NACEDA Network News
National Alliance of Community Economic Development Associations January 11, 2018

Policy Update

TAKE ACTION — Urge Congress to Protect Non-Defense Funding

Some 2,000 national, state, and local organizations have signed a letter urging Congress to appropriate adequate funding for non-defense programs. Sign the letter on behalf of your organization by Friday, January 12. This letter campaign is organized by NDD United, a broad coalition of national, state, and local organizations working to protect non-defense discretionary (NDD) programs from budget cuts. NDD programs include everything from education to public health and safety, environment to infrastructure, and science to housing and community development. NACEDA is a member of NDD United.

Tax Reform Preserves Tax Credits But Endangers Community Investment

The new tax code retains all core affordable housing and community development programs: the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit; Private Activity Bonds including multifamily Housing Bonds; the New Markets Tax Credit; and the Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credit. However, by lowering the top corporate tax rates from 35% to 21%, it reduces incentives for corporations to receive tax credits by investing in affordable homes and communities. Novogradac & Co. estimates that the tax reform will reduce affordable rental housing production by nearly 235,000 homes over 10 years and that the rental homes produced would likely serve higher average income households. An estimated 64% of the benefits of tax reform go to the top 1% of earners, at a cost to the country of over $1 trillion. The increased deficits created by these tax cuts puts vital housing and community development programs at risk of deep spending cuts down the line. 

HUD Solicits Public Comments on EnVision Centers

HUD Secretary Ben Carson announced the launch of the first EnVision Center hub in Detroit. These centralized hubs for supportive services will focus on the four pillars of Economic Empowerment, Educational Advancement, Health and Wellness, and Character and Leadership. Approximately 10 communities, selected from across the country, are anticipated to participate in the demonstration.  Submit public comments by February 12.

HUD Suspends Assessment of Fair Housing Submissions Until 2020

HUD published a notice in the Federal Register on January 5 suspending most local governments’ obligation under the Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule to submit an Assessment of Fair Housing until after October 31, 2020, and in many cases after 2025. Advocates are considering a legal strategy to prevent HUD from suspending regulations without observing the procedures or identifying relevant factual criteria.


Thriving Networks

Mark your Calendar! NACEDA 10th Anniversary Summit & Celebration 

September 12-14 in Philadelphia, PA: Plan to attend this dynamic peer-learning event for community development association professionals.

New Illinois Law Prevents Predatory Rent-To-Own Contracts

Drafted by Housing Action Illinois and passed with bipartisan support, the Installment Sales Contract Act took effect on January 1. Housing Action Illinois initiated the bill and led advocacy efforts in order to counter predatory schemes targeting low-income people and neighborhoods. “We had been hearing from members and allies about the resurgence of predatory rent-to-own models,” said Housing Action Illinois Policy Director Bob Palmer. "Too often these contracts result in people agreeing to buy houses in extremely poor condition at highly inflated purchase prices and high loan interest rates."

The new state law regulates sellers of 1-4 unit residential properties who enter into contracts more than three times in any 12-month period. Among the law’s many consumer protection provisions, buyers must receive:

  • written contracts defining who is responsible for repairs, taxes, and insurance with information about any balloon payments due on the property;
  • an amortization schedule prior to closing, showing how much of their monthly payment will be applied to principal and interest and how long it will take to pay off the loan;
  • disclosure of building code violations and fair cash value of the property as reflected on tax bills; 
  • a 3-day “cooling off period” after the seller has presented the contract to the buyer in its full and final form;
  •  a 90-day period to cure defaults before a seller can try and evict buyers for missing a payment.

Similar legislation is being considered in Ohio, Maryland and Michigan.

NACEDA Members Share Disaster Recovery Strategies

NACEDA hosted a webinar for members to learn what to expect when a disaster strikes and how to coordinate with public and funders. The speakers were  Matt Hull of the Texas Association of CDCs; Terry Chelikowsky of the Florida Alliance of CDCs; Shekeria Brown of South Florida Community Development Coalition; and Staci Berger from the Housing & Community Development Network of New Jersey. NACEDA members can log in to view the webinar. 


Healthy Places

Prosperity Indiana Engages Hospital Community Benefit Professionals

Prosperity Indiana is setting a national model for developing shared understanding and deep relationships between the community development and health sectors. Their annual summit is focused on the intersection of community development and health, including a 5-hour workshop tailored to hospital community benefits professionals. The workshop will bring together hospital, public health, and community development professionals to explore opportunities to revitalize high-poverty neighborhoods and thereby improve health outcomes across Indiana.

Prosperity Indiana' Workshop for Community Benefits Professionals will examine ways to begin conversations about integrating community economic development and hospital strategies to improve health and well-being in low- and moderate-income communities. Nonprofit hospitals are required to conduct a Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA) and implementation strategy every three years. By statute, these CHNAs must consider input from “persons who represent the broad interests of the community served by the hospital facility.“ NACEDA staff will attend the workshop and are working with the facilitator, Dan Hodgkins, to develop a webinar for NACEDA members.


Creative Places

Philadelphia Emphasizes Equity in Arts & Development

The Philadelphia Association of CDCs hosted a discussion titled “Can Art Play a Role in Equitable Development?” at their Annual Membership Meeting. The event was held at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, where members toured Philadelphia Assembled, a large collaborative art installation that highlighted community activism in the city. Building off their coalition work on creative placemaking projects, PACDC Program Director Pamela Bridgeforth guided the discussion on how placemakers can ensure that arts-based development is not a fad by creatively moving from smaller placemaking and placekeeping projects into collaborations that tackle issues of equity. As Jeanne van Heeswijk, lead artist for Philadelphia Assembled, memorably put it, emphasizing equity allows artists and community members to explore together: "How can we collectively reinvent the city more towards our hearts' desires?"

Take the Creative Placemaking Field Survey

ArtPlace America, The Kresge Foundation, and Arizona State University are conducting a survey to identify strengths and areas of opportunity for the creative placemaking field. Please complete this 10-minute survey by Friday. Your insight will inform strategic priorities for supporting the field over the coming years.


NACEDA Comings & Goings

>>> Bambie Hayes Brown is Executive Director of Georgia ACT. Kate Little retired from the position. She was a former NACEDA Board Member.

>>> Marla Newman is Director of Community Development for Winston-Salem, NC. Marla was formerly executive director of the Louisiana Housing Alliance. She serves as Secretary on the NACEDA Board of Directors.

>>> Andy Frazier will be Executive Director of the Community Foundation of South Jersey. He will leave his position as Executive Director of Prosperity Indiana on March 2. Andy serves as Treasurer of the NACEDA Board of Directors.

>>> Val Iverson retired from Arizona Housing Coalition; Joan Serviss is Executive Director.  Val is doing consulting work and will continue to serve on the NACEDA Board of Directors.

>>> Brian McGrain was appointed Director of Economic Development & Planning Department in Lansing, MI. Brian was Associate Director and COO of the Community Economic Development Association of Michigan, where he has worked for 11 years. 

Funding Opportunities

Environmental Justice Collaborative Problem-Solving Cooperative Agreements | EPA

Ten community-based organizations will receive up to $120,000 for two-year projects that create self-sustaining, community-based partnerships to improve local environments. The current opportunity places special emphasis on proposals to be performed in rural areas. The application deadline is February 16.

Sustainable Communities Innovation Challenge | Fannie Mae 

Phase 1 of The Challenge, which is open now through February 23, will award contracts for research and development to advance the most innovative idea s that focus on the intersection of affordable housing and employment/economic opportunity. 

Nonprofit Resource Fund | TD Charitable Foundation

Grants of up to $1,000 will be awarded to eligible community-based organizations for employees to attend approved classes/courses that will enhance their job performance. Available in MD, CT, DE, FL, ME, MA, MD, NH, NJ, NY, NC, PA, RI, SC, VT, VA, and DC. Rolling deadline.

View more funding opportunities on the NACEDA website. They're updated throughout the month.

Funding Opportunities