Advocates should be aware that the timing of the public participation for their jurisdiction’s FY14 Consolidated Plan/Annual Action Plan might be different this year, or there might be “contingency provisions” in it. HUD’s Office of Community Planning and Development (CPD) is advising recipients of CDBG, HOME, ESG, and HOPWA to delay submitting their FY14 Consolidated Plans or FY14 Annual Action Plans until CPD informs them of the amount of funds they will receive. This advice, found in CPD Notice-13-010, only applies to grantees with an FY14 program year start date that takes place either between October 1, 2013 and August 16, 2014, or 60 days after CPD announces a grantee FY14 funding allocations, whichever comes first.
CPD issued the Notice because Congress has yet to enact an FY14 HUD appropriations bill. Therefore, grantees do not know how much they will receive, hindering their ability to plan and budget for activities. If a grantee does submit an Annual Action Plan not knowing the amount of funds that it will ultimately receive, it might have to submit a substantial amendment to the Annual Action Plan, triggering additional public participation. The CPD Notice is intended to avoid unnecessary revisions.
The Notice offers grantees two basic options regarding compliance with the public participation requirements while waiting for CPD to announce FY14 allocation amounts. First, a grantee could conduct required public participation based on a draft Annual Action Plan that has estimated funding amounts and a contingency provision. The contingency provision would explain how the grantee will adjust the proposed Annual Action Plan once actual allocations are available. Five examples of contingency provisions are offered. For instance, the Action Plan contingency could list proposed activities in order of priority and indicate which will be funded as “backup” only if sufficient funds are available. Another example is proportionally increasing or decreasing all proposed activities’ budgets based on actual allocations.
The second basic option is for a grantee to prepare a proposed Annual Action Plan following its usual timetable, but postponing the public participation process until actual allocation amounts are known.
Some grantees with a January 1 program year start date have already submitted their FY14 Annual Action Plans. HUD is requiring these grantees to resubmit their Annual Action Plans once their actual allocations are known. However, these grantees will not have to carry out additional public participation unless major revisions are necessary in light of the actual amount of funds available.
CPD-13-010 is at: http://bit.ly/JOEYQS