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What's Up at HUD This Week in Region IX?

September 16, 2008

How do you spell relief? R-o-l-l-o-u-t.

As in rollout of the first phase of the 2008 Housing Act and the announcement of allocations to entitlement communities facing the challenge of large-scale foreclosures. The announcement of communities and allocations comes either next Friday (September 26) or the following Monday (September 29). Look for it first on www.hud.gov, and we'll follow up here in our issue after the announcement with whatever additional details we have.

While the Washington number-crunchers are running the data, the Northern California Nonprofit Housing Association didn't wait to begin talking about the who, what, where and when, as well as the how. In a meeting this past week under its auspices, about 25 entitlement communities got together to discuss issues like how to coordinate and collaborate with the state and non-entitlement communities to effectively meet the most needy, about model programs that could be used and whether to add the funds to existing programs or to create new ones, and citizen participation. There was still time for the gathering to wonder aloud about whether the available funds will cover administrative costs, what steps will be needed to get it running as soon as possible, what definition will be used on spending the funding within the 18 month window set in the law, whether there will be adequate time to create the strategic plan and application process, what sources there are for gathering data on foreclosures and abandoned property, and to express concern about how banks are appraising foreclosed properties.

HUD California Office Community Planning and Development Director Steve Sachs sat in on the meeting as an observer.

What do you know, and when will you tell us?

Here in Region IX, we�re putting together a prototype of a "Foreclosure Solutions Clearinghouse" modeled on the one HUD has on Barriers to Affordable Housing Clearinghouse. It will be a resource on what local communities are doing � whether it's new laws, new strategies, or just plain new thinking with new players � with info on who to contact, what results they appear to be getting, when it started, and all the other things folks will want to know. Send us an email at larry.bush@hud.gov and we'll send you a sample example of what an item will look like, and then you can use it as a template to send us what you�ve got going and want to share with others.

Whaddaya mean, somebody put a contract out on us?

The office refrigerators are getting filled up much faster these days, a sure sign that belt-tightening is hitting as more of us bring a lunch to the office rather than grabbing something outside (or is it because we don�t have time to leave our desks? You decide).

So, in the spirit of outreach, we want to remind you that HUD regularly posts contracts that are available for folks to win through a bidding process. Here's the link on the HUD pages, and it breaks it down to specific states and cities. The contract opportunities cover a wide range, and so it's worth the time to look it over and pass it along to folks who could use more work. And remember, local housing authorities and multifamily developments also have contract opportunities, and under HUD rules, they have to reach out to the local community for services and products, right down to who cuts the grass and who comes in to do the books.

Here's where the find the most recent listings (www.hud.gov/offices/cpo/contract.cfm) (sorry, it�s from September 8, should be something newer soon, but check it out).

Then scroll down that list to see how to contact the local assisted housing owners and public housing agencies for contracts they have available. It will give you a name and number to call in each area.

There is also a kind of "welcome to HUD contracting" page that gives you some of the pointers and links you'll want in general.

So the answer to the question about, "Somebody put a contract out on us" is that we at HUD are putting out the contracts, and it's up to you to see if it's up your alley, or might help your customers.

Hundreds Came, They Listened, Now You Can See for Yourself

The Western Housing Summit held recently in Los Angeles now has available for your perusal copies of materials and information given to participants at the session. More than 400 attended, and the fact is, folks found it pretty darn interesting. You will too, if you page through the materials on this web page (http://www.enterprisecommunity.org/local_work/southern_california/housing_summit.asp)

Phoenix Field Office Hosting Energy Efficiency, Green Building Workshops

On Sept. 16-17, the Phoenix HUD office hosted a 2-day workshop on Energy Efficiency and Green Building. With the assistance of Regional Energy Coordinator, Wayne Waite, the workshops feature presentations from the Arizona State Energy office, Arizona Public Service, GRID Solar Alternatives Solar, U.S. green building Council among many other featured speakers. Community Planning and Development and their contractor ICF assisted the workshops. Among 61 participants included cities, counties, and state government representatives who utilize HOME funding, non-profits, Public Housing Authorities, Tribes and Tribal Housing Agencies, and HUD funded multifamily property managers.

Energy Efficient Mortgages Focus of Presentation (Santa Ana, California)

On September 10, 2008, Ray Brewer, Santa Ana Field Office Director in collaboration with the Santa Ana Homeownership Center provided a presentation on energy efficiency mortgages and the impact of the new legislation on the program to approximately 150 mortgage industry partners at First American Title in Santa Ana, California.

Ten Year Plan to End Homelessness Signed in Fresno

The city and county of Fresno signed off Tuesday on a cooperative plan that aims to end chronic homelessness in 10 years. The plan, approved unanimously by both the Fresno County Board of Supervisors and the Fresno City Council, will focus on providing housing first, then other services as needed. It was developed in 99 days by a group of city and county leaders, homeless advocates and homeless people, and will focus on those who have been homeless for at least one year. Local officials were joined by Phillip Mangano, executive director of the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness, and staff from the San Francisco and Fresno HUD Offices.

$1.1 Million in Local Funds for Chronically Homeless Singles (Santa Clara County, California)

The Santa Clara County, California Board of Supervisors agreed to provide $1.1 million to support a one-year pilot program that will assist chronically homeless single individuals. The project will be operated by EHC LifeBuilders, a nonprofit located in Gilroy and Sunnyvale. The One-Stop project will provide expanded emergency shelter services including: Increased medical, housing, transportation, and employment services. The program is meant to improve upon the traditional cold weather shelter programs that require homeless people to leave in the morning. The added services will enable EHC staff to develop relationships with the homeless people it serves and assist them in accessing stable housing alternatives.

Groundbreaking for Development, HOPE VI Funds Involved (Phoenix, Arizona)

Phoenix Public Housing staff Barbara Gallegos and Raphael Meacham will attend the City of Phoenix Housing Department's Ceremonial Groundbreaking on the McCarty on Monroe project on September 18, 2008. The project was funded partially with HOPE VI funds.

Grand Opening Celebration (Ceres Court, Fontana, California)

On Friday, September 12, 2008, Ray Brewer, Santa Ana Field Office Director, in collaboration with Multifamily Housing attended and participated in the grand opening celebration of Ceres Court in Fontana, California. Ceres Court is a unique 20-unit new affordable housing apartment building/community for families who earn 50% or less of the area median income in a community with excellent employments and educational opportunities.

San Diego Forum on Capacity-Building for Community Organizations

On September 15, 2008, the San Diego HUD Field Office will participate in a forum to identify program needs, funding resources and areas of collaboration for three community based non-profit agencies in the South Bay region of San Diego. Housing Opportunities Collaborative will host this forum that will involve presentations by Casa Familiar, MAAC Project and South Bay Community Services, organizations that own, manage and develop affordable housing. Myrna Pascual, Operations Specialist, will moderate the panel discussions and will bring HUD information on how to become a HUD approved housing counseling agency and how to become a HUD approved nonprofit that can purchase discounted HUD homes.

Phoenix Field Office Director Attends Governor's Housing Conference (Arizona)

On September 9-11, Rebecca Flanagan attended the Governor's Affordable Housing Forum in Flagstaff. More than 300 participants attended the conference from cities, counties, Native American Tribes, non-profit, and multifamily housing providers. Rebecca moderated a panel on housing preservation with panelists Barry Zigas representing is own firm specializing in housing and community development, Carol Torres from USDA/RD and Charolette Grant-Cobb from the Arizona Department of Housing. All panelists discussed the expiring contracts in the various subsidy programs and the need to preserve these affordable units.

Agency to Close Operations, Can't Repay HUD (Orange County, California)

Monitoring of St Vincent de Paul Orange County revealed that it had a match funds shortfall of over $170,000. They have indicated that they are going to close operations since they have no ability to come up with the required match and have decided to drop their renewal application. HUD Headquarters has advised the Los Angeles Field Office to require that the agency repay the match due on the amount of funds that were drawn.

HUD advised the Continuum to seek another grantee rather than lose the $839,325 grant. American Family Housing (AFH) is the new grantee. AFH must present approvable documents to prevent the grant from being statutorily de-obligated by the end of September 2008.

Tribal Training on Indian Housing Block Grant Program (Porterville, California)

The Tule River Tribal Housing Department requested on-site training in NAHASDA Essentials a course developed by ONAP and ICF for training grant recipients of NAHASDA funding. Marlin Knight, Native American Program Specialist, will be providing the training the week of Sept. 16-18 in Porterville, California. NAHASDA Essentials was developed to give new staffs a broad-brush overview of the regulations governing the Indian Housing Block Grant program. The training has been requested to give staff and tribal leadership a better understanding on how they can use the program to better the community and housing conditions for the tribe. Attending will be the Tule River Tribal Housing Department staff, Board of Commissioners, Tribal Council, Tribal Administrator and other interested parties. (ed note: a prize goes to the first person able to identify all the acronyms in this item).

Grant Writing Workshop (Stockton, California)

The HUD Center for Faith-Based and Community Initiatives is conducting a free grant writing workshop at the University of the Pacific in Stockton, California, September 19, 2008. Operations Specialist from the Los Angeles Office, Pauline Louie will conduct the all day session for the more than 100 register participants. Supervisory Operations Officer, Nancy Flores will give the welcome remarks on behalf of Regional Director, Richard Rainey. Sponsors of the workshop include the Office of the Provost, Community Re-Entry Program and the PACIFIC Young Adult LULAC Council #3145.

Fair Lending Focus at North Las Vegas Foreclosure Workshop (Nevada)

On September 13, in North Las Vegas, NV, San Francisco Program Compliance Branch Chief Jeff Jackson will be a panelist on the city of North Las Vegas' Foreclosure Education Workshop. The panel is entitled "Fair Lending and Foreclosure Prevention Briefing", and other panelists joining Mr. Jackson will be Michael Mitchell and Jeffrey May, both associated with the National Neighbors program of National Community Reinvestment Coalition. Hundreds are anticipated to attend, as there has been widespread public outreach by the city of North Las Vegas regarding the event. Other HUD panelists include Kenneth LoBene, HUD's Las Vegas Field Office Director, who will present information on the FHA Secure and Hope for Homeowners program initiatives.

Coming Up:

San Lorenzo, California, October 2: Dedication Ceremony and Open House for Kent Gardens, 83 new affordable senior apartment homes, Regional Director Richard Rainey among the speakers at Mercy Housing California program.

San Francisco, November 15-18: The NAHRO Conference will be at the Hotel Monaco, and Regional Director Richard Rainey will be the luncheon speaker on Monday, November 17.

For further information regarding any of these articles, please contact the Region IX Supervisory Public Affairs Officer, Larry Bush.

Content Archived: February 11, 2011

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