Moving To Work Resident Meetings & Draft Plan
in: Announcements on: 08/02/2021
The Lewiston Housing Authority – Lewiston Housing – has an opportunity to apply for special designation from HUD which will provide much more flexibility in the way we deliver housing and family support services, leading to more and better housing opportunities for low-income persons and families in our community. Called the Moving to Work Demonstration, or MTW, the program seeks to test innovative, locally-designed strategies that use Federal dollars more efficiently, help residents find employment and become self-sufficient, and increase housing choices for low-income families. MTW allows housing authorities exemptions from many existing public housing and voucher rules and provides funding flexibility with how they use their Federal funds.
Lewiston Housing is specifically interested in expanding the effective use of Housing Choice Vouchers in the region, and in providing family support services to more residents in need. We think there are opportunities to attract more quality landlords into the program, resulting in more quality housing units in more diverse locations that can meet the needs of many more eligible families. Moving to Work could provide us with the regulatory flexibility to make these programs work much better in Lewiston.
Lewiston Housing held a virtual community meeting on Monday, August 9, 2021, at 11:00 AM to describe the Moving to Work program in more detail. Below is a video of the presentation:
Lewiston Housing held a follow-up virtual meeting on Friday, August 20, 2021, at 11:00 AM to describe our proposed changes.
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85277868961 or dial: (301) 715-8592 and enter webinar ID: 852 7786 8961
A draft of our Moving to Work Plan will be available for public review and comment, beginning August 23, and we will hold a formal Public Hearing on September 23 to receive public comments on our Plan. I encourage you to join us on August 9 to explore the Moving to Work Demonstration with us and what it could mean for Lewiston Housing families.
EDIT: Lewiston Housing’s Draft MTW Plan is available for review below (August 23, 2021). Comments may be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org or by mail to: Lewiston Housing, Attn: Travis Heynen, 1 College St, Lewiston, Maine 04240.
MTW Demonstration Program
The MTW demonstration program was first established in 1996 to provide statutory and regulatory flexibility to participating PHAs to meet the following three objectives:
Reduce cost and achieve greater cost-effectiveness in federal expenditures; Give incentives to families with children where the head of household is working, seeking work, or is preparing for work by participating in job training, educational programs, or programs that assist people to obtain employment and become economically self-sufficient; and, Increase housing choices for eligible low-income families.
To achieve these objectives, PHAs selected for participation in the MTW demonstration are given exemptions from some existing public housing and HCV rules and are offered more flexibility with how they use their federal funds. MTW agencies use this opportunity presented by the MTW demonstration to better address local housing needs and encourage self-sufficiency among those families receiving HUD-assisted housing.
In addition to statutory and regulatory relief, MTW agencies have the flexibility to apply fungibility among three core funding programs’ funding streams – public housing Operating Funds, public housing Capital Funds, and HCV
Throughout participation in the MTW demonstration program, MTW agencies must continue to meet five statutory requirements:
Very Low-Income Requirement – MTW agencies must ensure that at least 75 percent of the families assisted are very low-income families (under 30% AMI) each year.
Reasonable Rent Policy – MTW agencies must establish a reasonable rent policy which shall be designed to encourage employment and self-sufficiency by participating families such as by excluding some or all of a family’s earned income for purposes of determining rent.
Substantially the Same Requirement – MTW agencies must continue to assist substantially the same total number of eligible low-income families as would have been served absent the MTW demonstration.
Comparable Mix Requirement – MTW agencies must maintain a comparable mix of families (by family size) as would have been provided had the amounts not been used under the demonstration.
Housing Quality Standards (HQS) – MTW agencies must ensure that housing assisted under the demonstration meets HQS established by HUD.
For further information: https://www.hud.gov/program_offices/public_indian_housing/programs/ph/mtw
Moving to Work Expansion – Landlord Incentives
The Landlord Incentives Cohort of the MTW Expansion will evaluate landlord incentives and their effect on landlord participation in the Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) program. PHAs in the Landlord Incentives Cohort of the MTW Expansion must implement at least two MTW landlord incentive activities from a provided list of nine MTW landlord incentive activities.
HUD will select PHAs for the Landlord Incentives Cohort of the MTW Expansion using a lottery, thereby establishing two groups: a “treatment group” of PHAs that join the Landlord Incentives Cohort of the MTW Expansion and a “control group” of PHAs that do not join the Landlord Incentives Cohort of the MTW Expansion. An independent research team will compare outcomes for the PHAs that were selected to join the Landlord Incentives Cohort of the MTW Expansion and the PHAs that do not join the Landlord Incentives Cohort of the MTW Expansion.
PIH Notice 2021-03 provides eligibility criteria and requests MTW Plan and application packages from PHAs seeking to join the Landlord Incentives Cohort of the MTW Expansion. There are no PHA size requirements associated with the Landlord Incentives Cohort of the MTW Expansion beyond the statutory restriction that PHAs not administer more than 27,000 aggregate public housing and/or HCV units.
PIH Notice 2021-19 extended the deadline to submit MTW Plan and application packages to the Landlord Incentives Cohort of the MTW Expansion to October 15, 2021. Eligibility for all applicant PHAs will also be assessed as of that date.
For further information: https://www.hud.gov/program_offices/public_indian_housing/programs/ph/mtw/expansion/cohort4