December 9, 2004
HUD ISSUES 2005 SECTION 8 FUNDING GUIDELINES TO PUBLIC HOUSING AUTHORITIES NATIONWIDE
Rental assistance program gets record funding for third straight year
WASHINGTON - The Department of Housing and Urban Development today issued guidance to public housing agencies (PHAs) nationwide on 2005 Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) program funding guidelines in an effort to provide clear and early guidance to PHAs prior to implementation in January.
The notice at www.hud.gov/offices/pih/index.cfm explains how HUD will distribute the recently appropriated $14.8 billion in voucher funding to approximately 2,500 PHAs in 2005 as directed in the 2005 Consolidated Appropriations Act, which Congress recently passed.
For the straight third year, Congress has increased funding for the HCV program, also known as Section 8. Congress appropriated $12.7 billion in 2003, $14.5 billion in 2004 and $14.8 billion for next year. Funding for the rental assistance program, which currently assists approximately 2 million low-income families nationwide, has increased by $3.5 billion or 30 percent since 2001.
To further explain how the funding will be calculated and distributed based on congressional requirements, HUD will host a satellite broadcast for PHAs today at 2 p.m. (EST) that will give them an opportunity to obtain specific information about implementation and ask questions about distribution. In addition, HUD officials will host follow-up briefings beginning December 13th though 16th in eight cities across the country.
"With this guidance, webcast and upcoming informational sessions, we hope PHAs will get a complete understanding of next year's funding distribution," said HUD Assistant Secretary Michael Liu. "We hope having this information in advance will better prepare PHAs to serve families in their communities."
The Act specifically directs HUD to fund PHAs based on average voucher cost as reported to HUD for May-July 2004. The Act allows for an adjustment of this average cost by applying an inflation factor for 2005.
To ensure accuracy, PHAs will have ten calendar days later this month to provide HUD with corrections for significant discrepancies in HUD's records so that corrections can be made prior to distribution of final budget allocations. HUD will inform PHAs of their final 2005 HCV budgets no later than January 21, 2005.
Providing this information prior to implementation will allow PHAs to plan their budgets to best fit the needs of their programs and to continue assisting current families.
HUD is the nation's housing agency committed to increasing homeownership, particularly among minorities; creating affordable housing opportunities for low-income Americans; and supporting the homeless, elderly, people with disabilities and people living with AIDS. The Department also promotes economic and community development as well as enforces the nation's fair housing laws. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet and espanol.hud.gov.