Monday, May 16, 2022

CORRECTED: Portland Metro Housing Authorities Getting Creative with Use of Metro Supportive Services Funds. I Project Per Unit Average Clackamas Project Based Assistance Cost, Including Services, at $2,338 Per Unit Per Month.

After feedback and interaction with the Clackamas County Housing Authority Monday I have made these corrections to the prior post:

  1. The monthly rent for the 3 bedroom unit has been reduced below 120% because HACC determined it was above their rent reasonableness determination. So instead of $2,941 the 3 BR rent was reduced to $2,888. This impacts the 3 bedroom monthly subsidy cost which was reduced from $2,110 to $2,057 AND the average monthly subsidy cost per unit for the 40 units which was reduced from $1,563 to $1,493.
  2. The monthly average per unit cost for turnover deposits was reduced from $2,143 to $179. This was a BIG error and the result of my math error. 
  3. The monthly per unit cost for supportive services increased from $250 to $667. This was the result of my math error and feedback from HACC that they were projecting $8,000 per unit in annual supportive service costs and not the $10,000 I had used. 
  4. As a result the average monthly subsidy cost for the 40 supportive service units [housing, turnover deposits, and supportive services] was cut from $3,965 to $2,338. While the average housing subsidy cost per unit of $1,493 was only reduced slightly from $1,563 there was a BIG net reduction in my projected turnover deposit and supportive service costs. 
  5. I have also made reductions in the Total Development Cost to reflect suggestions from HACC.

I also note that my subsidy projections do NOT include any property tax reductions nor does the Total Development Cost include any of the supportive housing subsidy costs. 

I regret the errors and appreciate the feedback and interaction with  HACC.  

I have changed the text and table pasted in to reflect these changes


I recently tweeted that Home Forward  was planning on using Metro supportive services funds to pay $2 million in back rent for some of their tenants, with no clear data on how many tenants this will cover and under which programs rent was owed. The tweet is HERE

In reading through the upcoming agenda for the Clackamas County Commission I noticed that there was a consent agenda item to approve use of $3 million in Metro bonds to help finance a 100 unit affordable rental project on the Marylhurst campus in Lake Oswego.

This project currently has funding from a variety of state sources that HACC totals to $41.1M , a development cost of $411,000 per unit.

Projected Metro Supportive Services Voucher Monthly Cost --Housing, "Deposits", and Supportive Services--$2,338

Current HACC HUD Voucher Per Unit Cost--Housing Only-$946

In reading through the briefing materials I noticed that the housing authority was also asking for authority to project base 40 units. 

Instead of using HUD vouchers as the traditional source the plan is to use Metro supportive housing services funding to pay for project basing.

Since these aren't HUD vouchers they can use the supportive service funds for anything that is acceptable to Metro and the county.  I note for example that the briefing materials use don't use FMR but instead 120% of the FMR to value the cost of the vouchers . Rents are still subject to a housing authority rent reasonableness determination and HACC advises that for this project 3BR units have been limited to $2,888 instead of 120% of FMR which would be $2,941 . Under the Metro long range rent assistance program the tenant share of rent is 28.5% of gross income, with no income deductions permitted.

The projected 7 year $5.6 M cost for 40 vouchers includes $600,000 for turn over "deposits" expected at once per unit per year.

This however does NOT yet include supportive services that will be contracted for at a later date. After consultation with HACC I have used an average annual estimate of $8,000 per unit for supportive service costs. This adds another $2.24 M increasing TOTAL 7 year subsidy cost to $7.8 M.  [property tax exemption not included].

The term is for 7 years [the supportive service program is authorized for 10 years and the project is not expected to be online until 2023]. 

Below is a table with MY projected estimate of the monthly and annual costs for this project. 

  • Average monthly subsidy, including "Deposit" costs and a projected $8 K per unit in additional supportive service costs= $2,338. 
  • Annual subsidy for 40 units=$1.12M
  • The current Clackamas county average HUD voucher per unit cost is $946; the projected average monthly housing only subsidy for the 40 Metro supportive service units  is higher at $1,493. This is primarily because of the use of rents higher than the HUD FMR.
  • Average share of rent for the tenant is $723 a month.
  • Total 7 year subsidy costs (without property tax exemption) is projected at $7.8 M. 

The Clackamas County Supportive Services web page is HERE.

As I previously noted I have created a folder with Metro supportive services documents including progress reports and intergovernmental agreements HERE.

Originally created and posted on the Oregon Housing Blog.

Thursday, May 12, 2022

Metro Supportive Services Program Implementation Plans, Grant Agreements, and Progress Reports Consolidated Into 3 PDF Files.

The sheer complexity of tracking housing policies and data can be overwhelming. 

Metro's Supportive Services housing measure is a good example. There are local implementation plans, grant agreements, and progress reports that collectively total more than 1,600 pages. 

In an initial effort to make it simpler to find and search that information I created 3 PDF file binders, one each for 

Implementation Plans [628 pages].

Local Government Agreements [839 pages]. 

Progress Reports (Through April of this year). [154 pages].

All 3 PDF files open to a navigation page with bookmarks.  Each file has information from Clackamas, Multnomah, and Washington counties. 

While there are clearly other documents related to the Supportive Service program this at least is starting point that allows a keyword search of multiple counties at once.

The link for the FOLDER containing these documents is HERE. It currently contains 3 PDF files. Once you open the folder all files within with be viewable/downloadable. 

IF I add additional supportive services files or data you can navigate to this folder to find those documents. [I suggest you bookmark the link for future reference]. 

Originally created and posted on the Oregon Housing Blog

Tuesday, May 10, 2022

Upcoming $225M Metro Supportive Service Dollars Available Per Homeless Person Varies by County from $19K to $92k.

The graph and table below shows how much would be available by county per homeless person using the county share of homeless population the 2022 PIT count.  (A 1 page PDF version can be downloaded HERE).

Assumptions are:

  1. $225 M available for allocation (I believe this is the Metro projected collections for FY 2022-2023; see page 285 in proposed budget HERE.). 
  2. County distribution formula remains the same as current, and is based on the county on which the tax is collected. Current collection data, which should have seen a big jump in April, is not yet public. This could change distribution shown here. 
  3. No adjustments are made for share of regionwide chronic homeless population counts which is a focus area for the fund. (County data has not yet been released). [Multnomah county had nearly 85% of that sub population in the 2019 PIT survey]. 


The data shows that allocations would vary significantly by county. Multnomah county would get $19K per homeless person in the 2022 PIT, Clackamas County would get $80K, and Washington County would get $92K. That's nearly a 5 to 1 ratio from the lowest to the highest per capita amount. 

Also shown in the table, but not in graph, are per capita amounts per unsheltered person in the 2022 PIT count. That varies from an even WIDER amount from $33K (Multnomah,), to $140K (Clackamas), to $330K (Washington). That's nearly a 10 to 1 ratio from the lowest to the highest per capita amount.

Originally created and posted on the Oregon Housing Blog.

Monday, May 9, 2022

Portland Metro Homeless Services Tax. 2022: If $200 M Collected, Dollars for Each Chronic Homeless Person=$40,827.

Last week the three county Continuum of Care homeless organizations in the Portland Metro area released initial data from the 2022 Point in Time homeless count.

After looking at news coverage and the initial release of the 2019 PIT data the first unreported story I see is the high level of funding that would be available from the Metro services taxes for each chronic homeless person.

The math:

  • The press release reports a homeless population of 6,633 and (without a county breakout) a population of chronic homeless of 3,674. 
  • Metro's service tax dollars are supposed to be directly 75% at the chronically homeless. 
  • Let's assume a $200 million annual collection from the homeless service tax. 

With these facts and the assumed distribution of $200 million the table below shows that  for every chronic homeless person there would be $40,827 available, and for every non chronic homeless person there would be $16,898 available. 

NOTE; This is in ADDITION to the existing homeless spending per person from all other funding sources: HUD, HHS, VA, Treasury, state funding, local funding etc. (In their 2021 local implementation plan Clackamas County totals three county other homeless investments of $112 million, but this may be an understatement). 

Chronic Homeless Distribution Per County May Impact County Metro Service Tax Distribution. 

With the current chronic homeless data NOT yet publicly available by county, we can't know how the chronic homeless PIT will impact distribution amongst the counties.  

The 2022 PIT total homeless population distribution is Multnomah County (78.8%), Washington County (12.2%) and Clackamas County (9 %)

The current Metro service dollar distribution formula is Multnomah County (45.3%), Washington County (33.3%) and Clackamas County (21.3%)

Other factors, like the location of tax collections, may also impact the distribution. 

Originally created and posted on the Oregon Housing Blog

Tuesday, April 26, 2022

Oregon New "Flex" Home Loan Program Delays: A Year Later Negotiations Continue with Idaho Housing Agency to Service Loans.

Oregon Housing and Community Services has been talking about replacing the long running Oregon Bond SF loan program for a long time. An October 2020 meeting packet (PDF pages 12-20) for the Oregon Housing Stability Council had some background about the planned program. Some outtakes from the briefing materials:

"Lastly, though final terms of the DPA program are subject to negotiation with the future master servicer, our plan is for low income borrowers with an Area Median Income of 80% and below to have a forgivable DPA [DOWN PAYMENT ASSISTANCE] in the form of a silent second mortgage that has no payment and no interest rate. 

We have engaged our hedge provider, our master servicer should be boarded in the first part of 2021, we are in the process of finalizing our lender application and anticipate offering the program near the beginning of Q2-2021."

Earlier this year OHCS indicated that it would NOT be seeking additional private activity bond cap for the SF bond program because of the demand for bond cap for rental projects. OHCS continues to make loans under the SF bond program using existing allocated bond cap. The current Oregon SF bond rates are: 

Rate Advantage, 4.375% and Cash Advantage [WITH Down payment Assistance] 5.625%.

A snip from a recent Housing Stability Council meeting package shows that only 434 OHCS SF bond loans were made during CY 2021 even though rates were as low as 2.25%; in 2019 1,029 Oregon bond loans were originated. 

I recently inquired about the status after noting that the RFP for a servicer of flex loans had closed a year ago in April and an June 1, 2021 notice had been posted subsequently showing the intent to award, subject to negotiations, with the Idaho Housing and Finance Association. (IDHFA services SF loans for several other loans including Washington State).

The answer I received was that

"We are working to determine a timeline, but at this moment do not have a date to share with the public". and "this is a longer than typical timeline, however, the project is not only a format and structure that is new to OHCS, but also substantially more complex as well, we are working on this diligently."

I suspect that the topic could come up at the Friday May 6th meeting of the Oregon Housing Stability Council.

Originally created and posted on the Oregon Housing Blog.