- Site Selection and Neighborhood Standards. Where a PHA is planning to convert assistance under RAD, the PHA must comply with all applicable site selection requirements as set forth in this Notice and in accordance with any additional applicable guidance provided by HUD. Site selection requirements set forth at 24 CFR § 983.57 shall apply to RAD conversions to PBV assistance and site selection requirements set forth at Appendix III shall apply to RAD conversions to PBRA assistance. Site selection must be consistent with the requirements of the Fair Housing Act, Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 including implementing regulations at 24 CFR § 1.4(b)(3), Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 including implementing regulations at 24 CFR § 8.4(b)(5), and the Americans with Disabilities Act. Choice Neighborhoods Implementation projects are subject to the site and neighborhood standards published in the applicable NOFA.
It is the PHA’s responsibility to ensure that the site selection complies with the requirements of this Notice; the PHA must certify with the submission of its Annual Plan, Significant Amendment to its Annual Plan, or MTW Plan that it complies with the applicable site selection requirements. HUD will conduct a front-end civil rights review of the PHA’s proposed site in certain circumstances. For conversions of assistance that involve new construction that is located in an area of minority concentration (whether on the existing public housing site or on a new site), HUD will conduct a front-end civil rights review of the site to determine whether it meets one of the exceptions that would allow for new construction in an area of minority concentration.
Under its Site and Neighborhood Standards, HUD may approve new construction in an area of minority concentration, consistent with the regulatory requirements cited above, provided that:
- the new construction is located in a neighborhood experiencing significant private investment that is demonstrably improving the economic character of the area (a revitalizing area); or
- there are sufficient comparable housing opportunities in areas outside of minority concentration.
In determining if the project meets the requirements above, HUD may consider such factors as: whether the locality has a demonstrated commitment to revitalization that includes or is in addition to the RAD conversion; whether the neighborhood shows signs of revitalizing, through indicators such as declining census tract poverty rates, low or declining violent crime rates or evidence of increased educational opportunity; or whether there is high private and public investment in retail, commercial or housing development that is already occurring or will imminently occur in the area.
A PHA must receive prior written approval from HUD following the review that HUD has accepted the PHA's certification and supporting documentation prior to entering into binding commitments for new construction. A determination that a site fails to meet these requirements will be grounds for disapproval of a Financing Plan.
HUD acceptance of a site that the PHA has determined to meet the site and neighborhood standards is not a determination of compliance with the duty to affirmatively further fair housing or other fair housing and civil rights requirements. HUD approval of the sites for one or more RAD conversions does not indicate approval of the PHA’s or locality’s overall housing strategy. A PHA that does not promote fair housing choice outside areas of minority concentration and continues to site affordable housing in minority concentrated areas may be in noncompliance with the duty to affirmatively further fair housing and other fair housing and civil rights obligations. The PHA is responsible for ensuring that its RAD conversion, including any associated new construction, is consistent with its certification to affirmatively further fair housing and complies with civil rights laws.
- Section 3 of the Housing and Urban Development Act of 1968 (Section 3). Section 3 (24 CFR part 135) applies to all Work, including any new construction, that is identified in the Financing Plan and RCC to the extent that such repairs qualify as construction or rehabilitation. In addition, Section 3 may apply to the project after conversion based on the receipt of the use of federal financial assistance for rehabilitation activities.
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Accessibility and Relocation Plan ChecklistIf a PHA is performing a conversion without any rehabilitation or construction, is it necessary to provide an accessibility and relocation plan checklist?
Yes. All PHAs participating in RAD must fill out an accessibility and relocation plan checklist. There are only 2 questions that need to be completed on the checklist if the transaction does not involve any rehab or construction. A PHA will be required to fill out the checklist consistent with the provisions in Section 1.12 and Attachment 1A.1.E of PIH Notice 2012-32, REV-1.
Timing of Accessibility and Relocation Plan ChecklistIs it appropriate for a PHA to provide the accessibility and relocation plan checklist prior to submission of an application for firm commitment for FHA financing or submission of a financing plan?
Yes. PHAs must provide the accessibility and relocation checklist prior to submission of an application for firm commitment for FHA financing or submission of a financing plan. However, since approval of the checklist is required prior to closing, in order to avoid delays HUD strongly recommends that PHAs submit the checklist as soon as details of the transaction are known (i.e. before all of the other components of the Financing Plan or application for firm commitment is ready). Submission of the checklist in an earlier stage will help speed up transaction processing and allow HUD more time to work with a PHA to resolve any issues that may arise during review.
Transfer of Assistance to Site Outside of PHA’s JurisdictionCan a PHA do a RAD Transfer of Assistance to sites outside the jurisdiction of the PHA provided that the receiving jurisdiction and the state agency overseeing vouchers approves?
See the discussion of Transfer of Assistance in the Notice (including in particular, pages 31-32 of the Notice REV-2). HUD approvals for Transfer of Assistance are made case by case and in HUD's sole discretion. The site will also be subject to site and neighborhood standards. If you would like to discuss a specific proposal for Transfer of Assistance, please contact the RAD Team at RAD@hud.gov.
Process for Requesting Up-front FHEO ReviewsHow long does the FHEO neighborhood and site review take to complete and what is the formal process for requesting the up-front review?
HUD expects the upfront civil rights reviews to take approximately 60 days. The upfront civil rights review templates can be found in the Document Library on the RAD Resource Desk and the submission instructions can be found within the templates.
Definition ofWhat level of work is considered "new construction" for a RAD project when rehab is being done? For example, would a PHA be required to perform an FHEO review for "new construction" if it is gut-rehabbing all of the units?
For the purposes of RAD, new construction refers to the construction of entirely new structures and/or significant extensions of existing structures. Substantial rehabilitation of an existing structure that may include the demolition of units and walls but that will re-use the existing foundation is not considered new construction.