Title 24 published on 2012-04-01
The following are only the Rules published in the Federal Register after the published date of Title 24.
For a complete list of all Rules, Proposed Rules, and Notices view the Rulemaking tab.
Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968, as amended (Fair Housing Act or Act), prohibits discrimination in the sale, rental, or financing of dwellings and in other housing-related activities on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, disability, familial status, or national origin. 1 HUD, which is statutorily charged with the authority and responsibility for interpreting and enforcing the Fair Housing Act and with the power to make rules implementing the Act, has long interpreted the Act to prohibit practices with an unjustified discriminatory effect, regardless of whether there was an intent to discriminate. The eleven federal courts of appeals that have ruled on this issue agree with this interpretation. While HUD and every federal appellate court to have ruled on the issue have determined that liability under the Act may be established through proof of discriminatory effects, the statute itself does not specify a standard for proving a discriminatory effects violation. As a result, although HUD and courts are in agreement that practices with discriminatory effects may violate the Fair Housing Act, there has been some minor variation in the application of the discriminatory effects standard. 1 This preamble uses the term “disability” to refer to what the Act and its implementing regulations term a “handicap.” Both terms have the same legal meaning. See Bragdon v. Abbott, 524 U.S. 624, 631 (1998). Through this final rule, HUD formalizes its long-held recognition of discriminatory effects liability under the Act and, for purposes of providing consistency nationwide, formalizes a burden-shifting test for determining whether a given practice has an unjustified discriminatory effect, leading to liability under the Act. This final rule also adds to, and revises, illustrations of discriminatory housing practices found in HUD's Fair Housing Act regulations. This final rule follows a November 16, 2011, proposed rule and takes into consideration comments received on that proposed rule.
This rule revises the regulations governing FHA's Section 242 Hospital Mortgage Insurance Program (Section 242 program) for the purpose of codifying, in regulation, FHA's implementation of its authority to refinance existing loans of hospitals without FHA-insured mortgages, without conditioning the exercise of such authority on the expenditure of funds for construction or renovation. Hospitals with FHA's Section 242 mortgage insurance may refinance existing debt under section 223(a)(7) of the National Housing Act, and such refinancing under section 223(a)(7) is not conditioned upon the hospital undertaking new construction or renovation. When credit availability contracted considerably in 2008, FHA, in 2009, commenced the exercise of its authority to refinance the capital debt of hospitals without section 242 mortgage insurance. FHA exercised this authority through notices issued on July 1, 2009, and February 22, 2010. FHA initiated rulemaking to make this refinancing authority a permanent part of the Section 242 regulatory program through a January 29, 2010, proposed rule, which solicited comment on HUD's implementation of this refinancing authority to date. This final rule provides for codification in regulation of HUD's refinancing of existing debt and acquisitions for non-FHA insured loans of hospitals without conditioning such refinancing and acquisition on new construction or renovation. This rule makes certain changes to the regulations proposed January 2010 in response to public comments submitted on the proposed rule and further consideration of issues by HUD.
This final rule amends HUD's civil money penalty and civil penalty regulations by making inflation adjustments that are required by the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act of 1990 (28 U.S.C. 2461 note) (FCPIA Act). The FCPIA Act mandates the adjustments and the formula used to calculate them. Also in this final rule, HUD is taking the opportunity to update an outdated cross-reference in its civil money penalty regulations.
This final rule amends the roof truss testing procedures in the Federal Manufactured Home Construction and Safety Standards by adopting certain recommendations made by the Manufactured Home Consensus Committee (MHCC), as modified by HUD. Pursuant to the National Manufactured Housing Construction and Safety Standards Act of 1974, HUD published a recommendation submitted by MHCC to revise the existing roof truss testing procedures in 2003. In response to public comments, HUD returned the proposal to MHCC for further evaluation. After further consideration, MHCC submitted to HUD an amended version of its original proposal on roof truss testing. HUD was in agreement with the majority of MHCC's revised recommendations on roof truss testing which were published as a proposed rule on June 16, 2010. Many of MHCC's recommendations are included in this final rule. HUD identifies MHCC's proposals that were not accepted, or that were modified in light of public comments received or upon further evaluation, and provides its reasons for not accepting or for modifying these proposed revisions.
This rule amends the regulations governing FHA's Section 232 Healthcare Mortgage Insurance program (Section 232 program) by establishing the criteria and process by which FHA will accept and pay a partial payment of a claim under the FHA mortgage insurance contract. The Section 232 program insures mortgage loans to facilitate the construction, substantial rehabilitation, purchase, and refinancing of nursing homes, intermediate care facilities, board and care homes, and assisted-living facilities. Through acceptance and payment of a partial payment of claim, FHA pays the lender a portion of the unpaid principal balance and recasts a portion of the mortgage under terms and conditions determined by FHA, as an alternative to the lender assigning the entire mortgage to HUD. Partial payment of claim also allows FHA-insured healthcare projects to continue operating and providing services.
HUD is issuing this interpretive rule to clarify the scope of the provision in the National Housing Act that prohibits certain sources of a homebuyer's funds for the required minimum cash investment for single family mortgages to be insured by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA). Uncertainty has arisen as to the effect of this provision on State and local governments and their agencies' and instrumentalities' homeownership programs that provide funds for the minimum cash investment. This rule provides HUD's interpretation that this statutory provision does not remove the availability of FHA insurance for use in conjunction with State and local government programs that provide funds toward the required minimum cash investment. Although interpretive rules are exempt from public comment under the Administrative Procedure Act, HUD nevertheless invites public comment on the interpretation provided in this rule.
This final rule revises the regulations governing the Indian Housing Block Grant (IHBG) program and the Title VI Loan Guarantee program. HUD negotiated this rule with active tribal participation under the procedures of the Negotiated Rulemaking Act of 1990, pursuant to the Native American Housing Assistance and Self-Determination Reauthorization Act of 2008. These regulatory changes implement statutory amendments and reflect the consensus decisions reached by HUD and the tribal representatives.
This notice of waiver extension announces that FHA is extending the availability of the temporary waiver of its regulation that prohibits the use of FHA financing to purchase single family properties that are being resold within 90 days of the previous acquisition, until December 31, 2014. This waiver, which was first issued in January 2010, took effect for all sales contracts executed on or after February 1, 2010. On January 28, 2011, FHA extended the waiver through calendar 2011. On December 28, 2011, FHA extended the waiver through calendar 2012. Prior to the waiver, a mortgage was not eligible for FHA insurance if the contract of sale for the purchase of the property that secured the mortgage was executed within 90 days of the prior acquisition by the seller, and the seller did not come under any of the exemptions to this 90-day period specified in the regulation. Through the regulatory waiver, FHA encourages investors that specialize in acquiring and renovating properties to renovate foreclosed and abandoned homes, with the objective of increasing the availability of affordable homes for first-time and other purchasers, helping to stabilize real estate prices as well as neighborhoods and communities where foreclosure activity has been high. The waiver is applicable to all single family properties being resold within the 90-day period after prior acquisition, and is not limited to foreclosed properties. Additionally, the waiver is subject to certain conditions, and mortgages must meet these conditions to be eligible for the waiver. The waiver is not applicable to mortgages insured under HUD's Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) Program.
On July 31, 2012, HUD published an interim rule that established the regulations for the Continuum of Care program, and which solicits public comment through October 1, 2012. This document advises that HUD is extending the public comment period to November 16, 2012.
In 2010 through 2011, HUD commenced and completed the process of revising regulations applicable to, and closing documents used in, FHA insurance of multifamily rental projects, to reflect current policy and practices in the multifamily mortgage market. This final rule results from a similar process that was initiated in 2011 for revising and updating the regulations governing, and the transactional documents used in, the program for insurance of healthcare facilities under section 232 of the National Housing Act (Section 232 program). HUD's Section 232 program insures mortgage loans to facilitate the construction, substantial rehabilitation, purchase, and refinancing of nursing homes, intermediate care facilities, board and care homes, and assisted-living facilities. This rule revises the Section 232 program regulations to reflect current policy and practices, and improve accountability and strengthen risk management in the Section 232 program.
As part of HUD's efforts to strengthen the risk management practices of the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), HUD published a final rule on April 20, 2010, revising its regulations pertaining to the FHA-approval of mortgage lenders. The April 20, 2010, final rule increased the net worth requirement for FHA-approved lenders and mortgagees, eliminated HUD's approval of loan correspondents, and amended the general approval standards for lenders and mortgagees. This final rule makes several nonsubstantive clarifications and corrections to the provisions of the April 20, 2010, final rule. The changes will improve the clarity of HUD's regulatory requirements and, thereby, facilitate program participant compliance and improve HUD's ability to monitor and enforce its risk management regulations.
The Homeless Emergency Assistance and Rapid Transition to Housing Act of 2009 (HEARTH Act), enacted into law on May 20, 2009, consolidates three of the separate homeless assistance programs administered by HUD under the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act into a single grant program, and revises the Emergency Shelter Grants program and renames it the Emergency Solutions Grants program. The HEARTH Act also codifies in law the Continuum of Care planning process, a longstanding part of HUD's application process to assist homeless persons by providing greater coordination in responding to their needs. The HEARTH Act also directs HUD to promulgate regulations for these new programs and processes. This interim rule focuses on regulatory implementation of the Continuum of Care program, including the Continuum of Care planning process. The existing homeless assistance programs that comprise the Continuum of Care program are the following: the Supportive Housing program, the Shelter Plus Care program, and the Moderate Rehabilitation/Single Room Occupancy (SRO) program. This rule establishes the regulations for the Continuum of Care program, and, through the establishment of such regulations, the funding made available for the Continuum of Care program in the statute appropriating Fiscal Year (FY) 2012 funding for HUD can more quickly be disbursed, consistent with the HEARTH Act requirements, and avoid any disruption in current Continuum of Care activities.
This final rule amends HUD's regulations for the Section 8 Management Assessment program (SEMAP), by revising the process by which HUD measures and verifies performance under the SEMAP lease-up indicator. Specifically, HUD amends the existing regulation to reflect that assessment of a public housing agency's (PHA) leasing indicator will be based on a calendar year cycle, rather than a fiscal year cycle, which would increase administrative efficiencies for PHAs. This rule also clarifies that units assisted under the voucher homeownership option or occupied under a project-based housing assistance payments (HAP) contract are included in the assessment of PHA units leased.
The document advises that the interim rule for the Emergency Solutions Grants program, published on December 5, 2011, displayed an incorrect RIN number. This document advises of the correct RIN number, 2506-AC31, as displayed in the heading of this document.
This final rule makes changes to several sections of the regulations for the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program for states (State CDBG program). This final rule streamlines and updates the regulations to reflect statutory changes, clarifies the program income requirements, provides other clarifications to the State CDBG program regulations, and makes a conforming change to the regulations applicable to the CDBG Entitlement program. This final rule also provides additional flexibility to states in their administration of the program. The final rule follows publication of an October 17, 2008, proposed rule and takes into consideration the public comments received on the proposed rule.
The following are ALL rules, proposed rules, and notices (chronologically) published in the Federal Register relating to Title 24 after this date.
This proposed rule would streamline the FHA financial statement reporting requirements for lenders and mortgagees who are supervised by federal banking agencies and whose consolidated assets do not meet the thresholds set by their supervising federal banking agencies for submission of audited financial statements (currently set at $500 million in consolidated assets). HUD's regulations currently require all supervised lenders and mortgagees to submit annual audited financial statements as a condition of FHA lender approval and recertification. Through this proposed rule, in lieu of the annual audited financial statements, small supervised lenders and mortgagees would be required to submit the unaudited financial regulatory reports that align with their fiscal year ends and are required to be submitted to their supervising federal banking agencies. Small supervised lenders and mortgagees would only be required to submit audited financial statements if HUD determines that the supervised lenders or mortgagees pose heightened risk to the FHA insurance fund. This rule does not impact FHA's annual audited financial statements submission requirement for nonsupervised and large supervised lenders and mortgagees. The rule also does not impact those supervised lenders and mortgagees with consolidated assets in an amount that requires that lenders or mortgagees submit audited financial statements to their respective supervising federal banking agencies. Finally, HUD has taken the opportunity afforded by this proposed rule to make three technical changes to current regulations regarding reporting requirements for FHA-approved supervised lenders and mortgagees.
The Homeless Emergency Assistance and Rapid Transition to Housing Act of 2009 (HEARTH Act), enacted into law on May 20, 2009, consolidates three of the separate homeless assistance programs administered by HUD under the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act into a single Continuum of Care program, revises the Emergency Shelter Grants program and renames this program the Emergency Solutions Grants program, and creates the Rural Housing Stability Assistance program to replace the Rural Homelessness Grant program. The HEARTH Act also directs HUD to promulgate regulations for these new programs and processes. This proposed rule would provide for the establishment of regulations to implement the new Rural Housing Stability Assistance program. In addition to proposing the regulatory framework for the new Rural Housing Stability Assistance program, this rule also proposes to establish a definition for “chronically homeless” that includes a definition of “homeless occasion” that better targets persons with the longest histories of homelessness and the highest level of need.
HUD is seeking comment on moving the timeframe that FHA conducts its pre-endorsement review of loans originated by Direct Endorsement lenders from a time that is prior to the lender closing each loan and before FHA's endorsement of the mortgage for insurance to a period after the loan has been closed. Comment is sought on whether this shift in time, as further described in this document, would reduce the processing time before the loans may be closed, and facilitate loan closing.
This proposed rule would streamline the inspection and home warranty requirements for FHA single-family mortgage insurance. First, HUD proposes to remove the regulations for the FHA Inspector Roster (Roster). The Roster is a list of inspectors approved by FHA as eligible to determine if the construction quality of a one- to four-unit property is acceptable as security for an FHA-insured loan. HUD's regulations currently require the use of an inspector from the Roster as a condition for FHA mortgage insurance where the local jurisdiction does not perform necessary inspections. HUD's proposal to remove the Roster regulations is based on the recognition of the sufficiency and quality of inspections carried out by certified inspectors and other qualified individuals. Second, this proposed rule would also remove the regulations requiring 10-year protection plans in order to qualify for high loan-to-value (LTV), FHA-insured mortgages as a condition of closing for newly constructed single-family homes. The Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 (HERA) removed the statutory requirement for a warranty plan and other special requirements for high LTV mortgages. HUD, however, is retaining the requirement that the Warranty of Completion of Construction (form HUD-92544) be executed by the builder and the buyer of a new construction home, as a condition for FHA mortgage insurance.
On July 3, 2012, HUD published a Federal Register notice announcing its intent to initiate negotiated rulemaking for the purpose of developing regulatory changes to the funding formula for the Indian Housing Block Grant program authorized by the Native American Housing Assistance and Self-Determination Act of 1996. This document explains how persons may be nominated to serve as members on the negotiated rulemaking committee.
This proposed rule would amend the regulations governing FHA's Section 232 Healthcare Mortgage Insurance program (Section 232 program). The Section 232 program insures mortgage loans to facilitate the construction, substantial rehabilitation, purchase, and refinancing of nursing homes, intermediate care facilities, board and care homes, and assisted-living facilities. The amendments proposed by this rule would reduce risk to the FHA insurance fund by establishing the criteria and process by which FHA will accept and pay a partial payment of the claim under the FHA mortgage insurance contract. Through acceptance and payment of a partial payment of claim, FHA pays the lender a portion of the unpaid principal balance and recasts a portion of the mortgage under terms and conditions determined by FHA, as an alternative to the lender assigning the entire mortgage to HUD. Partial payment of claim would also allow FHA insured healthcare projects to continue operating and providing services.
HERA, enacted into law on July 30, 2008, made comprehensive and significant reforms to several HUD programs, including HUD's Public Housing, Section 8 Tenant-Based Voucher, and Project-Based Voucher programs. On November 24, 2008, HUD published a notice that provided information about the applicability of certain HERA provisions to these programs. The notice identified: (1) Those statutory provisions that are self-executing and required no action on the part of HUD for the program changes made by HERA to be implemented; and (2) those statutory provisions that require new regulations or regulatory changes by HUD for the HERA provisions to be implemented. The notice also offered the opportunity for public comment on the guidance provided. This proposed rule follows the November 24, 2008, notice for the purpose of establishing, in regulation, the reforms made to HERA as discussed in that notice, and to make other related regulatory changes. This proposed rule would make conforming changes to the regulations of the Section 8 Tenant-Based Voucher and Section 8 Project-Based Voucher programs to reflect the self-executing provisions of HERA, and would also amend the regulations required to implement those statutory provisions of HERA that are not self-implementing. Additionally, this rule would make such other changes for the purposes of updating certain regulations to reflect current practices, and clarifying other regulations which, based on experience, HUD determined would benefit from clarification. While the conforming and clarifying changes are not implementing new policy, HUD nevertheless welcomes comment on the clarity and comprehensibility of the language proposed to be codified. This rule also takes into consideration the two public comments received in response to issuance of the November 2008 notice, and solicits additional public comment. HERA changes affecting the public housing program are being addressed by separate rulemaking.
In 2010 through 2011, HUD commenced and completed the process of revising regulations applicable to, and closing documents used in, FHA insurance of multifamily rental projects, to reflect current policy and practices in the multifamily mortgage market. The multifamily rental project regulations and closing documents had not been updated in more than 20 years. Through this proposed rule, HUD commences a similar process for its regulations governing insurance of healthcare facilities under section 232 of the National Housing Act, and the closing documents used in such transactions. HUD's Section 232 program insures mortgage loans to facilitate the construction, substantial rehabilitation, purchase, and refinancing of nursing homes, intermediate care facilities, board and care homes, and assisted-living facilities. This rule proposes amendments to update HUD's Section 232 regulations, to reflect current policy and practices, and to improve accountability and strengthen risk management.
Multifamily Accelerated Processing (MAP) is a processing system introduced in 2000 as a pilot program to facilitate the accelerated processing of loan applications for FHA multifamily mortgage insurance, which generally involve the refinance, purchase, new construction, or rehabilitation of multifamily properties. These transactions are costly, complicated, and time-consuming to process. Prior to MAP, HUD field offices were encouraged to develop and test individual fast-track processing systems for use by qualified FHA-approved lenders that were experienced in processing loan applications for multifamily mortgages. The intent was to considerably reduce the processing time of applications. These test procedures included providing qualified lenders with the option of preparing FHA forms and undertaking preliminary underwriting for certain types of loan applications. Fast-track processing procedures developed by individual HUD offices that facilitated processing applications without sacrificing quality or increasing risk were consolidated into a national test of fast-track style processing of multifamily mortgage insurance applications under the name “MAP.” MAP has been administered to date through direct instructions to FHA-approved lenders under a MAP Guide. Given its experience to date with MAP, HUD believes the MAP accelerated processing procedures have been successful. To ensure the continued quality and efficiency of MAP procedures, HUD is codifying in regulations key provisions of MAP and introducing new provisions to strengthen MAP, to assure the integrity and competency of FHA-approved lenders as directed by the Helping Families Save Their Homes Act of 2009.