Northwest HUD Lines
HUD e-Briefs from Alaska, Idaho, Oregon & Washington
Mary McBride, Region X Regional Director (206) 220-5356
Leland Jones, Editor
Last February HUD, the Department of Justice and 49 state attorneys general reached a settlement with the nation's five largest mortgage servicers - Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citigroup and Ally Financial - to provide, under the National Mortgage Servicing Settlement, direct relief such as principal reduction or debt forgiveness to borrowers who'd been victimized by "mortgage loan servicing and foreclosure abuses." To date, Settlement administrator Joseph A. Smith reported in November, the servicers have provided some $26.1 billion in relief to "nearly 310,000 homeowners" nationwide. Closer to home, 88 Alaska homeowners have received $5.2 million, 1,653 Idaho homeowners have received $96.4 million, 3,334 homeowners have received $199.8 million and 7,038 Washington state homeowners have received $521.4 million under the Settlement. For state-by-state details, visit the website
AND DON'T FORGET. . .
January 18th, 2013 is approaching fast. That's the date by which, under the Settlement, those who homes to foreclosure between January 1st, 2008 and December 31st, 2011 and had a mortgage serviced by one of these five servicers, need to file a claim as partial compensation for improper conduct by servicers in the settlement. An estimated 72,000 borrowers in Alaska, Idaho, Oregon and Washington are eligible to file a claims. But they have to be filed by January 18th. So, if you think you're due, file today by visiting the website (https://nationalmortgagesettlementclaim.com/). And if you're not sure if you're eligible, call the National Mortgage Servicing Settlement administrator at (866) 430-8358. Again, the deadline is 18th, 2013.
SPEEDING THE RECOVERY
In the aftermath of Super Storm Sandy, FHA has issued a Mortgagee Letter 2012-23 reinforcing of helping FHA-insured borrowers victimized by disasters to repair or rebuild their homes by encouraging FHA-approved lenders to "extending foreclosure relief and directs lenders to release insurance proceeds to borrowers rather than to apply those payouts to bring delinquent mortgages current." Acting FHA Commissioner Carol Galante said the "longstanding" FHA policy helps put "families on the path to recovery as quickly as possible." In Federally-declared disaster areas, FHA usually orders a 90-day moratorium on foreclosures and forbearance on foreclosures and offers FHA-insured mortgages with 100 percent financing, including costs, for borrowers who wish to rebuild or buy a new home. For more, please visit the website
HUD okays $1,765,000 Section 108 loan guarantee for City of Olympia's economic & community development loan fund and two Section 108 guarantees totaling $2,963,000 for City of Gresham for Center for the Arts Plaza project and economic development loan fund. . .King County Housing Authority says all of its 3,366 public housing units will be smoke-free as of December 1st after 88 percent of residents surveyed express supported policy. . .Home Forward, City of Portland, Multnomah County and the United Way have each contributed $10,000 to a fund that will help homeless vets with VASH vouchers have an easier time finding housing by helping to cover move-in expenses not funded by the vouchers. . .Northwest Housing Alternatives breaks ground for 43-unit, $9.3 million Alma Gardens complex for the elderly in Hillsboro. . .Seattle Housing Authority awards total of 49 project-based vouchers to Solid Ground's Sand Point Family Housing, Mercy Housing Northwest's Impact Family Village, First Place School's Imani Village & Bellwether Housing's North Queen Anne Apartments to house families earning 30 percent or less of area median income for next 40 years. . .Innovative Housing Inc. breaks ground for 50-unit Eliot MLK Building, says Portland Observer, to "address a shortage of affordable rental units" in Portland's "core". . .Spokane Housing Ventures tells Journal of Business it's moving forward with $20 million project to build new 61-unit complex for the elderly and rehabilitate existing 124-unit Clare House in Spokane's South Hill neighborhood. . .Thanks to grant from Idaho Housing & Finance Association, Habitat for Humanity and ARCH Community Trust are now accepting applications to purchase three recently-acquire homes - two in Hailey and one in Bellevue. . .Impact Capital executive director Judith Olsen appointed to Federal Home Loan Bank of Seattle's affordable housing advisory council. . .City of Seattle, says Post-Intelligencer, okays housing authority's proposal to use HUD funds to convert Old Yesler Terrace Steam Plant into community center.
HUD has set a January 18th, 2013 deadline to submit applications for an estimated $1.6 billion in Continuum of Care funding. The Continuum of Care program - HUD's single-largest annual competitive funding opportunity - promotes a community-wide commitment to the ending homelessness; to provide funding for efforts by nonprofit providers, States, and local governments to quickly re-house homeless individuals and families while minimizing trauma and dislocation and to promote access to and effective utilization of mainstream programs by homeless individuals and families; and to optimize self-sufficiency among individuals and families experiencing homelessness. For the notice of funding availability, visit the website (http://www.grants.gov/search/announce.do;jsessionid=KXy2Q44Tyn6xWgtXQl1xGpHqF1SvGn9YfS1j9MTw
S5bJLhWpnDy5!-1043239538). Since this is the first time the Continuum competition is being held under a new interim rule, please read the program and application guidelines thoroughly and carefully.
HUD is seeking applicants for one, $10 million grant to establish a nationwide Strong Cities, Strong Communities Resource Network. Eligible applicants in the competition, which closes January 28th, include nonprofit organizations, foundations, anchor institutions, for-profit companies, or a consortium of these entities with demonstrated ability to raise philanthropic support. The Network is intended be "a centralized portal to connect America's most economically distressed communities to national and local experts with wide-ranging expertise and skills" to help "strengthen the foundation for economic growth and resiliency in these communities." For more, please visit the website (http://www.grants.gov/search/search.do;jsessionid=Lz03Q5HStDZftcTGBr8ydfD0kY6GJGJGN1Fpx8CLV
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has opened a funding competition for up to 35 Solid Waste Management Grants to provide technical assistance or training that will help rural communities "reduce or eliminate pollution of water resources" and "and improve planning and management of solid waste sites." Eligible applicants include private, non-profit organizations, Federally- or state-recognized tribes, public bodies or academic institutions. December 31st is the application deadline to apply. For more, visit the website (http://www.grants.gov/search/search.do;jsessionid=1XkMQ5JVmNGSx7CvShpv6qpK3GpTq8r7WpF181M
BRIEF BRIEFS TOO
Metlakatla Housing Authority in Alaska, Eastern Idaho Community Action Partnership, CASA and the Confederated Tribes of the Siletz in Oregon and the Opportunity Council in Washington win USDA Housing Preservation grants. . .Oregon Housing & Community Services and Legal Aid Services of Oregon launch new, statewide service providing "free legal assistance from an attorney to help address urgent foreclosure issues" by toll-free phone or in person at offices in Bend, Eugene, Hillsboro, Medford & Portland. . .Washington State Housing Finance Commission okays $37.7 million in financing for 204-unit Quilceda Creek affordable housing complex for families in Marysville and $19.1 million for 170 units of housing for the elderly at the new Affinity in Olympia. . .With lots of help from CASA of Oregon, residents of 76-space Clackamas manufactured housing park purchase the property. . .Alaska Energy Authority awards $8.9 million in grants to 16 "emerging technology projects" to, says Fairbanks News Miner, "reduce the cost of energy in the state". . .Fare well - and deepest gratitude - to Bud Alkire of the Everett Housing Authority and Elena Bassett of the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Tribal Housing Authority on their retirements after so many years of fighting the good fight for decent, affordable housing. . .HUD User updates Boise-Nampa Market-at-a-Glance analysis. . .Tacoma Housing Authority commissioners set March 1st deadline for all 1,400 of its publicly-subsidized units to be smoke-free. . .Cedar Sinai Park breaks ground for Kehillah Housing, a 14-unit, HUD-funded for adults with disabilities in Portland. . .Jennifer Barron named executive director of Kirkland Interfaith Transitional Housing succeeding Jan Dickerman. . .Mercy Housing Northwest presents a young Nampa couple with keys to their first home, says Idaho Press Tribune, the 21st of 27 homes the group has, in partnership with the city, bought and rehabilitated under the Neighborhood Stabilization Program. . .Seattle Housing Authority selects two partnerships - Vulcan Real Estate/Capitol Hill Housing & Forest City/Jonathan Rose Company - as finalists to be Yesler Terrace revitalization's Master Developer.
A lot of HUD's nonprofit and public partners are taken aback when they learn that FHA not only provides mortgage insurance to single-family and HUD-subsidized or "assisted" multi-family housing, but also to market-rate multifamily housing. Well, it does and has for a very long time. And during our Great Recession, FHA has played as critical a role in shoring-up the market-rate multifamily market as it has for homeownership. For a case study, visit Freedom Center complex now being built in Portland's Pearl District. For more, please visit the website.
The day before Thanksgiving, the Washington Department of Commerce gave us lots to be thankful for - $65 million in awards by the Washington Housing Trust Fund to produce 2,349 units of affordable housing - and an estimated 2,866 jobs, including 1,800 in construction - in 49 projects across 23 counties statewide. More than two-thirds of the units will go to households earning 50 percent or less of area median income, the Department said. "This housing will improve the lives of thousands of families and individuals across the state," said Governor Chris Gregoire, noting too that the "construction jobs will support our economy and put people back to work." Since 1999, the Housing Trust Fund has invested more than $900 million in producing and preserving 40,000 affordable housing units. "We are seeing record numbers of families seeking shelter and affordable housing," Scheilli Slaughter of Olympia's Family Support Center, one of 49 projects to win funds, told Thurston Talk. "With this great news we have some hope to give them." For a list of winners, see the website (http://www.commerce.wa.gov/media/Pages/PressReleaseView.aspx?pressreleaseid=106).
"You don't need a fuel-efficient car nearly as much if you live in fuel-efficient housing." That's the two-cents version of what's meant by the popular, but not very enchanting phrase "transit-based development." The bricks-and-mortar version is rising, as we write, at Glisan Commons, a new 127-unit workforce housing complex being built by Human Solutions and Reach Community Development in northeast Portland. It's just a bit over a block from a MAX station. Which means, of course, that those who live there can get almost anywhere they want to go in Portland without putting the pedal to the medal or the fuel pump into the gas tank. For more, visit the website.
The first choice a victim of domestic violence must make is whether to leave the abusive relationship. The second choice - "where do I go?" - often makes the first that much more difficult because a safe place can sometimes be hard to find. Alaska Governor Sean Parnell and the Alaska Housing Finance Corporation is trying to make it easier. Calling domestic violence an "epidemic," the Governor and Corporation have decided to provide - in collaboration with the Alaska Network on Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault and the Council on Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault -provide 214 - and, ultimately, up to 254 - HUD tenant-based Housing Choice Vouchers to non-profit victim services providers in 12 Alaska communities, from Anchorage to Wrangell, Fairbanks to Homer, Kodiak to Ketchikan to Kenai - to provide up to 36 months of transitional housing to victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. Under the Empowering Housing Choice Program, Alaska Housing Finance also will offer preferential placement on their public housing waiting lists to displaced victims in Bethel, Cordova and Nome. For more, see the website.
BRIEF BRIEFS THREE
Saying it will provide "health care second to none," Coeur d'Alene Tribe and U.S. Senator Mike Crapo celebrate grand opening of $17.3 million medical & wellness center in Plummer funded by the Tribe, the U.S. Health Resources & Services Administration under the Affordable Care Act and and the Benewah Medical & Wellness Center. . .Umatilla County Housing Authority, CASA of Oregon and USDA Rural Development celebrate grand opening of 40-unit Castle Rock Apartments for farm worker families in Boardman. . .On Thanksgiving eve, Habitat for Humanity of Seattle & King County welcomes 18 more families into "their own home for the first time". . .Catholic Sentinel says construction complete on new, $11 million, 43-unit apartment building for "working poor" next to MacDonald Center in downtown Portland. . .Habitat for Humanity Clallam County, says Sequim Gazette, names Liz Heath as interim executive director. . .REACH Community Development moves its headquarters to 4150 SW Moody Avenue., Portland, 97239. . .Bellwether Housing buys 50-unit building from Seattle Pacific University it will convert from student to affordable family housing. . .Tacoma-Pierce County Affordable Housing Consortium confers 2012 Excellence in Affordable Housing Awards on Washington State Housing Finance Commission, Ric Teasley of City of Tacoma, Tacoma Housing Authority & Habitat for Humanity of Tacoma & Pierce County. . .Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence honors YWCA Kitsap with a leadership award and grant for its HOME Plus Housing Program which, says Bremerton Patriot, has helped 36 families secure permanent housing since 2009. . .Proud Ground and Clackamas Community Land Trust combine forces into one organization. . .With financing help from Washington State Housing Finance Commission's Sustainable Energy Trust, Green Canopy Homes purchases three houses built in the 1920's scheduled to be demolish to instead convert into "high-performing and energy efficient" houses. . .USDA Secretary Vilsack announces Tribal College Initiative grant to Northwest Indian College on Lummi reservation to equip its Coastal Salish Institute.
WORTH A READ
When you think of a franchise player in professional sports, you probably think of the big games or the big cars and houses or the big paydays they enjoy. Not as much attention usually is paid to the big responsibilities they have, particularly off the court or diamond where they're expected to upstanding citizens, role models, the public face of the franchise. Virtually all of them, of course, are no more than a few years out of college or high school and they're expected to do and be something for which they've never prepared. It is, in other words, a learning process, a process, for example, in which LaMarcus Aldridge, the 6'11" power forward for the Portland Trailblazers is currently engaged. learning the ropes. Jason Quick of The Oregonian recently took a few days to see how he's doing. It's worth a read (http://www.oregonlive.com/blazers/index.ssf/2012/11/trail_blazers_lamarcus_aldridge_delivers_100_assis.html).
NOT SO FHA-ST
The FHA mortgage insurance fund is not financially supported by taxpayers. Instead, its funded entirely by premiums paid by FHA-insured borrowers. With the downturn in the mortgage markets, though, rumors have abounded for a number of years that FHA is on its last legs and will have to go to Treasury to seek public funding. Not so fast, suggests the most recent annual report to the Congress on the condition of the Fund prepared by an independent actuary. While the loans made during this Administration remain the strongest in the agency's history, "we take the findings of the independent actuary very seriously," commented acting FHA Commissioner Carol Galante. "We will continue to take aggressive steps to protect FHA's financial health while ensuring that FHA continues to perform its historic role of providing access to homeownership for underserved communities and supporting the housing market during tough economic times." To view the report and the actions FHA is taking see the website.
The U.S. Department of the Treasury's Community Development Financial Institutions Fund (CDFI Fund), is seeking comments by November 30th on a proposed report to assess the state of access to capital and credit in Native Communities, It's interested, in particular, about what the focus and scope of the report should be, what should it seek to accomplish, who are its key audiences and what emerging trends and innovations are important to be considered. For more about the comment process, please visit the website (http://www.cdfifund.gov/docs/2012/naca/FR%20NACA%20Study%202012-28995.pdf).
In October the Alaska Housing Finance Corporation recently opened, its waiting list for Housing Choice Vouchers to families and individuals in need of housing in Anchorage. Over the course of the month, it received "950 applications from its website and 820 applications by mail," a demonstration, said the Corporation's CEO and executive director Dan Fauske, that "in spite of AHFC's efforts to build or fund 409 new housing units in Anchorage in the past year, needs for affordable housing still exists in our community."
QUOTE TO NOTE
"We appreciate the partnership with the Tacoma Housing Authority and the important work being done with the McCarver students and their families. What we're confirming is what we've always suspected - that school is always more difficult for kids from families forced to move often due to economic and other life circumstances. Not every school can teach exactly the same thing at the same time on every subject. So bouncing around from school to school with breaks in between means some kids don't get that solid foundation of learning concepts that build on each other. For these kids in the housing authority at McCarver, the stability they're experiencing could mean they will experience huge academic success that otherwise might pass them by." - November 13, 2012 press release quoting Dr. Carol Santorno, Tacoma Public Schools Superintendent, on GEO Education & Research report that Tacoma Housing Authority's use of Housing Choice Vouchers to stabilize housing circumstances and classroom attendance of McCarver students resulting in these students have made three times the gains in reading test scores over comparison groups in first year of this five-year TPS & THA collaboration.
NOTES TO NOTE
Interior Department sets December 14th deadline to submit letters of interest in participating in the EPA and National Park Service's Groundwork USA Pilot Funding Project. . .Clackamas County sets December 31st deadline to apply for Supportive Housing development funds. . .USDA sets December 31st deadline to apply for up to 35 solid waste grants. . .Portland Housing Bureau sets January 7th deadline to apply for Affordable Rental Housing funding. . .EPA sets January 7th deadline to apply for Environmental Justice Small Grants Program funding. . .HUD sets January 18th deadline to apply for an estimated $1.6 billion in Continuum of Care funds. . .HUD extends deadline to January 22nd, 2013 to submit ideas and best practices on how it can help implement smoke-free public and multi-family housing. . .HUD sets January 28th deadline to apply for $10 million to establish nationwide Strong Cities, Strong Communities Resource Network.
Idaho AHMA offers Fall Compliance Conference on Low Income Housing Tax Credits, December 3rd, Boise. (http://www.idahoahma.org/civicrm/event/info?reset=1&id=52)
HUD's Northwest Office of Native American Programs hosts workshop on Indian Housing Plans, December 4th to 6th, Seattle.
Northwest Office of Native American Programs offers training on preparing Indian Housing Plans & Annual Performance Reports, December 4th to 6th, Seattle. (http://registration.firstpic.org/onapIHP/index.php)
Idaho AHMA offers Fall Compliance Conference on Low Income Housing Tax Credits, December 4th, Boise. (http://www.idahoahma.org/civicrm/event/info?reset=1&id=53)
Idaho AHMA offers Fall Compliance Conference on HUD Section 8, December 5th, Boise. (http://www.idahoahma.org/civicrm/event/info?reset=1&id=54)
Idaho Housing & Finance Association hosts free Bedbugs at Bay workshop, December 5th, Lewiston. (http://www.idahohousing.com/newsroom/news-releases.aspx?udt_961_param_detail=535)
Treasury's Community Development Financial Institutions Fund hosts Webinar on new Scaling Up Microfinance training scheduled in January and February, 2013, on-line, December 6th. (http://www.cdfifund.gov/news_events/CDFI-2012-42-CDFI_Fund_Announces_Training_Schedule_for_Microfinance_Capacity_Building_Initiative_Series.asp)
Idaho AHMA offers Fall Compliance Conference on HUD Section 8, December 6th, Boise. (http://www.idahoahma.org/civicrm/event/info?reset=1&id=55)
Idaho AHMA offers Fall Compliance Conference on Rental Development, December 7th. (http://www.idahoahma.org/civicrm/event/info?reset=1&id=56http://www.idahoahma.org/civicrm/event/info?reset=1&id=56)
Alaska Commission on Aging hosts Alaska Senior Housing Summit, Anchorage, December 12th. Contact email@example.com
Spokane Low Income Housing Consortium holds annual meeting, December 12th, Spokane. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org
HUD Seattle hosts workshop on Intro to HUD Real Estate Assessment Center's New On-Line Physical Inspection Software, December 13th, Seattle.
HUD's Alaska Office of Native American Program offers Environmental Review workshop, January 8th to 11th, Anchorage.
HUD Spokane hosts on-line Fair Housing Basics workshop, January 10th, on-line.
LeadingAge Washington & Washington State Housing Finance Commission host Effective Models of Affordable Housing for Seniors with Services Symposium, Sea-Tac, January 17th. (http://leadingagewa.org/wp-content/uploads/Housing-Symposium-Registration-11_191.pdf)
HUD Portland hosts Fair Housing Basics workshop, Portland, January 23rd.
HUD Spokane hosts Fair Housing Basics workshop in Spokane, January 24th.