7 CFR § 3560.56 - Processing section 515 housing proposals.
(a) Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA) responses.
(1) The Agency will publish an annual NOFA with deadlines and other information related to submission of new construction MFH proposals, including expansion of existing MFH in designated places selected in accordance with § 3560.57.
(2) To be eligible for funding consideration, MFH proposals must be submitted in accordance with the NOFA and must provide information requested in the NOFA for the Agency to score and rank the proposals.
(3) MFH proposals needing rental subsidies must include requests for Agency rental assistance or a description of any non-Agency rental subsidy to be used with the proposal and must provide information required by § 3560.260 (c).
(4) The Agency will consider housing proposals requesting rental assistance in rank order to the extent rental assistance is available. When there is no rental assistance available, the Agency will consider only those housing proposals in rank order that do not require rental assistance.
(b) Preliminary proposal assessment. The Agency will make a preliminary assessment of the application using the following criteria and will reject those applications which do not meet all of these criteria:
(1) The proposal was received by the submission deadline specified in the NOFA,
(2) The proposal is complete as specified in the NOFA,
(3) The proposal is for an authorized purpose, and
(1) The following criteria will be used to score housing proposals as more completely established in the NOFA:
(i) The presence and extent of leveraged assistance in the proposal for the units that will serve tenants meeting Agency income limits at basic rents comparable to what the rent would be if the Agency provided full financing.
(ii) The proposal will provide rental units in a colonia, tribal land, Rural Economic Area Partnership (REAP) community, Enterprise Zone or Empowerment Community (EZ/EC) or in a place identified in the state Consolidated Plan or a state needs assessment as a high need community for MFH.
(iv) The proposal uses a donated site which meets the following conditions:
(B) The site is suitable for the housing proposals and meets Agency requirements;
(C) Site development costs do not exceed what they would be to purchase and develop an alternative site;
(D) The overall cost of the MFH is reduced by the donation of the site; and
(2) The Agency will rank housing proposals based on their scoring.
(i) When proposals have an equal score, preference will be given to Indian tribes as defined in § 3560.11 and local nonprofit organizations or public bodies whose principal purposes include low-income housing that meet the conditions of § 3560.55(c) and the following conditions.
(A) Is exempt from Federal income taxes under section 501(c)(3) or 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue code;
(B) Is not wholly or partially owned or controlled by a for-profit or limited-profit type entity;
(C) Whose members, or the entity, do not share an identity of interest with a for-profit or limited-profit type entity;
(D) Is not co-venturing with another entity; and
(E) The entity or its members will not be receiving any direct or indirect benefits pursuant to LIHTC.
(ii) A drawing will be held in the event of a tie score, first for proposals from applicants who meet the conditions of paragraph (c)(2)(i) of this section and next for proposals from applicants for which paragraph (c)(2)(i) of this section is not applicable. Each proposal will be numbered in the order in which it is drawn.
(3) The Agency will request initial loan applications from parties who submitted the housing proposals with the highest ranking, taking into consideration available funds. The Agency will notify non-selected parties with the reasons for their non-selection, and the process that may be used to seek a review of the non-selection decision.
(d) Processing initial loan applications. The Agency will review all initial loan applications submitted in accordance with Agency requirements to further evaluate the eligibility and feasibility of the housing proposals. This determination will include:
(1) A review of the preliminary plans and cost estimates,
(2) A market feasibility review,
(4) A review of the Affirmative Fair Housing Marketing Plan,
(5) An analysis of current credit reports,
(6) A review of Civil Rights Impact Analysis in accordance with 7 CFR part 2006, subpart P, and
(7) Completion of environmental review requirements in accordance with 7 CFR part 1970.
(e) Processing order of initial loan applications. The Agency will process initial loan applications in rank order, taking into account available funds. If any initial loan applications are withdrawn, rejected, or delayed for a period of time that will not permit funding in the current funding cycle, the Agency will process, in rank order, the next initial loan application as funding levels permit.
(f) Other assistance. During each stage of loan application processing, loan applicants must notify the Agency of all other assistance, including other Federal Government assistance proposed or approved for use in connection with the loan application.
(g) Proposal withdrawal or rejection. An applicant may withdraw a housing proposal, an initial loan application, or a final loan application at any time during the Agency review process with a written request. The Agency may reject a housing proposal, an initial loan application, or a final loan application at any time during the Agency review process when an applicant fails to provide information requested by the Agency within the time frame specified by the Agency.
(h) Final applications. Applicants, with initial loan applications that are selected by the Agency for further processing, must submit a final application, with any additional information requested by the Agency, to confirm and document a housing proposal's eligibility and feasibility, including an affirmative fair housing marketing plan. The Agency will notify applicants with initial loan applications that are not selected for further processing of their non-selection, the reasons for their non-selection, and the process that may be used to seek a review of the non-selection decision.
(i) Rural cooperative housing proposals. Rural cooperative housing loan proposals will be solicited through a NOFA and will be assessed and processed in the same manner described in paragraphs (a) through (h) of this section.
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