The new Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) regulation, published on July 16, 2015 (see Memo, 7/13), requires jurisdictions that receive federal housing and community development funds to develop an Assessment of Fair Housing (AFH). Implementation of the requirement will be staggered over several years. NLIHC has learned the identity of the 22 jurisdictions that likely will be the first to implement the AFH during the second half of 2016. An additional 105 jurisdictions are likely be required to submit an AFH during 2017. Lists of the 2016 and 2017 jurisdictions are at http://nlihc.org/sites/default/files/Hud-Jurisdictions_2016.pdf and http://nlihc.org/sites/default/files/Hud-Jurisdictions_2017.pdf.
Advocates in these jurisdictions are urged to contact their local offices responsible for preparing a new 5-Year Consolidated Plan (ConPlan) to determine exactly when a new 5-Year ConPlan is due. A jurisdiction’s initial AFH is due 270 days before its next new 5-Year ConPlan is due.
The final AFFH rule requires jurisdictions to give the public reasonable opportunities for involvement in the development of the AFH and the incorporation of the AFH into the ConPlan.
These lists are subject to change. Jurisdictions (“program participants” in the new AFFH terminology) have the flexibility to change their program year start dates. Most now have a July 1 program year, and many have an October 1 program year. Jurisdictions may also change the length of their ConPlan cycle. Most have five-year cycles, but they could also be as short as a three-year cycle. The AFFH rule encourages program participants to collaborate with other program participants in their region, which could entail re-alignment of their ConPlan cycles and change where they fall on the list.
Program participants with a new 5-Year ConPlan due before July 1, 2016 will have the deadline for submitting an AFH extended because HUD has not yet published a final AFFH Assessment Tool for completing an AFH. A revised, proposed Assessment Tool was published for comment on July 16 (see Memo, 7/20).
Until required to submit a new 5-Year ConPlan, a jurisdiction must continue to follow the existing Analysis of Impediments (AI) to fair housing choice process, certifying that the jurisdiction has conducted an analysis of impediments and is taking appropriate actions to overcome the effects of any impediments.
The final AFFH rule staggers implementation of the requirement to submit an AFH as follows:
- CDBG entitlement jurisdictions that received at least $500,000 in 2015 and that must have a new 5-Year ConPlan on or after January 1, 2017, will be the first to submit an initial AFH.
- States do not have to submit an AFH until they are required to have a new 5-Year ConPlan on or after January 1, 2018.
- CDBG entitlement jurisdictions that received less than $500,000 in 2015 do not have to submit an AFH until they are required to have a new 5-Year ConPlan on or after January 1, 2018.
- Public Housing Agencies (PHAs) with more than 550 units of public housing and/or vouchers combined do not have to comply with the new AFFH system until they are required to submit a new 5-Year PHA Plan on or after January 1, 2018.
- PHAs with fewer than 550 units of public housing and/or vouchers, combined, (known as “Qualified PHAs”) do not have to comply with the new AFFH system until they are required to submit a new 5-Year PHA Plan on or after January 1, 2019.
More information about the final AFFH rule and the proposed, revised Assessment Tool is on NLIHC’s AFFH webpage, http://nlihc.org/issues/affh
More information about the existing AI process is on page 7-1 of NLIHC’s 2015 Advocates’ Guide, http://nlihc.org/sites/default/files/Sec7.01_AFFH_2015.pdf