressed concerns about the lack of affordable housing.
A survey was completed to gather citizen opinion about the needs for housing
and community development in Tennessee. The primary concern among respondents
was the need for additional housing rehabilitation. Nonprofit organizations
ranked the need for support services above all other concerns. Most respondents
felt that the elderly should be the target population most needing priority
funding. Within the special needs categories, mental health received a higher
priority than did all other groups.
The Consolidated Plan uses the number of units built between 1940 and 1959 as a proxy measure of the need for moderate rehabilitation. The number of units built before 1940 is used as a proxy measure of the need for substantial rehabilitation. The number of units built between 1940 and 1959 was 425,694. The number of units built before 1940 was 185,580.
Tennessee's population from the 1990 Census had a total population of 4,877,185, a six percent increase from the 1980 Census count. The Census Bureau predicts that Tennessee's population growth will outpace the United States' population growth from 1990 to the year 2000 (a 13% increase compared to an estimated 10.8% increase in the nation's population). Thus, the State is expected to have over 5.5 million residents in the year 2,000. This will correlate into an increase in the number of households. The State estimates that the number of households will increase from 1,997,361 in 1995 to 2,159,242 in the year 2000.
The Tennessee Housing Development Agency (THDA) predicts that the number of low, very low, and moderate income households in the state will increase throughout the remainder of the decade as Tennessee's population and number of households grow. Although many more housing units are expected to be occupied by owners than renters, the lowest income renter households (0 to 30% of adjusted median family income) will out-number the owner- occupied households who earn less than 30 percent of the median income. It is also noteworthy that more than 60 percent of renter households earn less than 80 percent of the median income, while nearly 60 percent of the households who own their homes have incomes greater than 96 percent of the median income.
The critical housing needs identified in the Consolidated Plan are housing for the homeless, affordability of homeownership for low-and-moderate income households, trends toward losses in the affordable housing inventory and deterioration of this housing, and housing rehabilitation for low-income elderly homeowners to ensure safe, sound, and accessible homes where seniors can age in place.
Homeownership is a high priority in Tennessee. Statewide, the percentage of homeowners has fallen slightly from 68.6 percent in 1980 to 68.0 percent in 1990. However, the rate of homeownership is lower for minority and lower-income households.
The potential of low income renters to become homeowners is limited. Nearly 40 percent of renters are very low income and only 29 percent of current housing units are affordable to that group.
The initial costs of homeownership are often a barrier for lower income households. This problem is growing with the increase in low wage-low skill jobs and higher ratios of net earnings to debt. The required downpayment and closing costs have kept potential homeowners in rental units, frequently cost burdened.
Housing programs and credit policies need to focus on encouraging and assisting a greater number of low income households to become homeowners. Low interest rates, homeownership counseling, and downpayment and closing cost assistance have proven extremely valuable. Greater support for these methods and new approaches are needed.
THDA estimates that 159,711 housing units in Tennessee need substantial rehabilitation and that 1,069,550 units need moderate rehabilitation.
The number of elderly persons living in Tennessee is 746,988. Sixty-two percent live in urban areas, and thirty-eight percent live in rural areas. Thirty-nine percent of the elderly population is men, and sixty-one percent is women.
Older men typically live in family households with only 13.7 percent living alone. Older women often survive their husbands and 40.7 percent live alone. Of the 215,140 Tennesseans over age 60 living alone, 170,989 are female and 44,150 male. Persons living alone tend to have incomes below the poverty level more often than the older population as a whole--44.1% in comparison to 22%. For all persons over 60 living alone, the median income is $7,447; for males living alone it is $8,910, and for females it is $7,247.
The 1990 Census showed unmet housing needs among the older population. In all housing units with householders over 65 years of age, 3.6% do not have a telephone and 22.2% do not have a vehicle available for transportation. In owner-occupied units with householders over 65, 1.9% are without complete plumbing and about 1% without complete kitchen facilities. In renter-occupied housing units, 3.2% are without complete plumbing facilities, and 2.2% without complete kitchen facilities. This data indicates, for example, that about 21,500 units with elderly householders are without complete plumbing, and a little over 13,000 without complete kitchen facilities. Households without telephones and available vehicles are not likely to have good access to community services and resources.
The growth rate of this segment of the population is also a factor to be considered. While the under-65 population grew by only eight percent between 1981-1991, the over 85 population skyrocketed at a rate of 35%.
Housing rehabilitation funds are needed to preserve the housing stock occupied by elderly homeowners and to retrofit the housing to ensure a safe and accessible home where seniors can age in place. Part of the need for housing for lower income elderly persons can be met by retrofitting first floor public housing units as adaptable units. Care services need to be provided to low-income elderly subsidized renters to enable them to remain in their homes.
As of June 30, 1994, the Division of Mental Retardation Services had a list of 985 persons with mental retardation waiting for community residential services. Besides the persons on the waiting list , the Division of Mental Retardation Services plans to deinstitutionalize many persons from the three developmental centers it operates. Between now and the year 2000, the Vision 2000 plans call for 1,095 persons to move from the developmental centers into community settings. Besides the above persons Tennessee anticipates that an average of 327 additional persons will request services each year. These persons will need housing in community settings, such as apartments and private homes.
Tennessee needs all-female facilities for persons with severe mental illness. Fifteen additional group housing facilities that would house eight persons each are needed.
Tennessee needs 900 subsidized independent living units for consumers with children. Twenty group home housing facilities housing eight persons each are needed to provide twenty-four hour supportive care for men and women consumers.
Tennessee needs 800 units of rent subsidized, low-rent efficiency, or one-bedroom housing units for consumers in small concentrations, preferably integrated into developments for non-consumers. Nine hundred tenant-based rent subsidy certificates or vouchers for accessing units in privately owned developments are needed.
In Tennessee 4,319 AIDS cases were reported from 1982 through October, 1994, according to the Department of Health. The number of HIV cases reported for the same period was 4,124. Housing affordability is a key issue in this population. As the disease progresses, more money is required for food and medicine, making less available for housing costs.
Persons with physical disabilities need more affordable housing units that are accessible to the physically challenged and close to employment and support services.
In 1990 Tennessee's housing stock included 2,114,522 units for year-round occupation. Eighty-eight percent of these units were occupied. Since that year, single family construction activity has been strong and multifamily construction activity has rebounded following a persistent downward trend during the late 1980's and early 1990's.
Tennessee can expect strong population and household growth. The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) anticipates that U.S. economic growth and housing construction will slow in 1995 and 1996.
Decent housing at an affordable price is not a reality for many Tennessee households with low or very low-income. Housing costs make up a substantially higher percentage of income for lower income persons. Housing costs of less than 30 percent of income are generally considered "affordable." In 1990, about 408,000 Tennessee households (22%) were paying over 30 percent of their income for housing (excess cost burden), and about 160,000 (9%) were paying over 50 percent (severe cost burden).
Almost one-fourth of Tennessee households live in a unit with a housing problem (as defined by HUD. Excessive cost burden is the primary housing problem. Renters are almost twice as likely as owners to experience a housing problem (38% versus 19%). Except for renters with large families (5 or more persons), the major housing problem for both renters and owners is excessive housing costs.
The Tennessee Department of Human Services (DHS) administers the Community Services Block Grant (CSBG) that provides supportive services to homeless individuals and families in local communities. DHS has developed a network of homeless coordinators as a resource to identify local needs and provide limited services.
Based on a 1988 survey and demand for funding in the Emergency Shelter Grant Program (ESGP) and Emergency Community Services Homeless Program (EHP), Tennessee has 2,451 homeless persons, 2,094 housed in emergency shelters and 357 unsheltered. Youth 17 years of age or younger are 449 of the homeless. Tennessee ESGP applications reflect need for housing, employment, job training, and emotional support and counseling.
Of Tennessee's 95 counties, 34 are served by agencies funded through ESGP funds. Fourteen counties have had domestic violence shelters funded. There is a need for an additional 1600 emergency shelter beds. The overwhelming priority group is homeless families with children, followed closely by the mentally ill and substance abusers.
The need exists for specialized shelters for families with children, single adults, veterans, the mentally ill, the chemically dependent, runaway youth, and people with AIDS. Discussion with shelter providers indicates that most of this need is for longer term supportive housing with transitional services to better prepare homeless persons for longer term integration into the community.
Traditional programs that serve the homeless have not been able to meet the overwhelming demand. Single parents and intact families, the elderly and the handicapped homeless remain grossly underserved. The following needs have been identified throughout the State on a consistent basis: Lack of affordable rental housing, problems in saving the necessary amount to pay for necessary deposits to move into permanent housing, necessity of low- interest loans or grants to keep families from being evicted after lay-off or extended unemployment or illness, lack of day care, accessibility to entitlement programs, transportation, housing assistance and counseling, employment assistance and counseling, specialized health care, and food and clothing needs.
Households with 30% or less of the area median family income are most in need of supportive housing and services to prevent homelessness. DHS has provided a formal information and referral service out of its 95 county offices for several years. This often serves as an informal clearinghouse of available emergency services. These services play an important role in preventing homelessness in rural areas where emergency services are scarce. Also, DHS funds prevention activities in several of its emergency shelter grant programs. Additionally, the Department administers the EHP Program through the State's 22 community action and human resources agencies. For the past two years, the State has encouraged these agencies to use allowable funds for prevention activities.
Tennessee has 1,150 to 2,000 homeless mentally ill persons. Basic services are provided to mentally ill homeless in the four metropolitan areas of Tennessee by designated PATH providers. McKinney Permanent Housing Program funds have provided housing for the mentally ill homeless in Nashville, Knoxville, and Chattanooga. The following are gaps in services to this population:
There is an increasing mismatch between the after-tax cost of homeownership and income. Homeowners have to pay a higher percentage of income for housing than they once did.
Only 56% of all households today are headed by married couples. Single-parent households tend to have less income than two wage earner households.
The national average rental cost burden is still near its 25-year peak. The gross rent burden is 1993 held at 30.9 percent of income.
Affordability continues to be the key to housing Tennesseans. Income disparities and underserved markets are the significant barriers for many trying to make the move from renting to owning.
The Consolidated Plan requires an analysis of impediments to fair housing choice and a plan to eradicate those impediments. Tennessee recognizes the interrelationship between impediments to fair housing choice and the social and economic well-being of all its citizens. The challenge for Tennessee is to develop a fair housing plan for use in 1996.
Tennessee must begin programs to reduce and eradicate lead-based paint hazards in the housing stock. The State is challenged to set up a lead-based paint hazard elimination program in 1995.
Information was solicited from the public on non-housing community development needs in two ways. The first was through a public hearing process conducted in three locations in the state. The second was through a questionnaire that was distributed throughout the state. The following shows the percentage priority of program objectives as expressed by the survey respondents:
The following shows the project priorities in percentages of respondents to the survey:
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The best planning strategy is a collaborative effort by state and local institutions, community groups, citizens, and government officials. Developing partnerships among these interests, both in and out of government, would ease community-building efforts and problem solving for the Tennessee Consolidated Plan. Tennessee is committed to working toward achieving the leadership role set out by HUD for comprehensive state planning in the future. One of the most important aspects of this role is finding methods to expand the structural base of consolidated planning to include more participants in the process.
The overarching mission of the consolidated planning process is to help Tennesseans build communities of opportunity. Our communities are witness to an enormous tangle of problems in such areas as education, public safety, housing, infrastructure, health, and employment which seem to grow in their complexity each year. The enormity of problems is matched, however, by windows of great opportunity for success. The deciding factor depends on the human element: how well community members build understanding and action toward solutions.
The first step in the accomplishment of consolidated planning in Tennessee
was the designation of an agency to coordinate and lead the process. The
Tennessee Housing Development Agency (THDA) received designation as the agency
to lead the consolidated planning process.
It was once said by Albert Einstein that "the significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them". If consolidated planning is to be an effective tool for Tennessee, participants in the process must be guided by common vision, a clear mission, and a solid resolve to learn new approaches to old and persistent problems.
Step A: The Tennessee department of Human Services (DHS) should prioritize recommendations from a list of low-income housing programs for the homeless to form action steps toward activation of a continuum of care approach to homelessness. 1995.
Step B: The Tennessee Housing Development Agency (THDA) should offer home mortgages below market rates in every county of the state. 1995.
Step C: THDA should target special mortgage products to special populations. 1995.
Step D: THDA should provide home mortgages with low down payments. 1995.
Step E: THDA should provide assistance with downpayment and closing costs. 1995.
Step F: THDA should provide grants to local governments and not-for-profit organizations for qualified purchase assistance. 1995.
Step G: The Tennessee Commission on Aging should develop policy that targets housing rehabilitation resources to low-income elderly homeowners to ensure a safe, sound, and accessible homes where seniors can age in place. 1996.
Step H: THDA should develop policy that informs and directs specific actions to reverse trends toward losses in the affordable housing inventory and increases in structural inadequacy. 1997.
Step I: THDA should develop policy that informs and directs specific actions to meet the downpayment and closing cost burden of low- and moderate-income households restricted from homeownership due to dwindling adjusted income levels while continuing to provide assistance through homebuyer mortgage programs. 1997.
Step A: The Tennessee Department of Human Services (DHS) should prioritize recommendations from a list of low-income housing programs for the homeless to form action steps toward activation of a continuum of care approach to homelessness. 1995.
Step B: DHS should promote the development of resources for an additional 1,600 units of supportive housing for immediate occupancy. 1995.
Step C: DHS should promote the immediate expansion of outreach programs to homeless persons in the streets. 1995.
Step D: DHS should take action to ensure that individuals and families at risk of homelessness are offered opportunities to reduce emergency shelter use and avoid entering homelessness. 1995.
Step E: DHS should allocate resources for prevention activities including rent and utility deposits for homeless families moving back into homelessness. 1995.
Step F: DHS should actively encourage local response through community action and human resource agencies. 1995.
Step A: The Tennessee Housing Development Agency (THDA) should provide program aid and application technical assistance to special needs interests. 1995.
Step B: THDA should market and promote housing finance tools to special needs interests. 1995.
Step C: The Tennessee Commission on Aging should design a demonstration project for low-income elderly subsidized renters whose chronic medical needs do not meet nursing home criteria but who need to be linked to services to age in place. 1996.
Step D: The Tennessee Commission on Aging should develop a collaboration of public and private interests to research the structure and methodology of an adaptable housing project for the elderly. 1997.
Step E: The Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation (DMHMR) should take action to develop new types of services for persons with mental and physical disabilities that embrace community inclusion and emphasize housing in community settings. 1998.
Step F: DMHMR should increase supportive care placements for women with severe mental illness. 1996.
Step G: DMHMR should develop plans to increase subsidized independent living units for mentally-ill consumers with children. 1997.
Step H: DMHMR should encourage the development of rent subsidized or low rent efficiency or one-bedroom housing units for mentally-ill consumers in small concentrations, preferably in mainstream housing developments. 1996.
Step I: DMHMR should plan for the development of tenant-based rent subsidy certificates or vouchers to enable mentally-ill consumers to find housing units in privately owned developments. 1997.
Step A: THDA should form a collaboration of public and private interests to research the structure and methodology of a neighborhood revitalization program in Tennessee. 1995.
Step B: The Tennessee Department of Health should identify lead-based paint hazards and coordinate reduction and elimination programs to include neighborhood revitalization programs. 1996.
Step C: The Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development should encourage the development of neighborhood watch groups and citizens crime prevention programs. 1996.
Step D: THDA should research methods that make better use of resources to further the design, viability, and capacity development of distressed neighborhoods. 1997.
Step E: THDA should target grant and mortgage funds to preserve existing neighborhoods and to help revitalize/create new neighborhoods. 1997.
Step F: The Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development should leverage grant funds to attract new investment into communities. 1996.
Step A: THDA should convene a collaborative meeting of public and private interests to research the structure and methodology of a fair housing plan for Tennessee. 1995.
Step B: THDA should develop policy that directs specific action steps toward encouraging the redirecting of the decentralization of development in urban areas and the deconcentration of poverty. 1997.
Step C: The Tennessee Human Rights Commission should convene a collaborative meeting of public and private interests to develop a needs analysis of fair access to quality public and private facilities and services for all citizens. 1996.
Step A: THDA should convene a collaborative meeting of public and private interests to research the structure and linkage of cultural preservation programs with housing and community development programs. 1996.
Step B: THDA should convene a collaborative meeting of public and private interests to research the structure and linkage of energy conservation policies with housing and community development programs. 1996.
Step A: THDA should develop partnerships with private sector financial institutions to encourage the development of affordable housing for lower income persons. 1996.
Step B: THDA should encourage the use of loan pools, loan funds, and linking sources of capital for making projects work. 1997.
Step A: The Department of Economic and Community Development should convene a collaborative meeting of public and private interests to investigate the feasibility, structure, and methodology of community development financial institutions and community development corporations. 1996.
Step B: THDA should develop policy that informs and directs specific action steps to encourage and promote consumer confidence in homeownership as a possible investment strategy. 1996.
Step C: THDA should encourage renters to view homeownership as a viable investment strategy and set up a personal investment program for downpayment and closing costs and as a tool for personal equity and wealth development. 1996.
Step D: THDA should form partnerships with capital and credit institutions to promote understanding off affordable housing markets and the development of credit policy. 1996.
Step A: The Department of Economic and Community Development should convene a meeting to discuss cooperation and coordination of housing and community development initiatives with the programs of the Departments of Labor and Education. The goal of such a collaborative meeting is to ensure that housing and community development programs are coordinated with job development programs. 1996.
Step B: The Department of Economic and Community Development should convene a collaborative meeting to ensure cooperation and coordination of housing and community development initiatives with the State's Mainstreet Program and other business development programs. 1995.
Step C: THDA should convene a collaborative meeting between public and private interests to ensure coordination of job development programs with housing programs. 1996.
Step A: THDA should convene a collaborative meeting of public and private interests to discuss partnerships and initiatives to improve educational attainment and literacy levels of persons using low-income housing programs. 1995.
Step B: THDA should develop a program for renters receiving Section 8 assistance that helps them become more self-sufficient and possible homeowners. 1996.
Step C: The Department of Economic and Community Development should provide leadership toward forming a collaborative partnership between public and private interests to further develop and refine the State's goals, programs, policies, and implementation of the anti-poverty strategy. 1997.
Step A: THDA should form a collaborative partnership to develop and coordinate a clear and common vision to improve leadership quality and program planning capacity for housing and community development initiatives. 1995.
Step B: THDA should coordinate efforts to expand public/private partnerships that are inclusive, work to motivate and stimulate the public and leverage or link resources. 1995.
Step C: THDA should coordinate efforts to develop policies which promote innovative government that works to be flexible, creative, and fair. Programs should work toward coordination with appropriate partners in order to achieve effectiveness and efficiency. 1996.
Step D: THDA should coordinate efforts to improve communication tools using better technology to identify gaps, decrease filters, and expand the audience. The goal is to improve community participation in housing and community development products and programs by enhancing electronic communication tools and outreach activities. 1995.
Step E: THDA should convene a collaborative meeting between public and
private interests to research and define the data gaps for information on
strategic planning and resource allocation. The goal is to develop knowledge
and information systems to improve the distribution technology of knowledge and
information to community members. 1995.
The 1995 One-Year Action Plan consists of the method of distribution of funds for each of the four HUD programs.
HOME funds are used for acquisition, rehabilitation, and new construction of homeowner and rental housing units. Tennessee received $12,882,000 for the 1995 program year. Fifteen percent of the funds will be used to fund applications from Community Housing Development Organizations (CHDO's). Thirty-three percent of the funds will be used to fund projects located in urban areas. Fifty-two percent of the funds will be used to fund projects in rural areas. Five percent of the funds will be used for State administration, and five percent of the funds will be used for applicants' administration.
The 1995 ESG allocation to the State of Tennessee was $1,428,000. The funds are used for rehabilitation of buildings to be emergency shelters for homeless persons, and to pay for operating costs and supportive services. Twenty-two CSBG agencies will receive a total of $100,000 for statewide homeless prevention. The employment demonstration in Knoxville and Nashville will receive $135,271. The metropolitan cities that do not receive formula allocations from HUD will receive formula allocations totaling $407,630. The remaining $714,099 will be awarded competitively to statewide applicants.
The $30,767,000 of 1995 CDBG funds will be provided to cities and counties that do not have a CDBG Entitlement directly from HUD, to implement a wide variety of community development activities. The allocation to funding categories is shown below:
The State received $1,114,000 of 1995 HOPWA funds. The funds will be provided to nonprofit organizations that submit applications in response to a request for proposals to provide housing and supportive services to persons with HIV/AIDS and their families.