The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has announced that it will proceed with amending the Obama-era Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) regulations after a U.S. District Court dismissed a lawsuit by liberal advocacy groups last week related to the Department’s suspension of a computer tool used by municipalities to measure fair housing levels.
“I am tremendously gratified that the Court agreed with HUD on all its legal arguments,” said HUD Secretary Ben Carson in a message to the Department’s staff. “My approach to regulations is that they should work in practice and not just in theory. Fairness is baked into our DNA. Whether it’s making sure our regulations work in the real world, or challenging discrimination where we find it, HUD stands for fairness.”
Last week, HUD published a notice inviting the public’s comment on amendments to the its’ AFFH regulations. HUD stressed that it sought to “offer more helpful guidance to states and local communities to effectively promote fair housing choice through the use of their federal funds.” HUD added that the public comment input is being designed to “minimize regulatory burden while more effectively aiding program participants to meet their statutory obligations,” while focusing on a process that emphasized “positive results, rather than on analysis.”
The Department also sought to increase housing choice, including the construction of more housing supply.