Demonstration Project for Assistance to Units of General Local Government To Encourage Upgrading of Lower Income Family Housing
The Congress finds that—
“(1) the Department of Health and Human Services spends in excess of $5,000,000,000 annually for housing in the form of allowances for shelter for public assistance recipients;
“(2) States administering the Department of Health and Human Services public assistance program often specify shelter allowances that have little relationship to the cost or the quality of the housing in which public assistance recipients live;
“(3) at least 30 per centum of public assistance recipients live in substandard housing;
“(4) the older rental buildings in which many public assistance recipients live are in those neighborhoods that need the assistance of the programs of the Department of Housing and Urban Development for preservation and rehabilitation; and
“(5) there is the potential for improving housing for many lower income families by coordinating State and local government efforts in order to assure that families receiving public assistance payments from the Department of Health and Human Services are able to live in decent, safe, and sanitary housing.
The purpose of this section, therefore, is to provide assistance to units of general local government and their designated agencies in order to develop a program that will—
“(1) encourage the upgrading of housing occupied primarily by lower income families, including families receiving assistance under the aid for families with dependent children program established under title IV of the Social Security Act [42 U.S.C. 601 et seq.]; and
“(2) provide for better coordination at the local level of the efforts to assist families receiving public assistance from the Department of Health and Human Services so that these families will be able to occupy affordable housing that is decent, safe, and sanitary and that, if necessary, is rehabilitated with funds provided by the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
“(c) The Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (hereafter referred to in this section as the ‘Secretary’) shall, to the extent approved in appropriation Acts, establish and maintain a demonstration project to carry out the purpose described in subsection (b).
“(d) In carrying out such project, the Secretary shall make grants to units of general local government, or designated agencies thereof, to carry out administrative plans approved by the Secretary in accordance with subsection (e), and the Secretary may make grants to States to provide technical assistance for the purpose of assisting such units of general local government to develop and carry out such plans.
(1) Grants may be made to States and units of general local government and agencies thereof that apply for them in a manner and at a time determined by the Secretary and that, in the case of units of general local government and their agencies, are selected on the basis of an administrative plan described in such application.
No such administrative plan shall be selected by the Secretary unless it sets forth a plan for local government activities that are designed to—
“(A) require or encourage owners of rental housing occupied by lower income families to bring such housing into compliance with local housing codes;
“(B) provide technical assistance, loans, or grants to assist owners described in subparagraph (A) to undertake cost-effective improvements of such housing;
“(C) work with the State to establish and implement a schedule of local shelter allowances for recipients of assistance under title IV of the Social Security Act [42 U.S.C. 601 et seq.] based on building quality that will be applicable to buildings involved in this program; and
“(D) coordinate local housing inspection, housing rehabilitation loan or grant assistance, rental assistance, and social service programs for the purpose of improving the quality and affordability of housing for lower income families.
Funds received from any grant made by the Secretary to a unit of general local government shall be made available for use according to the administrative plans and may be used for—
“(A) technical assistance or financial assistance to property owners to upgrade housing projects described in paragraph (2)(A) of this subsection;
“(B) temporary rental assistance to families who live in buildings assisted under this program and who are eligible for, but are not receiving, assistance under section 8 of the United States Housing Act of 1937 [42 U.S.C. 1437f], except that such families shall not include families receiving assistance under title IV of the Social Security Act [42 U.S.C. 601 et seq.], and the amount of such rental assistance may not exceed 20 per centum of each grant received under this section;
“(C) housing counseling and referral and other housing related services;
“(D) expenses incurred in administering the program carried out with funds received under this section, except that such expenses may not exceed 10 per centum of the grant received under this section; and
“(E) other appropriate activities that are consistent with the purposes of this section and that are approved by the Secretary.
Any recipient of a grant from the Secretary under this section shall agree to—
“(1) contribute to the program an amount equal to 15 per centum of the funds received from the Secretary under this section, and the Secretary shall permit the recipient to meet this requirement by the contribution of the value of services carried out specifically in connection with the program assisted under this section;
“(2) permit the Secretary and the General Accounting Office [now Government Accountability Office] to audit its books in order to assure that the funds received under this section are used in accordance with the section; and
“(3) other terms and conditions prescribed by the Secretary for the purpose of carrying out this section in an effective and efficient manner.
“(g) In making grants available under this section, the Secretary shall select as recipients at least 20 units of general local government (or their designated agencies). The selection of proposals for funding shall be based on criteria that result in a selection of projects that will enable the Secretary to carry out the purpose of this section in an effective and efficient manner and provide a sufficient amount of data necessary to make an evaluation of the demonstration project carried out under this section.
(1) Not later than June 1, 1984, the Secretary shall transmit to the Congress an interim report on the implementation of the demonstration under this section.
“(2) The Secretary shall transmit, not later than October 1, 1985, to both Houses of the Congress a detailed report concerning the findings and conclusions that have been reached by the Secretary as a result of carrying out this section, along with any legislative recommendations that the Secretary determines are necessary.
“(i) To carry out this section, there are authorized to be appropriated not to exceed $10,000,000 during fiscal year 1984, and not to exceed $15,000,000 during fiscal year 1985, to remain available until expended.”