On February 22, NAHRO submitted comments on HUD’s proposed revisions to the Annual Contributions Contract (ACC) and the MTW Amendment to the Consolidated ACC (CACC). NAHRO’s comments can be found here: www.nahro.org/policy-documents-and-correspondence. Comments on the ACC and the MTW Amendment to the ACC are due February 25.
On December 27, 2018, HUD published a revised ACC in the Federal Register through a Notice of Proposed Information Collection via the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA). NAHRO does not believe that revising the ACC through the PRA is appropriate. The ACC has been and continues to be a contract between a PHA and the federal government and not a unilateral grant agreement issued by HUD to a PHA.
HUD’s efforts to revise the ACC through the PRA process continue to demonstrate that HUD does not view the ACC as a bilateral contract between two parties, thus fundamentally changing the ACC and going against congressional intent that the federal government contract with PHAs.
Beyond NAHRO’s concerns with HUD’s treatment of the ACC as a unilateral grant agreement as opposed to a bilateral contract, as it has always been treated in the past, NAHRO also has concerns regarding certain provisions within the revised ACC. These concerns include a modified definition of “HUD Requirements” which maintains that PHAs must follow the law, HUD regulations, and other federal regulations and executive orders, as well as HUD-issued notices and HUD-required forms or agreements. Although NAHRO agrees PHAs should be beholden to follow statutes, and regulations, the inclusion of HUD-issued notices, and HUD-required forms should not be included in the ACC. HUD-issued notices are the agency’s interpretation of governing laws and regulations, however HUD-issued notices do not have the force and effect of law.
NAHRO also submitted comments on the MTW Amendment to the CACC. An agency’s participation in the MTW Expansion will be formalized by this amendment to the PHA’s CACC. Through the amendment, the PHA “agrees to abide by the program structure, flexibilities, and terms and conditions detailed in the Operations Notice for the term of the agency’s participation in [the] MTW demonstration.”
Due to the reasons noted above, NAHRO is concerned that the agreement formalizing an agency’s participation in the MTW expansion is amended to the ACC. NAHRO fears HUD may unilaterally change the MTW CACC Amendment without MTW agency input or that HUD could terminate the MTW CACC Amendment through the ACC unilaterally. NAHRO has further concerns that the flexibility inherent to the MTW Demonstration through the use of waivers may be impacted by the requirement that MTW agencies strictly adhere to all “HUD Requirements” as defined by the revised ACC.
NAHRO also expressed specific concerns relating to HUD’s ability to discontinue an MTW activity through the MTW Amendment and the requirement to transition out of the MTW demonstration within 12 years.
Comments on the ACC and the MTW Amendment to the ACC are due February 25. NAHRO’s comment letters can be found here: www.nahro.org/policy-documents-and-correspondence.