Senator Jack Reed (D-RI) reintroduced the Family Self-Sufficiency Act on August 2. The measure has been referred to the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs.
The legislation, S.3513, would put into statute the existing method of funding HUD’s Family Self Sufficiency (FSS) program through administrative fees for Housing Choice Vouchers. It provides for one full-time FSS coordinator for public housing agencies with 25 or more participants, and allows the HUD Secretary to determine policies for entities that serve fewer than 25 participants. The bill authorizes a second coordinator position for an entity with 75 or more participants, and an additional coordinator for each additional 50 participants, or another ratio to be established by the Secretary after an evaluation of the fee allocation system. The bill requires the evaluation be conducted within four years of the bill’s enactment, and requires subsequent evaluations to occur at least ever four years thereafter.
The measure requires performance reporting on the number of families enrolled and graduated, the number of established escrow accounts, positive escrow balances and any other information that may be required by the Secretary.
The legislation would expand the FSS program by allowing landlords participating in the project-based Section 8 rental assistance program to voluntarily make available a local FSS program to their residents through a cooperative agreement with a local public housing agency that already administers FSS.
The bill authorizes $100 million in annual appropriations for FY13 through FY17 to carry out the amendments made in the act.
Representative Judy Biggert (R-IL) introduced related legislation (H.R. 34) in the House of Representatives (see Memo, 1/14/11).
The full bill text is attached to this page.