Final Rule for CityFHEPS Amendment Concerning Certain Regulated Units

Adopted Rules: Closed to Comments

Agency:
Effective Date: 
Friday, May 29, 2020

Statement of Basis and Purpose of Rule

In order to implement the Mayor’s priority of preventing homelessness and moving households into stable housing, the Commissioner of the New York City Department of Social Services / Human Resources Administration (DSS/HRA) issues these amendments to the rule concerning the CityFHEPS rental assistance program.

The first amendment authorizes DSS/HRA to make additional payments, over and above the regular CityFHEPS rental assistance amounts, in certain regulated units where such payments are needed to make up the difference between the CityFHEPS maximum rent and the regulatory rent as set by the New York City Department of Housing Preservation & Development ("HPD") or the New York City Housing Development Corporation (“HDC”). Specifically, additional payments are authorized where both of the following conditions are met: (1) a unit is subject to the HPD/HDC Marketing Handbook pursuant to a regulatory agreement or similar instrument; and (2) HPD and/or HDC is requiring or approving that such units be filled by homeless individuals or families instead of or subsequent to an affordable housing lottery. These additional payments were originally authorized by emergency rule issued on January 30, 2020. The emergency rule was prompted by the availability of more than 150 rent-regulated units, many under the State’s 421-a Affordability Option C program. Payments made under the emergency rule have already enabled many people to exit shelter and move into these units. Making these provisions permanent will enable these payments to continue for the individuals and families who have already moved out of shelter and will enable other individuals and families to move into units that meet the same criteria. These additional payments were originally authorized by emergency rule issued on January 30, 2020. The emergency rule was prompted by the availability of more than 150 rent-regulated units, many under the State’s 421-a Affordability Option C program. Payments made under the emergency rule have already enabled many people to exit shelter and move into these units. Making these provisions permanent will enable these payments to continue for the individuals and families who have already moved out of shelter and will enable other individuals and families to move into units that meet the same criteria.

The second amendment revises section 10-09(a) concerning midyear recalculations of the CityFHEPS rental assistance amount. That provision currently provides that the agency will recalculate the CityFHEPS rental assistance amount, at the household’s request, only where the household’s income has decreased prior to renewal. However, there are instances, including when a smaller household who was previously on cash assistance receives disability benefits, where a household may potentially benefit from a midyear recalculation when their income has increased midyear. The amended provision provides that, upon request, the agency will recalculate the CityFHEPS rental assistance payment prior to renewal whenever there is a change in income that would decrease the household’s client contribution.

HRA’s authority for this rule may be found in sections 34, 56, 61, 62, 77, and 131 of the New York Social Services Law and sections 603 and 1043 of the New York City Charter.

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