Introduction

The National Housing Trust Fund (NHTF) is a new federal affordable housing program that complements existing federal, state and local efforts to build, preserve and rehabilitate affordable housing for families and individuals with the lowest incomes – those earning at or below 30 percent of the area median income (AMI). NHTF is a dedicated program, not subject to Congressional appropriations. Funding for the NHTF comes from an assessment on loans made by Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae.

The NHTF was created as part of the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 (HERA). On January 30, 2015, the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) published an interim rule (FR-5246-I-03 and at 24 CFR Parts 91 and 93), which provides the guidelines for states to implement the NHTF program during the first year’s allocation. HUD plans to issue a final rule for the NHTF after states have had experience administering the program and are able to offer comments regarding the initial implementation.
Gov. Inslee designated the Washington State Department of Commerce to administer the NHTF program.

2017 Allocation Plan

The state conducted a public comment period on July 6-19, 2017, and held a public hearing on July 19, 2017, for the state’s draft 2017 Action Plan and the draft 2017 NHTF Allocation Plan. The Action Plan encompasses all HUD Community Planning and Development Grants. The NHTF Allocation Plan is specific to the NHTF program and describes how the state plans to allocate the NHTF funds.

After closing the public comment period, the state submitted its 2017 Action Plan and the 2017 NHTF Allocation Plan  to HUD for review and approval. Once HUD approves these plans, the state will receive its various program allocations (NHTF included).

Stakeholder Meetings Held

In preparing to develop the 2017 NHTF Allocation Plan, Commerce held stakeholder meetings in Olympia and Spokane. Those meeting took place in late January and mid-February, respectively. The input received from stakeholders was fairly consistent with prior public comments received on the 2016 NHTF Allocation Plan. These meetings were not the formal public comment process required by HUD, rather, they were additional meetings held to engage stakeholders and seek their input early in the process, as Commerce is working to develop the implementation plan for this new source of funding for affordable housing. Both stakeholder meetings were recorded and are available below, along with the PowerPoint presentation used during the meetings:

Commerce will now begin the process of developing the DRAFT 2017 Allocation Plan. It is anticipated to be completed and released for a formal HUD public hearing and public comment period in or around April of 2017. This release will be coordinated with the DRAFT 2017 Action Plan, which covers all HUD formula grants (HOME, CDBG, HOPWA, & ESG).

Submit your comments

Commerce welcomes feedback and input at any time. If you have comments about the NHTF or questions about meetings, please contact Michelle Campbell with the contact information provided below:

Email your comments to Michelle.Campbell@commerce.wa.gov.
Mail comments to:
National Housing Trust Fund Program
Department of Commerce
PO Box 42525
Olympia WA 98504-2525