[Hpn] Homelessness Provisions in Final FY 2002 VA/HUD Appropriations Bill ... : NAEH

Morgan W. Brown norsehorse@hotmail.com
Sat, 17 Nov 2001 22:15:16 -0500


-------Forwarded FYI-------

Found at:

National Alliance to End Homelessness
<http://www.endhomelessness.org>


Homelessness Provisions in Final
FY 2002 VA/HUD Appropriations Bill
and Accompanying Committee Reports
<http://www.endhomelessness.org/pol/papers/2002VAHUDBill.htm>


Also available in print-ready version (PDF: 21KB-7 pages)
<http://www.endhomelessness.org/pol/papers/hudlanguage.pdf>


Bill Language as passed - From H.R. 2620


HOMELESS ASSISTANCE GRANTS

For the emergency shelter grants program as authorized under subtitle B of 
title IV of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, as amended; the 
supportive housing program as authorized under subtitle C of title IV of 
such Act; the section 8 moderate rehabilitation single room occupancy 
program as authorized under the United States Housing Act of 1937, as 
amended, to assist homeless individuals pursuant to section 441 of the 
McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act; and the shelter plus care program as 
authorized under subtitle F of title IV of such Act, $1,122,525,000, to 
remain available until September 30, 2004: Provided, That not less than 30 
percent of funds made available, excluding amounts provided for renewals 
under the shelter plus care program, shall be used for permanent housing: 
Provided further, That all funds awarded for services shall be matched by 25 
percent in funding by each grantee: Provided further, That the Secretary 
shall renew on an annual basis expiring contracts or amendments to contracts 
funded under the shelter plus care program if the program is determined to 
be needed under the applicable continuum of care and meets appropriate 
program requirements and financial standards, as determined by the 
Secretary: Provided further, That all awards of assistance under this 
heading shall be required to coordinate and integrate homeless programs with 
other mainstream health, social services, and employment programs for which 
homeless populations may be eligible, including Medicaid, State Children's 
Health Insurance Program, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, Food 
Stamps, and services funding through the Mental Health and Substance Abuse 
Block Grant, Workforce Investment Act, and the Welfare-to-Work grant 
program: Provided further, That $2,000,000 of the funds appropriated under 
this heading shall be available for the national homeless data analysis 
project: Provided further, That $6,600,000 of the funds appropriated under 
this heading shall be available for technical assistance: Provided further, 
That no less than $5,600,000 of the funds appropriated under this heading 
shall be transferred to the Working Capital Fund: Provided further, That 
$500,000 shall be made available to the Interagency Council on the Homeless 
for administrative needs.



Report language (Report language that was superceded or that simply restates 
the bill provision has been omitted)

>From Joint Explanatory Statement in the Conference Report, H.Rept. 107-272

HOMELESS ASSISTANCE GRANTS

Appropriates $1,122,525,000 for homeless assistance grants, instead of 
$1,027,745,000 as proposed by the House and $1,022,745,000 as proposed by 
the Senate.

The conferees have increased funding for this account above the amounts 
proposed by the House and the Senate to provide for full funding of Shelter 
Plus Care renewals within this account, instead of providing this funding in 
a separate account as proposed by the Senate. The House bill did not include 
funding for these costs. While funding for these renewals has been provided 
in this account consistent with the manner in which funding was provided 
prior to fiscal year 2001, new bill language is included requiring the 
annual renewal of all expiring Shelter Plus Care contracts if the program is 
determined to meet

appropriate program requirements and is needed under the applicable 
continuum of care.

Includes modified language requiring not less than 30 percent of the funds 
provided under this account, exclusive of amounts for Shelter Plus Care 
renewals, be used for permanent housing as proposed by the Senate, instead 
of 35 percent as proposed by the House. Includes language requiring that all 
funds awarded for services shall be matched by 25 percent in funds from each 
grantee as proposed by the House and the Senate.

Includes language proposed by the Senate providing that funds under this 
account be made available for three years, instead of two years as proposed 
by the House. However, HUD is directed to review the obligation rates for 
funds provided under this account and provide a report to the Committees on 
steps being taken to accelerate the grant award and obligation process no 
later than April 1, 2002.

Includes language providing $2,000,000 for the national homeless data 
analysis project and $6,600,000 for technical assistance. Language is also 
included transferring $5,600,000 to the Working Capital Fund for the 
development and maintenance of information technology systems, instead of 
$14,200,000 as proposed by the House and the Senate.

The conferees agree that HUD should use the continuum of care process to 
give preference to communities that use funds for permanent housing to end 
homelessness for chronically homeless, disabled people and encourage 
communities to obtain funds for supportive services from non-HUD sources, 
such as the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of 
Labor, and the Department of Veterans Affairs.

The conferees reiterate language included in the Senate report regarding the 
need for data and analysis on the extent of homelessness and the 
effectiveness of McKinney-Vento Act programs. Specifically, the conferees 
direct HUD to continue to work with local communities on a client reporting 
system, analyze the data within two years, and report to the Committees 
within 90 days of enactment of this Act on its progress.

In addition, the conferees are also providing $2,000,000 to continue the 
Department's national homeless data analysis project to document the 
demographics of homelessness, identify patterns in utilization of 
assistance, and document the effectiveness of the systems. The conferees 
believe that it is critical to develop an unduplicated count of the homeless 
population and direct HUD to contract with experienced academic institutions 
to analyze the data and provide annual reports to the Committees on 
Appropriations.

The conferees expect that HUD field staff will oversee the implementation of 
homeless programs funded under this title. This oversight should include 
annual site visits and desk and field audits of a representative sample of 
programs in each jurisdiction. Using this information, HUD should analyze 
Annual Performance Reports and forward an annual plan for addressing problem 
areas.

The conferees reiterate and endorse language in the House report regarding 
the Secretary's joint task force with the Secretary of Health and Human 
Services (HHS) to identify and target each agency's roles and 
responsibilities in addressing the needs of the homeless. Recognizing the 
fact that up to one-third of the homeless population are veterans, the 
conferees believe that increased coordination is necessary between the 
Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and HUD to ensure each agency is 
fulfilling its appropriate mission. Therefore, the conferees urge the 
Secretary to include the Secretary of Veterans Affairs in its task force 
discussions. The conferees request that the Department keep the Committees 
apprised of these efforts and provide a report, no later than February 15, 
2002, on its findings and recommendations for changes in HUD programs.

Further, the conferees reiterate the language in the Senate report 
concerning the Interagency Council on the Homeless (ICH), including placing 
the Council under the Domestic Policy Office; rotating the Chairmanship 
among the Secretaries of HUD, HHS, Labor, and VA; requiring the members to 
meet at least semi-annually; and instructing the Council to quantify the 
number of their mainstream program participants who become homeless, 
preventing homelessness, and describing how they assist the homeless.

The conferees continue to have questions about out-year cost data on 
contract renewals for the permanent housing programs for the homeless. 
Accordingly, the conferees direct the Department to include in its fiscal 
year 2003 budget justifications five-year projections, delineated on an 
annual basis, of the costs of renewing the permanent housing component of 
the Supportive Housing Program and separately, the Shelter Plus Care 
program.

The conferees reiterate language in the Senate report directing HUD to 
ensure that State and local jurisdictions that receive homeless assistance 
funding pass on at least 50 percent of all administrative funds to the 
nonprofits administering the homeless assistance programs.


SHELTER PLUS CARE RENEWALS

The conferees have included full funding for Shelter Plus Care renewals 
under the homeless assistance grants account instead of providing funds 
under this separate account as proposed by the Senate. The House did not 
include funding for this account.


>From Senate Committee Report, S.Rept. 107-43

HOMELESS ASSISTANCE GRANTS

PROGRAM DESCRIPTION

The `Homeless Assistance Grants Program' account is intended to fund the 
emergency shelter grants program, the supportive housing program, the 
section 8 moderate rehabilitation single-room occupancy program, and the 
shelter plus care program.

COMMITTEE RECOMMENDATION

The Committee recommends $1,022,745,000 for homeless assistance grants. The 
amount recommended is the same as the fiscal year 2001 appropriated level 
and same as the budget request. In addition, the Committee has provided an 
additional $99,780,000 in a separate account for Shelter Plus Care renewals. 
[In final bill both amounts were included in Homeless Assistance Grants.]

The Committee is concerned that a small percentage of homeless people are 
chronically homeless, defined as having been homeless for at least 2 years, 
having a chronic disability, and over that time having had regular 
interaction with costly systems such as emergency shelter, hospital 
emergency rooms, emergency psychiatric and detoxification facilities, and 
the corrections system. The Committee believes that HUD and local providers 
need to increase the supply of permanent supportive housing for chronically 
homeless, chronically ill people over time until the need is met at an 
estimated 150,000 units. Accordingly, the Committee is including again a 
requirement that a minimum of 30 percent of the funds appropriated be 
allocated to permanent housing to address chronic homelessness. The 
Committee expects the Department to take this 30 percent requirement 
seriously and meet this minimum standard. To achieve this important goal, 
the Committee directs the Department to use the Continuum of Care process to 
ensure that communities utilize permanent housing funds to target 
chronically homeless, chronically disabled people and to give them 
preference in receiving McKinney-Vento homeless funds.

In addition, the Committee is including a 25-percent match requirement for 
services to maintain a balance between homeless services and the development 
of permanent housing. The Committee supports HUD's efforts to transfer the 
responsibility for services to HHS, leaving the housing component to HUD.

The Committee continues to believe that to address fully homelessness and to 
make a serious effort in ending homelessness, the involvement of a full 
range of Federal programs is critical. Accordingly, the Committee has 
included the budget request of $500,000 for staffing for the Interagency 
Council on the Homeless. This money shall be transferred from the HUD budget 
to the budget of the Executive Office of the President, which shall 
administer the Interagency Council on the Homeless. The Committee directs 
that the Council will be under the authority of the Assistant to the 
President for Domestic Policy within the Executive Office of the President. 
Members of the Council shall be Cabinet Secretaries, and the Chairmanship of 
the Council shall rotate among the Secretaries of the following agencies: 
HUD, HHS, Labor and VA. The members of the Council shall meet at least 
semi-annually. The purpose of the Council shall be to promote substantive 
coordination among Federal agencies in order to prevent homelessness, to 
meet the needs of homeless people, and to pursue reductions in the number of 
homeless people. The Committee instructs the Council specifically to require 
HUD, HHS, Labor and VA to quantify the number of their programs participants 
who become homeless, to address ways in which mainstream programs can 
prevent homelessness among those they serve, and to describe specifically 
how they provide assistance to people who are homeless.

The Committee continues to believe that it is critical for the Department to 
collect and analyze data on homelessness to determine the true number of 
people that experience homelessness and for what services and assistance are 
provided to homeless people. The Committee remains supportive of the 
Department's ongoing data collection and analysis efforts pertaining to its 
homeless programs. HUD should continue its efforts in working with local 
jurisdictions on collecting an array of data on homelessness in order to 
prevent duplicate counting of homeless persons, and to analyze their 
patterns of use of assistance, including how they enter and exit the 
homeless assistance system and the effectiveness of the system. The 
Committee directs HUD to take the lead in working with communities toward 
this end, and to analyze jurisdictional data within 2 years. Implementation 
and operation of Management Information Systems (MIS), and collection and 
analysis of MIS data have been made eligible uses for Supportive Housing 
Program funds, and have been authorized to be funded under renewal grants 
even in cases where MIS is a new activity. The Committee directs HUD to 
report on the progress of this data collection and analysis effort within 90 
days after the date of enactment of this Act. This activity should be 
considered a priority.

The Committee has included bill language to provide $14,200,000 [in final 
bill this is split up as $6,600,000 for regular TA plus $5,600,000 to 
another HUD TA account plus $2,000,000 for national data work] of the funds 
provided under this account for technical assistance and homeless 
information systems. Despite the mandates included in the fiscal year 2001 
appropriations legislation, the Department failed to provide sufficient 
funding to the Office of Special Needs Assistance Programs to develop and 
implement critically-needed information systems. Accordingly, the Committee 
directs the Department to provide the designated funds to the Office of 
Special Needs Assistance Programs.

The Committee also directs HUD to spend at least $1,500,000 [$2,000,000 in 
final bill]  to continue on an annual basis, to report on a nationally 
representative sample of jurisdictions whose local MIS data can be 
aggregated yearly to document the change in demographics of homelessness and 
demand for homeless assistance, to identify patterns in utilization of 
assistance, and to demonstrate the effectiveness of assistance. The 
Committee expects HUD to use technical assistance funds to assist in the 
development of an unduplicated count. The Committee instructs HUD to use 
these funds to contract with experienced academic institutions to analyze 
the data and provide annual reports to the Congress on its findings.

The Committee urges the Department to provide funding for the expansion of 
the Corporation for Supportive Housing's capacity-building activities. The 
Corporation, one of our nation's most important national housing 
intermediary organizations, is the only intermediary dedicated to combating 
chronic homelessness in our communities by expanding the availability of 
permanent supportive housing. The successes of the Corporation and 
service-supported housing has been both dramatic and well documented in 
addressing the condition of homelessness among the nation's most vulnerable 
residents and successfully breaking the tragic cycle of homeless individuals 
through shelters, emergency rooms and even jails.

To the extent that State and local jurisdictions receive homeless 
assistance, HUD is directed to ensure that these jurisdictions pass on at 
least 50 percent of all administrative funds to the nonprofits administering 
the homeless assistance programs.


SHELTER PLUS CARE

PROGRAM DESCRIPTION

The Shelter Plus Care program provides rental housing assistance for 
homeless persons with disabilities, including tenant-based rental 
assistance, sponsor-based rental assistance, project-based rental 
assistance, or SRO assistance. Funding for supportive services is provided 
from other sources.


COMMITTEE RECOMMENDATION

The Committee recommends an appropriation of $99,780,000 for the Shelter 
Plus Care renewals on an annual basis for expiring contracts. This funding 
level is the same as the budget request and the fiscal year 2001 level. The 
Committee is also concerned about contracts expiring under the permanent 
housing component of the Supportive Housing Program. Cost estimates for 
renewing these contracts for 1 year is about $23,000,000. The Committee, 
however, has decided to not shift funding for this program to a separate 
account due to questions about future out-year cost data on contract 
renewals for Supportive Housing. Accordingly, the Committee directs the 
Department to include in its fiscal year 2003 budget justifications, 5-year 
projections on an annual basis the cost of renewing the permanent housing 
component of the Supportive Housing Program. Further, the Department should 
include the same level of details for Shelter Plus Care renewals.



>From House Committee Report, H.Rept. 107-159

Homeless Assistance Grants

HOMELESS ASSISTANCE GRANTS

The homeless assistance grants account provides funding for the following 
homeless programs under title IV of the McKinney Act: (1) the emergency 
shelter grants program; (2) the supportive housing program; (3) the section 
8 moderate rehabilitation (single room occupancy) program; and (4) the 
shelter plus care program. This account also supports activities eligible 
under the innovative homeless initiatives demonstration program. Beginning 
in fiscal year 2001, funding for the renewal of shelter plus care vouchers 
is provided in a separate account.

The Committee is concerned that, given the tremendous housing needs of 
homeless people, over 50 percent of HUD homeless assistance grant funds are 
being spent on services rather than on housing. The Committee is aware that 
the Secretary has initiated a joint task force with the Secretary of the 
Department of Health and Human Services to identify and target each agency's 
responsibilities and roles in addressing the needs of the homeless 
population. The Committee expects this effort to result in a better 
targeting of HUD's resources to the housing needs of the homeless by 
eliminating duplication and overlap among Federal programs and reducing 
barriers which have limited the ability of providers to access services 
funding from other Federal agencies. The Committee requests that the 
Department keep the Committee apprised of the task force's progress, and 
provide a report, no later than February 15, 2002, on its finding and 
recommendations for changes in HUD programs. In the interim, the Committee 
has deferred making any significant changes to HUD programs. However, HUD is 
instructed to use the Notice of Funding Availability and other available 
mechanisms to encourage communities to seek funding for services from 
non-HUD sources so that HUD resources can be directed at providing housing, 
including permanent supportive housing, for homeless people.


SHELTER PLUS CARE RENEWALS

The Shelter Plus Care program provides rental assistance that, when combined 
with social services, supplies supportive housing for homeless people with 
disabilities and their families. Shelter Plus Care provides a variety of 
housing choices such as group homes or individual units, coupled with a 
range of supportive services which are funded from other non-HUD sources. 
Funding for new Shelter Plus Care grants is provided under the Homeless 
assistance grants program account. However, beginning in fiscal year 2001, 
funding for the renewal of existing Shelter Plus Care contracts on a 
one-year basis is provided under this account.

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-------End of forward-------

Morgan <norsehorse@hotmail.com>
Morgan W. Brown
Montpelier Vermont USA



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