Advocacy & Policy

2023 Government Shutdown Resources

Updated October 2, 2023

(October 2, 2023 Update) – On September 30, 2023, Congress passed — and the President signed — a continuing resolution to fund the government through November 17, 2023.

NAHRO will update this page as more information is made available.

On September 29th, HUD’s Office of Public Engagement shared the following:

In the event of a lapse in appropriations, HUD has sufficient carryover funds to operate through the completion of the pay period ending October 7th and employees should continue to follow their planned schedule. We will provide further updates on the agency’s operating status as necessary. That means most HUD functions will continue and the Department will provide further updates on its operating status, as necessary.

In limited circumstances, certain activities will no longer be authorized even though HUD has funding to temporarily operate after this lapse. For example, after September 30, new reverse mortgage originations would not be available for endorsement for seniors through the Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) program. Specific HUD offices will provide further guidance to impacted stakeholders, if and when, necessary. Consistent with HUD’s Contingency Plan for a lapse, we will execute an orderly shutdown of all non-excepted activities, after October 7, as necessary” [bold added].

HUD Shutdown Contingency Plan

In the event of a shutdown, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has updated their shutdown contingency plan.

The following information on HUD’s programs were taken from HUD’s shutdown contingency plan and gleaned from HUD staff.

Public Housing

For the operating fund, funding for October and November will be obligated. HUD is checking to see whether they will also be able to obligate funding for December.

For the capital fund, funds that have already been obligated and in the system and which can be drawn down without further action or review by HUD employees should be available. New capital funds (i.e., funds for 2024) will not be available until a budget is passed.

Additionally, “[PHA staff] will be able to draw down funds from LOCCS (Line of Credit Control System) for the purpose of accessing funds for public housing (operating subsidies and capital funds) that have already been obligated in the system and which can be drawn down without further action or review by HUD employees.”

Whether an inspection will happen will depend on whether the inspection contract was obligated before the shutdown for contracted inspectors. HUD employees will not conduct inspections unless “there is a known threat to life or property at that specific location.” The Technical Assistance Center (TAC) will remain open to answer questions. Responses that require HUD staff review or approval will be delayed.

Housing Choice Voucher Program

For the voucher program, HUD staff has said that

“[HUD] will continue to make payments . . . plus carryover every month as is typical.  The reserves will still be able to be accessed if a PHA needs them to make payments (that qualifies under ‘imminent threat’).”

This means that PHA staff can expect regular payments for the voucher program and that there is a high likelihood that there is enough funding for the program until the end of the year. This includes both HAP funding and administrative fees. This also means that PHAs will be able to access their HUD-held reserves for the purposes of preventing terminating assistance to families.

Funding actions that require staff assistance like “HAP and fee frontload requests, submissions of budget revisions for [the] EHV program, ModRehab, Mainstream Vouchers, SRO, etc.” will not be available.

Community Planning and Development Programs

The Office of Community Planning and Development (CPD) will continue to make previously obligated funds available for draw down by CPD grantees (CDBG, HOME, HOPWA, Homeless Assistance Grants and other grant funds). If there is no action or review needed by HUD employees for funds to be drawn down from the system, then grantees will be able to draw funds normally. If it is required, CPD will only recall employees to review disbursement requests in certain cases where there is believed to be an imminent threat to the safety of human life or property.

Additionally, a long-term shutdown could result in the automatic approval of consolidated plans. However, consolidated plans may be rejected in the future even though they were approved initially. For information regarding the processing of FY 23 grant agreements, CPD has stated that they will provide further guidance if and when a government shutdown is imminent.

Family Self-Sufficiency Program

HUD staff has stated the following:

“In the case of a shut-down, the FSS team would be furloughed. Grants that have been made will continue to be available via LOCCS, as usual.  However, as you know, draws for more than 10% of the grant funds are required to be approved and if we are shut down, we will not be able to approve them. All scheduled TA will be cancelled (e.g. office hours or other webinars).  The FSS mailbox will not be monitored. I cannot say what the impact will be on the FY23 competition/award processing will be, other than to say that we will not be able to work on it during a shut-down.”

Moving to Work Agencies

The Department’s documentation states the following:

“HUD staff will not process funding assignments for non-HAP, MTW-eligible activities during the shutdown, except where there is an imminent threat to lives or property. MTW PHAs, like all PHAs, would only be able to schedule payments that are already obligated in the system. In addition, exempt staff would not be able to respond to questions by phone or email, so technical assistance during a shutdown may also be affected.”

Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD)

(Updated 9/29/2023)

While applications for RAD conversion can be submitted, they will not be reviewed. Closings that have received a Rental Assistance Demonstration Conversion Commitment (RCC) and the closing was scheduled prior to the shutdown may continue. If the failure to close or prepare to close would impact property (e.g., loss of tax credits), the closing may continue.

A HUD staffer has told NAHRO the following: “In the RAD public housing context, a shutdown would primarily impact [HUD’s] ability to provide TA, answer questions, review and underwrite Financing Plan submissions, and issue RCCs. The PHAs can continue to prepare their RAD transactions and can continue to upload documents to the Resource Desk (provided the Resource Desk doesn’t have technical problems as I don’t think the team is permitted to do IT maintenance). A shutdown has no impact on the PHA’s ability to proceed with construction of a RAD transaction post-closing.

Housing Update from Washington

NAHRO’s September 21 Housing Update from Washington was on a potential federal government shutdown. After the update, staff emailed out a list of questions that were asked during the webinar with responses. Note: for questions where we didn’t have answers, we reached out to HUD.

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