HUD NOFA FUNDING
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) funds housing and services for people who are homeless through the annual NOFA (Notice of Funding Availability) process.
Largest Single Source of Funding
HUD’s Continuum of Care homeless assistance programs serve as the largest single source of funding for homeless services in Chicago; and, in 2011 Chicago received more than $53 million from HUD to support over 170 programs for homeless individuals and families. HUD awards the Continuum of Care homeless assistance grants through an annual application process known as the NOFA (Notice of Funding Availability), which is typically released by HUD in the spring or summer of each year.
Each year, on behalf of the Chicago Planning Council on Homelessness, the Chicago Alliance to End Homelessness submits a lengthy application to HUD for the Continuum of Care NOFA funding. Included in this application is Chicago’s priority list for distributing the annual HUD funding. In order for a program to receive HUD funding, it must appear on Chicago’s priority list.
For agencies applying for HUD funding in Chicago, the NOFA process has two parts – the local evaluation process and the submission of the HUD application:
Part 1: The Evaluation Process
Prior to the release of the Continuum of Care NOFA by HUD, Chicago performs its own evaluation of renewal and new projects through two simultaneous processes. These processes are established by the Chicago Planning Council on Homelessness and managed by the Chicago Alliance to End Homelessness.
Renewal Projects: For renewal projects, agencies complete and submit the evaluation instrument, which is a tool used to evaluate each program. Evaluation instrument applications are then reviewed to ensure the project is operating in compliance with HUD and local standards.
New Projects: For new projects, agencies complete a separate application process consisting of a letter of interest (LOI) and an application (if applicable).
Part 2: Submission of HUD Application
Once HUD releases the Continuum of Care NOFA, agencies are required to submit a series of online forms, for each program, through HUD’s electronic application system e-snaps. These are commonly known as the Exhibit 2 applications.
2013 HUD Evaluation Process
The 2013 NOFA Evaluation Process has begun. Please visit www.allchicago.org to view the 2013 Evaluation Instrument Resources.
2012 HUD NOFA Process
The 2012 HUD NOFA Process was laid out in an announcement sent to all HUD SHP providers in March 2012.
Chicago Evaluation Process:
The 2012 HUD Continuum of Care NOFA process kicked off on April 30, 2012 with the release of the 2012 Evaluation Instrument for renewal SHP projects. As Chicago awaited the implementation of the HEARTH Act and the release of Chicago’s new Plan to End Homelessness, the Chicago Planning Council has dedicated 2012 as a transition year with an abridged evaluation instrument. Chicago Alliance staff provided training and technical assistance to all agencies required to complete an Evaluation Instrument.
HUD Application Process:
The HUD Application process began in August 2012 with work on the Grant Inventory Worksheet, followed by the registration and UFA application, and ended in January 2013 with the submission of Chicago’s Exhibit 1, the Project Priority Listing, and all project Exhibit 2’s.
The Chicago Planning Council on Homelessness reallocated funding from all renewal projects to create a new project for Coordinated Access and an HMIS Expansion Project. Additionally, during the 2012 application process, HUD required CoC’s to place projects into two tiers in the event that HUD funding was not sufficient to cover all projects. As a result, the Planning Council passed the 2012 Ranking Policies to help determine which projects would be placed in Tier 2. That announcement was released on January 3, 2013. The Tier 2 cut off point is only an estimate until the final funding announcements are made by HUD, which is expected during the first half of 2013.
For questions about the HUD Application Process, or any of the content in the documents submitted to HUD, please contact Nicole Bahena at (312) 379-0301 x 28.
Useful NOFA Links
New APR: HUD requires all HUD projects ending on or after June 1, 2011 to use submit a new version of the APR in e-snaps. HUD provides several resources on its HUDHRE website. Additionally, the local HUD provided a special APR training at the request of the Alliance, and the presentation slides from that training can be downloaded here.
e-snaps and HUD e-snaps Training and Resource Page: HUD unveiled a new electronic application for the 2008 Continuum of Care (CoC) competition through a new online system, called e-snaps. HUD provides frequently updated information about e-snaps during the NOFA process on their Training and Resource Page.
Supportive Housing Program Desk Guide: The SHP Desk Guide describes the SHP grant process from grant award onward. It will take you through the life cycle of a grant, incorporating everything from very basic information to the intricacies of grant administration. The guide is not a substitute for the SHP regulations. However, it is a practical guide to issues that arise during project implementation.
Supportive Housing Program Self-Monitoring Tools: The guide provides user-friendly forms to enable staff to assess their project operations against the standards set by HUD rules and regulations. Tools include: Measuring Project Progress, Determining and Documenting Participant Eligibility, Tracking Match Requirements, Tracking Important Contract Dates and Implementation Milestones, Calculating Resident Rent, Record Keeping and Financial Management, and Conducting a Housing Assessment.
HUD Homeless Resource Exchange: The Homelessness Resource Exchange is your online one-stop shop for information and resources on assisting people who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless. Program guidance and regulations, technical assistance (TA) and training resources, research and publications, and more are available.
Local HUD Representatives: See section entitled "Homeless Programs" for representatives' contact information for HUD SHP, S+C, and SRO programs in Chicago.
Program Models Chart: The Program Models Chart, which was revised and approved by the Chicago Planning Council on Homelessness in May 2010, describes each program model considered to be in alignment with Chicago's Plan to End Homelessness. The Chart is used for local funding purposes, including Chicago's HUD NOFA funding process.