Policy 7-3 HOUSING PROGRAM POLICY

DISTRIBUTION    :    Mayor and City Council
All Departments

SUBJECT        :    Housing Program Policy

PURPOSE:    To establish policy level guidance for implementation of local housing programs funded and conducted under the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and HOME Investment Partnerships (HOME) programs.

BACKGROUND:    Each year the City of Lawton receives grant funds from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) under the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program and the HOME Investment Partnerships (HOME) Program.  HUD encourages investment in housing affordable to and occupied by low-income persons and families, those with incomes less than or equal to 80 percent of the area median family income adjusted for family size.  HUD promulgates detailed rules and regulations that govern grant funded activities.  The programs must be administered in accordance with those federal guidelines. Therefore, there is no requirement or need for local council policies to prescribe local procedures.  It is appropriate, however, that the City Council provide local policy guidance for the conduct of the housing programs.  Council Policy 7-3 promulgates broad, general policy level guidance for the conduct of the City = s federally funded housing programs.  The housing programs are administered by the Housing and Community Development Department.  The department is responsible to formulate policies and procedures to facilitate successful administration of Lawton = s housing programs.

POLICY/
PROCEDURES:    I.  GENERAL POLICY.   Housing assistance programs funded by HUD = s CDBG and HOME programs will be administered in accordance with federal guidelines prescribed by HUD.  Grant funds will be invested in housing activities in Lawton solely for the benefit of low-income persons and families, as defined by HUD eligibility criteria.  Funds may be used for direct loans, deferred loans, or grants or may be combined with other public or private money to provide housing assistance to the greatest number possible of low-income persons or families.  All housing assistance programs will be administered in such a way as to ensure fair and equitable distribution of benefits.  Eligible applicants for funding assistance will be considered and selected in compliance with the Fair Housing Act and without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, sex, familial status or handicap.

II.  SPECIFIC POLICY.

A.  Responsibilities.

1.  The Housing and Community Development Department Director shall develop and implement local policies and procedures necessary to administer local federally funded housing assistance programs in accordance with HUD = s CDBG and HOME program rules, regulations, federal guidelines, and applicable state statutes.

2.  The Housing and Community Development Department Director is responsible for administering all CDBG and HOME housing assistance programs in accordance with HUD guidelines and the guidance contained in this policy.

B.  Housing Activities.   The Housing and Community Development Department Director will implement the housing projects and activities in accordance with the housing strategy established in the City of Lawton Consolidated Plan.  The Director will ensure all housing projects and activities funded by HUD programs are administered to comply with HUD guidelines and the guidance provided in this policy:

1.  CDBG Housing Rehabilitation Project

2.  CDBG Emergency Home Repair Project

3.  CDBG Housing Improvement Project

4.  HOME First-Time Homebuyer Project

5.  HOME Homeowner Rehabilitation Project

6.  HOME Tenant-Based Rental Assistance Project

7.  HOME Rental Rehabilitation Loan Project

8.  HOME Community Housing Development Organization Project.


C.  Income Eligibility.  Income eligibility will be established in accordance with HUD = s most recently published low-income criteria.  Further, income eligibility for each housing project or activity will be designed to target the housing needs and strategy outlined in the Consolidated Plan.

D.  Loans and Grants.  

1.  The Housing and Community Development Department Director is approving authority for grants and loans issued to eligible applicants.

2.  All loans and grants awarded for local housing projects or activities which involve a long term obligation by the recipient(s) or in which the loan has an amortization schedule for payback will be secured by a promissory note and mortgage between the recipient(s) and the City of Lawton.

E.  Terms and Conditions of Loans and Grants.

1.  If the property for which a loan is obtained is sold, transferred, rented, leased, assigned, or if the borrower(s) permits any lien or security interest to attach upon the property, or if a contract is executed for the sale, transfer, rent or lease assignment of the property or any part thereof within the period of the loan without the consent of the City Council, the loan becomes immediately due and payable in full with interest retroactive to the date of the mortgage document.
2.  If the borrower(s) satisfies all of the conditions of the loan agreement and payment in full of the loan at expiration of the agreement then the mortgage will be released.

3.  Exceptions to paragraph II.D.2 above apply to the CDBG Emergency Home Repair Project and the Housing Improvement Project which require short term obligations.  In the latter case, in lieu of a promissory note and mortgage, a written agreement complying with HUD requirements will be implemented between the recipient(s) and the City of Lawton.

4.  For all loans and grants, a lien will be filed at the Comanche County Clerk = s office to secure the participant = s obligations under the program agreement to ensure the property is not contracted for sale, sold, or put to some other unauthorized use in contravention of HUD and local policy requirements.  If the property is not sold, transferred, rented leased or assigned, or if the borrower(s) does not permit a lien or security interest to attach upon the property for which the loan was obtained, or if a contract is not executed for the sale, transfer, rent, lease or assignment of the property or part thereof within the term of the loan agreement and payment in full of the loan, the lien on the property shall be released after the expiration date.

REFERENCES    :    None.

EFFECTIVE DATE/
RESCISSION:    This policy becomes effective June 9, 1998 and rescinds Council Policies 29, 30, 51, 60, and 61.

RESPONSIBLE
DEPARTMENT    :    Housing and Community Development Department




Cecil E. Powell
Mayor
June 9, 1998