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HUD/FHEO RIN: 2529-AA97 Publication ID: Fall 2018 
Title: ●Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing Streamlining and Enhancement (FR-6123)  
Abstract:

This advance notice of proposed rulemaking invites public comment on amendments to HUD’s affirmatively furthering fair housing (AFFH) regulations. The goal of the regulations is to provide HUD program participants with a specific planning approach to assist them in meeting their statutory obligation to affirmatively further the purposes and policies of the Fair Housing Act.  HUD is committed to its mission of achieving fair housing opportunity for all, regardless of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, disability, or familial status. fair housing. However, HUD’s experience over the three years since the newly-specified approach was promulgated demonstrates that it is not fulfilling its purpose to be an efficient means for guiding meaningful action by program participants. As HUD begins the process of developing a proposed rule to amend the existing AFFH regulations, it is soliciting public comment on changes that will: (1) minimize regulatory burden while more effectively aiding program participants to plan for fulfilling their obligation to affirmatively further the purposes and policies of the Fair Housing Act;  (2) create a process that is focused primarily on accomplishing positive results, rather than on performing analysis of community characteristics; (3) provide for greater local control and innovation; (4) seek to encourage actions that increase housing choice, including through greater housing supply; and (5) more efficiently utilize HUD resources. HUD is also reviewing comments submitted in response to the withdrawal of the Local Government Assessment Tool and will consider those comments during HUD’s consideration of potential changes to the AFFH regulations. 

 
Agency: Department of Housing and Urban Development(HUD)  Priority: Other Significant 
RIN Status: First time published in the Unified Agenda Agenda Stage of Rulemaking: Prerule Stage 
Major: No  Unfunded Mandates: No 
EO 13771 Designation: Other 
CFR Citation: 24 CFR 5, 91, 92, 570, 574, 576, and 903     (To search for a specific CFR, visit the Code of Federal Regulations.)
Legal Authority: 42 U.S.C. 3535(d) and 3601 to 3619   
Legal Deadline:  None

Statement of Need:

The stated purpose of the AFFH regulations is to provide HUD program participants with a planning approach to assist them in meeting their legal obligation to affirmatively further the purposes and policies of the Fair Housing Act.  However, HUD has concluded that the current regulations are ineffective. The highly prescriptive regulations give participants inadequate autonomy in developing fair housing goals as suggested by principles of federalism.  Additionally, the current regulations do not address the lack of adequate housing supply, which has a particular adverse impact on protected classes under the Fair Housing Act. Finally, some peer-reviewed literature indicates that outcomes of policies focused on deconcentrating poverty may vary across different ages and demographic groups, and suggests that such policies are difficult to implement at scale and without disrupting local decision making.

Summary of the Legal Basis:

Alternatives:

None.

Anticipated Costs and Benefits:

At this pre-rule stage, HUD expects that the neither the total economic costs nor the total efficiency gains will exceed $100 million.

Risks:

Program participants are reminded that the legal obligation to affirmatively further fair housing remains in effect. The withdrawal of the Local Government Assessment Tool means that a program participant that has not yet submitted an AFH using that device that has been accepted by HUD must continue to carry out its duty to affirmatively further fair housing by, inter alia, continuing to assess fair housing issues as part of planning for use of housing and community development block grants in accordance with pre-existing requirements.  The pre-existing requirements referred to the fair housing assessment as an analysis of impediments to fair housing choice (AI).  HUD places a high priority upon the responsibility of program participants to ensure that their AIs serve as effective fair housing planning tools. 

Timetable:
Action Date FR Cite
ANPRM  08/16/2018  83 FR 40713   
Comment Period End  10/15/2018 
NPRM  09/00/2019 
Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required: No  Government Levels Affected: None 
Small Entities Affected: No  Federalism: No 
Included in the Regulatory Plan: Yes 
RIN Data Printed in the FR: No 
Agency Contact:
Krista Mills
Deputy Assistant Secretary, Office of Policy, Legislative Initiatives, and Outreach
Department of Housing and Urban Development
Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity
451 Seventh Street SW,
Washington, DC 20410
Phone:202 402-6577