NCSHA Opportunity Zone Fund Directory Surpasses 100 Funds, Nearly $24 Billion in Investment

More than 100 funds have been launched to invest in designated Opportunity Zones, according to NCSHA’s latest Opportunity Zone Fund Directory released today. The 105 funds in the current directory represent nearly $24 billion in anticipated investment. Funds range in size from $1 million to $3 billion, with an average fund size of approximately $225 million. The latest edition of the directory includes 16 new funds and details on each fund’s size and investment and geographic focuses.

OZ Funds’ Target Sizes Range Widely

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Commercial real estate continues to be the primary focus of Opportunity Funds formed to date, with 91 percent (96 of 105 funds) reporting investment in multifamily residential, student housing, mixed-use, hospitality, or other commercial development. The number of funds planning to invest in community revitalization, affordable housing, or workforce housing has increased to 57 percent (60 of 105), while 48 percent (50 of 105 funds) plan investment in economic development or small business development, and 21 percent (22 of 105 funds) plan to focus on infrastructure or renewable energy investment. Nearly all of the 105 funds report investment focus in multiple categories.

OZ Funds Mostly Target Commercial Real Estate OZ Funds Mostly Target Commercial Real Estate

Thirty-eight of the 105 funds plan to invest nationwide, while the remaining 67 funds are targeting specific states or regions. The West/Southwest region is the target of 17 percent of the funds (18 of 105), followed by the Northeast/Mid-Atlantic with 15 percent (16 of 105), the Southeast with 13 percent (14 of 105), and the Midwest with 7 percent (7 of 105). The remaining funds target multiple states and/or regions.

OZ Funds Are Spread Throughout the Country

OZ Funds Are Spread Throughout the Country
NCSHA will continue to update the directory as additional Opportunity Funds are announced. To add a fund to the directory, please complete this form

Call For Action: HB1411 Oklahoma Affordable Housing Act

HB1411-Nichols has been scheduled to be heard on the House Floor. This could happen as early as today. HB1411 modifies the Oklahoma Affordable Housing Act and allows the Act to be used in all 77 Counties in the state. The Oklahoma Coalition for Affordable Housing supports HB1411.

Please contact your Representative as soon as possible today via phone or email and request they VOTE YES ON HB1411 to support affordable housing in Oklahoma for our families and seniors.

To locate your Representative, go to oklegislature.gov and fill out your home address in the lower right corner. Please also consider having staff and residents call in support.

Current status of other measures OCAH is tracking:

HB1411

Revenue and taxation; affordable housing tax credit; effective

date.

H
Scheduled on Floor Calendar

HB1962

Revenue and taxation; ad valorem taxation; valuation increase; procedures; effective date.
3/6/2019
S
First Reading

Third Reading, Measure passed:

Ayes

: 97 Nays:

0

HB2393

Landlord and tenant; termination of tenancy; modifying mailing of notice; effective

date.
3
/6/2019

Scheduled on Floor Calendar

SB731

Appraisers; providing procedure for undeliverable subpoenas; modifying the Oklahoma Appraisal Management Company Regulation Act. Effective date.

3/6/2019
S
Measure passed: Ayes: 44 Nays: 2

Note: "S" denotes Senate action; "H" denotes House action.

Click here to modify your bill tracking list.

For more information on Oklahoma legislation, please visit their web site at http://www.oklegislature.gov.

First of Two Lobby Day Preparation Webinars Happening on March 7

The first of two webinars on effective advocacy and NLIHC’s policy priorities is Thursday, March 7, 2:00 p.m. ET. The webinars will prepare advocates for NLIHC’s annual Capitol Hill Lobby Day on March 29. Register for the March 7 webinar, “Lobbying 101,” an introduction to effective advocacy, at: https://bit.ly/2N08LZ8

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OHFA 2019 HOME & NHTF TRAINING

OHFA Training for the 2019 HOME & NHTF applications will be held on Tuesday, March 19, 2019 in OHFA’s Will Rogers Conference Room, 100 NW 63rd, Oklahoma City from 1:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Please bring a copy of the 2019 HOME & NHTF applications to the training. The applications can be found on the OHFA website. Final applications will be posted on OHFA’s website no later than March 8.

Small Area Fair Market Rents Modestly Improve Neighborhood Outcomes Among Black and Hispanic Voucher Holders, but Additional Policies are Needed

An article in Housing Policy Debate "Do Small Area Fair Market Rents Reduce Racial Disparities in the Voucher Program?" by Vincent Reina found that Small Area Fair Market Rents (SAFMRs) are associated with important but marginal improvements in accessing less disadvantaged neighborhoods for black and Hispanic Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) holders and accessing less minority-concentrated neighborhoods for black HCV holders. While SAFMRs are an important tool, a broader range of fair housing policies are needed to fully address racial segregation and access to opportunity.

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Fair Housing Update: Recent Charges Highlight Discrimination Issues

Reprinted courtesy of ARELLO’s Boundaries magazine.

[The following examples are based on HUD announcements and charging or other documents in pending cases (and one settled matter) that have not been adjudicated, thus the
recited factual circumstances and legal conclusions are mere

<

p class=”MsoNormal”>allegations that have not been proven. HUD FHA charges are heard by a United States Administrative Law Judge unless any party to the charge elects to have the case heard
in federal district court. FHA remedies such as fines, damages, injunctive and other equitable relief, and attorney fees, may be awarded only upon a finding that unlawful discrimination has occurred (or if the case is settled).]

Designated Parking Spaces: HUD recently alleged that companies involved in the management of a West Virginia apartment complex engaged in prohibited

discrimination by refusing the request for a designated parking space made by a resident with disabilities. The resident verbally requested the parking space and was

told to get a prescription from her doctor, which she did. The prescription indicated that the resident’s disability requires a designated parking space “close to home.” Her

medical provider also returned a verification indicating the need for a designated parking space close to her unit and identifying the relationship between the requested

accommodation and her disability. The companies allegedly failed to grant the request. The resident continued to have difficulties finding a parking space close to her unit, which exacerbated her medical condition, and moved out of the property. HUD General Council Paul Compton said, “When a resident needs a designated parking space as an accommodation for her disability and providing one will not be an undue burden or fundamental alteration, a housing provider must do so.”

Assistance Animals and Common Areas: HUD has alleged that a New Jersey condominium association violated the FHA by only allowing a sight and hearing impaired resident, when accompanied by her assistance animal, to use the service door instead of the main entrance to the development or its common areas. According to HUD, “The case came to HUD’s attention when the daughter of a condominium resident who uses an assistance animal filed a complaint alleging that the condominium association refused to waive its requirement that residents transport pets in carriers when in common areas, and was fined $100 for walking the animal in the development’s common areas. Because of the resident’s mobility impairments, her daughter was primarily responsible for walking the dog. Additionally, when the resident was with her assistance animal, she was required to use the service door to enter and exit the building.” Mr. Compton noted, “Rules that limit access to condominium common areas for persons with disabilities who need an assistance animal violate the Fair Housing Act.”

Occupancy Policies Restricting Children: The owners of a three-bedroom rental

unit in Wisconsin have been charged with violating the FHA by refusing to rent

to a couple with five children, and by making prohibited statements “indicating any preference, limitation, or discrimination based on familial status, or that indicates

an intention to make such a distinction.” According to HUD, the owners’ occupancy policy for all of their rental properties allowed no more than two people per bedroom,

and thus limited the subject property to six residents. However, HUD alleges that the unit is large enough for the family under the local housing code, and three of the children would only have lived there part time. According to the HUD charges, an occupancy policy of two persons per bedroom is presumptively reasonable under the FHA,

but the presumption is rebuttable by considering certain factors (e.g., bedroom/unit size and configuration, age of children, physical limitations of the housing, state

and local law, etc. [Citations omitted]). The owners also allegedly said that they were not comfortable with having five children living in the unit and that “this is too many

kids and having three boys sharing a bedroom would be too many for one room even if two of the boys are only there part time.” The owners also allegedly told the couple

they did not feel that the house would be cleaned properly and were concerned things would get damaged. HUD’s Paul Compton commented, “Assuming that families with

children make bad tenants is an unlawful stereotype. When a housing provider refuses to rent to a family because the family has children, the refusal violates the Fair Housing

Act.”

U.S. Commission on Civil Rights Finds ‘Broken Promises’ in Provision of Native American Housing

The United States Commission on Civil Rights (USCCR) released a report, Broken Promises: Continuing Federal Funding Shortfall for Native Americans, in December 2018, that evaluates the federal government’s commitments to support the well-being and sovereignty of Native American tribes and villages. The report – which was sent directly to President Trump and Vice President Pence – concludes that the U.S. government has not adequately followed through on federal trust obligations regarding numerous issues, including housing. USCCR recommends increasing funding for tribal housing funding through the Native American Housing Assistance and Self Determination Act (NAHASDA).

Read more of this article here

ACTION Campaign Update and Monthly Call, March 1 at 2 pm EST

The ACTION Campaign will be holding a call on Friday, March 1 at 2 pm EST to discuss the outlook for Housing Credit legislation in the 116th Congress.

Call-in Information:

Phone number: 866-469-3239

Access Code: 628 683 024

Lawmakers Divert Second Government Shutdown, Turn Attention to FY 2020 Appropriations and Other Legislative Priorities

Earlier this month Congress passed and the president signed full-year spending bills to fund the agencies that had been operating under a Continuing Resolution (CR) for fiscal year (FY) 2019. The bill provides enough money to fully fund renewals for tenant-based and project-based vouchers, and sets aside $25 million for a family mobility demonstration program that aims to help families move to and remain in lower-poverty neighborhoods. It also provides $1.25 billion for the HOME Investment Partnerships Program, a HUD block grant program that is often used as a gap filler in Housing Credit developments. This represents an 8 percent reduction in HOME since FY 2018, but is still HOME’s second highest allocation since FY 2011.

Appropriators will now turn their attention to the FY 2020 appropriations process, which will require lawmakers to agree to raise the spending caps enacted in the Budget Control Act of 2011 in order to avoid dramatic cuts across federal programs in FY 2020.

While there was talk of attaching a tax extenders package to the FY 2019 appropriations bill, it ultimately advanced without any tax provisions. There may be another effort to extend expired tax provisions later this year, which could offer an opportunity to advance other tax priorities, including the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (Housing Credit).

Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act Update

The government shutdown delayed congressional action on many legislative priorities, but offices are picking up the pace on finalizing legislation now that FY 2019 funding negotiations have ended. ACTION is working closely with congressional champions in the House and Senate to finalize bill text, secure Republican lead sponsors, and reintroduce the Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act to strengthen and expand the Housing Credit. Stay tuned to our blog for updates on the Housing Credit and opportunities to advocate in support of the program.

Congressional Hearings Highlight Importance of Affordable Housing

On February 13 the House Financial Services Committee convened a hearing entitled “Homelessness in America: Examining the Crisis and Solutions to End Homelessness.” The full committee hearing focused on both the causes of and solutions to homelessness, and many panel members testified on the importance of addressing housing affordability issues as a critical homelessness-prevention tool. Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) stated during the hearing that the Housing Credit, which enjoys bipartisan support, is the primary tool for promoting affordable housing. The House Ways and Means Committee also held a hearing on February 13 – “How Middle Class Families are Faring in Today’s Economy” – in which Rep. Suzan DelBene (D-WA), a strong supporter of the Housing Credit, spoke about the importance of affordable rental housing.

Senate Banking Committee to Vote on Mark Calabria as FHFA Director

The Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs will vote on the nomination of Mark Calabria to lead the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) this Thursday, February 28. Earlier this month Dr. Calabria testified before the Senate Banking Committee on his nomination to lead FHFA, where he faced questions regarding previous statements supporting the elimination of affordable housing goals for the GSEs, as well as his intentions regarding the future of the Capital Magnet and Housing Trust Funds. Regarding his authority to suspend payments to these programs, Calabria stated that the standard to suspend payments was “mechanical,” rather than discretionary, and added that under the current economic conditions the payments were not at risk of being suspended. When asked whether he would commit to preserving strong affordable housing goals, he stated that he would, “within the confines of the statute.”

FHA to Expand Pilot Program Focused on Accelerating Financing of Housing Credit Projects

HUD has announced the expansion of a pilot program that streamlines Federal Housing Administration (FHA) mortgage insurance applications for affordable housing developments that have equity from Housing Credits. FHA is expanding this pilot to include new construction and substantial rehabilitation under its Section 221(d)(4) and Section 220 Programs. The program is intended to ensure faster and more efficient processing for low-risk, Housing Credit transactions by eliminating redundant reviews.

HUD Offers HOME Program Series II and III Training Webinars

HUD’s Office of Affordable Housing Programs (OAHP) is again offering a "Building HOME" webinar training series. The training series will provide an overview of the HOME Investment Partnerships Program (HOME), including eligible program activities related to homeowners and homebuyers, rental housing, Tenant-Based Rental Assistance (TBRA), and Community Housing Development Organization (CHDO) activities.

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Revenue Estimates & Numbers of the Day

From our Friends at the OK Policy Institute:

Weekly What’s That

Revenue Estimate, What’s That?

Oklahoma makes official revenue estimates that determine how much the Legislature is allowed to appropriate in its annual budget for state agencies. The Legislature is limited to appropriating no more than 95 percent of certified collections. Revenue estimates are certified three times each year: late December, February, and June. Click here to read more about Revenue Certification/Revenue Estimates.

Look up more key terms to understand Oklahoma politics and government here.

Numbers of the Day

· 73% – Percentage of Oklahoma prison inmates assessed with a need for substance abuse treatment who did not receive it in Fiscal Year 2018

· 75.3% – Median weekly earnings of female full-time workers in Oklahoma as a percentage of male full-time workers’ median earnings (2018)

· 43,840 – The total number of approved medical marijuana patient licenses as of February 11, 2019

· 57.5 years – Life Expectancy for Oklahomans with an untreated mental illness

· 2.6% – Percentage of Oklahoma’s population age 1 year and over who moved here from a different state