How can HUD better support the social housing sector? Our latest policy brief, “What can HUD do to expand public and community ownership of rental housing?” looks at the ways that existing HUD programs might be adapted to increase funding for the non-profit, public, and community-based housing sector. These programs are all likely to grow under the Biden infrastructure plan, and it is important to plan now for a larger share of housing resources in social housing, outside the private for-profit housing model.
Other News and Resources
Calling the question (LIHTC): The Inclusive Communities Project has responded to President Biden’s January 26, 2021 “Memorandum on Redressing Our Nation’s and the Federal Government’s History of Discriminatory Housing Practices and Policies” with two petitions for rulemaking asking the Treasury Department to adopt site selection criteria (and eliminate local vetoes) for the Low Income Housing Tax Credit program, and asking the Office of Comptroller of the Currency to stop approving bank ownership of LIHTC projects in high poverty neighborhoods that have no concerted community revitalization plans, as required by statute. Both of these agencies are governed by the Fair Housing Act’s duty to Affirmatively Further Fair Housing, and it is time for them to acknowledge their duty in regulations. The complaints were prompted, in part, by a powerful expose of LIHTC siting practices by the local ABC affiliate.
The future of public housing – and RAD: A detailed report from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, “An Agenda for the Future of Public Housing,” calls for $70 billion in capital funding to address deferred maintenance and renovation of public housing (compared with $40 billion in the President’s new infrastructure plan), expansion of the Rental Assistance Demonstration (along with strengthening tenants’ rights under the RAD program), and elimination of loopholes in regulations for demolition and disposition of public housing. The report also provides recommendations on addressing the legacy of segregation and disinvestment in the public housing program. Notably, the report notes that almost half of public housing residents in RAD developments expressed a preference for moving with a Housing Choice Voucher, yet most had never heard of this “Choice-Mobility” option, which is required of all developments receiving funding under the RAD program.
Inclusionary housing database and guides: The Grounded Solutions Network has released a comprehensive database of inclusionary housing programs in the US, along with two guides on incorporating racial equity into inclusionary housing programs.
The long shadow of redlining: Another study of the durable impacts of our 20th Century segregation policies – this time looking at current school impacts of redlining – “The Lingering Legacy of Redlining on School Funding, Diversity, and Performance,” published by the Annenberg Institute at Brown University.
Helpful resources from the Urban Institute: Two compilations of current resources and best practices include resources on structural racism from the Institute’s “Racial Equity Analytics Lab” and “Federal Reforms to Strengthen Housing Stability, Affordability, and Choice,” which reviews the evidence base for current proposals to expand our affordable housing infrastructure, consistent with fair housing principles.