Important Items to Note in This Year’s CoC NOFA
Below is a quick list of some important changes and items to note in the recently released NOFA for HUD’s CoC Program as applicants are working on improving their system to achieve better results.
- Details in the NOFA: It is critical that all applicants read the NOFA carefully, as it is different than many of the NOFAs released previously. Please take particular note of the scoring and selection criteria contained in the NOFA.
- The Interim Rule: The FY 2012 CoC Program Competition is the first funding competition to be administered under the CoC Program interim rule. If you are not familiar with the new regulations, please refer to this rule before and during your application process.
- CoCs must rank projects: To ensure that CoCs have the opportunity to prioritize their projects locally in the event that HUD is not able to fund all renewals, HUD is requiring that CoCs rank projects within 2 tiers in FY 2012. Tier 1 is equal to the CoC's Annual Renewal Demand approved in the Registration process, less 3.5 percent. Tier 2 is the amount between a CoC's Tier 1 and the CoC's Final Pro-Rata Need (FPRN) and any approved amounts for CoC planning and the Permanent Housing Bonus.
- Ending Chronic Homelessness: Aligned with Opening Doors: Federal Strategic Plan to Prevent and End Homelessness, HUD has made ending chronic homelessness by the end of 2015 a priority. In order to reach this national goal, HUD strongly encourages CoCs to include this priority as part of their local planning process and HUD must prioritize funding targeted to this population.
A priority for HUD in the FY 2012 CoC competition is the development of new permanent supportive housing projects that propose to serve 100 percent chronically homeless individuals and families. HUD seems to be providing a strong indication that it will expect CoCs to prioritize those families and individuals with the longest history of homelessness first. The Permanent Housing Bonus will be limited to projects that propose to exclusively serve chronically homeless individuals and families.
- Renewals under SHP and S+C: Applicants that were eligible in the past for renewals under the Supportive Housing Program (SHP) and Shelter Plus Care (S+C) will continue to be eligible for renewal of leasing, operating, supportive services, rental assistance, HMIS, and project administration—so long as the recipient does not change the project.
- Reallocation: All CoCs will be allowed to reallocate funding from existing renewal projects to new project applications (please read NOFA in detail for eligible projects) without decreasing the CoCs Annual Renewal Demand. HUD (and USICH) are strongly encouraging CoCs to take advantage of this flexibility to make changes to create better results.
Projects eligible for reallocation: Rental assistance projects formerly awarded under the (S+C) will now be eligible for reallocation; Supportive Housing Program resources will continue to be eligible for reallocation as well. Reallocated funds from Supportive Services Only projects are also eligible to establish and operate a coordinated intake system.
CoCs will not reduce their renewal amounts if they decide to reallocate some of their resources to be more effective.
- Who to Contact for CoC Program Changes: If a CoC would like to make changes to their CoC program and crisis response system via repurposing existing programs or reallocating resources like those mentioned above, the first step is to contact their HUD Field Office to find out if it will be a grant amendment (which can happen anytime) or a “reallocation” which will have to take place during the CoC NOFA competition.