HUD Highlights E-Newsletter
Region X - Alaska, Idaho, Oregon & Washington
Martha Dilts, Region X Deputy Director (206) 220-5356
Leland Jones, Editor
HUD Secretary Donovan and Treasury Secretary Geithner have announced a Second Lien Program that, they say, will "make it easier for homeowners to modify or refinance their mortgages" under the Making Home Affordable Program established by President Obama, When a Making Home Affordable modification is initiated on a first mortgage, servicers participating in the Second Lien Program will automatically reduce payments on the second mortgage under a pre-set protocol or have the option to extinguish the second if that's more appropriate. They also announced steps to help "underwater" borrowers regain equity in their homes by refinancing into the FHA Hope for Homeowners program. For more (www.MakingHomesAffordable.gov).
Are you an underwriter, loan processor, loan officer or REALTOR who wants to know what's new at FHA? Find out at an FHA Lender Update co-sponsored by HUD's Santa Ana Homeownership Center and the Washington Mortgage Lenders Association from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. from June 9th to 11th at the Holiday Inn Sea-Tac. Registration is $285 and payable by check only to the Washington Mortgage Lenders, P.O. Box 141, Olympia, Washington, 98507. Space is limited, so please register by May 28th. For more information, call the Association at (360) 943-9205. P.S. - Bring a calculator!
QUOTE TO NOTE
"American homeowners desperately need the relief this program offers, but the very last thing they need is to be taken advantage of as they try to hold on to their homes. This Administration is deeply committed not just to providing at-risk homeowners with assistance but also to cracking down on anyone who seeks to defraud them." - Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner on April 6th announcing a coordinated campaign by Treasury, HUD, Justice, the Federal Trade Commission and state agencies target mortgage loan modification fraud and foreclosure rescue scams.
Vice President Biden and Agriculture Secretary Vilsack award $371.5 million in guaranteed housing loans to Alaska, Idaho, Oregon and Washington to "create jobs and "make the dream of home ownership a reality for thousands of people in rural areas" under the Recovery Act. . .Seattle Times says Washington Legislature "unanimously passes bill" sponsored by Senator Jean Berkey of Everett providing $250,000 to Washington Housing Finance Authority to "recruit a pool" of "attorneys, mortgage brokers and other professionals" to help "distressed homeowners to work out loan modifications" on their mortgages. . .William Rainford of Boise one of five finalists for Catholic Charities USA National Volunteer of the Year Award. . .Western Idaho Community Action and Bank of the Cascades break earth on 2-acre "share the harvest" community garden in Payette. . .EPA awards $89.8 million in Recovery Act funds to Idaho, Oregon and Washington for "overdue to water systems that are essential to protecting public health and the environment". . .Daily Astorian says Clatsop County Housing Authority buys 42-unit condominium in Seaside to transform into affordable, workforce housing. . .Clearwater Economic Development Association in Idaho one of 20 organizations nationwide to win USDA Rural Development to help rural communities be "attractive places to live and work". . .New Day Enterprises and Oregon Housing & Community Services celebrates grand opening of Washington Willow complex for adults with developmental disabilities in LaGrande. . .Idaho Department of Labor and American Legion Post 143 win American Legion's national 2009 Homeless Veterans Outreach Award. . .Good Shepherd Senior Housing breaks ground for 40-unit, HUD-assisted housing in Lynnwood. . .USDA celebrates Earth Day by awarding $4.7 million in loans and grants to upgrade water and waste water systems in Fort Yukon, Nightmute and Hooper Bay in Alaska, Tetonia in Idaho and Rainier and the Kalispel Reservation in Washington.
On December 29th, The Federal Register published a notice reminding all potential applicants for discretionary HUD funding in 2009 that applications would have to be filed electronically through the grants.gov portal. But that was before passage of the Recovery Act and its additional billions of Federal dollars in grant funds. To avoid over taxing the application processing capabilities of grants.gov, on April 16th The Register published an important revision noting that "application submission requirements" for 2009 HUD discretionary grants "will be provided in the individual program NOFAs that HUD will publish throughout FY2009." The notice that full application materials will no longer be published in The Register, but instead available only at HUD's Web site. For more (http://edocket.access.gpo.gov/2009/E9-8691.htm).
SPEAKING OF WHICH. . .
HUD's published the first Notice of Funding Availability - NOFA - for Fiscal Year 2009, inviting applications for $26 million in grants under the Rural Housing & Economic Development Funds to "support innovative housing and economic development in rural areas." Deadline is May 29th.
HUD WANTS TO KNOW
The April 29th Federal Register invited comments from the general public and "stakeholders in HUD's insured multifamily projects" to offer recommendations on "administrative and procedural changes that HUD should adopt to expedite approval of multifamily housing projects involving low-income tax credits or tax exempt bonds under the jurisdiction of HUD." Comments are due June 29th. For more (http://edocket.access.gpo.gov/2009/E9-9677.htm).
BRIEF BRIEFS TOO
NeighborWorks America says it will distribute $81 million in Federal funds this year to some 230 non-profits to "provide quality counseling for strengthening homeowners at risk of foreclosure". . .Valley Residential Services celebrates grand opening of 8-unit Deneki House for the developmentally-disabled in Wasilla, Alaska. . .Idaho Housing & Finance Association awards almost $2.6 million in HUD Continuum of Care funds to 28 organizations to allow them to, says IHFA's Gerald Hunter, "continue their important and necessary work" to help the homeless. . .Mentored by Professor Will Macht, 8 Portland State University win the National Association of Industrial & Office Properties' Northwest Real Estate Challenge by proposing use of HUD's Section 221(d)4 program for redevelopment of an aging apartment building in north Seattle. . .Leadership Boise takes the leading in raising $30,000 to replace roof at Interfaith Sanctuary homeless shelter. . .Ashland City Council okays CDBG funds for street work at new 60-unit Jackson County Housing Authority complex. . .Seattle Housing Authority commits CDBG funds to "more than double" the size of the Kings Court community center operated by Federal Way Youth & Family Services. . .Lummi Nation makes plans to break ground for new Gateway Center in May. . .Rural CAP and Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium award $100,000 in EPA funds to native villages of Eyak, Tetlin,and Petersburg Indian Association for environmental demonstration projects. . .Michelle Griffith named executive director of ARCH Community Housing in Ketchum. . .On 20th anniversary of Prince William Sound oil spill, Alaska Community Foundation announces endowed disaster recovery fund to help "communities with unmet needs" after the "usual state, federal and private aid funding runs out". . .Telling The Portland Oregonian that "a large utility bill can mean the difference between paying other bills or not," Central City Concern of Portland releases study on "new ways buildings to capture, use and recycle rainwater and wastewater". . .City of Spokane and Spokane Housing Ventures celebrate grand opening of the renovated Bel Franklin Apartments. l
! ! ! NEWS FLASH ! ! !
U.S. Department of Labor publishes new Davis-Bacon wage rates effective April 24th for Federally-assisted residential properties of four stories at less in Washington state. For the new rates in your community, visit here (www.wdol.gov/dba.aspx#0). For reconsideration of the new rates, contact the Labor Department's wage rate division in its San Francisco regional office.
BEHIND THE BILLIONS
For some, it's hard to get their heads and hands around the American Recovery & Revitalization Act. The numbers are so big. But break it down and take a look at some of the things the Recovery Act will mean on the streets and in the neighborhoods of Northwest cities and towns. Like the repair of elevators in a six-story high-rise for the elderly in Pasco. An emergency call system for a rental complex in Salem. Seventeen houses with newly-stabilized foundations in Bethel. Two new houses in a Wee Wun subdivision on the Suquamish Reservation. New siding at the Sunnyside Homes development in Kennewick. New plumbing, wiring, furnaces, flooring and kitchen upgrades in the Portland Housing Authority's "sweet 16" public housing complexes for families. An energy-efficient HVAC in a Nampa apartment complex. Asbestos removal in Tacoma. The rebuilding of a four-plex in Fairbanks that was destroyed by fire. A new roof on Van Vista apartments in Vancouver. And that's just the beginning. Streets, sewers and sidewalks in Seattle's Rainier Vista neighborhood. Keep an eye on the when's and what's of Recovery Act (www.recovery.gov) spending in your backyard.
TAKE A LOOK
Want to know what HUD and its partners has accomplished doing the first 100 days of the Obama Administration. Take a look on HUD's website.
BRIEF BRIEFS THREE
Seattle Housing Authority and Mayor Greg Nickels celebrates completion of the last of 600 rental units it planned in the High Point neighborhood. . .Six Myrtle Creek, Oregon families break ground for their new homes in Umpqua Community Development Corporation's fourth "self help" subdivision. . .Energy Trust of Oregon wins 2009 Energy Star Award for "improving the efficiency of more than 1,000 homes through retrofits, nearly double the previous year". . .Idaho Housing & Finance hosts appreciation lunch in Chubbuck for more than 70 REALTORS who've used IdaMortgage to help 572 families buy homes. . .HUD awards a total of $1.9 million in Resident Opportunities & Self Sufficiency grants to Bremerton, Tacoma, Kenaitze/Salamatof, Portland, Clackamas County and Lincoln County housing authorities. . .Spirit Mountain Community Fund sets June 26th as deadline to apply for 2009 Oregon Tribal Grants. . .Meridian, Idaho, high-schoolers complete construction of their first-ever "green" Habitat house. . .Journal of Business says Community Frameworks plans to develop $4.3 million, 30-unit Valley Pointe affordable housing complex in Spokane Valley. . .Office of Rural Farmworker Housing tells Wenatchee World that "groundbreaking," 126-unit Sage Bluff Seasonal Farmworker Housing, owned by the Washington Growers League and funded with $2.5 million in grants and loans from the Washington Department of Community, Trade & Economic Development and a $2.8 loan from Northwest Farm Credit, will "up and running" for the cherry and apple harvests. . .105-year-old, 25-unit Whitman opens after an 18-month Idaho Housing & Finance-funded renovation and may, reports KIDK-TV, be the "key to helping revitalize" Old Town in Pocatello. . .Portland Housing Authority announces plans to buy two buildings with 300 apartments it already manages in order to preserve them as affordable housing.
HIP, HIP, HAIR-RAH!
Phil Donahue, apparently, is to blame. "I've been looking for a really good cause to shave my head," explained Oregon Housing & Community Services' Margaret McDowell, "since I saw" him Phil "pay five women in his audience $500 to shave theirs in 1979." Well, shaved she was as, for the record, were five of her male colleagues who were "bold enough to go bald" for a very good cause - the Governor's State Employee Food Drive. Thanks to this and other stunts, OHCS employees broke their 2008 totals, raising $12,053 in cash and 61,213 pounds of donated foodstuffs, the equivalent, said fund drive coordinator Tony Penrose, of 494 pounds per OHCS employee.
In Oregon they're getting their heads shaved for a good cause. In Idaho, they're getting their hair coiffed. At the Austin Kade Academy Student Hair and Fashion show held earlier this month at the Civic Center in Idaho Falls to help raise money for a community center and 19 more units of housing at the Haven, a shelter for homeless families. "Lots of amazing hair," stylist-in-training Annie Cooper promised KPWI-TV, the kind that makes "people lie step back and go "whoa!"" and, even better, to raise as much money for The Haven "as we can."
May 8th is deadline for EPA' Healthy Communities grant program and for HHS Administration for Families & Children Job Opportunities for Low-Income Individuals grant program. . .May 13th is deadline to apply for USDA's Community Food Projects grants. . .May 15th is deadline for Department of Homeland Security's Citizenship Grant program. . .May 21st is deadline for Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration Offender Reentry grants program. . .May 22nd is deadline for National Park Service's Save America's Treasures grant program for preservation of historic collections or properties. . .May 28th is deadline for community development corporations to apply for HHS Community Economic Development Projects grant program. . .USDA accepting applications until May 31st, for household water well funds to give rural residents "access to clean, safe drinking water". . .June 8th is deadline to apply for HHS Administration for Children & Families Street Outreach Program to help runaways living on the streets. June 9th is deadline to apply for USDA Rural Energy for America grants to provide energy audits to help rural small businesses and agricultural producers to "identify ways to improve energy efficiency". . .June 16th is deadline to apply for EPA Healthy Indoor Environment grants. . .June 19th is deadline to apply for USDA Rural Utilities Community Connect grants.
Oregon Department of Consumer & Business Services hosts all-day Homeownership Preservation Summit in Portland, May 2nd. For more (www.ohcs.oregon.gov/OHCS/RA_Home_Foreclosures_Resources_Oregon_Data.shtml).
Annual conference of Pacific Northwest Regional Council of NAHRO, May 3rd through 6th in Boise. For more (www.pnrcnahro.org/conference2009.htm).
Training for grantees and potential sub-grantees on the HUD Homeless Prevention & Rapid Re-Housing Program funded by the Recovery Act May 7th and 8th in Seattle.
Washington Coalition for the Homeless annual conference, May 13th to May 15th in Vancouver.
City of Nampa hosts Foreclosure Intervention Workshop in Nampa Homeownership, May 16th. For more (www.ci.nampa.id.us/pages/events.php).
4th Annual Idaho Affordable Housing Management Association conference in Boise, May 18th to 21st. For more (www.IdahoAHMA.org).
Congressman Adam Smith hosts free Federal grants workshop with representatives from HUD, USDA, Department of Commerce and Department of Education May 20th at University of Washington-Tacoma. For more (http://www.house.gov/adamsmith/).
Neighborhood USA Conference in Spokane, May 20th to May 23rd. For more (www.spokaneneighborhoods.org/2009nusa.aspx).
Coalition for a Livable Future hosts 2009 Regional livability Summit in Portland, May 20th. For more (www.clfuture.org/events/2009wummi)
HUD Fair Housing Workshop, May 28th in Seattle.
26tj manual Alaska Rural Providers Conference in Kodiak, June 1st to 5th. For more (www.ruralcap.com/aboutrc/cutenews/admin.php?subaction=showfull&
Oregon Chapter of American Planning Association hosts Planning for a New World, Preparing for the Future annual conference in Portland, from June 3rd to June 5th. For more (www.oregonapa.org).
Mercy Housing celebrates completion of the 100th home it's built in Idaho, June 13th, Magic Valley. For more email firstname.lastname@example.org.
National Energy & Utility Affordability Conference in Portland, June 15th to 17th. For more (www.energyandutilityconference.org/).
Community Shelter & Assistance Corporation hosts Farm worker Housing & Asset Management Conference in Redmond, OR, June 24th to 26th. For more (www.casaoforegon.org/conference)