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COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT AND HOUSING
  Preserving Section 8 Housing
Celebrating the 25th Anniversary of the
Community Development
Block Grant (CDBG) Program

Community
Reinvestment Act (CRA)

The Shelter Plus Care Program
Section 202/811 Gap Funding
Federal Home Loan
Banks

Sunset of Hope VI Program
Housing for the Elderly
Celebrating Homeownership Week
The Historic Homeownership Assistance Act
Public Insurance
Funding for
Empowerment Zones and Strategic Planning
Communities

Housing and Community Development Committee Resolution on the President's FY2000 Budget for the Department of Housing and Urban Development

ARTS, CULTURE AND RECREATION

MISCELLANEOUS

USCM HOME

RESOLUTIONS INDEX

COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT AND HOUSING

PRESERVING SECTION 8 HOUSING

WHEREAS, in 1997, the US Conference of Mayors adopted a Section 8 Portfolio Restructuring resolution which urged the President, the Secretary of HUD, and the Congress to adopt a portfolio restructuring program that preserves and improves the existing project-based system, and a Section 8 Funding Requirements resolution which urged Congress and the President to provide necessary increases in budget authority and sufficient budget outlay levels to renew all expiring project-based and tenant-based Section 8 contracts and ensure that the increases do not divert resources from other important programs; and

WHEREAS, The Multifamily Assisted Housing Reform and Affordability Act (MAHRAA) signed in law in October, 1997 establishes permanent provisions covering Section 8 contract renewals and portfolio restructuring for a portion of the nation’s project-based Section 8 portfolio with HUD insured mortgages and Section 8 rents above true market value; and

WHEREAS, in 1998, the US Conference of Mayors adopted another resolution on Preserving the Section 8 Program, which supported full funding of all expiring Section 8 contracts and requested HUD to preserve existing below-market affordable housing in tight markets by exercising the discretion granted by existing law (Pub L No. 105-65, Sec.524(a)(1) to provide Section 8 project-based contract renewal offers at increased market rent levels in exchange for an owner’s or purchaser’s commitment to appropriate continuing affordability restrictions; and

WHEREAS, until April 1999, HUD’s implementation of MAHRAA provided few incentives for owners of properties whose Section 8 contract rents are below market levels to stay in the program and allows a significant number of these properties to leave the Section 8 program ("opt-out"), thus reducing the nation’ critically needed affordable housing stock and displacing many low income tenants; and

WHEREAS, on April 29, 1999, HUD announced a new emergency policy initiative to use its existing legislative authority and Section 8 resources to provide higher contract rent renewal offers to owner of certain below market properties with expiring contracts in FY ‘99 to prevent "opt-outs" and displacement of many low income tenants; and

WHEREAS, Congress is currently considering proposed legislation (H.R. 425, H.R. 1336) that would provide additional federal funds on a matching basis to state and local governments to preserve existing federally subsidized or assisted housing, clarify HUD’s "mark up" authority and policy, and provide "enhanced voucher" protections to tenants threatened with displacement by owner "opt-outs"; and

WHEREAS, the Congress and the Administration in 1997 concluded a Balanced Budget Agreement that provides sufficient budget authority over the five-year period from FY 1998-2002 to renew all expiring Section 8 tenant-based and project-based contracts and units, and Congress provided sufficient appropriations for that purpose in FY ‘98 and FY ‘99; and

WHEREAS, the Administrations’s FY ‘00 budget projects a need for approximately $10.8 billion in new budget authority to renew all expiring Section 8 project - and tenant-based contracts on approximately 2.4 million units and provide tenant protections where contracts are terminated, but does not include sufficient funds to preserve all below-market properties by "marking up" rents to market levels; and

WHEREAS, Congress is again considering Emergency Supplemental Appropriations legislation (H.R. 1141, S. 544), the Senate version of which would be partially offset by a $350 million deferral of Section 8 renewal funds appropriated for FY ‘99; and, if enacted, such deferral in FY ‘99 would have to be replenished as additions to the Administration’s FY ‘00 budget request,

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the US Conference of Mayors commends HUD’s leadership for working together with the USCM, the housing community, and the Congress in putting forth its Section 8 emergency policy, and strongly urges:

    The President and the Congress to provide full funding in FY ‘00 of the Administration’s estimated $10.8 billion in budget authority needed for Section 8 contract renewals, plus funding necessary to restore any FY ‘99 Section 8 rescission or deferral or to implement HUD’s new "mark up" policy and any other policy adopted by Congress to preserve affordable housing and protect tenants, without diverting any resources from the CDBG, HOME, public housing or other important housing and community development programs; The President, the Congress, and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to adopt any additional policies that are necessary to implement and supplement HUD’s new emergency "mark up" policy to preserve existing affordable housing without encouraging "opt-outs," such as assuring that preservation is the preferred policy option, that HUD has authority to provide proposed renewal contract rents at least equivalent to the rents available through opt-out, and that preservation solutions are developed for those properties ineligible for funding under HUD’s new policy criteria. The President and the Congress to prevent tenant displacement by providing "enhanced vouchers" to residents of below-market buildings where owners elect not to renew their Section 8 contracts; and The President and the Congress to preserve affordable housing stock by adopting tax policies that specifically encourage the transfer of properties to qualified community-based nonprofit organizations and public agencies, or other purchasers to commit to equivalent long-term affordability restrictions, which demonstrate resident support and commitment to meeting the needs of residents.

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