HUD Revises Multifamily Notice about Tenant Participation Requirements

HUD’s Office of Multifamily Housing Programs issued Notice H 2016-05 on March 31, revising Notice H 2014-12 (see Memo 9/15/14) pertaining to owner compliance with tenant participation requirements at HUD-assisted private multifamily properties. These Notices state that a tenant or tenant organization may file a written complaint with the local HUD office and describe the penalties that may be levied if owners or managers violate tenant participation requirements as found at Part 245 of the regulations.

The new Notice restates the requirements in Notice H 2014-12, but with three changes. First, the Notice adds to the list of property types that may be assessed civil monetary penalties non-insured projects that have a project-based Section 8 contract renewed under the Multifamily Assisted Housing Reform and Affordability Act of 1997 (MAHRAA). This is an improvement sought for several years by the National Alliance of HUD Tenants (NAHT), whose advocacy resulted in the original tenant participation Notice H 2011-29 (see Memo, 10/14/11).

Second, under Section C, “Rights of Tenants and Tenant Organizations,” the language regarding meeting space is substantially amended to address accessibility requirements. Owners are required to give priority to meeting spaces that provide physical access for individuals with disabilities in accordance with regulations in Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and Titles II and III of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.  All programs or activities must be held in accessible locations unless the owner can demonstrate that doing so would result in a fundamental alteration of the program or an undue financial and administrative burden. Individuals with disabilities must receive services in the most integrated setting appropriate to their needs.

The third change, in Section F, clarifies the role of HUD-initiated conciliation in resolving tenant complaints.

Notice H 2016-05 is at: