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-------- Original message --------
From: Adam Knapp
Date: 8/16/18 7:49 PM (GMT-06:00)
To: Pat Forbes

Subject: Fwd: Murray Wennerlund, Louisiana Representative Edward "Ted" James, Dist 101 said it, we are echoing the call to fight hard Now!

FYI
- - -
knapp@brac.org
(225) 278-3708

From: Pat Forbes
Sent: Thursday, August 16, 2018 8:49 PM
To: Adam Knapp
Subject: Re: Murray Wennerlund, Louisiana Representative Edward "Ted" James, Dist 101 said it, we are echoing the call to fight hard Now!

Thanks. We've talked to this guy and tried to explain that while we agree with his interpretation, HUD has not (so far)

Research Resource:

FAQ No. 117    

Date: 4-8-2019 Updated: 4-8-2019 Subject:

From: Adam Knapp [mailto:knapp@brac.org]
Sent: Monday, July 16, 2018 7:18 PM
To: Pat Forbes ; Dan Rees

Subject: Fwd: Wallace Aultman, PLEASE VOTE NO on CLOSING our HUD CDBG-DR Program before HUD's ALLOWED Time Estimated to be 1-18-2023

Pat and Dan-

What is this?

- - -

knapp@brac.org
(225) 278-3708
Begin forwarded message:
From:
Date: July 16, 2018 at 5:04:46 PM CDT
To:
Subject: Wallace Aultman, PLEASE VOTE NO on CLOSING our HUD CDBG-DR Program before HUD's ALLOWED Time Estimated to be 1-18-2023
Reply-To:

(Reference Email: Please Vote No on Closing our HUD CDBG-DR Program before HUD's ALLOWED Time Estimated to be 1-18-2023)

FROM: On Jul 17, 2018, at 7:48 AM, Pat Forbes wrote:

I think he's taken my statement that our goal is to have all grant determinations done by this fall and all construction done by next spring as some kind of deadline for the program. That's all I can think. Do you think all the Task Force members got this?


-------- Original message --------
From: Adam Knapp
Date: 7/17/18 8:54 AM (GMT-06:00)
To: Pat Forbes
Cc: Dan Rees

Subject: Re: Wallace Aultman, PLEASE VOTE NO on CLOSING our HUD CDBG-DR Program before HUD's ALLOWED Time Estimated to be 1-18-2023

I would assume so if I received it. It came in this weird form like a form email. I got two of them almost at the exact same time. Let me know if you want me to forward the other one. I have not been planning to reply

- - -

knapp@brac.org
(225) 278-3708


From: Dan Rees
Sent: Tuesday, July 17, 2018 9:31 AM
To: Adam Knapp; Pat Forbes
Subject: Re: Wallace Aultman, PLEASE VOTE NO on CLOSING our HUD CDBG-DR Program before HUD's ALLOWED Time Estimated to be 1-18-2023

The email was forwarded to you by Murray Westerlund who spoke at the task force meeting last Friday. We have received a number of public record requests from him, most recently for the task force member contact info.

Dan Rees
Phone 225 342 1718


From: Pat Forbes
Sent: Tuesday, July 17, 2018 10:30 AM
To: Adam Knapp
Cc: Dan Rees
Subject: Re: Wallace Aultman, PLEASE VOTE NO on CLOSING our HUD CDBG-DR Program before HUD's ALLOWED Time Estimated to be 1-18-2023

Thanks, we'll probably reach out

Research Resources:

FAQ No. 116    

Date: 4-8-2019 Updated: 4-8-2019 Subject:

On November 14, 2017, Pan American Engineers, LLC ("Pan American") entered into a Professional Services Contract with the Louisiana Office of Community Development - Disaster Recovery Unit ("OCD"). On January 24, 2018, Pan American entered into a subcontract with CSRS to assist with grant management services in connection with OCD's Community Development Block Grant ("CDBG") Disaster Recovery Programs related to Hurricanes Katrina, Rita, Gustav, and Ike, the floods of 2016, and future disasters.

On May 3, 2018, Revision 1 to the Pan American subcontract with CSRS required CSRS to provide executive staff augmentation services and such personnel as necessary to provide executive staff services to OCD. Stacy Bonnaffons, an employee of CSRS, was assigned as temporary Chief of Staff for OCD until July 15, 2018, when her service was discontinued and the chief of staff position was abolished through the hiring of a Chief Operations Officer by OCD. Ms. Bonnaffons remains an employee of CSRS as a Program Manager in connection with the disaster recovery programs, in particular, the 2016 flood recovery program, "Restore Louisiana."

In October of 2018, OCD entered into an unrelated contract with The Compass Group Affordable Housing, LLC ("Compass Group") to provide policy and finance advisory services related to affordable, multi-family housing in support of the investment of CDBG funds into various multifamily rental housing programs, including the Piggyback Program, which combines CDBG loans with Low Income Housing Tax Credit equity. The Compass Group provides OCD with advisory services related to government regulations, financing structures, and housing policy issues, including affordability, disaster resilience, and other key outcomes.

Compass Group seeks to engage CSRS to supplement their services to OCD. These affordable housing services have no connection to the disaster recovery services provided by CSRS to Pan American and CSRS had no involvement in preparing the Request for Proposal which led to the contract between Compass Group and OCD. Additionally, Ms. Bonnaffons did not participate in the contract between Compass Group and OCD and Ms. Bonnaffons provided no services to OCD as interim Chief of Staff in connection with the affordable housing services to be provided in the potential subcontract between CSRS and Compass Group. Finally, Ms. Bonnaffons is not rendering the same services to CSRS as a Program Manager as the services she rendered to OCD as interim Chief of Staff.

Research Resource: Louisiana Ethics Agenda Item Docket No. 18-1283

FAQ No. 115    

Date: 4-1-2019 Updated: 4-1-2019 Subject:

Double-Flooded Policy Clarification
Follow-up from Prior Policy Meeting

Policy Meeting Packet

[FULL DISCLOSURE REPORT TO BE PUBLISHED FIRST WEEK OF APRIL 2019]

From: Leann Smith
Sent: Tuesday, August 21, 2018 4:19 PM
To: Spring Garcia
Cc: Kim Chauvin


Subject: Double Flooded Applicants


Hello Spring,

Hope you're doing well! Kim and I spoke about the policy meeting, and we wanted to dialogue with you about the topic of
minor damage on both floods.

Stacy mentioned that she'd like to see the population of applicants that should have been considered major/severe from their cumulative FVL but were deemed ineligible due to damage level. I told Kim that I'd be happy to help get a report run to identify this population, but I wanted to get with you first to make sure that you weren't running any reports of your own. I'm happy to assist with this if you'd like me to handle it.

Also, we'd addressed in the meeting that only the cumulative of the FVL should be considered when determining if an applicant was major/severe as a result of both storms. However, Kim is concerned that the cumulative of the flood height from both storms may have been used to determine major/severe in the past. I wanted to put this on your radar (and I can also help pull some reports on this as well, if needed).

Let me know if I need to do anything from here. Happy to help!

Thanks!

LeAnn Smith
225.831.2995
leann.smith@restore-la.org

>>>

From: Spring Garcia
Sent: Tuesday, August 21, 2018 6:18 PM
To: Leann Smith
Cc: Kim Chauvin

Subject: RE: Double Flooded Applicants

Only the FVL from both storms is added and if > 8K then will be M/S. If flood height from either storm is > 12” it's used. In other words flood height is not added together.

Spring Garcia
Spring.Garcia@la.gov
225-831-2775

>>>

From: Leann Smith
Sent: Wednesday, August 22, 2018 8:23 AM
To: Spring Garcia
Cc: Kim Chauvin

Subject: RE: Double Flooded Applicants

Good deal. If you wind up needing some extra help in researching the double flooded population, please just let me know!

Thanks, and have a great day!

LeAnn Smith
225.831.2995
leann.smith@restore-la.org

>>>

RE: Double Flooded Applicants
Spring Garcia
Sent:Monday, October 15, 2018 4:11 PM
To: Leann Smith; Ingrid Jones; Tracy Bennett; Hannah Kimbrough
Cc: Annick Mauroner; Amanda Raymond; Chad Carson; Catherine Fairchild; Bria Griffith; Malissa X. Jackson; Shirley Poirrier; Stacy Bonnaffons;
Lauren Tichenor Nichols

All, In reviewing file a couple of items were brought to light that require correction.

1. RLHP Policies and Procedures Doc. V4.1 needs the following revision on pg. 57 for Double flooded applicants. It currently states in the second paragraph:

"The applicant will need to provide proof of loss related to the March 2016 flood via receipts for materials or repairs, cancelled checks to contractors, and/or paid invoices to establish the value of the repairs lost in the second flood in August 2016. RLHP will also use FEMA data to verify March 2016 damage level, which must have been major/severe, or the cumulative FEMA verified loss of both storms must have been major/severe."

The corrected verbiage is: RLHP will also use FEMA data to verify the damage level. If flood height from either storm is > 12" or if the cumulative FEMA verified loss of both storms > 8K then the damage will be considered major/severe.
2.
a. The PCA put out for double flooded applicants contains calculation processes for 5 6 scenarios. OCD is currently reviewing for accuracy and will provide feedback ASAP.
b. The PCA also requires cancelled checks for all expenditures. This is not RLHP policy. If a handwritten receipt with handwritten logo/company information or a receipt to an individual is provided then a cancelled check would be required but receipts from Home Depot, B&D Plumbing, Central Electric etc. should not require cancelled checks or proof of payment.

Spring Garcia
Spring.Garcia@la.gov
225-831-2775

Research Resource:

  • Document Request Louisiana DOA Management Meetings between 8-2018 and 11-2018.

FAQ No. 114    

Date: 4-1-2019 Updated: 4-1-2019 Subject:

Cost Analysis for Elevated New Construction Homes.

Overview: As part of the Restore Louisiana Homeowners Assistance Program, IEM was tasked to provide a cost analysis for elevated new construction homes within the program. The cost analysis is intended to provide a realistic expectation of the additional costs that can be expected when constructing a foundation capable of elevating a home 3 feet or greater above existing ground.

Design Assumptions: While various constructions methods and designs may be considered, it is necessary to develop the cost analysis around similar floorplan layouts. This approach allows for the analysis to illustrate on how the total cost of construction efforts may vary depending upon floorplan size without being skewed with other design details. The following assumptions were considered:

  • Single story home with a pier and beam foundation.
  • Light Weight Timber Frame construction.
  • Floor system elements are included in the previously determined construction cost of the home.
  • Site work and Clean-up is included in the previously determined construction cost of the home.
  • Required Pile length of 35' per pile (poor soil conditions)
    2' wide x 1' deep concrete grade beam cast-in-place at grade to laterally support piles and, if necessary, vertically support CMU piers.
  • Two means of egress (stairs) per home.
    All connections between foundation elements are included in the unit price.
  • All labor, equipment, and materials are included in the unit price.
  • 30' wide foundation plan with varying lengths to accommodate the program determined floorplan sizes.
    Construction methods based on IRC 2015 or newer.
  • Engineering costs include designed drawings, acquisition of all relevant geotechnical information, any necessary site visits for compliance inspection, and any required final as-built drawings.

2100 sf plan with 6 Foot Elevation:

Item Unit Rate Qty Unit Unit Cost
Timber Pilings 2100 /sf $24.00 945 LF $22,680
4 " Concrete Under Building 2100 /sf $4.00 2100 SF $8,400
CMU Block $23.00 360 EA $8,280
Survey 2100 /sf $1,200 1 LS $1,200
Geotechnical 2100 /sf $0.96 2,100 SF $2,019.23
Engineering 2100 /sf $2.70 2,100 SF $5,665.24
Elevation Certificate 2100 /sf $1,200 1 LS $1,200
As Builts 2100 /sf $1,500 1 LS $1,500
Stairs / Landings 2100 /sf $5,000 1 $5,000
Façade Up Charge for Elevation 2100 /sf $0.77 2100 $1,623.93
Total Cost $57,568.40
Price Per SQ FT $27.41

FAQ No. 113    

Date: 3-30-2019 Updated: 3-30-2019 Subject:

Title 24: Housing and Urban Development
PART 570—COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT BLOCK GRANTS

§ 570.1 Purpose and primary objective.

(a) This part describes policies and procedures applicable to the following programs authorized under title I of the
Housing and Community Development Act of 1974, as amended:

(1) Entitlement grants program (subpart D);
(2) Nonentitlement Funds: HUD-administered Small Cities and Insular Area programs (subpart F);
(3) State program: State-administered CDBG nonentitlement funds (subpart I);
(4) Special Purpose Grants (subpart E);
(5) Urban Development Action Grant program (subpart G); and
(6) Loan Guarantees (subpart M).

Research Resource:

FAQ No. 112    

Date: 3-30-2019 Updated: 3-30-2019 Subject:

Solution 2 Reconstruction with Elevation homeowners that have DOB higher than their grant award based on the first grant award calculation may have a housing discrimination issue to file against HUD.

Background: Homeowners who elevated using SBA grants were not afforded the offset costs of elevation as identified July 13, 2018 in APA 9. The elevation allowances were never applied to homeowners during the initial grant award process which would have lowered the DOB to include accounts with SBA loans. The state has instructed these homeowners to wait for an SBA fix. The state has been informed of the issue and has yet to respond.

The research has been completed, if you can complete the spreadsheet I've linked here and show you are eligible for a grant once you add your elevation costs you may have a solid case to file with HUD OIG this week. I will coach and offer the reporting process to those penalized by the first grant calculation method that omitted unmet needs, unforeseen costs, and elevation costs.

Complete the Spreadsheet and PM me a copy, I will be attaching them to a report I will be publishing and you will need to submit it to HUD OIG with your report.

Download Solution 2 Elevation Reconstruction Allowance Calculator

FAQ No. 111    

Date: 3-28-2019 Updated: 3-28-2019 Subject:

Open Letter to Congressman Graves posted on Facebook.com Congressman Garret Graves comment by Murray Wennerlund.

The language sounds like you're talking HUD but you start with the federal management agency.
This would really work better if you could get the Administrator of the Emergency Management (FEMA) to address the disaster assistance delivery. If we could add to H.R. 1311 verbiage making FEMA refer disaster victims to either HUD or SBA based on FEMA's financial controls which would need to be modified from their current method of identifying if a household has at least one income maker.
If we had FEMA refer the Low to Moderate Income (LMI) which HUD identifies as 80% AMI or less directly to HUD CDBG-DR federal assistance and all those at 120% AMI or greater to SBA then you only have to figure out how to manage the middle income families that most likely do not have enough resources available to them to make a full recovery without adding serious debt burden on their households.
Simply by splitting LMI off in the first week we would have saved over 29,000 families from being denied assistance later with the Restore Louisiana program.
If those that had incomes at 120% or greater were advised by FEMA to seek "Other Assistance Elsewhere" which means their income and credit would have allowed them to seek conventional lenders which would not have resulted in the SBA DOB issue we face today. It would have instructed credit worthy households to take conventional loans even if the interest and terms were not as good as the SBA. The loans would have not penalized them thus making them "Reimbursements" in the HUD CDBG-DR program.
So the only demographic and the heaviest in voters is the 81% to 120% group, either directly these households typically run at 75% of their total income to reoccurring debt. To add the financial burden of a disaster to their households it normally means they seek additional income. They are below the cash in hand market standards to qualify for loans in the amounts for a Assistance Elsewhere approach with their recovery as the 120% AMI groups are. This middle class group uses more credit cards that are very high in interest rates. This short term cash advance system at 17%+ interest adds a financial risk of default on the primary mortgage not to mention the stress this type of debt causes. For these households we need a focus on local banks willing to offer lines of credit to rebuild that may have state backing but not federal taxpayer dollar backing which would make the credit line a DOB.
The hardest group to fund is also the same group suffering in the recovery process.
Recap: Between the below 80% and the above 120% comparing programs we use today both demographics would suffer ZERO in structural repairs. HUD CDBG-DR Grants for the 80%, 100% reimbursements to the 120%.
Where is the wording that focuses on the the middle class 81% to 119%?
By the way, you're doing great with pushing the Stafford Act.
Now let's push the Sequence of Delivery amendment so we can get people fixed in the first 3 months instead of the last 3 years of the HUD CDBG-DR program.

FAQ No. 110    

Date: 3-28-2019 Updated: 3-28-2019 Subject:

Reforming Disaster Recovery Act of 2019

Bill Summary: The Reforming Disaster Recovery Act of 2019 would permanently authorize the CDBG-DR program as well as address concerns that have been raised about the administration of the program.27 Among other requirements, the discussion draft would mandate that:

  1. (1) HUD disburse one-third of CDBG-DR funds within 60 days and the other two-thirds within 180 days of a Congressional appropriation;
  2. (2) HUD, FEMA, and the Small Business Administration (SBA) work together to better improve data sharing and to reduce duplication of benefits between agencies; and
  3. (3) any CDBG-DR-funded new construction, repair, or rehabilitation utilize minimum federal standards for flood risk mitigation and storm water protection.

Additionally, the discussion draft would allow cities and counties with well-developed disaster relief resources to become pre-certified to receive funding more quickly.

Research Resource:

FAQ No. 109    

Date: 3-26-2019 Updated: 3-26-2019 Subject:

Start your Long Term Recovery process by learning what federal and state services are offered after a declared disaster.

  • FEMA
  • Volunteer Groups
  • SBA (Business and Homeowner loans)
  • Volunteer Groups
  • HUD Community Development Block Grant Disaster Relief (CDBG-DR)
  • Family, neighbors, friends.
You are going to hear about IA (Individual Assistance) and IHP (Individual Household Program and ONA (Other Needs Assistance).

IA (Individual Assistance)
Taking the event order you will be offered a small amount of grant money if any for IA. This is a safe grant and will not be used against you later as long as it is for rental or during the time you were suffering and that is during the disaster. If you lost your home or apartment this IA grant may pay for Hotels, Apartments, or other shelter directly. What they give you in form of a check is to cover your time between the disaster and when you get into a rental agreement that they will pay directly. Take the IA money.

  • IA Housing Needs
    • Temporary Housing (a place to live for a limited period of time): Financial assistance may be available to homeowners or renters to rent a temporary place to live. If no rental properties are available, a government housing unit may be provided, but only as a last resort.
    • Lodging Expenses Reimbursement: Reimbursement of hotel expenses for homeowners or renters may be available for short periods of time due to inaccessibility or utility outage if not covered by insurance or any other program.

IHP (Individual Household Program)
This is where we say think before you accept anything. If it's a grant you receive this money can only be used on repairing your home. But, if your home is a Manufactured home this money will count against you for later grants. Also, if you purchase appliances, furniture, hot water heater, bedding, clothes you will be penalized for those purchases later. This is to make your home safe to live in but also doesn't not count as funds for rebuilding as your home was prior to the disaster. You must understand that every dollar of IHP will be counted against you with other programs so you must spend that money you have recieved only on items that other programs will not offer you grant money for or toward the final repairs of your home.
More Information and Resources.

  • IHP Housing Needs
    • Temporary Housing (a place to live for a limited period of time): Financial assistance may be available to homeowners or renters to rent a temporary place to live. If no rental properties are available, a government housing unit may be provided, but only as a last resort.
    • Lodging Expenses Reimbursement: Reimbursement of hotel expenses for homeowners or renters may be available for short periods of time due to inaccessibility or utility outage if not covered by insurance or any other program.
    • Repair: Financial assistance may be available to homeowners to repair disaster-caused damage to their primary residence that is not covered by insurance. The goal is to make the damaged home safe, sanitary, or fit to occupy.
      • Note: IHP Grants to repair your home are for the structure only. You can not purchase vehicles, kitchen appliances, kitchen cabinets, tables, chairs or other furniture. You can not purchase hot water heaters or bathroom fixtures. The IHP Grants are to make your home or part of your home safe but they do not include anything like a new microwave. Basically it's Windows, Walls, Doors and clean your floor. Everything else will be deducted from grants down the sequence of deliver which may or may not be a deduction from your grant but rather a debt that has to be repaid before additional grant money is awarded.
    • Replacement: Financial assistance may be available to homeowners to replace their home destroyed in the disaster that is not covered by insurance. The goal is to help the homeowner with the cost of replacing their destroyed home.
    • Permanent or Semi-Permanent Housing Construction: Direct assistance or money for the construction of a home. This type of help occurs only in insular areas or other locations specified by FEMA, where no other type of housing assistance is possible.

Read our two part series on what IHP Grants can be used for.

ONA (Other Needs Assistance)
To date we have not had any reports of anyone being awarded ONA grants which can be used for anything from clothing to vehciles. We do know that nearly everyone that lost a vehicle was told if you applied to the SBA and were "Declined" by the SBA FEMA may award you the ONA. We find this FALSE based on the fact that the SBA will qualify you for collateral loans and if you own a home even with a mortgage they will create you an approved loan amount that will disqualify you from any ONA grant. This grant is not actually my opinion worth applying for because FEMA requires you to apply for a SBA loan first. More information and resources.

NOTICE: FEMA will tell you that you will have to apply for the SBA Disaster Loan to be qualified for ONA Grant money. The only way to be awarded ONA Grant money from FEMA is to be declined by the SBA which only happens under extreme or adverse conditions. 1. You are a known terrorist or enemy of the state and country. 2. You are in prison. 3. Your household has no verifiable income. 4. You are dead.

SBA Disaster Loan Program (By default we say NO to any SBA loan application.)
Be very careful and be aware of the risks you are about to take when you are asked or told to apply for an SBA Disaster Loan. These are LOANS and NOT GRANTS. These are not Business Loans that are forgiven after 5 to 7 years. These are loans which the SBA will offer you even if you have no created an income of $18,090 Net per year as long as you have collateral or assets they will approve you a loan.

  • Those that are below the 80% AMI for your area should NOT apply for the SBA disaster loan.
  • Those between 80% and 120% should seek only local lenders for any short term rebuilding loans or non at all.
  • Those over 120% will be paying market interest rates so it doesn't help to apply to the SBA either. Look to local lenders to borrow money.

In all cases and all income levels it is important to calculate your recovery funds and your ability to acquire conventional loans, borrow from family, friends, draw from your retirement saves, etc. Once you select an SBA loan even if you do not take the money but you have executed the loan and then backed out or cancelled the loan that money will be used against you as available disaster recovery funds later when you are offered HUD CDBG-DR grants. We have many homeowners that are willing to share their experiences with you directly about the SBA loan process. Most will tell you to seek other assistance and avoid the application process of the SBA Disaster Loan program completely. Read what a 35 year retired OCD-DRU director has to say about the program and take the words seriously. Say No to the SBA Loan, read more.

We are homeowners, renters, victims of disasters that thought the federal system was here to help us. We were wrong, the shock were all were in because of the disaster blinded us and with that in mind I want to tell you personally that it has taken more than one year to even reach the point of understanding what we needed to do for our disaster recovery. We are still living in a RV 2 years after the disaster and still fighting the federal and state disaster recovery people over every penny we are qualified to receive.
No one plans on disasters because we have federal, state and local government employees we pay to handle these matters. We expected them to tell us from the first day what to do. What we have learned was nothing short of everything FUBAR. Many lost thousands over policy that has not business even being in a disaster relief or disaster recovery program while others were lied to and suffer today a debt burden they would have never had if our local elected officials and paid government employees would have advised us with the correct information. Even news media outlets from local services failed to pass the information about how to recover which they all hand in hand.

FAQ No. 108    

Date: 3-25-2019 Updated: 3-25-2019 Subject:

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