HUD Criticized by 22 Attorneys General for Fair Housing Rules Rollback – NMP Skip to main content

HUD Criticized by 22 Attorneys General for Fair Housing Rules Rollback

NationalMortgageProfessional.com
Mar 16, 2020
Photo credit: Getty Images/Andrii Yalanskyi

California Attorney General Xavier Becerra and New York Attorney General Letitia James led a coalition of 22 attorneys general in filing a comment letter slamming the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development’s (HUD) proposed rule rolling back critical fair housing protections. The proposed rule would gut the current Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) rule and replace it with a drastically scaled back rule that lacks meaningful guidance for local jurisdictions, public housing authorities, and states working to address segregation and promote integration in their communities and also reduces the federal government’s oversight of those groups. 
 
California Attorney General Xavier Becerra and New York Attorney General Letitia James led a coalition of 22 attorneys general in filing a comment letter slamming the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development’s (HUD) proposed rule“There’s no place for housing policies that turn back the clock to the days of segregation,” said Attorney General Becerra. “If the Trump Administration has its way, communities across the country will lose out on critical resources that help bring us together and promote equal access to opportunity. In California, we’re taking action to end housing discrimination and foster diverse communities–we’re asking that HUD do the same.”
 
Under the Fair Housing Act, HUD is required to take affirmative steps to further fair housing, including tackling the legacy of segregation and historic disparities in access to integrated housing. To that end, HUD promulgated a rule in 2015 to address those goals. The 2015 rule created a process under which state and local jurisdictions are required to examine the barriers to fair housing specific to their communities and demonstrate how federal housing dollars will be used to promote balanced and integrated communities. The Trump Administration announced that it was suspending the rule in 2018 without adequate explanation.
 
The Trump Administration’s proposed rule would backtrack on the 2015 rule’s critical efforts and remove mechanisms for accountability. In fact, the proposed rule’s amended definition of AFFH largely avoids mention of protected classes, segregation, or integration, calling into question HUD’s commitment to its statutory duty to end racial segregation resulting from discriminatory housing practices and promote integration. Moreover, the new processes for applying for funding rely on arbitrary metrics that may penalize jurisdictions that would otherwise likely stand to benefit the most from HUD assistance.
 
While the 2015 rule requires jurisdictions provide a comprehensive assessment of current housing patterns using HUD-provided data, HUD’s new proposal would not require any data or research to support jurisdictions’ proposed goals for the funding. Instead, HUD appears to be incentivizing program participants to focus on issues that are unrelated to fair housing, and some that are even hostile to protected classes under the Fair Housing Act.
 
In the comment letter, the coalition argues that the proposed rule does not provide meaningful oversight of local jurisdictions, fails to require these jurisdictions to confront urgent barriers to fair housing, appears designed to penalize urban areas, and would violate the Administrative Procedure Act.
 
In filing the comment letter, Attorney General Becerra is joined by the attorneys general of New York, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and District of Columbia.

 
Published
Mar 16, 2020
When Will Then Be Now? March

With inflation at 5.7% in 2021, the Fed indicates a rate hike is coming ‘soon’, most likely during its meeting March 15-16.

Regulation and Compliance
Jan 27, 2022
Markets Anxious As Fed Opens 2-Day Meeting

Investors, mortgage brokers & bankers await latest policy statement on fighting inflation

Regulation and Compliance
Jan 25, 2022
Ginnie Mae Streamlines FHA Advanced Loan Modification program

Documentation changes eliminate requirements for recordation and title insurance.

Regulation and Compliance
Jan 24, 2022
'A Long Road To Normal'

Nominated again to lead The Fed, Powell tells Senate committee to expect three rate hikes, but 'if we have to raise interest rates more over time, we will.'

Regulation and Compliance
Jan 11, 2022
CFPB: Complaint Response Worsens At Big 3 Credit Bureaus

Report claims Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion routinely failed to fully respond to consumers with errors.

Regulation and Compliance
Jan 10, 2022
The Fed Names Chairs, Deputy Chairs For 12 Reserve Banks

In recent years, the Federal Reserve System has worked to increase the overall diversity of the Reserve Bank and branch boards of directors and continues to build on those efforts.

Regulation and Compliance
Jan 06, 2022