Government Shutdown FAQ (2023)


Posted On: October 1, 2023

Navigating the complexities of a government shutdown can be challenging, especially when it concerns vital services like housing. The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) plays a pivotal role in ensuring affordable housing for countless Americans. Given the potential uncertainties during a shutdown, we want you to understand how it could affect HUD’s operations, specifically related to inspections, asset management, and assisted housing. This government shutdown FAQ aims to address common questions and provide clarity on HUD’s contingency plan in the context of a government shutdown. This FAQ will help inform and prepare you.

Asset Management & Assisted Housing

How will HUD handle payments under Section 8 contracts, rent supplement, section 236, or PRACS during a government shutdown?

HUD remains committed to the continuity of housing services. The agency will make payments under previously obligated Section 8 contracts, rent supplements, Section 236 agreements, PRAC, and PBCA contracts as necessary. HUD, in collaboration with the OCFO, will evaluate the sufficiency of funds for these contracts, tapping into any permanent or indefinite authority or multi-year carryover funding when needed. If available, HUD will disburse the funds promptly, including renewals and amendments for Section 8 contracts.

During the shutdown, will HUD staff approve releases of residual receipts or Reserve for Replacement for Section 8 housing assistance?

Absolutely. You should direct your requests to the Asset Management Division Director of the specific HUD office. On the submitted form, HUD-9250, include the requested amount, account balance, and certification of fund replenishment once the HUD reinstates the subsidy.

Will HUD process Section 8 waiver requests during the shutdown?

In general, no. However, properties HUD designates as troubled assets will see minimal staff oversight. This ensures the agency can take action to mitigate any imminent threats or issues.

Will HUD still process tenant certifications and electronic voucher payment requests during the shutdown?

Yes, they will. The Tenant Rental Assistance Certification System (TRACS) will continue to operate and process vouchers using previously obligated funds.

Will HUD process contract renewal requests during the shutdown?

HUD will process contract renewals as long as there’s budget authority derived from earlier appropriations or recaptures.

What about Service Coordinator grants? Will HUD process them during the shutdown?

HUD will pay previously obligated grants. However, the agency will not make any new funding commitments during the shutdown period.

Will the Multifamily Housing End User Support Help Desk remain operational during the shutdown?

Yes. This help desk will be active, addressing inquiries related to various systems like the Development Application Processing System, Integrated Real Estate Management System, Tenant Rental Assistance Certification System, and questions specific to Multifamily Housing Enterprise Income Verification procedures.

Inspections

During a government shutdown, will HUD continue inspections on properties?

Yes, inspections funded by previous obligations will proceed as planned. Furthermore, any inspection deemed necessary due to a perceived threat to life or property at a specific HUD location will also continue.

How does HUD handle inspections procured by servicing mortgagees during a shutdown?

Inspections for which the servicing mortgagee is responsible will carry on without interruption.

If HUD employees conduct inspections, how will the agency prioritize them during a shutdown?

If there’s reason to believe a specific location poses a threat to life or property, that inspection will proceed. Conversely, HUD might defer the inspection if they identify no such threat.

If a threat to life or property emerges during the shutdown, how does HUD respond?

Should HUD become aware of such a threat during a lapse in appropriations, they will promptly schedule an inspection by a HUD employee.

What about inspections that occur right before or during a government shutdown?

HUD will recall staff as required to conduct activities essential to review these inspections. The necessary HUD staff will mobilize to address exigent circumstances to ensure safety and compliance.

We hope this government shutdown FAQ offers clarity regarding HUD’s contingency measures and operations during a government shutdown. Always refer to the official HUD contingency plan for a comprehensive understanding.



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