HUD’s Research NOFA
Todd M. Richardson, Associate Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy Development. I am pleased to let folks know that we have recently issued a Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA) for four projects I mentioned in this column in February of 2014. Folks eligible and interested in these projects should visit www.grants.gov.
These are the four exciting new research projects:
- Moving To Work (MTW) Evaluation (1 award of up to $2,175,000). The study HUD envisions is a comprehensive evaluation guided by the following overarching questions: What can we learn from MTW initiatives about how to deliver federal housing assistance to achieve cost efficiency, client self-sufficiency, and increased housing choice? What are the risks and opportunities inherent in MTW flexibilities (that is, the specific exceptions from the Housing Act of 1937 that allow MTW innovations)?
- Jobs Plus Evaluation (1 award of up to $1,475,000). This study will provide an implementation and baseline assessment at up to 8 PHAs implementing Jobs Plus, the new $24 million place-based program designed to increase work and earnings among public housing residents. Jobs Plus includes three core components: employment-related services; financial incentives — in particular, the Jobs Plus Earned Income Disregard; and community supports for work. This cooperative agreement is expected to support the first phase of a multiphase evaluation.
- Small Area Fair Market Rent (SAFMR) Demonstration Evaluation (1 award of up to $850,000). This study will evaluate the implementation of zip code-based FMRs relative to the current method of metropolitan-based FMRs for five public housing agencies (PHAs) and the FMR area of Dallas, Texas. The research team will study the impact on where tenants locate and lease units as a result of the program. The team will also evaluate the program’s impact on PHA program management and costs. Five of the six PHAs began program implementation in 2013.
- Resident Opportunities and Self-Sufficiency (ROSS) Program Evaluation (1 award of up to $700,000). This evaluation will explore the operations and activities undertaken by approximately 200 service coordinators supported by the roughly 110 grantees announced in February 2015 under the fiscal year 2014 ROSS Service Coordinators program.
Like Research Partnerships, we expect that using Cooperative Agreements to undertake these research projects will have great value for the housing and community development fields. Cooperative Agreement research is what its name implies. The work involves a substantial amount of back-and-forth between HUD and the selected research teams to ensure that the research successfully answers the questions posed in the NOFA, produces high-quality written report(s), and generates data-sets that are available for use by other researchers.
Eligible applicants are public or private nonprofit organizations or intermediaries, including institutions of higher education and areawide planning organizations; for-profit organizations; states, units of general local government, or Indian tribes; public housing agencies; and small businesses. Applicants must meet the specific requirements and qualifications specified in the NOFA, including expertise in housing and service programs for low-income persons in general, the specific HUD programs and activities to be studied, and the specific research methods needed to undertake the study.