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November 7, 2011
HUD, TREASURY, USDA AND OREGON HOUSING & COMMUNITY SERVICES AGREE TO STREAMLINE INSPECTIONS OF GOVERNMENT-ASSISTED HOUSING
New Federal Inspection Alignment Pilot Could Eliminate Up to 13,000 Duplicative Inspections of Assisted Housing Properties in Six States, Including Oregon
PORTLAND - Today, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Northwest Regional Administrator Mary McBride, United States Department of Rural Development State Director Vicki Walker and Oregon Housing &
Community Services Executive Director Margaret Van Vliet announced an interagency agreement to reduce duplicate physical inspections of Federally-subsidized affordable housing in Oregon - allowing developers and owners to focus
on delivering more housing and resources to those in need. The agencies will officially launch the program at a signing ceremony expected to be held in Salem later this month.
As part of the Obama Administration's commitment to better coordinate federal rental policy, HUD, Treasury and USDA are piloting programs in Oregon, Washington, Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota and Ohio to avoid duplicate inspections and reduce regulatory burdens for rental housing that is subsidized through more than one federal agency. Developers and owners often work with several federal agencies to house the lowest-income tenants. In the past this meant duplicate requirements and extra paperwork.
Many assisted-housing complexes receive funding from multiple funding sources, each of which may have its own inspectional regimen and requirements. Multiple regimens mean multiple inspections. In an average year, HUD, USDA and the housing finance agencies in these six states conduct an average of 24,000 often duplicative inspections annually at 11,000 assisted properties. The physical inspection realignment pilot is expected to eliminate the need for up to 13,000 inspections each year representing significant savings both for these agencies and owners and
operators of the assisted properties. State, local and federal housing agencies will come to agreement on the use of common inspection criteria, a statistically valid sample size, and an established inspection frequency.
"This initiative is an important step forward in the administration's desire to streamline government policies and build strong inter-agency partnerships to serve the American public as cost-effectively and efficiently as possible," said Mary McBride, HUD's Northwest Regional Administrator. "It is an excellent example of HUD partnering with federal and state agencies to eliminate burdensome requirements and provide seamless coordination for our customers."
Vicki Walker, USDA Rural Development's Rural Housing Service Administrator in Oregon, said "Any time we not only improve the efficiency of a government process, but also reduce the burden on our property owners and developers - that's a success. USDA Rural Development is proud to make this agreement with our colleagues at Housing and Urban Development and the U.S. Treasury, for we know that reducing duplication between our agencies frees up time and resources that we can better spend providing affordable housing to those who need it most."
Oregon Housing & Community Services Executive Director Margaret Van Vliet said, "The State of Oregon is eager to take this step with our federal partners. Reducing the burden on our property owners will be a big win. And being
more strategic about how we protect the living environments of Oregon's vulnerable populations will be an even
bigger win for the people we're all here to serve."
In response to the White House's Domestic Policy Council (http://www.whitehouse.gov/administration/eop/oua/blog) request for better coordinated federal rental policy, HUD, USDA Rural Development, Treasury and Oregon Housing & Community Services have worked together since April to craft a memorandum of understanding that aligns the often burdensome program requirements of different affordable rental housing government programs. The MOU to be approved by HUD, Treasury, and USDA Rural Development later this month is an administrative solution that better aligns state and federal affordable rental housing program policies.
The following Federal and state assisted-housing programs will be governed by this agreement:
- HUD's Section 8 Project-Based Rental Assistance Program
- HUD's Multifamily Mortgage Insurance Program
- HUD's Direct Loan and Capital Advance
- HUD's HOME Investment Partnerships Program (HOME)
- HUD's Section 8 Project Based Voucher Program
- Low-Income Housing Tax Credit Allocation
- RD's Section 515 Rural Rental Housing Program
- HFA Mortgage Loan Financing
HUD's mission is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. HUD is working to strengthen the housing market to bolster the economy and protect consumers; meet the need for quality affordable rental homes: utilize housing as a platform for improving quality of life; build inclusive and sustainable communities free from discrimination; and transform the way HUD does business. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet at www.hud.gov and espanol.hud.gov. You can also follow HUD on Twitter at @HUDnews or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/HUD, or sign up for news alerts on HUD's News Listserv.