HUD No. 05-110
August 29, 2005
UPCOMING INDIAN HOUSING CONFERENCE TO ILLUSTRATE BEST PRACTICES, NEW APPROACHES TO CREATE AFFORDABLE HOUSING FOR NATIVE AMERICANS
WASHINGTON - The Department of Housing and Urban and Development will host Sharing Solutions and Innovative Approaches, a National Indian Housing Summit and Trade Show in Reno, Nevada on September 19-22. Tribal councils, tribal members, housing authorities and Tribally Designated Housing Entities (representing tribes), as well as, mortgage lenders, housing developers, federal agencies and Indian organizations will converge at John Ascuaga's Nugget Hotel to share best practices to create more affordable housing on and off reservations and to gather new approaches to help more Native Americans become homeowners.
"This national gathering will build upon the six regional conferences the Department held last year," said Rodger Boyd, Deputy Assistant Secretary for HUD's Office of Native American Programs (ONAP). "Our goal is to bring everyone to the table to illustrate that homeownership is a good economic engine that helps to create sustainable economies in tribal communities."
While the number of Native Americans who own their own homes has increased slightly, Native Americans still lag far behind other groups. The Native American homeownership rate, estimated to be as low as 33 percent by the Government Accountability Office, is less than half the rate of homeownership for the general U.S. population. The rate also trails other minority groups, which includes a rate of 46 percent for Hispanic households and 48 percent for African American households.
Conference attendees can choose to follow one of the seven workshop tracks that include an array of in-depth sessions:
- Alternative Financing & Funding
- Strategic Planning Models of Comprehensive Planning for Tribal Communities
- Innovations in Housing Development
- Housing Organization of The Future
- Building Foundations for Wealth Creation
- Designing and Building Healthy Communities
- Performance Planning, Evaluation & Tracking
In addition to workshops, mortgage lenders will have an opportunity to get acquainted with lending in Indian Country at a special Interactive Lender's Forum on Indian Loan Guarantee Programs. This one-day forum on September 21st will be an in-depth discussion with officials from HUD, the Department of Agriculture Rural Housing and the Bureau of Indian Affairs about loan guarantee programs that encourage affordable housing development and homeownership opportunities in Indian Country.
In conjunction with the summit, there will be a Trade Show, which will accommodate vendors and exhibitors that will present a broad range of organizations representing the housing and mortgage lending industry, including Wells Fargo Bank, CitiMortgage, Key Bank, Housing Assistance Council, Native American Bank, Boys and Girls Club of America and The Falmouth Institute.
ONAP held regional summits during the spring and summer of 2004 in Hollywood (Fla.), Anchorage (Ala.), Worley (Idaho), Estes Park (Colo.), Tulsa (Okla.), Reno (Nev.). All six summits were built around the theme Catching the Dream - Expanding Options for Affordable Housing: Local Issues, Local Solutions. These summits gave HUD representatives the opportunity to discuss housing issues, problems and solutions with tribal officials and tribal members who live in Indian Country and witness the shortfalls that plague their communities firsthand. The information gathered at these summits was used to plan for the national summit. HUD hosted the last national gathering of this kind in 2001.
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 HIV/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.