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April 1 -- The Office of Policy Development and Research (PD&R), at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), is proposing the collection of information for the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) Choice Mobility and Long-Term Affordability Evaluation and invites public comment to OMB by May 3, 2021.  
 
RAD was established under the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act of 2012 to preserve affordable housing units over the long term by enabling public housing authorities (PHAs) to apply to HUD to convert at-risk public housing properties to two different forms of project-based Section 8 Housing Assistance Payments contracts—project based voucher (PBV) or project-based rental assistance (PBRA). Doing so gives PHAs more flexibility to access private and public funding sources to meet with short-term capital needs, reduce their reliance on limited appropriations, and stabilize their financial and physical condition. Choice mobility, an additional feature of RAD, allows residents of RAD properties to request a Housing Choice Voucher that they can use to move to a housing unit in the private market.  
 
Congress requested an evaluation of RAD to assess the impact of the demonstration on the preservation and improvement of public housing, the amount of private sector leveraging, and the effect on tenants. HUD contracted a two-phase evaluation to address these research areas. The Phase I results were published in 2016 and the Phase II results in 2019. The Fiscal Year 2018 Appropriations Act provided funds to conduct a follow-up evaluation of the RAD program, including its implementation and outcomes, the choice mobility option, the impact on tenants and related protections, and the long-term preservation of housing affordability.
 
PD&R invites comment on the information collection for this new phase of the RAD evaluation titled RAD Choice Mobility and Long-Term Affordability Evaluation. The current information collection is designed to support four studies included in the evaluation:  
One is the study of the implementation of the RAD choice mobility option and its effects on property outcomes, tenant outcomes, and the voucher program.  
The second study is the impact of RAD on the long-term preservation and financial viability of converted affordable housing properties.  
The third is the adequacy of asset management for PBV and PBRA conversions.  
The fourth study will examine the organizational and operational changes at PHAs that participated in RAD. For the first three studies, the evaluation includes web-based survey of all RAD PHAs, RAD property owners/ operators, and former RAD residents who have exercised the choice mobility option; and a sample survey of RAD residents who have not elected the choice mobility option. For the fourth study, we plan to conduct qualitative interviews with senior staff at 25 RAD PHAs.
 
RAD webpage: https://www.hud.gov/RAD  
RAD Evaluation submission to OMB: https://www.reginfo.gov/public/do/PRAViewICR?ref_nbr=202101-2528-010 Click on IC List for data collection instruments, View Supporting Statement for technical documentation
FR notice inviting public comments to OMB: https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2021/03/02/2021-04253/30-day-notice-of-proposed-information-collection-rental-assistance-demonstration-rad-choice-mobility (Note: PD&R submitted its proposal to OMB on April 1. The public has 30 days to provide comments, that is, by May 3, 2021.)
 
For AEA members wishing to submit comments to OMB, "A Primer on How to Respond to Calls for Comment on Federal Data Collections" is available at https://www.aeaweb.org/content/file?id=5806

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