Office of Grants Management headquarters staff establish program policy and work closely with counterparts in the Area Offices to support Tribal Partners by providing technical assistance and guidance in the administration of housing programs, development of viable communities, and expanded economic opportunities for low- and moderate-income persons.
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Statutes, Regulations, Notices and Guidance
The Native American Housing Assistance and Self Determination Act of 1996 (NAHASDA) reorganized the system of housing assistance provided to Native Americans through the Department of Housing and Urban Development by eliminating several separate programs of assistance and replacing them with a block grant program. The two programs authorized for Indian tribes under NAHASDA are the Indian Housing Block Grant (IHBG) which is a formula based grant program and Title VI Loan Guarantee which provides financing guarantees to Indian tribes for private market loans to develop affordable housing. Regulations are published at 24 CFR Part 1000. NAHASDA was amended in 2000 to add Title VIII-Housing Assistance for Native Hawaiians. The amendment to NAHASDA adds similar programs for Native Hawaiians who reside on Hawaiian Home Lands. Regulations for implementing Native Hawaiian Housing Block Grant (NHHBG) program program are published at 24 CFR Part 1006.
Indian Housing Block Grant Programs
Indian Housing Block Grant
The Indian Housing Block Grant Program (IHBG) is a formula grant that provides a range of affordable housing activities on Indian reservations and Indian areas. The block grant approach to housing for Native Americans was enabled by the Native American Housing Assistance and Self Determination Act of 1996 (NAHASDA). Eligible IHBG recipients are Federally recognized Indian tribes or their tribally designated housing entity (TDHE), and a limited number of state recognized tribes who were funded under the Indian Housing Program authorized by the United States Housing Act of 1937 (USHA). With the enactment of NAHASDA, Indian tribes are no longer eligible for assistance under the USHA.
Indian Housing Block Grant Competitive Program
The Department recognizes that this additional IHBG funding provides a rare opportunity to fund strong and viable affordable housing projects in Indian Country. These projects could begin to address the concerns identified in the study. In accordance with the Appropriations Acts, HUD will give priority to projects that spur construction and rehabilitation, while considering need and administrative capacity. HUD strongly encourages new affordable housing construction projects that will increase the number of housing units available for low-income Indian families and help address the housing shortage in Indian Country. Additionally, HUD encourages housing rehabilitation projects that will increase the useful life of existing affordable housing units and alleviate substandard housing conditions. HUD also encourages necessary affordable housing-related infrastructure projects that will enable future construction or rehabilitation. While HUD will give funding priority for new construction projects, rehabilitation projects, and related necessary infrastructure projects, applicants may also apply for funding to carry out other eligible activities under NAHASDA. Finally, Indian tribes and TDHEs that are applying for funding under this Program are encouraged to propose projects that are part of a comprehensive plan to address housing conditions in their communities, including overcrowding and physically deteriorating units, as appropriate. Applicants should also engage in long-term planning and ensure that the project being proposed is part of a holistic plan that considers planned future infrastructure development, economic development opportunities, and more.
Indian Housing Block Grant Formula
Funds appropriated by Congress for the Indian Housing Block Grant Program (IHBG) are made available to eligible grant recipients through a formula. Regulations governing the formula can be found at 24 CFR Part 1000, Subpart D. On November 22, 2016, the Native American Housing Assistance and Self Determination Final Rule was published revising the IHBG Formula. In brief, the formula has four components; Need, Formula Current Assisted Stock, 1996 Minimum, and Undisbursed IHBG funds factor. The Need component considers population, income, and housing conditions. The Formula Current Assisted Stock component reflects housing developed under the United States Housing Act (the predecessor of the IHBG program) which is owned and/or operated by the IHBG recipient and provides funds for ongoing operation of the housing. The 1996 minimum provides adjustments when an Indian tribe is allocated more or less funding under the IHBG formula than it received in FY 1996 for operating subsidy and modernization. The Undisbursed IHBG funds factor provides adjustments for tribes with an initial allocation of $5 million or more and has undisbursed IHBG funds in an amount greater than the sum of the prior three years’ initial allocation calculations.
Indian Community Development Block Grant
The ICDBG Program provides eligible grantees with direct grants for use in developing viable Indian and Alaska Native Communities, including decent housing, a suitable living environment, and economic opportunities, primarily for low- and moderate-income persons. Projects funding by the ICDBG program must principally benefit low-and-moderate-income persons (24 CFR 1003.208). The program regulations provide for two categories of grants, Single Purpose, and Imminent Threat:
Single purpose grants are awarded on a competition basis pursuant to the terms published in an annual Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA).
Imminent Threat Grants
The Secretary of HUD may set aside up to $4 million of each year’s allocation for the noncompetitive, first come-first served, funding of grants to eliminate or lessen problems which pose an imminent threat to public health or safety of tribal residents. Application procedures are available at 2018-04: Imminent Threat Grants (Supersedes Guidance 2017-01) Indian Community Development Block Grant (ICDBG) Imminent Threat (IT) program. Related to Imminent Threats, HUD published FR-6301-N-02 Regulatory and Administrative Requirement Flexibilities Available to Native American Programs During CY 2022 and CY 2023 to Tribal Grantees To Assist With Recovery and Relief Efforts on Behalf of Families Affected by Presidentially Declared Disasters. This Federal Register Notice provides waivers and flexibilities from HUD requirements for the Indian Housing Block Grant (IHBG), Indian Community Development Block Grant (ICDBG), and Native Hawaiian Housing Block Grant (NHHBG) for grantees located in areas that are covered by Presidentially Declared Disasters (PDDs). Refer to Section B. 1. and 2. for a list of ICDBG waivers. In addition, HUD recently launched a website on Climate Resilience and Adaptation that is a resource hub for Tribes. It includes climate data and toolkits to enable Tribes to design their own solutions to address climate change. The website also highlights case studies of Tribes doing this work and funding that can be used for these purposes.
In January 2015, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced a demonstration program to offer a permanent home and supportive services to Native American Veterans who are experiencing or at risk of experiencing homelessness. The Tribal HUD-VA Supportive Housing program (Tribal HUD-VASH) will provide rental assistance and supportive services to Native American veterans who are Homeless or At Risk of Homelessness living on or near a reservation or other Indian areas. In its initial funding round, HUD is making available $5.2 million in grant funding to Indian tribes and tribally designated housing entities (TDHEs) to fund this rental assistance and associated administrative fees. Indian tribes and TDHEs participating in this program must partner with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to provide case management and supportive services to eligible Native American veterans.