The Secretary of Housing and Urban Development may, to the extent amounts are available to carry out this section and the requirements of this section are met, make grants for use in accordance with this section to national and regional organizations and consortia that have experience in providing or facilitating self-help housing homeownership opportunities.
“(b)Goals and Accountability.—In making grants under this section, the Secretary shall take such actions as may be necessary to ensure that—
assistance provided under this section is used to facilitate and encourage innovative homeownership opportunities through the provision of self-help housing, under which the homeowner contributes a significant amount of sweat equity toward the construction of the new dwellings;
assistance provided under this section for land acquisition and infrastructure development results in the development of not less than 4,000 new dwellings;
the dwellings constructed in connection with assistance provided under this section are quality dwellings that comply with local building and safety codes and standards and are available at prices below the prevailing market prices;
the provision of assistance under this section establishes and fosters a partnership between the Federal Government and organizations and consortia, resulting in efficient development of affordable housing with minimal governmental intervention, limited governmental regulation, and significant involvement by private entities;
activities to develop housing assisted pursuant to this section involve community participation in which volunteers assist in the construction of dwellings; and
dwellings are developed in connection with assistance under this section on a geographically diverse basis, which includes areas having high housing costs, rural areas, and areas underserved by other homeownership opportunities that are populated by low-income families unable to otherwise afford housing.
If, at any time, the Secretary determines that the goals under this subsection cannot be met by providing assistance in accordance with the terms of this section, the Secretary shall immediately notify the applicable Committees in writing of such determination and any proposed changes for such goals or this section.
The Secretary shall select organizations and consortia referred to in subsection (a) to receive grants through a national competitive process, which the Secretary shall establish.
Amounts from grants made under this section, including any recaptured amounts, shall be used only for eligible expenses in connection with developing new decent, safe, and sanitary nonluxury dwellings in the United States for families and persons who otherwise would be unable to afford to purchase a dwelling.
“(2)Eligible expenses.—For purposes of paragraph (1), the term ‘eligible expenses’ means costs only for the following activities:
Acquiring land (including financing and closing costs), which may include reimbursing an organization, consortium, or affiliate, upon approval of any required environmental review, for nongrant amounts of the organization, consortium, or affiliate advanced before such review to acquire land.
Installing, extending, constructing, rehabilitating, or otherwise improving utilities and other infrastructure.
Such term does not include any costs for the rehabilitation, improvement, or construction of dwellings.
“(e) Establishment of Grant Fund.—
Any amounts from any grant made under this section shall be deposited by the grantee organization or consortium in a fund that is established by such organization or consortium for such amounts, administered by such organization or consortium, and available for use only for the purposes under subsection (d). Any interest, fees, or other earnings of the fund shall be deposited in the fund and shall be considered grant amounts for purposes of this section.
“(2)Assistance to affiliates.—
Any organization or consortia that receives a grant under this section may use amounts in the fund established for such organization or consortia pursuant to paragraph (1) for the purposes under subsection (d) by providing assistance from the fund to local affiliates of such organization or consortia.
“(f)Requirements for Assistance.—The Secretary may make a grant to an organization or consortium under subsection (a) only pursuant to—
an expression of interest by such organization or consortia to the Secretary for a grant for such purposes;
“(2) a determination by the Secretary that the organization or consortia has the capability and has obtained financial commitments (or has the capacity to obtain financial commitments) necessary to—
develop not less than 30 dwellings in connection with the grant amounts; and
otherwise comply with a grant agreement under subsection (i); and
a grant agreement entered into under subsection (i).
In making grants under subsection (a), the Secretary shall ensure that grants are provided and grant amounts are used in a manner that results in national geographic diversity among housing developed using grant amounts under this section.
“(i)Grant Agreement.—A grant under this section shall be made only pursuant to a grant agreement entered into by the Secretary and the organization or consortia receiving the grant, which shall—
require such organization or consortia to use grant amounts only as provided in this section;
provide for the organization or consortia to develop a specific and reasonable number of dwellings using the grant amounts, which number shall be established taking into consideration costs and economic conditions in the areas in which the dwellings will be developed, but in no case shall be less than 30;
require the organization or consortia to use the grant amounts in a manner that leverages other sources of funding (other than grants under this section), including private or public funds, in developing the dwellings;
require the organization or consortia to comply with the other provisions of this section;
provide that the Secretary shall recapture any grant amounts provided to the organization or consortia that are not used within 24 months after such amounts are first disbursed to the organization or consortia, except that such period shall be 36 months in the case of grant amounts from amounts made available for fiscal year 1996 to carry out this section, and in the case of a [sic] grant amounts provided to a local affiliate of the organization or consortia that is developing five or more dwellings in connection with such grant amounts; and
contain such other terms as the Secretary may require to provide for compliance with subsection (b) and the requirements of this section.
“(j)Fulfillment of Grant Agreement.—
If the Secretary determines that an organization or consortia awarded a grant under this section has not, within 24 months after grant amounts are first made available to the organization or consortia (or, in the case of grant amounts from amounts made available for fiscal year 1996 to carry out this section and grant amounts provided to a local affiliate of the organization or consortia that is developing five or more dwellings in connection with such grant amounts, within 36 months), substantially fulfilled the obligations under the grant agreement, including development of the appropriate number of dwellings under the agreement, the Secretary shall use any such undisbursed amounts remaining from such grant for other grants in accordance with this section.
“(k)Records and Audits.—During the period beginning upon the making of a grant under this section and ending upon close-out of the grant under subsection (l)—
the organization awarded the grant shall keep such records and adopt such administrative practices as the Secretary may require to ensure compliance with the provisions of this section and the grant agreement; and
the Secretary and the Comptroller General of the United States, and any of their duly authorized representatives, shall have access for the purpose of audit and examination to any books, documents, papers, and records of the grantee organization or consortia and its affiliates that are pertinent to the grant made under this section.
The Secretary shall close out a grant made under this section upon determining that the aggregate amount of any assistance provided from the fund established under subsection (e)(1) by the grantee organization or consortium exceeds the amount of the grant. For purposes of this paragraph, any interest, fees, and other earnings of the fund shall be excluded from the amount of the grant.
A grant under this section shall be considered to be funds for a special project for purposes of section 305(c) of the Multifamily Housing Property Disposition Reform Act of 1994 [42 U.S.C. 3547
“(n)Report to Congress.—
Not later than 90 days after close-out of all grants under this section is completed, the Secretary shall submit a report to the applicable Committees describing the grants made under this section, the grantees, the housing developed in connection with the grant amounts, and the purposes for which the grant amounts were used.
“(o)Definitions.—For purposes of this section, the following definitions shall apply:
The term ‘applicable Committees’ means the Committee on Banking and Financial Services [now Committee on Financial Services] of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs of the Senate.
The term ‘Secretary’ means the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development.
The term ‘United States’ includes the States of the United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Guam, the Virgin Islands, American Samoa, and any other territory or possession of the United States.
“(p)Authorization of Appropriations.—
There are authorized to be appropriated to carry out this section such sums as may be necessary for fiscal year 2001.
The Secretary shall issue any final regulations necessary to carry out this section not later than 30 days after the date of the enactment of this Act [Mar. 28, 1996]. The regulations shall take effect upon issuance and may not exceed, in length, 5 full pages in the Federal Register.”
“Notwithstanding the amendments made by subsection (a) [amending section 11 of Pub. L. 104–120
, set out above], any grant under section 11 of the Housing Opportunity Program Extension Act of 1996 [Pub. L. 104–120
] (42 U.S.C. 12805
note) from amounts appropriated in fiscal year 1998 or any prior fiscal year shall be governed by the provisions of such section 11 as in effect immediately before the enactment of this Act [Oct. 21, 1998
], except that the amendments made by paragraphs (8) and (9) of subsection (a) of this section shall apply to such grants.”
“This section [amending section 11 of Pub. L. 104–120
, set out above, and enacting provisions set out as a note above] shall take effect, and the amendments made by this section are made on, and shall apply beginning upon, the date of the enactment of this Act [Oct. 21, 1998