Notice of Funding Availability Under Supportive Services for Veteran Families Program, 65200-65208 [2018-27465]

Download as PDF 65200 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 243 / Wednesday, December 19, 2018 / Notices Notice of OFAC Actions On December 10, 2018, OFAC determined that the property and interests in property subject to U.S. jurisdiction of the following persons are blocked under the relevant sanctions authority listed below. Individuals 1. CHOE, Ryong Hae (a.k.a. CH’OE, Ryong-hae); DOB 15 Jan 1950; Gender Male; Secondary sanctions risk: North Korea Sanctions Regulations, sections 510.201 and 510.210; Director of the Workers’ Party of Korea Organization and Guidance Department (individual) [DPRK2]. Designated pursuant to Section 1(a)(iii) of Executive Order 13687 of January 2, 2015, ‘‘Imposing Additional Sanctions with Respect to North Korea’’ (E.O. 13687) for being an official of the Workers’ Party of Korea. 2. JONG, Kyong Thaek (a.k.a. CHO’NG, Kyo’ng-t’aek), Pyongyang, Korea, North; DOB 01 Jan 1961 to 31 Dec 1963; Gender Male; Secondary sanctions risk: North Korea Sanctions Regulations, sections 510.201 and 510.210; Minister of State Security (individual) [DPRK2]. Designated pursuant to Section 1(a)(ii) of E.O. 13687 for being an official of the Government of North Korea. Also designated pursuant to Section 1(a)(iii) of E.O. 13687 for being an official of the Workers’ Party of Korea. 3. PAK, Kwang Ho (a.k.a. PAK, Kwang-ho); DOB 01 Jan 1946 to 31 Dec 1948; Gender Male; Secondary sanctions risk: North Korea Sanctions Regulations, sections 510.201 and 510.210; Director of the Propaganda and Agitation Department (individual) [DPRK2]. Designated pursuant to Section 1(a)(iii) of E.O. 13687 for being an official of the Workers’ Party of Korea. Andrea Gacki, Director, Office of Foreign Assets Control. [FR Doc. 2018–27453 Filed 12–18–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4810–AL–P DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES1 Notice of Funding Availability Under Supportive Services for Veteran Families Program Department of Veterans Affairs. Notice of fund availability. AGENCY: ACTION: The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is announcing the availability of funds for supportive services grants for new applicants and existing grantees under the Supportive SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:59 Dec 18, 2018 Jkt 247001 Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) Program. This Notice of Fund Availability (NOFA) contains information concerning the SSVF Program, supportive services grant application process. Awards made for supportive services grants will fund operations beginning October 1, 2019. DATES: Applications for supportive services grants under the SSVF Program must be received by the SSVF Program Office by 4:00 p.m. Eastern Time on February 22, 2019. In the interest of fairness to all competing applicants, this deadline is firm as to date and hour, and VA will treat as ineligible for consideration any application that is received after the deadline. Applicants should take this practice into account and make early submission of their materials to avoid any risk of loss of eligibility brought about by unanticipated delays, computer service outages, or other submission-related problems. For a Copy of the Application Package: Copies of the application can be downloaded from the SSVF website at www.va.gov/homeless/ ssvf.asp. Questions should be referred to the SSVF Program Office via email at SSVF@va.gov. For detailed SSVF Program information and requirements, see part 62 of Title 38, Code of Federal Regulations (38 CFR part 62). Submission of Application Package: Applicants must submit applications electronically following instructions found at www.va.gov/homeless/ssvf.asp. Applications may not be mailed or sent by facsimile (FAX). Applications must be received in the SSVF Program Office by 4:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on the application deadline date. Applications must arrive as a complete package. Materials arriving separately will not be included in the application package for consideration and may result in the application being rejected. See Award Information section of this NOFA for maximum allowable grant amounts. Technical Assistance: Information regarding how to obtain technical assistance with the preparation of a supportive services grant application is available on the SSVF Program website at: www.va.gov/homeless/ssvf.asp. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. John Kuhn, National Director, Supportive Services for Veteran Families, by email at SSVF@va.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Funding Opportunity Title: Supportive Services for Veteran Families Program. Announcement Type: Initial. ADDRESSES: PO 00000 Frm 00066 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Funding Opportunity Number: VA– SSVF–110918. Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Number: 64.033, VA Supportive Services for Veteran Families Program. Funding Opportunity Description Purpose The SSVF Program purpose is to provide supportive services grants to private non-profit organizations and consumer cooperatives, who will coordinate or provide supportive services to very low-income veteran families who: (i) Are residing in permanent housing and are at risk of becoming homeless; (ii) are homeless and scheduled to become residents of permanent housing within a specified time period; or (iii) after exiting permanent housing within a specified time period, are seeking other housing that is responsive to such very lowincome veteran family’s needs and preferences. SSVF prioritizes the delivery of rapid re-housing services to homeless veteran households. Rapid re-housing is an intervention designed to help individuals and families quickly exit homelessness, return to housing in the community, and avoid homelessness again in the near term. The core components of a rapid re-housing program are housing identification, financial assistance with move-in and rental expenses, and rapid re-housing case management and services. These core components represent the minimum that a program must be providing to households to be considered a rapid re-housing program, but do not provide guidance for what constitutes an effective rapid re-housing program. Applicants should familiarize themselves with the Rapid Re-housing Performance Benchmarks and Program Standards found on at www.va.gov/ homeless/ssvf.asp. Funding Priorities The principle goal for this NOFA is to provide support to those applicants who demonstrate the greatest capacity to end homelessness among veterans or, in communities that have already met US Interagency Council on Homelessness (USICH) Federal Criteria and Benchmarks, or, alternatively, Community Solutions’ Functional Zero (the latter can be found at https:// cmtysolutions.org/sites/default/files/ final_zero_2016_metrics.pdf), a capacity to sustain these gains. Priority will be given to grantees who can demonstrate adoption of evidence-based practices in their application. E:\FR\FM\19DEN1.SGM 19DEN1 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 243 / Wednesday, December 19, 2018 / Notices Under Priority 1, VA will provide funding to existing grantees with 3-year accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) in Employment and Community Services: Rapid Rehousing and Homeless Prevention standards, a 4year accreditation from the Council on Accreditation’s (COA) accreditation in Housing Stabilization and Community Living Services standards, or a 3-year accreditation in The Joint Commission’s (JC) Behavioral Health Care: Housing Support Services Standards. Priority 2 includes existing grantees seeking to renew their grants not included under Priority 1. Under Priority 3, VA will provide non-renewable grants for a 2year period to eligible entities providing services to very low-income veteran families who are occupying permanent housing in the areas of one of the Continuums of Care (CoC) listed in the Award Information section of this Notice. VA has designed this 2-year effort to provide a surge of resources in communities with high need. Only existing grantees currently providing services in an identified target community are eligible to apply for additional funds in that target community they currently serve under Priority 3. Priority 4 is open to new applicants only, who are seeking to provide services in the areas of one of the CoCs listed in the Award Information section of this Notice. These locations have been selected based on the current unmet service needs and the levels of Veteran homelessness, and VA also seeks to ensure that supportive services grants are equitably distributed across geographic regions, including rural communities and tribal lands. Applications for Priority 3 and 4 awards must include a letter of support from the target CoC to be considered for funding. CoC letters of support must contain the information described in the Award Information section of this Notice. amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES1 Note: VA is considering adding an additional rental subsidy option for Priority 3 awards. Should VA announce this new rental subsidy option through the publication of rulemaking that would amend 38 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) part 62, Priority 3 awardees, as well as any other SSVF grantee providing services in a Priority 3 target community, would have the Definitions: Title 38 CFR part 62 contains definitions of terms used in the SSVF Program. In addition to the definitions and requirements described in 38 CFR part 62, this NOFA provides further clarification in this paragraph on the use of Emergency Housing Assistance (EHA). EHA may be provided by the SSVF grantee under 38 CFR 62.34(f) to VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:59 Dec 18, 2018 Jkt 247001 offer transition in place when a permanent housing voucher, such as is offered through the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Section 8 program, is available from any source, but access to the permanent housing voucher is pending completion of the housing inspection and administrative processes necessary for leasing. In such circumstances, the EHA payment cannot exceed what would otherwise be paid when the voucher is utilized. EHA may also be used as part of a Rapid Resolution or diversion response that helps Veteran households avoid entry into homelessness through placements with family or friends. Approach Respondents to this NOFA should base their proposals and applications on the current requirements of part 62. Grantees will be expected to leverage supportive services grant funds to enhance the housing stability of very low-income veteran families who are occupying permanent housing. In doing so, grantees are required to establish relationships with local community resources. Therefore, grantees must work through coordinated partnerships built either through formal agreements or the informal working relationships commonly found among successful social service providers. As part of the application, all applicants are strongly encouraged to provide letters of support from their respective VA Network Homeless Coordinator (or their designee). In addition, Priority 1 and 2 applicants are strongly encouraged to provide letters of support from the CoC where they plan to deliver services that reflect the applicant’s engagement in the CoC’s efforts to coordinate services. Priority 3 and 4 applicants are required to provide these letters from the local CoC. Failure to provide a letter of support from the CoC as described will limit the maximum award to 90 percent of the award made in the previous fiscal year for Priority 1 and 2 applicants (as described in the Award Information section of this Notice. In addition, any applicant proposing to serve an Indian Tribal area is strongly encouraged to provide a letter of support from the relevant Indian Tribal Government. The CoC’s letter of support should note if the applicant is providing assistance to CoC in building local capacity to build Coordinated Entry Systems (CES) and the value and form of that assistance, whether support is direct funding or staffing. CES requires that providers ‘‘operating within the CoC’s geographic area must also work together to ensure the CoC’s coordinated PO 00000 Frm 00067 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 65201 entry process allows for coordinated screening, assessment and referrals.’’ (HUD Notice: CPD–17–01). The CoC’s letter of support should also describe the applicant’s participation in the CoC’s community planning efforts. Pursuant to 38 CFR 62.36, all grantees must participate in the development, implementation, and ongoing operations of their local CoC’s coordinated assessment system, to include a CoC plan. A CoC plan is a community plan to organize and deliver housing and services to meet the needs of people who are homeless as they move to stable housing and maximize self-sufficiency. The community plan includes action steps to end homelessness and prevent a return to homelessness (CoC locations and contact information can be found at www.hudhre.nfo/ index.cfm?do=viewCocMaps). As part of their application, the applying organization’s Executive Director must certify on behalf of the agency that they will actively participate in CoC community planning efforts and operate the rapid re-housing component of their SSVF grant in a manner consistent with the Rapid Rehousing Performance Benchmarks and Program Standards found at www.va.gov/homeless/ssvf.asp. The aim of the provision of supportive services is to assist very lowincome veteran families residing in permanent housing to remain stably housed and to rapidly transition those not currently in permanent housing to stable housing. SSVF emphasizes the placement of homeless veteran families who are described in 38 CFR 62.11(b)– (c) to include (i) very low-income veteran families who lack a fixed, regular and adequate nighttime residence and are scheduled to become residents of permanent housing within 90 days, and (ii) very low-income veteran families who have exited permanent housing within the previous 90 days to seek other housing that is responsive to their needs and preferences. As a crisis intervention program, the SSVF Program is not intended to provide long-term support for participants, nor will it be able to address all of the financial and supportive services needs of participants that affect housing stability. Rather, when participants require longterm support, grantees should focus on connecting such participants to income supports, such as employment and mainstream Federal and community resources (e.g., HUD–VA Supportive Housing Program, HUD Housing Choice Voucher Programs, McKinney-Vento Funded Supportive Housing Programs, Temporary Assistance for Needy E:\FR\FM\19DEN1.SGM 19DEN1 65202 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 243 / Wednesday, December 19, 2018 / Notices Families (TANF), and Social Security Income/Social Security Disability Insurance (SSI/SSDI), etc.) that can provide ongoing support as required. Assistance in obtaining or retaining permanent housing is a fundamental goal of the SSVF Program. Grantees must provide case management services in accordance with 38 CFR 62.31. Such case management should include tenant counseling, mediation with landlords, and outreach to landlords. Authority Funding available under this NOFA is authorized by 38 United States Code (U.S.C.) 2044. VA implements the SSVF Program through regulations in 38 CFR part 62. Funds made available under this NOFA are subject to the requirements of these regulations. Requirements for the Use of Supportive Services Grant Funds amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES1 Requirements The applicant’s request for funding must be consistent with the limitations and uses of supportive services grant funds set forth in 38 CFR part 62 and in this NOFA. In accordance with the regulations and this NOFA, the following requirements apply to supportive services grants awarded under this NOFA: 1. Grantees may use a maximum of 10 percent of supportive services grant funds for administrative costs identified in 38 CFR 62.70(e). 2. Priority 1 and 2 grantees must use a minimum of 60 percent of the temporary financial assistance portion of their supportive services grant funds to serve very low-income veteran families who qualify under 38 CFR 62.11(b). Priority 3 and 4 applicants are required to spend no less than 70 percent of all budgeted temporary financial assistance on participants occupying permanent housing as defined in 38 CFR 62.11(b). (NOTE: Grantees may request a waiver to decrease this minimum, as discussed in the Application Review Information section of this Notice.) 3. Priority 1, 2, and 4 grantees may use a maximum of 50 percent of supportive services grant funds to provide the supportive service of temporary financial assistance paid directly to a third party on behalf of a participant for child care, emergency housing assistance, transportation, rental assistance, utility-fee payment assistance, security deposits, utility deposits, moving costs, and general housing stability assistance (which includes emergency supplies), in accordance with 38 CFR 62.33 and 38 VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:59 Dec 18, 2018 Jkt 247001 CFR 62.34. Priority 3 grantees must use a minimum of 60 percent of supportive services grant funds to provide the supportive service of temporary financial assistance, unless a waiver is granted by the SSVF program office. Guidance for the Use of Supportive Services Grant Funds Title 38 CFR 62.2 defines Rapid rehousing as assistance offered ‘‘without preconditions’’. This is consistent with VA policy to support a ‘‘Housing First’’ model in addressing and ending homelessness. Grantees must develop plans that will ensure that veteran participants have the level of income and economic stability needed to remain in permanent housing after the conclusion of the SSVF intervention. Both employment and benefits assistance from VA and non-VA sources represent a significant underutilized source of income stability for homeless veterans. Income is not a pre-condition for housing. Case management should include income maximization strategies to ensure households have access to benefits, employment, and financial counseling. The complexity of program rules and the stigma some associate with entitlement programs contributes to their lack of use. For this reason, grantees are encouraged to consider strategies that can lead to prompt and successful access to employment and benefits that are essential to retaining housing. 1. Grantees are expected to offer the following supportive services: Counseling participants about housing; assisting participants in understanding leases; securing utilities; making moving arrangements; providing representative payee services concerning rent and utilities when needed; and mediation and outreach to property owners related to locating or retaining housing. Grantees may also assist participants by providing rental assistance, security or utility deposits, moving costs, emergency housing, or general housing stability assistance; or using other Federal resources, such as HUD’s Emergency Solutions Grants Program (ESG), or supportive services grant funds subject to the limitations described in this Notice and 38 CFR 62.34. 2. As SSVF is a short-term crisis intervention, grantees must develop plans that will produce sufficient income to sustain veteran participants in permanent housing after the conclusion of the SSVF intervention. Grantees must ensure the availability of employment and vocational services either through the direct provision of PO 00000 Frm 00068 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 these services or their availability through formal or informal service agreements. Agreements with Homeless Veteran Reintegration Programs funded by the U.S. Department of Labor are strongly encouraged. For participants unable to work due to disability, income must be established through available benefits programs. 3. Per 38 CFR 62.33, grantees must assist participants in obtaining public benefits. Grantees must screen all participants for eligibility for a broad range of entitlements such as TANF, Social Security, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, the LowIncome Home Energy Assistance Program, the Earned Income Tax Credit, and local General Assistance programs. A description of some of these benefits programs, including eligibility and how to access benefits, can be found at www.benefits.gov. Grantees are expected to access the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s SSI/SSDI Outreach, Access, and Recovery (SOAR) program directly by training staff and providing the service or subcontracting services to an organization to provide SOAR services. 4. Grantees are encouraged to provide, or assist participants in obtaining, legal services relevant to issues that interfere with the participants’ ability to obtain or retain permanent housing. (NOTE: Information regarding legal services provided may be protected from being released to the grantee or VA under attorney-client privilege, although the grantee must provide sufficient information to demonstrate the frequency and type of service delivered.) Support for legal services can include paying for court filing fees to assist a participant with issues that interfere with the participant’s ability to obtain or retain permanent housing or supportive services, including issues that affect the participant’s employability and financial security. Grantees (in addition to employees and members of grantees) may represent participants before VA with respect to a claim for VA benefits, but only if they are recognized for that purpose pursuant to 38 U.S.C. Chapter 59. Further, the individual providing such representation must be accredited pursuant to 38 U.S.C. Chapter 59. 5. Access to mental health and addiction services are required by SSVF; however, grantees cannot fund these services directly through the SSVF grant. Therefore, applicants must demonstrate, through either formal or informal agreements, their ability to promote rapid access to and engagement with mental health and addiction E:\FR\FM\19DEN1.SGM 19DEN1 65203 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 243 / Wednesday, December 19, 2018 / Notices amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES1 services for the veteran and family members. 6. VA recognizes that extremely lowincome veterans, with incomes below 30 percent of the area median income, face greater barriers to permanent housing placement. Grantees should consider how they can support these participants. 7. When serving participants who are residing in permanent housing, the defining question to ask is ‘‘Would this individual or family be homeless but for this assistance?’’ The grantee must use VA’s homeless prevention screening tool with criteria that targets those most at-risk of homelessness. To qualify for SSVF services, a participant who is served under 38 CFR 62.11(a) (homeless prevention) must not have sufficient resources or support networks (e.g., family, friends, faith-based or other social networks) immediately available to prevent them from becoming homeless. To further qualify for services under 38 CFR 62.11(a), the grantee must document that the participant meets that eligibility requirement. Documentation of one of the following conditions would meet this requirement: (a) Has moved because of economic reasons two or more times during the 60 days immediately preceding the application for homelessness prevention assistance; (b) Is living in the home of another because of economic hardship; (c) Has been notified in writing that their right to occupy their current housing or living situation will be terminated within 21 days after the date of application for assistance; (d) Lives in a hotel or motel, and the cost of the hotel or motel stay is not paid by charitable organizations or by Federal, State, or local government programs for low-income individuals; (e) Is exiting a publicly funded institution or system of care (such as a health care facility, a mental health facility, or correctional institution) without a stable housing plan; or (f) Otherwise lives in housing that has characteristics associated with instability and an increased risk of homelessness, as identified in the VA’s homeless prevention screening tool. 8. SSVF grantees are required to participate in local planning efforts designed to end veteran homelessness. Grantees may use grant funds to support SSVF involvement in such community planning by sub-contracting with CoCs, when such funding is essential, to create or sustain the development of these data driven plans. Grantees may also deploy staff to participate in CoC sanctioned Coordinated Entry screening and assessment. 9. When other funds from community resources are not readily available to assist program participants, grantees may choose to utilize supportive services grants, to the extent described in this NOFA and in 38 CFR 62.33 and 62.34, to provide temporary financial assistance. Such assistance may, subject to the limitations in this NOFA and 38 CFR part 62, be paid directly to a third party on behalf of a participant for child care, transportation, family emergency housing assistance, rental assistance, utility-fee payment assistance, security or utility deposits, moving costs and general housing stability assistance as necessary. 10. SSVF expects grantees to offer Rapid Resolution (also known as diversion) services. These services engage veterans immediately before or after they become homeless and assist them to avoid continued homelessness. These efforts can reduce the trauma and expense associated with extended periods of homelessness, and the strain on the crisis response and affordable housing resources in the community. Through Rapid Resolution, the grantee and the Veteran explore safe, alternative housing options immediately before or quickly after they become homeless. Rapid Resolution can identify an immediate safe place to stay within the Veteran’s network of family, friends, or other social networks. All Veterans requesting SSVF services should have a Rapid Resolution screening and if not appropriate for Rapid Resolution grantees should then assess the Veteran for other SSVF services. More information about Rapid Resolution can be found at www.va.gov/homeless/ ssvf.asp. Award Information Overview This NOFA announces the availability of funds for supportive services grants State CA CA CA CA CA 17:59 Dec 18, 2018 Funding The funding priorities for this NOFA are as follows:. 1. Priority 1. Under Priority 1, VA will provide funding to those existing grantees with 3-year CARF, 4-year COA accreditations, or 3-year JC accreditations. Proof of accreditation must be submitted with the application no later than the application due date. Grantees previously awarded a 3-year grant that is not scheduled to end by October 1, 2019, cannot apply under this NOFA but are required to submit a letter of intent (LOI) by the NOFA deadline indicating their intention of continuing SSVF services in FY 2019. Grantees submitting a LOI must include proof of continued accreditation, a letter of support from the CoC (see Award Information section in this Notice.) and a proposed budget for FY 2020. 2. Priority 2. Priority 2 includes all other existing grantees, not applying under Priority 1, seeking to renew their grants. 3. Priority 3. Priority 3 applications will be accepted only from existing grantees currently providing services in one of the communities targeted for additional funding under this Priority. (a) Awards are for a 2-year nonrecurring period. (b) If multiple grantees have fundable scores, VA may elect to equally distribute funds amongst applicants regardless of the funding request in order to strengthen overall community capacity. This distribution of funds could occur among the top 2 or 3 scoring applicants. (c) If underspent, awards are subject to being recouped as per the Other Information (d) section of this Notice, with funding amounts annualized for the purposes of spending calculations (for example, a 2-year award of $6 million is treated as $3 million per year). As a new award in the first year of the award period, grants will not be subject to the Other Information section of this Notice until the end of the third quarter. (e) List of CoCs for purposes of Priority 3 funding. CoC for the following areas ................................................................................. ................................................................................. ................................................................................. ................................................................................. ................................................................................. VerDate Sep<11>2014 under the SSVF Program and pertains to proposals for renewal of existing supportive services grant programs. Jkt 247001 PO 00000 CoC ID San Jose/Santa Clara ................................................. San Francisco .............................................................. Oakland ....................................................................... Los Angeles ................................................................. San Diego .................................................................... Frm 00069 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\19DEN1.SGM 19DEN1 CA–500 CA–501 CA–502 CA–600 CA–601 Maximum (awards cover 2-year term) $3 $6 $6 $6 $6 million. million. million. million. million. 65204 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 243 / Wednesday, December 19, 2018 / Notices State CoC for the following areas DC ................................................................................ HI .................................................................................. IL .................................................................................. NY ................................................................................. WA ................................................................................ District of Columbia ..................................................... Honolulu ....................................................................... Chicago ........................................................................ New York City .............................................................. Seattle .......................................................................... amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES1 4. Priority 4. Priority 4 applications will be accepted from new applicants only, who are seeking to provide services in the areas of one of the following targeted CoCs: (a) Grant requests do not need to serve target communities exclusively and may also include neighboring communities. Grant requests cannot exceed the amount listed as the ‘‘Maximum CoC ID CoC for the following areas AK ................................................................................. AL ................................................................................. AR ................................................................................. AZ ................................................................................. CA ................................................................................. CA ................................................................................. CA ................................................................................. CO ................................................................................ CO ................................................................................ IN .................................................................................. KS ................................................................................. LA ................................................................................. LA ................................................................................. MA ................................................................................ MO ................................................................................ MT ................................................................................ NC ................................................................................ NC ................................................................................ NY ................................................................................. NV ................................................................................. OR ................................................................................ OR ................................................................................ SD ................................................................................. TX ................................................................................. TX ................................................................................. TX ................................................................................. WA ................................................................................ WI ................................................................................. Alaska BoS .................................................................. Birmingham/Jefferson, St. Clair ................................... Little Rock/Central Arkansas ....................................... Phoenix, Mesa/Maricopa ............................................. Sacramento City .......................................................... San Diego .................................................................... Santa Ana/Anaheim/Orange County ........................... Metropolitan Denver .................................................... Colorado BoS .............................................................. Indiana BoS ................................................................. Kansas BoS ................................................................. Lafayette/Acadiana ...................................................... Louisiana BoS ............................................................. Boston .......................................................................... Kansas City ................................................................. Montana Statewide ...................................................... Charlotte/Mecklenberg ................................................. North Carolina BoS ..................................................... Buffalo, Niagara Falls/Erie ........................................... Las Vegas/Clark .......................................................... Portland, Gresham/Multnomah .................................... Oregon BoS ................................................................. South Dakota Statewide .............................................. Dallas City ................................................................... Houston, Pasadena, Conroe/Harris ............................ Texas BoS ................................................................... Washington BoS .......................................................... Wisconsin BoS ............................................................ Allocation of Funds Funding will be awarded under this NOFA to new applicants and existing VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:59 Dec 18, 2018 Jkt 247001 grantees for a 1 to 3-year period for services beginning October 1, 2019. The following requirements apply to grants awarded under this NOFA: 1. In response to this NOFA, only existing grantees can apply as Priority 1 or 2 grantees. 2. Applications for Priority 3 will only be accepted from designated target communities and requests cannot exceed the amounts listed as a maximum award list in the chart in II.B.3. 3. Only existing grantees currently providing SSVF services in a target community listed in II.B.3. may apply for funding under Priority 3. These applicants can only apply for funding in the target community where they are providing services. PO 00000 Frm 00070 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 $3 $3 $6 $6 $6 million. million. million. million. million. Request’’ for the target CoCs listed below. (b) As a new award, in the first year of the award period, grants will not be subject to VII.C until the end of the third quarter. State All Priority 1 and 2 applicants must apply using the renewal application. To be eligible for renewal of a supportive services grant, the Priority 1 and 2 applicants’ program concept must be substantially the same as the program concept of the grantees’ current grant award. Renewal applications can request funding that is equal to or less than their current annualized award. Under Priority 3 and 4, applicants must apply using the application for new applicants. Applications will only be accepted from eligible entities proposing to serve the target communities served by one of the CoCs described in Section II.B.3. and II.B.4. DC–500 HI–501 IL–510 NY–600 WA–500 Maximum (awards cover 2-year term) CoC ID AK–501 AL–500 AR–500 AZ–502 CA–503 CA–601 CA–602 CO–503 CO–500 IN–502 KS–507 LA–500 LA–509 MA–500 MO–604 MT–500 NC–505 NC–503 NY–508 NV–500 OR–501 OR–505 SD–500 TX–600 TX–700 TX–503 WA–501 WI–500 Maximum request $500,000. $500,000. $500,000. $1 million. $1 million. $1 million. $1 million. $1 million. $1 million. $1 million. $500,000. $250,000. $250,000 $1 million. $500,000. $500,000. $500,000. $500,000. $250,000. $1 million. $1 million. $1 million. $500,000. $500,000. $1 million. $1 million. $1 million. $1 million. 4. Applications for Priority 4 must include services for the designated target communities (the application may also include services for adjacent areas) and requests cannot exceed the amounts listed as the maximum award in the chart in II.B.4. 5. Eligible entities can submit no more than one application for new funding under Priority 4. 6. Each renewal grant request under Priority 1 or 2 cannot exceed the grantee’s current annualized award. 7. Applicants must fill out separate applications for each grant funding request. 8. Applicants under Priority 1 or 2 may request an amount less than their current award (this will not be considered a substantial change to the program concept). E:\FR\FM\19DEN1.SGM 19DEN1 amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES1 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 243 / Wednesday, December 19, 2018 / Notices 9. If a grantee failed to use all of its awarded funds in FY 2018 or had unspent funds returned to VA in FY 2018, VA may elect to limit renewal awards under Priority 1 or 2 to the amount of funds used in the previous fiscal year. 10. If, during the course of the grant year, VA determines that grantee spending is not meeting the minimum percentage milestones below, VA may elect to recoup projected unused funds and reprogram such funds to provide supportive services in areas with higher need. Should VA elect to recoup unspent funds, reductions in available grant funds would take place the first business day following the end of the quarter. (a) By the end of the first quarter, December 31, 2019, of the grantee’s supportive services annualized grant award period, if the grantee’s cumulative requests for supportive services grant funds is fewer than 15 percent of the total supportive services grant award VA may recoup funds. During this same period, the grantee’s cumulative requests for supportive services grant funds may not exceed 35 percent of the total supportive services grant award, or VA may recoup funds. (b) By the end of the second quarter, March 31, 2020, of the grantee’s supportive services annualized grant award period, if the grantee’s cumulative requests for supportive services grant funds is fewer than 40 percent of total supportive services grant award the VA may recoup funds. During this same period, the grantee’s cumulative requests for supportive services grant funds may not exceed 60 percent of the total supportive services grant award. (c) By the end of the third quarter, June 30, 2020, of the grantee’s supportive services annualized grant award period, if the grantee’s cumulative requests for supportive services grant funds is fewer than 65 percent of total supportive services grant award, the VA may recoup funds. During this same period, the grantee’s cumulative requests for supportive services grant funds may not exceed 80 percent of the total supportive services grant award, or the VA may recoup funds. 11. Applicants for Priority 1 or 2 awards who fail to provide a letter of support from at least one of the CoCs they plan to serve will be eligible for renewal funding at a level no greater than 90 percent of the amount of funds awarded to them in their prior grant award. Applicants are responsible for determining who in each CoC is authorized to provide such letters of VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:59 Dec 18, 2018 Jkt 247001 support. This requirement applies to all Priority 1 and 2 applicants, including existing multi-year grantees that are only required to submit a LOI in response to this NOFA. Applicants for Priority 3 or 4 awards are required to provide a letter of support from the CoC identified in Section II.B.3 (for Priority 3) or Section II.B.4. (for Priority 4). Priority 3 and 4 applications that do not include a letter will not be considered for funding. In order to meet this requirement, all applicant letters, regardless of Priority, must include: (a) A detailed description of the applicant’s participation in the CoC’s Coordinated Entry process or planning activities and overall community planning efforts (for instance, confirmation of applicant’s active participation in planning coordinated entry, commitment to participating in coordinated entry, hours spent on CoCsponsored committee or workgroup assignments and names of said committees or workgroups). (b) The applicant’s contribution to the CoC’s coordinated entry process capacity building efforts, detailing the specific nature of this contribution (for instance, the hours of staff time and/or the amount of funding provided), if such SSVF capacity has been requested by the CoC or otherwise has shown to be of value to the CoC. 12. Should additional funding become available over the course of grant term from funds recouped under the Award Information section of this Notice, funds that are voluntarily returned by grantees, or funds that become available due to a grant termination, VA may elect to offer these funds to grantees in areas where demand has exceeded available SSVF resources. Additional funds will be provided first to the highest scoring grantee in the selected area who is in compliance with their grant agreement and has the capacity to utilize the additional funds. 13. Should sufficient funds be available, Priority 1 and 2 grantees may be eligible for an increase of up to 2 percent of their renewed total award. Any such increase will be applied uniformly to all renewed Priority 1 and 2 grants. Supportive Services Grant Award Period Priority 1 and 2 grant awards are generally made for a 1-year period, although selected grants may be eligible for a 3-year award (see the Award Administration section of this Notice). Priority 3 grants will have a 2-year, nonrenewable term. Priority 4 grants are awarded for a 1-year period. Priority 1, 2, and 4 are eligible to be renewed in a PO 00000 Frm 00071 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 65205 subsequent NOFA subject to the availability of funding. Eligibility Information Eligible Applicants: Only eligible entities that are existing grantees with grants scheduled to end by September 30, 2019, can apply under Priority 1 or 2 in response to this NOFA. For Priority 3, any eligible entity that is an existing grantee may apply for new funding in one of the listed target communities described in the Award Information section of this Notice. For Priority 4, any eligible entity may apply for new funding in one of the listed target communities described in the Award Section of this Notice. In order to be eligible, an applicant must qualify as a private non-profit organization that meets the definition of ‘‘eligible entity’’ in the 38 CFR 62.2. Cost Sharing or Matching: None. Application and Submission Information Obtaining an Application Package Applications are located at www.va.gov/homeless/ssvf.asp. Any questions regarding this process should be referred to the SSVF Program Office via email at SSVF@va.gov. For detailed SSVF Program information and requirements, see 38 CFR part 62. Content and Form of Application Applicants must submit applications electronically following instructions found at www.va.gov/homeless/ssvf.asp. The full, downloadable content of the application can be found at www.va.gov/homeless/ssvf.asp. Priority 3 and 4 applicants must complete the application for new applicants. Priority 1 and 2 applicants use the renewal application. The renewal application includes questions that require a narrative response for the following. 1. Describe how your program’s participants made progress in achieving stability during the grant award period. For example, describe specific initiatives you have taken to increase household income through employment or benefits, such as use of the Department of Labor’s Homeless Veterans Reintegration Program or the SSI/SSDI Outreach, Access, and Recovery (SOAR) program. Additionally, describe how any proposed program modifications will impact participants housing stability. 2. Describe how your program targeted and reduced Literal homelessness among very low-income Veteran families occupying permanent housing (Category 2 and 3, described in 38 CFR 62.11). Please include any E:\FR\FM\19DEN1.SGM 19DEN1 amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES1 65206 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 243 / Wednesday, December 19, 2018 / Notices initiatives you are taking to address shortfalls in the availability of affordable housing in the communities you serve. 3. Describe how you targeted and prevented literal homelessness among those very low-income Veteran families occupying permanent housing who were most at risk (Category 1, described in 38 CFR 62.11(b)(1)). Please describe in detail any Rapid Resolution/ diversion services offered and how they are integrated into the screening process employed as part of Coordinated Entry. 4. Describe how you receive and respond to feedback from participants in your program (e.g. exit interviews, internal surveys, etc.). What is your average number of responses to the SSVF Participant Survey? Are you satisfied with your response rate and, if not, how will you work to increase it? Describe any changes you have made as a result of participant feedback. 5. Specify the average time between client intake and start of service delivery, average time to placement in permanent housing, and average length of stay (enrollment to exit). Describe any programmatic or organizational delays associated with onset of supportive services delivery. Describe the timeline for any proposed program modifications. 6. How have you coordinated SSVF services with other programs offered in the Continuum(s) of Care (CoC) you currently serve? Describe your direct involvement in each CoC’s Coordinated Entry effort and community plan to end Veteran homelessness. 7. Please explain whether your program was implemented consistent with your approved budget in your previous year of operation (Oct 1 through Sept 30). Explain any major deviations or variances from original budget. (VA-approved program changes to the grant agreement do not need to be addressed.) 8. Please provide information on whether your program: (a) Required an extension in order to fully expend its grant award, (b) had unspent funds swept by the SSVF program office at the end of any quarter and/or (c) returned funds to U.S. Treasury at the end of the grant period. If you have returned funds, explain your plan to fully expend your current grant amount. 9. Describe how your program was implemented in accordance with VA’s goals (as described in 38 CFR part 62 and this NOFA) for the SSVF Program. Address how you ensured staff were trained and supervised to deliver services to rapidly meet participants’ individualized needs while protecting VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:59 Dec 18, 2018 Jkt 247001 the program from waste, fraud, and abuse. Submission Dates and Times Applications for supportive services grants under the SSVF Program must be received by the SSVF Program Office by 4:00 p.m. Eastern Time on February 22, 2019. Awards made for all grants will fund operations beginning October 1, 2019. Applications must arrive as a complete package. Materials arriving separately will not be included in the application package for consideration and may result in the application being rejected. Additionally, in the interest of fairness to all competing applicants, this deadline is firm as to date and hour, and VA will treat as ineligible for consideration any application that is received after the deadline. Applicants should take this practice into account and make early submission of their materials to avoid any risk of loss of eligibility brought about by unanticipated delays, computer service outages, or other delivery-related problems. Funding Restrictions Funding will be awarded for supportive services grants under this NOFA depending on funding availability (currently funding is only authorized to be appropriated for the SSVF program through FY 2019). Applicants should fill out separate applications for each supportive services funding request. Funding for Priority 1 or 2 will be awarded under this NOFA to existing grantees for a 1 to 3-year period beginning on October 1, 2019. Funding for Priority 3 will be awarded for a 2-year period beginning on October 1, 2019. Funding for Priority 4 will be awarded for a 1-year period beginning on October 1, 2019. Funding used for staff education and training cannot exceed 1 percent of the overall program grant award. This limitation does not include the cost to attend VA mandated training. All training costs must be directly related to the provision of services to homeless veterans and their families. Expenses related to maintaining accreditation are allowable. Grantees are allowed to include expenses for seeking initial accreditation only once in a 5year period. The expenses to renew full accreditation is allowed and is based on the schedule of the accrediting agency, for instance every 3 years for CARF and every 4 years for COA. Expenses related to the renewal of less than full accreditation are not allowed. PO 00000 Frm 00072 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Other Submission Requirements 1. Existing grantees applying for renewal grants may apply only as renewal applicants using the application designed for renewal grants. 2. Existing grantees applying for new funding under Priority 3 must use the application designed for new grants. 3. At the discretion of VA, multiple grant proposals submitted by the same lead agency may be combined into a single grant award if the proposals provide services to contiguous areas. 4. Additional supportive services grant application requirements are specified in the application package. Submission of an incorrect or incomplete application package will result in the application being rejected during threshold review. The application packages must contain all required forms and certifications. Selections will be made based on criteria described in 38 CFR part 62 and this NOFA. Applicants and grantees will be notified of any additional information needed to confirm or clarify information provided in the application and the deadline by which to submit such information. Applicants must submit applications electronically. Applications may not be mailed or sent by facsimile (FAX). Application Review Information Criteria 1. VA will only score applicants that meet the threshold requirements described in 38 CFR 62.21. 2. VA will use the criteria described in 38 CFR 62.22 to score an application (Priority 3 and 4) for a supportive services grant and criteria in 38 CFR 62.24 to score grantees applying for renewal (Priority 1 and 2) of a supportive services grant. Review and Selection Process 3. VA will review all supportive services grant applications in response to this NOFA according to the following steps: a. Score all applications that meet the threshold requirements described in 38 CFR 62.21. b. Rank those applications who score at least 75 cumulative points and receive at least one point under each of the categories identified for new applicants in 38 CFR 62.22 and renewal applicants in 38 CFR 62.24. The applications will be ranked in order from highest to lowest scores in accordance with 38 CFR 62.23 for new applicants and 38 CFR 62.25 for renewal applicants. c. Utilize the ranked scores of applications as the primary basis for E:\FR\FM\19DEN1.SGM 19DEN1 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 243 / Wednesday, December 19, 2018 / Notices selection. However, VA will also utilize the following considerations in 38 CFR 62.23(d) to select applicants for funding: (i) Give preference to applications that provide or coordinate the provision of supportive services for very low-income veteran families transitioning from homelessness to permanent housing. Consistent with this preference, where other funds from community resources are not readily available for temporary financial assistance, Priority 1 and 2 applicants are required to spend no less than 60 percent of all budgeted temporary financial assistance on participants occupying permanent housing as defined in 38 CFR 62.11(b). Priority 3 and 4 applicants are required to spend no less than 70 percent of all budgeted temporary financial assistance on participants occupying permanent housing as defined in 38 CFR 62.11(b). Waivers to this spending requirement may be requested when grantees can demonstrate significant local progress towards eliminating homelessness in the target service area. Waiver requests must include data from authoritative sources such as USICH certification, that a community has ended homelessness as defined by Federal Benchmarks and Criteria or has reached Community Solution’s Functional Zero. Waivers for the spending requirement may also be requested for services provided to rural Indian tribal areas and other rural areas where shelter capacity is insufficient to meet local need. Waiver requests must include an endorsement by the impacted CoC explicitly stating that a shift in resources from rapid re-housing to prevention will not result in an increase in homelessness. (ii) To the extent practicable, ensure that supportive services grants are equitably distributed across geographic regions, including rural communities and tribal lands. This equitable distribution criteria will be used to ensure that SSVF resources are provided to those communities with the highest need as identified by VA’s assessment of expected demand and available resources to meet that demand. (ii) Subject to the considerations noted in paragraph B.3 above, VA will fund the highest-ranked applicants for which funding is available. amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES1 Award Administration Information Award Notices Although subject to change, the SSVF Program Office expects to announce grant recipients in the fourth quarter of FY 2019 with grant agreements being signed by October 1, 2019. Prior to executing a funding agreement, VA will VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:59 Dec 18, 2018 Jkt 247001 contact the applicants, make known the amount of proposed funding and verify that the applicant would still like the funding. Once VA verifies that the applicant is still seeking funding, VA will execute an agreement and make payments to the grant recipient in accordance with 38 CFR part 62 and this NOFA. Administrative and National Policy Requirements Grantees are expected to offer the following supportive services: Housing counseling; assisting participants in understanding leases; securing utilities; making moving arrangements; providing representative payee services concerning rent and utilities when needed; and mediation and outreach to property owners related to locating or retaining housing. Grantees may also assist participants by providing rental assistance, security or utility deposits, moving costs or general housing stability assistance, using other Federal resources, such as ESG, or supportive services grant funds to the extent described in this NOFA and 38 CFR 62.34. As SSVF grants cannot be used to fund treatment for mental health or substance use disorders, applicants must provide evidence that they can provide access to such services to all program participants through formal and informal agreements with community providers. Reporting VA places great emphasis on the responsibility and accountability of grantees. As described in 38 CFR 62.63 and 62.71, VA has procedures in place to monitor supportive services provided to participants and outcomes associated with the supportive services provided under the SSVF Program. Applicants should be aware of the following: 1. Upon execution of a supportive services grant agreement with VA, grantees will have a VA regional coordinator assigned by the SSVF Program Office who will provide oversight and monitor supportive services provided to participants. 2. Grantees will be required to enter data into a Homeless Management Information System (HMIS) Web-based software application. This data will consist of information on the participants served and types of supportive services provided by grantees. Grantees must treat the data for activities funded by the SSVF Program separate from that of activities funded by other programs. Grantees will be required to work with their HMIS Administrators to export client-level PO 00000 Frm 00073 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 65207 data for activities funded by the SSVF Program to VA on at least a monthly basis. 3. VA shall complete monitoring evaluations of each grantee at a rate of not less than once every two years. Monitoring will also include the submittal of quarterly and annual financial and performance reports by the grantee. The grantee will be expected to demonstrate adherence to the grantee’s proposed program concept, as described in the grantee’s application. All grantees are subject to audits conducted by the VA or its representative. 4. Grantees will be assessed based on their ability to meet critical performance measures. In addition to meeting program requirements defined by the regulations and applicable NOFA(s), grantees will be assessed on their ability to place participants into housing and the housing retention rates of participants served. Higher placement for homeless participants and higher housing retention rates for at-risk participants are expected for very-low income veteran families when compared to extremely low-income veteran families with incomes below 30 percent of the area median income. 5. Organizations receiving renewal awards and that have had ongoing SSVF program operation for at least 1 year (as measured from the start of initial SSVF services until February 22, 2019) may be eligible for a 3-year award. Grantees meeting outcome goals defined by VA and in substantial compliance with their grant agreements (defined by meeting targets and having no outstanding corrective action plans) and who, in addition, receive 3-year accreditation from CARF in Employment and Community Services: Rapid Rehousing and Homeless Prevention standards, a 4year accreditation from COA accreditation in Housing Stabilization and Community Living Services standards, or a 3 year accreditation in The Joint Commission’s Behavioral Health Care: Housing Support Services Standards are eligible for a 3-year grant renewal subject to funding availability. (NOTE: Multi-year awards are contingent on funding availability). If awarded a multiple year renewal, grantees may be eligible for funding increases as defined in NOFAs that correspond to years 2 and 3 of their renewal funding. Other Information VA Goals and Objectives for Funds Awarded Under This NOFA: In accordance with 38 CFR 62.24(c), VA will evaluate an applicant’s compliance with VA goals and requirements for the E:\FR\FM\19DEN1.SGM 19DEN1 65208 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 243 / Wednesday, December 19, 2018 / Notices amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES1 SSVF Program. VA goals and requirements include the provision of supportive services designed to enhance the housing stability and independent living skills of very low-income veteran families occupying permanent housing across geographic regions and program administration in accordance with all applicable laws, regulations, and guidelines. For purposes of this NOFA, VA goals and requirements also include the provision of supportive services designed to rapidly re-house or prevent homelessness among people in the following target populations who also meet all requirements for being part of a very low-income veteran family occupying permanent housing: 1. Veteran families earning less than 30 percent of area median income as most recently published by HUD for programs under section 8 of the United States Housing Act of 1937 (42 U.S.C. 1437f) (http://www.huduser.org). 2. Veterans with at least one dependent family member. 3. Veterans returning from Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Iraqi Freedom, or Operation New Dawn. 4. Veteran families located in a community, as defined by HUD’s CoC, or a county not currently served by another SSVF grantee. 5. Veteran families located in a community, as defined by HUD’s CoC, where current level of SSVF services is not sufficient to meet demand of Category 2 and 3 (currently homeless) veteran families. 6. Veteran families located in a rural area. 7. Veteran families located on Indian Tribal Property. B. Payments of Supportive Services Grant Funds: Grantees will receive payments electronically through the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Payment Management System. Grantees will have the ability to request payments as frequently as they choose subject to the following limitations: 1. During the first quarter of the grantee’s supportive services annualized grant award period, the grantee’s cumulative requests for supportive services grant funds may not exceed 35 VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:59 Dec 18, 2018 Jkt 247001 percent of the total supportive services grant award without written approval by VA. 2. By the end of the second quarter of the grantee’s supportive services annualized grant award period, the grantee’s cumulative requests for supportive services grant funds may not exceed 60 percent of the total supportive services grant award without written approval by VA. 3. By the end of the third quarter of the grantee’s supportive services annualized grant award period, the grantee’s cumulative requests for supportive services grant funds may not exceed 80 percent of the total supportive services grant award without written approval by VA. 4. By the end of the fourth quarter of the grantee’s supportive services annualized grant award period, the grantee’s cumulative requests for supportive services grant funds may not exceed 100 percent of the total supportive services grant award. Recouping Excess Funds VA regularly reviews grantee expenditures to ensure that funds are being used in a manner consistent with program goals and regulations. It is expected that grantee expenditures will be consistent across quarters as significant variance, specifically lower than expected spending, may indicate either a lower demand for services or difficulty in managing funds. If during the grant period, VA determines that grantee spending is not meeting the minimum percentage milestones below, VA may elect to recoup projected unused funds and reprogram such funds to provide supportive services in areas with higher need. Reductions will be calculated based on the total amount of payment requests submitted through the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Payment Management System by 5:00 p.m. eastern standard time on the last business day of the quarter. Should VA elect to recoup unspent funds, reductions in available grant funds would take place the second business day following the end of the quarter. PO 00000 Frm 00074 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 9990 1. By the end of the first quarter of the grantee’s supportive services annualized grant award period, the grantee’s cumulative requests for supportive services grant funds is fewer than 15 percent of total supportive services grant award. (During this same period, the grantee’s cumulative requests for supportive services grant funds may not exceed 35 percent of the total supportive services grant award.) 2. By the end of the second quarter of the grantee’s supportive services annualized grant award period, the grantee’s cumulative requests for supportive services grant funds is fewer than 40 percent of total supportive services grant award. (During this same period, the grantee’s cumulative requests for supportive services grant funds may not exceed 60 percent of the total supportive services grant award.) 3. By the end of the third quarter of the grantee’s supportive services annualized grant award period, the grantee’s cumulative requests for supportive services grant funds is fewer than 65 percent of total supportive services grant award. (During this same period, the grantee’s cumulative requests for supportive services grant funds may not exceed 80 percent of the total supportive services grant award). Signing Authority The Secretary of Veterans Affairs, or designee, approved this document and authorized the undersigned to sign and submit the document to the Office of the Federal Register for publication electronically as an official document of the Department of Veterans Affairs. Robert L. Wilkie, Secretary, Department of Veterans Affairs, approved this document on December 14, 2018, for publication. Dated: December 14, 2018. Jeffrey M. Martin, Assistant Director, Office of Regulation Policy & Management, Office of the Secretary, Department of Veterans Affairs. [FR Doc. 2018–27465 Filed 12–18–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 8320–01–P E:\FR\FM\19DEN1.SGM 19DEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 243 (Wednesday, December 19, 2018)]
[Notices]
[Pages 65200-65208]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-27465]


=======================================================================
-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS


Notice of Funding Availability Under Supportive Services for 
Veteran Families Program

AGENCY: Department of Veterans Affairs.

ACTION: Notice of fund availability.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is announcing the 
availability of funds for supportive services grants for new applicants 
and existing grantees under the Supportive Services for Veteran 
Families (SSVF) Program. This Notice of Fund Availability (NOFA) 
contains information concerning the SSVF Program, supportive services 
grant application process. Awards made for supportive services grants 
will fund operations beginning October 1, 2019.

DATES: Applications for supportive services grants under the SSVF 
Program must be received by the SSVF Program Office by 4:00 p.m. 
Eastern Time on February 22, 2019. In the interest of fairness to all 
competing applicants, this deadline is firm as to date and hour, and VA 
will treat as ineligible for consideration any application that is 
received after the deadline. Applicants should take this practice into 
account and make early submission of their materials to avoid any risk 
of loss of eligibility brought about by unanticipated delays, computer 
service outages, or other submission-related problems.

ADDRESSES: For a Copy of the Application Package: Copies of the 
application can be downloaded from the SSVF website at www.va.gov/homeless/ssvf.asp. Questions should be referred to the SSVF Program 
Office via email at SSVF@va.gov. For detailed SSVF Program information 
and requirements, see part 62 of Title 38, Code of Federal Regulations 
(38 CFR part 62).
    Submission of Application Package: Applicants must submit 
applications electronically following instructions found at www.va.gov/homeless/ssvf.asp. Applications may not be mailed or sent by facsimile 
(FAX). Applications must be received in the SSVF Program Office by 4:00 
p.m. Eastern Standard Time on the application deadline date. 
Applications must arrive as a complete package. Materials arriving 
separately will not be included in the application package for 
consideration and may result in the application being rejected. See 
Award Information section of this NOFA for maximum allowable grant 
amounts.
    Technical Assistance: Information regarding how to obtain technical 
assistance with the preparation of a supportive services grant 
application is available on the SSVF Program website at: www.va.gov/homeless/ssvf.asp.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. John Kuhn, National Director, 
Supportive Services for Veteran Families, by email at SSVF@va.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:
    Funding Opportunity Title: Supportive Services for Veteran Families 
Program.
    Announcement Type: Initial.
    Funding Opportunity Number: VA-SSVF-110918.
    Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Number: 64.033, VA 
Supportive Services for Veteran Families Program.

Funding Opportunity Description

Purpose

    The SSVF Program purpose is to provide supportive services grants 
to private non-profit organizations and consumer cooperatives, who will 
coordinate or provide supportive services to very low-income veteran 
families who: (i) Are residing in permanent housing and are at risk of 
becoming homeless; (ii) are homeless and scheduled to become residents 
of permanent housing within a specified time period; or (iii) after 
exiting permanent housing within a specified time period, are seeking 
other housing that is responsive to such very low-income veteran 
family's needs and preferences. SSVF prioritizes the delivery of rapid 
re-housing services to homeless veteran households.
    Rapid re-housing is an intervention designed to help individuals 
and families quickly exit homelessness, return to housing in the 
community, and avoid homelessness again in the near term. The core 
components of a rapid re-housing program are housing identification, 
financial assistance with move-in and rental expenses, and rapid re-
housing case management and services. These core components represent 
the minimum that a program must be providing to households to be 
considered a rapid re-housing program, but do not provide guidance for 
what constitutes an effective rapid re-housing program. Applicants 
should familiarize themselves with the Rapid Re-housing Performance 
Benchmarks and Program Standards found on at www.va.gov/homeless/ssvf.asp.

Funding Priorities

    The principle goal for this NOFA is to provide support to those 
applicants who demonstrate the greatest capacity to end homelessness 
among veterans or, in communities that have already met US Interagency 
Council on Homelessness (USICH) Federal Criteria and Benchmarks, or, 
alternatively, Community Solutions' Functional Zero (the latter can be 
found at https://cmtysolutions.org/sites/default/files/final_zero_2016_metrics.pdf), a capacity to sustain these gains. 
Priority will be given to grantees who can demonstrate adoption of 
evidence-based practices in their application.

[[Page 65201]]

    Under Priority 1, VA will provide funding to existing grantees with 
3-year accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation of 
Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) in Employment and Community Services: 
Rapid Rehousing and Homeless Prevention standards, a 4-year 
accreditation from the Council on Accreditation's (COA) accreditation 
in Housing Stabilization and Community Living Services standards, or a 
3-year accreditation in The Joint Commission's (JC) Behavioral Health 
Care: Housing Support Services Standards. Priority 2 includes existing 
grantees seeking to renew their grants not included under Priority 1. 
Under Priority 3, VA will provide non-renewable grants for a 2-year 
period to eligible entities providing services to very low-income 
veteran families who are occupying permanent housing in the areas of 
one of the Continuums of Care (CoC) listed in the Award Information 
section of this Notice. VA has designed this 2-year effort to provide a 
surge of resources in communities with high need. Only existing 
grantees currently providing services in an identified target community 
are eligible to apply for additional funds in that target community 
they currently serve under Priority 3. Priority 4 is open to new 
applicants only, who are seeking to provide services in the areas of 
one of the CoCs listed in the Award Information section of this Notice. 
These locations have been selected based on the current unmet service 
needs and the levels of Veteran homelessness, and VA also seeks to 
ensure that supportive services grants are equitably distributed across 
geographic regions, including rural communities and tribal lands. 
Applications for Priority 3 and 4 awards must include a letter of 
support from the target CoC to be considered for funding. CoC letters 
of support must contain the information described in the Award 
Information section of this Notice.

    Note:  VA is considering adding an additional rental subsidy 
option for Priority 3 awards. Should VA announce this new rental 
subsidy option through the publication of rulemaking that would 
amend 38 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) part 62, Priority 3 
awardees, as well as any other SSVF grantee providing services in a 
Priority 3 target community, would have the Definitions:

    Title 38 CFR part 62 contains definitions of terms used in the SSVF 
Program. In addition to the definitions and requirements described in 
38 CFR part 62, this NOFA provides further clarification in this 
paragraph on the use of Emergency Housing Assistance (EHA). EHA may be 
provided by the SSVF grantee under 38 CFR 62.34(f) to offer transition 
in place when a permanent housing voucher, such as is offered through 
the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Section 8 
program, is available from any source, but access to the permanent 
housing voucher is pending completion of the housing inspection and 
administrative processes necessary for leasing. In such circumstances, 
the EHA payment cannot exceed what would otherwise be paid when the 
voucher is utilized. EHA may also be used as part of a Rapid Resolution 
or diversion response that helps Veteran households avoid entry into 
homelessness through placements with family or friends.

Approach

    Respondents to this NOFA should base their proposals and 
applications on the current requirements of part 62. Grantees will be 
expected to leverage supportive services grant funds to enhance the 
housing stability of very low-income veteran families who are occupying 
permanent housing. In doing so, grantees are required to establish 
relationships with local community resources. Therefore, grantees must 
work through coordinated partnerships built either through formal 
agreements or the informal working relationships commonly found among 
successful social service providers.
    As part of the application, all applicants are strongly encouraged 
to provide letters of support from their respective VA Network Homeless 
Coordinator (or their designee). In addition, Priority 1 and 2 
applicants are strongly encouraged to provide letters of support from 
the CoC where they plan to deliver services that reflect the 
applicant's engagement in the CoC's efforts to coordinate services. 
Priority 3 and 4 applicants are required to provide these letters from 
the local CoC. Failure to provide a letter of support from the CoC as 
described will limit the maximum award to 90 percent of the award made 
in the previous fiscal year for Priority 1 and 2 applicants (as 
described in the Award Information section of this Notice. In addition, 
any applicant proposing to serve an Indian Tribal area is strongly 
encouraged to provide a letter of support from the relevant Indian 
Tribal Government.
    The CoC's letter of support should note if the applicant is 
providing assistance to CoC in building local capacity to build 
Coordinated Entry Systems (CES) and the value and form of that 
assistance, whether support is direct funding or staffing. CES requires 
that providers ``operating within the CoC's geographic area must also 
work together to ensure the CoC's coordinated entry process allows for 
coordinated screening, assessment and referrals.'' (HUD Notice: CPD-17-
01). The CoC's letter of support should also describe the applicant's 
participation in the CoC's community planning efforts.
    Pursuant to 38 CFR 62.36, all grantees must participate in the 
development, implementation, and ongoing operations of their local 
CoC's coordinated assessment system, to include a CoC plan. A CoC plan 
is a community plan to organize and deliver housing and services to 
meet the needs of people who are homeless as they move to stable 
housing and maximize self-sufficiency. The community plan includes 
action steps to end homelessness and prevent a return to homelessness 
(CoC locations and contact information can be found at www.hudhre.nfo/
index.cfm?do=viewCocMaps).
    As part of their application, the applying organization's Executive 
Director must certify on behalf of the agency that they will actively 
participate in CoC community planning efforts and operate the rapid re-
housing component of their SSVF grant in a manner consistent with the 
Rapid Re-housing Performance Benchmarks and Program Standards found at 
www.va.gov/homeless/ssvf.asp.
    The aim of the provision of supportive services is to assist very 
low-income veteran families residing in permanent housing to remain 
stably housed and to rapidly transition those not currently in 
permanent housing to stable housing. SSVF emphasizes the placement of 
homeless veteran families who are described in 38 CFR 62.11(b)-(c) to 
include (i) very low-income veteran families who lack a fixed, regular 
and adequate nighttime residence and are scheduled to become residents 
of permanent housing within 90 days, and (ii) very low-income veteran 
families who have exited permanent housing within the previous 90 days 
to seek other housing that is responsive to their needs and 
preferences. As a crisis intervention program, the SSVF Program is not 
intended to provide long-term support for participants, nor will it be 
able to address all of the financial and supportive services needs of 
participants that affect housing stability. Rather, when participants 
require long-term support, grantees should focus on connecting such 
participants to income supports, such as employment and mainstream 
Federal and community resources (e.g., HUD-VA Supportive Housing 
Program, HUD Housing Choice Voucher Programs, McKinney-Vento Funded 
Supportive Housing Programs, Temporary Assistance for Needy

[[Page 65202]]

Families (TANF), and Social Security Income/Social Security Disability 
Insurance (SSI/SSDI), etc.) that can provide ongoing support as 
required.
    Assistance in obtaining or retaining permanent housing is a 
fundamental goal of the SSVF Program. Grantees must provide case 
management services in accordance with 38 CFR 62.31. Such case 
management should include tenant counseling, mediation with landlords, 
and outreach to landlords.

Authority

    Funding available under this NOFA is authorized by 38 United States 
Code (U.S.C.) 2044. VA implements the SSVF Program through regulations 
in 38 CFR part 62. Funds made available under this NOFA are subject to 
the requirements of these regulations.

Requirements for the Use of Supportive Services Grant Funds

Requirements

    The applicant's request for funding must be consistent with the 
limitations and uses of supportive services grant funds set forth in 38 
CFR part 62 and in this NOFA. In accordance with the regulations and 
this NOFA, the following requirements apply to supportive services 
grants awarded under this NOFA:
    1. Grantees may use a maximum of 10 percent of supportive services 
grant funds for administrative costs identified in 38 CFR 62.70(e).
    2. Priority 1 and 2 grantees must use a minimum of 60 percent of 
the temporary financial assistance portion of their supportive services 
grant funds to serve very low-income veteran families who qualify under 
38 CFR 62.11(b). Priority 3 and 4 applicants are required to spend no 
less than 70 percent of all budgeted temporary financial assistance on 
participants occupying permanent housing as defined in 38 CFR 62.11(b). 
(NOTE: Grantees may request a waiver to decrease this minimum, as 
discussed in the Application Review Information section of this 
Notice.)
    3. Priority 1, 2, and 4 grantees may use a maximum of 50 percent of 
supportive services grant funds to provide the supportive service of 
temporary financial assistance paid directly to a third party on behalf 
of a participant for child care, emergency housing assistance, 
transportation, rental assistance, utility-fee payment assistance, 
security deposits, utility deposits, moving costs, and general housing 
stability assistance (which includes emergency supplies), in accordance 
with 38 CFR 62.33 and 38 CFR 62.34. Priority 3 grantees must use a 
minimum of 60 percent of supportive services grant funds to provide the 
supportive service of temporary financial assistance, unless a waiver 
is granted by the SSVF program office.
Guidance for the Use of Supportive Services Grant Funds
    Title 38 CFR 62.2 defines Rapid re-housing as assistance offered 
``without preconditions''. This is consistent with VA policy to support 
a ``Housing First'' model in addressing and ending homelessness.
    Grantees must develop plans that will ensure that veteran 
participants have the level of income and economic stability needed to 
remain in permanent housing after the conclusion of the SSVF 
intervention. Both employment and benefits assistance from VA and non-
VA sources represent a significant underutilized source of income 
stability for homeless veterans. Income is not a pre-condition for 
housing. Case management should include income maximization strategies 
to ensure households have access to benefits, employment, and financial 
counseling. The complexity of program rules and the stigma some 
associate with entitlement programs contributes to their lack of use. 
For this reason, grantees are encouraged to consider strategies that 
can lead to prompt and successful access to employment and benefits 
that are essential to retaining housing.
    1. Grantees are expected to offer the following supportive 
services: Counseling participants about housing; assisting participants 
in understanding leases; securing utilities; making moving 
arrangements; providing representative payee services concerning rent 
and utilities when needed; and mediation and outreach to property 
owners related to locating or retaining housing. Grantees may also 
assist participants by providing rental assistance, security or utility 
deposits, moving costs, emergency housing, or general housing stability 
assistance; or using other Federal resources, such as HUD's Emergency 
Solutions Grants Program (ESG), or supportive services grant funds 
subject to the limitations described in this Notice and 38 CFR 62.34.
    2. As SSVF is a short-term crisis intervention, grantees must 
develop plans that will produce sufficient income to sustain veteran 
participants in permanent housing after the conclusion of the SSVF 
intervention. Grantees must ensure the availability of employment and 
vocational services either through the direct provision of these 
services or their availability through formal or informal service 
agreements. Agreements with Homeless Veteran Reintegration Programs 
funded by the U.S. Department of Labor are strongly encouraged. For 
participants unable to work due to disability, income must be 
established through available benefits programs.
    3. Per 38 CFR 62.33, grantees must assist participants in obtaining 
public benefits. Grantees must screen all participants for eligibility 
for a broad range of entitlements such as TANF, Social Security, the 
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, the Low-Income Home Energy 
Assistance Program, the Earned Income Tax Credit, and local General 
Assistance programs. A description of some of these benefits programs, 
including eligibility and how to access benefits, can be found at 
www.benefits.gov. Grantees are expected to access the Substance Abuse 
and Mental Health Services Administration's SSI/SSDI Outreach, Access, 
and Recovery (SOAR) program directly by training staff and providing 
the service or subcontracting services to an organization to provide 
SOAR services.
    4. Grantees are encouraged to provide, or assist participants in 
obtaining, legal services relevant to issues that interfere with the 
participants' ability to obtain or retain permanent housing. (NOTE: 
Information regarding legal services provided may be protected from 
being released to the grantee or VA under attorney-client privilege, 
although the grantee must provide sufficient information to demonstrate 
the frequency and type of service delivered.) Support for legal 
services can include paying for court filing fees to assist a 
participant with issues that interfere with the participant's ability 
to obtain or retain permanent housing or supportive services, including 
issues that affect the participant's employability and financial 
security. Grantees (in addition to employees and members of grantees) 
may represent participants before VA with respect to a claim for VA 
benefits, but only if they are recognized for that purpose pursuant to 
38 U.S.C. Chapter 59. Further, the individual providing such 
representation must be accredited pursuant to 38 U.S.C. Chapter 59.
    5. Access to mental health and addiction services are required by 
SSVF; however, grantees cannot fund these services directly through the 
SSVF grant. Therefore, applicants must demonstrate, through either 
formal or informal agreements, their ability to promote rapid access to 
and engagement with mental health and addiction

[[Page 65203]]

services for the veteran and family members.
    6. VA recognizes that extremely low-income veterans, with incomes 
below 30 percent of the area median income, face greater barriers to 
permanent housing placement. Grantees should consider how they can 
support these participants.
    7. When serving participants who are residing in permanent housing, 
the defining question to ask is ``Would this individual or family be 
homeless but for this assistance?'' The grantee must use VA's homeless 
prevention screening tool with criteria that targets those most at-risk 
of homelessness. To qualify for SSVF services, a participant who is 
served under 38 CFR 62.11(a) (homeless prevention) must not have 
sufficient resources or support networks (e.g., family, friends, faith-
based or other social networks) immediately available to prevent them 
from becoming homeless. To further qualify for services under 38 CFR 
62.11(a), the grantee must document that the participant meets that 
eligibility requirement. Documentation of one of the following 
conditions would meet this requirement:
    (a) Has moved because of economic reasons two or more times during 
the 60 days immediately preceding the application for homelessness 
prevention assistance;
    (b) Is living in the home of another because of economic hardship;
    (c) Has been notified in writing that their right to occupy their 
current housing or living situation will be terminated within 21 days 
after the date of application for assistance;
    (d) Lives in a hotel or motel, and the cost of the hotel or motel 
stay is not paid by charitable organizations or by Federal, State, or 
local government programs for low-income individuals;
    (e) Is exiting a publicly funded institution or system of care 
(such as a health care facility, a mental health facility, or 
correctional institution) without a stable housing plan; or
    (f) Otherwise lives in housing that has characteristics associated 
with instability and an increased risk of homelessness, as identified 
in the VA's homeless prevention screening tool.
    8. SSVF grantees are required to participate in local planning 
efforts designed to end veteran homelessness. Grantees may use grant 
funds to support SSVF involvement in such community planning by sub-
contracting with CoCs, when such funding is essential, to create or 
sustain the development of these data driven plans. Grantees may also 
deploy staff to participate in CoC sanctioned Coordinated Entry 
screening and assessment.
    9. When other funds from community resources are not readily 
available to assist program participants, grantees may choose to 
utilize supportive services grants, to the extent described in this 
NOFA and in 38 CFR 62.33 and 62.34, to provide temporary financial 
assistance. Such assistance may, subject to the limitations in this 
NOFA and 38 CFR part 62, be paid directly to a third party on behalf of 
a participant for child care, transportation, family emergency housing 
assistance, rental assistance, utility-fee payment assistance, security 
or utility deposits, moving costs and general housing stability 
assistance as necessary.
    10. SSVF expects grantees to offer Rapid Resolution (also known as 
diversion) services. These services engage veterans immediately before 
or after they become homeless and assist them to avoid continued 
homelessness. These efforts can reduce the trauma and expense 
associated with extended periods of homelessness, and the strain on the 
crisis response and affordable housing resources in the community. 
Through Rapid Resolution, the grantee and the Veteran explore safe, 
alternative housing options immediately before or quickly after they 
become homeless. Rapid Resolution can identify an immediate safe place 
to stay within the Veteran's network of family, friends, or other 
social networks. All Veterans requesting SSVF services should have a 
Rapid Resolution screening and if not appropriate for Rapid Resolution 
grantees should then assess the Veteran for other SSVF services. More 
information about Rapid Resolution can be found at www.va.gov/homeless/ssvf.asp.

Award Information

Overview

    This NOFA announces the availability of funds for supportive 
services grants under the SSVF Program and pertains to proposals for 
renewal of existing supportive services grant programs.

Funding

    The funding priorities for this NOFA are as follows:.
    1. Priority 1. Under Priority 1, VA will provide funding to those 
existing grantees with 3-year CARF, 4-year COA accreditations, or 3-
year JC accreditations. Proof of accreditation must be submitted with 
the application no later than the application due date. Grantees 
previously awarded a 3-year grant that is not scheduled to end by 
October 1, 2019, cannot apply under this NOFA but are required to 
submit a letter of intent (LOI) by the NOFA deadline indicating their 
intention of continuing SSVF services in FY 2019. Grantees submitting a 
LOI must include proof of continued accreditation, a letter of support 
from the CoC (see Award Information section in this Notice.) and a 
proposed budget for FY 2020.
    2. Priority 2. Priority 2 includes all other existing grantees, not 
applying under Priority 1, seeking to renew their grants.
    3. Priority 3. Priority 3 applications will be accepted only from 
existing grantees currently providing services in one of the 
communities targeted for additional funding under this Priority.
    (a) Awards are for a 2-year non-recurring period.
    (b) If multiple grantees have fundable scores, VA may elect to 
equally distribute funds amongst applicants regardless of the funding 
request in order to strengthen overall community capacity. This 
distribution of funds could occur among the top 2 or 3 scoring 
applicants.
    (c) If underspent, awards are subject to being recouped as per the 
Other Information
    (d) section of this Notice, with funding amounts annualized for the 
purposes of spending calculations (for example, a 2-year award of $6 
million is treated as $3 million per year). As a new award in the first 
year of the award period, grants will not be subject to the Other 
Information section of this Notice until the end of the third quarter.
    (e) List of CoCs for purposes of Priority 3 funding.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                           CoC for the following                    Maximum (awards cover 2-year
                 State                             areas                CoC ID                  term)
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
CA.....................................  San Jose/Santa Clara.....          CA-500  $3 million.
CA.....................................  San Francisco............          CA-501  $6 million.
CA.....................................  Oakland..................          CA-502  $6 million.
CA.....................................  Los Angeles..............          CA-600  $6 million.
CA.....................................  San Diego................          CA-601  $6 million.

[[Page 65204]]

 
DC.....................................  District of Columbia.....          DC-500  $3 million.
HI.....................................  Honolulu.................          HI-501  $3 million.
IL.....................................  Chicago..................          IL-510  $6 million.
NY.....................................  New York City............          NY-600  $6 million.
WA.....................................  Seattle..................          WA-500  $6 million.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    4. Priority 4. Priority 4 applications will be accepted from new 
applicants only, who are seeking to provide services in the areas of 
one of the following targeted CoCs:
    (a) Grant requests do not need to serve target communities 
exclusively and may also include neighboring communities. Grant 
requests cannot exceed the amount listed as the ``Maximum Request'' for 
the target CoCs listed below.
    (b) As a new award, in the first year of the award period, grants 
will not be subject to VII.C until the end of the third quarter.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                           CoC for the following
                 State                             areas                CoC ID             Maximum request
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
AK.....................................  Alaska BoS...............          AK-501  $500,000.
AL.....................................  Birmingham/Jefferson, St.          AL-500  $500,000.
                                          Clair.
AR.....................................  Little Rock/Central                AR-500  $500,000.
                                          Arkansas.
AZ.....................................  Phoenix, Mesa/Maricopa...          AZ-502  $1 million.
CA.....................................  Sacramento City..........          CA-503  $1 million.
CA.....................................  San Diego................          CA-601  $1 million.
CA.....................................  Santa Ana/Anaheim/Orange           CA-602  $1 million.
                                          County.
CO.....................................  Metropolitan Denver......          CO-503  $1 million.
CO.....................................  Colorado BoS.............          CO-500  $1 million.
IN.....................................  Indiana BoS..............          IN-502  $1 million.
KS.....................................  Kansas BoS...............          KS-507  $500,000.
LA.....................................  Lafayette/Acadiana.......          LA-500  $250,000.
LA.....................................  Louisiana BoS............          LA-509  $250,000
MA.....................................  Boston...................          MA-500  $1 million.
MO.....................................  Kansas City..............          MO-604  $500,000.
MT.....................................  Montana Statewide........          MT-500  $500,000.
NC.....................................  Charlotte/Mecklenberg....          NC-505  $500,000.
NC.....................................  North Carolina BoS.......          NC-503  $500,000.
NY.....................................  Buffalo, Niagara Falls/            NY-508  $250,000.
                                          Erie.
NV.....................................  Las Vegas/Clark..........          NV-500  $1 million.
OR.....................................  Portland, Gresham/                 OR-501  $1 million.
                                          Multnomah.
OR.....................................  Oregon BoS...............          OR-505  $1 million.
SD.....................................  South Dakota Statewide...          SD-500  $500,000.
TX.....................................  Dallas City..............          TX-600  $500,000.
TX.....................................  Houston, Pasadena, Conroe/         TX-700  $1 million.
                                          Harris.
TX.....................................  Texas BoS................          TX-503  $1 million.
WA.....................................  Washington BoS...........          WA-501  $1 million.
WI.....................................  Wisconsin BoS............          WI-500  $1 million.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    All Priority 1 and 2 applicants must apply using the renewal 
application. To be eligible for renewal of a supportive services grant, 
the Priority 1 and 2 applicants' program concept must be substantially 
the same as the program concept of the grantees' current grant award. 
Renewal applications can request funding that is equal to or less than 
their current annualized award. Under Priority 3 and 4, applicants must 
apply using the application for new applicants. Applications will only 
be accepted from eligible entities proposing to serve the target 
communities served by one of the CoCs described in Section II.B.3. and 
II.B.4.

Allocation of Funds

    Funding will be awarded under this NOFA to new applicants and 
existing grantees for a 1 to 3-year period for services beginning 
October 1, 2019. The following requirements apply to grants awarded 
under this NOFA:
    1. In response to this NOFA, only existing grantees can apply as 
Priority 1 or 2 grantees.
    2. Applications for Priority 3 will only be accepted from 
designated target communities and requests cannot exceed the amounts 
listed as a maximum award list in the chart in II.B.3.
    3. Only existing grantees currently providing SSVF services in a 
target community listed in II.B.3. may apply for funding under Priority 
3. These applicants can only apply for funding in the target community 
where they are providing services.
    4. Applications for Priority 4 must include services for the 
designated target communities (the application may also include 
services for adjacent areas) and requests cannot exceed the amounts 
listed as the maximum award in the chart in II.B.4.
    5. Eligible entities can submit no more than one application for 
new funding under Priority 4.
    6. Each renewal grant request under Priority 1 or 2 cannot exceed 
the grantee's current annualized award.
    7. Applicants must fill out separate applications for each grant 
funding request.
    8. Applicants under Priority 1 or 2 may request an amount less than 
their current award (this will not be considered a substantial change 
to the program concept).

[[Page 65205]]

    9. If a grantee failed to use all of its awarded funds in FY 2018 
or had unspent funds returned to VA in FY 2018, VA may elect to limit 
renewal awards under Priority 1 or 2 to the amount of funds used in the 
previous fiscal year.
    10. If, during the course of the grant year, VA determines that 
grantee spending is not meeting the minimum percentage milestones 
below, VA may elect to recoup projected unused funds and reprogram such 
funds to provide supportive services in areas with higher need. Should 
VA elect to recoup unspent funds, reductions in available grant funds 
would take place the first business day following the end of the 
quarter.
    (a) By the end of the first quarter, December 31, 2019, of the 
grantee's supportive services annualized grant award period, if the 
grantee's cumulative requests for supportive services grant funds is 
fewer than 15 percent of the total supportive services grant award VA 
may recoup funds. During this same period, the grantee's cumulative 
requests for supportive services grant funds may not exceed 35 percent 
of the total supportive services grant award, or VA may recoup funds.
    (b) By the end of the second quarter, March 31, 2020, of the 
grantee's supportive services annualized grant award period, if the 
grantee's cumulative requests for supportive services grant funds is 
fewer than 40 percent of total supportive services grant award the VA 
may recoup funds. During this same period, the grantee's cumulative 
requests for supportive services grant funds may not exceed 60 percent 
of the total supportive services grant award.
    (c) By the end of the third quarter, June 30, 2020, of the 
grantee's supportive services annualized grant award period, if the 
grantee's cumulative requests for supportive services grant funds is 
fewer than 65 percent of total supportive services grant award, the VA 
may recoup funds. During this same period, the grantee's cumulative 
requests for supportive services grant funds may not exceed 80 percent 
of the total supportive services grant award, or the VA may recoup 
funds.
    11. Applicants for Priority 1 or 2 awards who fail to provide a 
letter of support from at least one of the CoCs they plan to serve will 
be eligible for renewal funding at a level no greater than 90 percent 
of the amount of funds awarded to them in their prior grant award. 
Applicants are responsible for determining who in each CoC is 
authorized to provide such letters of support. This requirement applies 
to all Priority 1 and 2 applicants, including existing multi-year 
grantees that are only required to submit a LOI in response to this 
NOFA. Applicants for Priority 3 or 4 awards are required to provide a 
letter of support from the CoC identified in Section II.B.3 (for 
Priority 3) or Section II.B.4. (for Priority 4). Priority 3 and 4 
applications that do not include a letter will not be considered for 
funding. In order to meet this requirement, all applicant letters, 
regardless of Priority, must include:
    (a) A detailed description of the applicant's participation in the 
CoC's Coordinated Entry process or planning activities and overall 
community planning efforts (for instance, confirmation of applicant's 
active participation in planning coordinated entry, commitment to 
participating in coordinated entry, hours spent on CoC-sponsored 
committee or workgroup assignments and names of said committees or 
workgroups).
    (b) The applicant's contribution to the CoC's coordinated entry 
process capacity building efforts, detailing the specific nature of 
this contribution (for instance, the hours of staff time and/or the 
amount of funding provided), if such SSVF capacity has been requested 
by the CoC or otherwise has shown to be of value to the CoC.
    12. Should additional funding become available over the course of 
grant term from funds recouped under the Award Information section of 
this Notice, funds that are voluntarily returned by grantees, or funds 
that become available due to a grant termination, VA may elect to offer 
these funds to grantees in areas where demand has exceeded available 
SSVF resources. Additional funds will be provided first to the highest 
scoring grantee in the selected area who is in compliance with their 
grant agreement and has the capacity to utilize the additional funds.
    13. Should sufficient funds be available, Priority 1 and 2 grantees 
may be eligible for an increase of up to 2 percent of their renewed 
total award. Any such increase will be applied uniformly to all renewed 
Priority 1 and 2 grants.

Supportive Services Grant Award Period

    Priority 1 and 2 grant awards are generally made for a 1-year 
period, although selected grants may be eligible for a 3-year award 
(see the Award Administration section of this Notice). Priority 3 
grants will have a 2-year, non-renewable term. Priority 4 grants are 
awarded for a 1-year period. Priority 1, 2, and 4 are eligible to be 
renewed in a subsequent NOFA subject to the availability of funding.

Eligibility Information

    Eligible Applicants: Only eligible entities that are existing 
grantees with grants scheduled to end by September 30, 2019, can apply 
under Priority 1 or 2 in response to this NOFA. For Priority 3, any 
eligible entity that is an existing grantee may apply for new funding 
in one of the listed target communities described in the Award 
Information section of this Notice. For Priority 4, any eligible entity 
may apply for new funding in one of the listed target communities 
described in the Award Section of this Notice. In order to be eligible, 
an applicant must qualify as a private non-profit organization that 
meets the definition of ``eligible entity'' in the 38 CFR 62.2.
    Cost Sharing or Matching: None.

Application and Submission Information

Obtaining an Application Package

    Applications are located at www.va.gov/homeless/ssvf.asp. Any 
questions regarding this process should be referred to the SSVF Program 
Office via email at SSVF@va.gov. For detailed SSVF Program information 
and requirements, see 38 CFR part 62.

Content and Form of Application

    Applicants must submit applications electronically following 
instructions found at www.va.gov/homeless/ssvf.asp. The full, 
downloadable content of the application can be found at www.va.gov/homeless/ssvf.asp. Priority 3 and 4 applicants must complete the 
application for new applicants. Priority 1 and 2 applicants use the 
renewal application. The renewal application includes questions that 
require a narrative response for the following.
    1. Describe how your program's participants made progress in 
achieving stability during the grant award period. For example, 
describe specific initiatives you have taken to increase household 
income through employment or benefits, such as use of the Department of 
Labor's Homeless Veterans Reintegration Program or the SSI/SSDI 
Outreach, Access, and Recovery (SOAR) program. Additionally, describe 
how any proposed program modifications will impact participants housing 
stability.
    2. Describe how your program targeted and reduced Literal 
homelessness among very low-income Veteran families occupying permanent 
housing (Category 2 and 3, described in 38 CFR 62.11). Please include 
any

[[Page 65206]]

initiatives you are taking to address shortfalls in the availability of 
affordable housing in the communities you serve.
    3. Describe how you targeted and prevented literal homelessness 
among those very low-income Veteran families occupying permanent 
housing who were most at risk (Category 1, described in 38 CFR 
62.11(b)(1)). Please describe in detail any Rapid Resolution/diversion 
services offered and how they are integrated into the screening process 
employed as part of Coordinated Entry.
    4. Describe how you receive and respond to feedback from 
participants in your program (e.g. exit interviews, internal surveys, 
etc.). What is your average number of responses to the SSVF Participant 
Survey? Are you satisfied with your response rate and, if not, how will 
you work to increase it? Describe any changes you have made as a result 
of participant feedback.
    5. Specify the average time between client intake and start of 
service delivery, average time to placement in permanent housing, and 
average length of stay (enrollment to exit). Describe any programmatic 
or organizational delays associated with onset of supportive services 
delivery. Describe the timeline for any proposed program modifications.
    6. How have you coordinated SSVF services with other programs 
offered in the Continuum(s) of Care (CoC) you currently serve? Describe 
your direct involvement in each CoC's Coordinated Entry effort and 
community plan to end Veteran homelessness.
    7. Please explain whether your program was implemented consistent 
with your approved budget in your previous year of operation (Oct 1 
through Sept 30). Explain any major deviations or variances from 
original budget. (VA-approved program changes to the grant agreement do 
not need to be addressed.)
    8. Please provide information on whether your program: (a) Required 
an extension in order to fully expend its grant award, (b) had unspent 
funds swept by the SSVF program office at the end of any quarter and/or 
(c) returned funds to U.S. Treasury at the end of the grant period. If 
you have returned funds, explain your plan to fully expend your current 
grant amount.
    9. Describe how your program was implemented in accordance with 
VA's goals (as described in 38 CFR part 62 and this NOFA) for the SSVF 
Program. Address how you ensured staff were trained and supervised to 
deliver services to rapidly meet participants' individualized needs 
while protecting the program from waste, fraud, and abuse.

Submission Dates and Times

    Applications for supportive services grants under the SSVF Program 
must be received by the SSVF Program Office by 4:00 p.m. Eastern Time 
on February 22, 2019. Awards made for all grants will fund operations 
beginning October 1, 2019. Applications must arrive as a complete 
package. Materials arriving separately will not be included in the 
application package for consideration and may result in the application 
being rejected. Additionally, in the interest of fairness to all 
competing applicants, this deadline is firm as to date and hour, and VA 
will treat as ineligible for consideration any application that is 
received after the deadline. Applicants should take this practice into 
account and make early submission of their materials to avoid any risk 
of loss of eligibility brought about by unanticipated delays, computer 
service outages, or other delivery-related problems.

Funding Restrictions

    Funding will be awarded for supportive services grants under this 
NOFA depending on funding availability (currently funding is only 
authorized to be appropriated for the SSVF program through FY 2019). 
Applicants should fill out separate applications for each supportive 
services funding request. Funding for Priority 1 or 2 will be awarded 
under this NOFA to existing grantees for a 1 to 3-year period beginning 
on October 1, 2019. Funding for Priority 3 will be awarded for a 2-year 
period beginning on October 1, 2019. Funding for Priority 4 will be 
awarded for a 1-year period beginning on October 1, 2019.
    Funding used for staff education and training cannot exceed 1 
percent of the overall program grant award. This limitation does not 
include the cost to attend VA mandated training. All training costs 
must be directly related to the provision of services to homeless 
veterans and their families.
    Expenses related to maintaining accreditation are allowable. 
Grantees are allowed to include expenses for seeking initial 
accreditation only once in a 5-year period. The expenses to renew full 
accreditation is allowed and is based on the schedule of the 
accrediting agency, for instance every 3 years for CARF and every 4 
years for COA. Expenses related to the renewal of less than full 
accreditation are not allowed.

Other Submission Requirements

    1. Existing grantees applying for renewal grants may apply only as 
renewal applicants using the application designed for renewal grants.
    2. Existing grantees applying for new funding under Priority 3 must 
use the application designed for new grants.
    3. At the discretion of VA, multiple grant proposals submitted by 
the same lead agency may be combined into a single grant award if the 
proposals provide services to contiguous areas.
    4. Additional supportive services grant application requirements 
are specified in the application package. Submission of an incorrect or 
incomplete application package will result in the application being 
rejected during threshold review. The application packages must contain 
all required forms and certifications. Selections will be made based on 
criteria described in 38 CFR part 62 and this NOFA. Applicants and 
grantees will be notified of any additional information needed to 
confirm or clarify information provided in the application and the 
deadline by which to submit such information. Applicants must submit 
applications electronically. Applications may not be mailed or sent by 
facsimile (FAX).

Application Review Information

Criteria

    1. VA will only score applicants that meet the threshold 
requirements described in 38 CFR 62.21.
    2. VA will use the criteria described in 38 CFR 62.22 to score an 
application (Priority 3 and 4) for a supportive services grant and 
criteria in 38 CFR 62.24 to score grantees applying for renewal 
(Priority 1 and 2) of a supportive services grant.

Review and Selection Process

    3. VA will review all supportive services grant applications in 
response to this NOFA according to the following steps:
    a. Score all applications that meet the threshold requirements 
described in 38 CFR 62.21.
    b. Rank those applications who score at least 75 cumulative points 
and receive at least one point under each of the categories identified 
for new applicants in 38 CFR 62.22 and renewal applicants in 38 CFR 
62.24. The applications will be ranked in order from highest to lowest 
scores in accordance with 38 CFR 62.23 for new applicants and 38 CFR 
62.25 for renewal applicants.
    c. Utilize the ranked scores of applications as the primary basis 
for

[[Page 65207]]

selection. However, VA will also utilize the following considerations 
in 38 CFR 62.23(d) to select applicants for funding:
    (i) Give preference to applications that provide or coordinate the 
provision of supportive services for very low-income veteran families 
transitioning from homelessness to permanent housing. Consistent with 
this preference, where other funds from community resources are not 
readily available for temporary financial assistance, Priority 1 and 2 
applicants are required to spend no less than 60 percent of all 
budgeted temporary financial assistance on participants occupying 
permanent housing as defined in 38 CFR 62.11(b). Priority 3 and 4 
applicants are required to spend no less than 70 percent of all 
budgeted temporary financial assistance on participants occupying 
permanent housing as defined in 38 CFR 62.11(b). Waivers to this 
spending requirement may be requested when grantees can demonstrate 
significant local progress towards eliminating homelessness in the 
target service area. Waiver requests must include data from 
authoritative sources such as USICH certification, that a community has 
ended homelessness as defined by Federal Benchmarks and Criteria or has 
reached Community Solution's Functional Zero. Waivers for the spending 
requirement may also be requested for services provided to rural Indian 
tribal areas and other rural areas where shelter capacity is 
insufficient to meet local need. Waiver requests must include an 
endorsement by the impacted CoC explicitly stating that a shift in 
resources from rapid re-housing to prevention will not result in an 
increase in homelessness.
    (ii) To the extent practicable, ensure that supportive services 
grants are equitably distributed across geographic regions, including 
rural communities and tribal lands. This equitable distribution 
criteria will be used to ensure that SSVF resources are provided to 
those communities with the highest need as identified by VA's 
assessment of expected demand and available resources to meet that 
demand.
    (ii) Subject to the considerations noted in paragraph B.3 above, VA 
will fund the highest-ranked applicants for which funding is available.

Award Administration Information

Award Notices

    Although subject to change, the SSVF Program Office expects to 
announce grant recipients in the fourth quarter of FY 2019 with grant 
agreements being signed by October 1, 2019. Prior to executing a 
funding agreement, VA will contact the applicants, make known the 
amount of proposed funding and verify that the applicant would still 
like the funding. Once VA verifies that the applicant is still seeking 
funding, VA will execute an agreement and make payments to the grant 
recipient in accordance with 38 CFR part 62 and this NOFA.

Administrative and National Policy Requirements

    Grantees are expected to offer the following supportive services: 
Housing counseling; assisting participants in understanding leases; 
securing utilities; making moving arrangements; providing 
representative payee services concerning rent and utilities when 
needed; and mediation and outreach to property owners related to 
locating or retaining housing. Grantees may also assist participants by 
providing rental assistance, security or utility deposits, moving costs 
or general housing stability assistance, using other Federal resources, 
such as ESG, or supportive services grant funds to the extent described 
in this NOFA and 38 CFR 62.34.
    As SSVF grants cannot be used to fund treatment for mental health 
or substance use disorders, applicants must provide evidence that they 
can provide access to such services to all program participants through 
formal and informal agreements with community providers.

Reporting

    VA places great emphasis on the responsibility and accountability 
of grantees. As described in 38 CFR 62.63 and 62.71, VA has procedures 
in place to monitor supportive services provided to participants and 
outcomes associated with the supportive services provided under the 
SSVF Program. Applicants should be aware of the following:
    1. Upon execution of a supportive services grant agreement with VA, 
grantees will have a VA regional coordinator assigned by the SSVF 
Program Office who will provide oversight and monitor supportive 
services provided to participants.
    2. Grantees will be required to enter data into a Homeless 
Management Information System (HMIS) Web-based software application. 
This data will consist of information on the participants served and 
types of supportive services provided by grantees. Grantees must treat 
the data for activities funded by the SSVF Program separate from that 
of activities funded by other programs. Grantees will be required to 
work with their HMIS Administrators to export client-level data for 
activities funded by the SSVF Program to VA on at least a monthly 
basis.
    3. VA shall complete monitoring evaluations of each grantee at a 
rate of not less than once every two years. Monitoring will also 
include the submittal of quarterly and annual financial and performance 
reports by the grantee. The grantee will be expected to demonstrate 
adherence to the grantee's proposed program concept, as described in 
the grantee's application. All grantees are subject to audits conducted 
by the VA or its representative.
    4. Grantees will be assessed based on their ability to meet 
critical performance measures. In addition to meeting program 
requirements defined by the regulations and applicable NOFA(s), 
grantees will be assessed on their ability to place participants into 
housing and the housing retention rates of participants served. Higher 
placement for homeless participants and higher housing retention rates 
for at-risk participants are expected for very-low income veteran 
families when compared to extremely low-income veteran families with 
incomes below 30 percent of the area median income.
    5. Organizations receiving renewal awards and that have had ongoing 
SSVF program operation for at least 1 year (as measured from the start 
of initial SSVF services until February 22, 2019) may be eligible for a 
3-year award. Grantees meeting outcome goals defined by VA and in 
substantial compliance with their grant agreements (defined by meeting 
targets and having no outstanding corrective action plans) and who, in 
addition, receive 3-year accreditation from CARF in Employment and 
Community Services: Rapid Rehousing and Homeless Prevention standards, 
a 4-year accreditation from COA accreditation in Housing Stabilization 
and Community Living Services standards, or a 3 year accreditation in 
The Joint Commission's Behavioral Health Care: Housing Support Services 
Standards are eligible for a 3-year grant renewal subject to funding 
availability. (NOTE: Multi-year awards are contingent on funding 
availability). If awarded a multiple year renewal, grantees may be 
eligible for funding increases as defined in NOFAs that correspond to 
years 2 and 3 of their renewal funding.

Other Information

    VA Goals and Objectives for Funds Awarded Under This NOFA: In 
accordance with 38 CFR 62.24(c), VA will evaluate an applicant's 
compliance with VA goals and requirements for the

[[Page 65208]]

SSVF Program. VA goals and requirements include the provision of 
supportive services designed to enhance the housing stability and 
independent living skills of very low-income veteran families occupying 
permanent housing across geographic regions and program administration 
in accordance with all applicable laws, regulations, and guidelines. 
For purposes of this NOFA, VA goals and requirements also include the 
provision of supportive services designed to rapidly re-house or 
prevent homelessness among people in the following target populations 
who also meet all requirements for being part of a very low-income 
veteran family occupying permanent housing:
    1. Veteran families earning less than 30 percent of area median 
income as most recently published by HUD for programs under section 8 
of the United States Housing Act of 1937 (42 U.S.C. 1437f) (http://www.huduser.org).
    2. Veterans with at least one dependent family member.
    3. Veterans returning from Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation 
Iraqi Freedom, or Operation New Dawn.
    4. Veteran families located in a community, as defined by HUD's 
CoC, or a county not currently served by another SSVF grantee.
    5. Veteran families located in a community, as defined by HUD's 
CoC, where current level of SSVF services is not sufficient to meet 
demand of Category 2 and 3 (currently homeless) veteran families.
    6. Veteran families located in a rural area.
    7. Veteran families located on Indian Tribal Property.
    B. Payments of Supportive Services Grant Funds: Grantees will 
receive payments electronically through the U.S. Department of Health 
and Human Services Payment Management System. Grantees will have the 
ability to request payments as frequently as they choose subject to the 
following limitations:
    1. During the first quarter of the grantee's supportive services 
annualized grant award period, the grantee's cumulative requests for 
supportive services grant funds may not exceed 35 percent of the total 
supportive services grant award without written approval by VA.
    2. By the end of the second quarter of the grantee's supportive 
services annualized grant award period, the grantee's cumulative 
requests for supportive services grant funds may not exceed 60 percent 
of the total supportive services grant award without written approval 
by VA.
    3. By the end of the third quarter of the grantee's supportive 
services annualized grant award period, the grantee's cumulative 
requests for supportive services grant funds may not exceed 80 percent 
of the total supportive services grant award without written approval 
by VA.
    4. By the end of the fourth quarter of the grantee's supportive 
services annualized grant award period, the grantee's cumulative 
requests for supportive services grant funds may not exceed 100 percent 
of the total supportive services grant award.

Recouping Excess Funds

    VA regularly reviews grantee expenditures to ensure that funds are 
being used in a manner consistent with program goals and regulations. 
It is expected that grantee expenditures will be consistent across 
quarters as significant variance, specifically lower than expected 
spending, may indicate either a lower demand for services or difficulty 
in managing funds. If during the grant period, VA determines that 
grantee spending is not meeting the minimum percentage milestones 
below, VA may elect to recoup projected unused funds and reprogram such 
funds to provide supportive services in areas with higher need. 
Reductions will be calculated based on the total amount of payment 
requests submitted through the U.S. Department of Health and Human 
Services Payment Management System by 5:00 p.m. eastern standard time 
on the last business day of the quarter. Should VA elect to recoup 
unspent funds, reductions in available grant funds would take place the 
second business day following the end of the quarter.
    1. By the end of the first quarter of the grantee's supportive 
services annualized grant award period, the grantee's cumulative 
requests for supportive services grant funds is fewer than 15 percent 
of total supportive services grant award. (During this same period, the 
grantee's cumulative requests for supportive services grant funds may 
not exceed 35 percent of the total supportive services grant award.)
    2. By the end of the second quarter of the grantee's supportive 
services annualized grant award period, the grantee's cumulative 
requests for supportive services grant funds is fewer than 40 percent 
of total supportive services grant award. (During this same period, the 
grantee's cumulative requests for supportive services grant funds may 
not exceed 60 percent of the total supportive services grant award.)
    3. By the end of the third quarter of the grantee's supportive 
services annualized grant award period, the grantee's cumulative 
requests for supportive services grant funds is fewer than 65 percent 
of total supportive services grant award. (During this same period, the 
grantee's cumulative requests for supportive services grant funds may 
not exceed 80 percent of the total supportive services grant award).

Signing Authority

    The Secretary of Veterans Affairs, or designee, approved this 
document and authorized the undersigned to sign and submit the document 
to the Office of the Federal Register for publication electronically as 
an official document of the Department of Veterans Affairs. Robert L. 
Wilkie, Secretary, Department of Veterans Affairs, approved this 
document on December 14, 2018, for publication.

    Dated: December 14, 2018.
Jeffrey M. Martin,
Assistant Director, Office of Regulation Policy & Management, Office of 
the Secretary, Department of Veterans Affairs.
[FR Doc. 2018-27465 Filed 12-18-18; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 8320-01-P