In addition to meeting and
working as a full Commission, the Commissioners have divided into
task forces to focus on issues of particular relevance to the
“housing question.” Each task force has, in turn, identified
priority questions that provide a framework for its exploration and
The task force categories, members, and priority questions are
Harvey (chair), Houstoun (vice chair), Basgal,
Carley, Dolbeare, Hudnut, Kellom, Rector, Stanley
- How can the eligibility and planning requirements that govern
housing programs be coordinated with non-housing programs (such as
transportation, child care, and health care) so that housing
policy reinforces welfare reform to assist strong, self-sufficient
- Are there best practices that should be used in affordable
housing programs so that housing assistance has a positive impact
on the broader community and helps create healthy neighborhoods?
Are mixed-income, mixed-use developments preferable?
Dolbeare (chair), Basgal (vice chair), Glover,
- How well or badly are vouchers working in different markets?
What factors lead to success with vouchers for tenants?
- How can vouchers best support mobility and self-sufficiency
for the families that receive them?
- To what extent should vouchers be project based or otherwise
linked to production programs? If they should be linked to such
programs, how and how many?
- Should consumer-based assistance also be made available to
low-income homeowners with severe housing cost burdens? If so, how
should this be done?
Colton (chair), Fauske (vice chair), Alexander, Bessant,
Bozzuto, Burum, Carley, Lynch, Moseley
- How can access to capital for homeownership (for refinancing
as well as purchase) be improved for those who currently fall
through the gaps?
- How can the multifamily housing finance delivery system be
improved for housing production and preservation?
Burum (chair), Glover (vice chair), Collins, Houstoun
- How can we best provide the capital to finance the
rehabilitation needs of the affordable housing stock (both public
housing and the assisted inventory)?
- How can this existing stock be preserved so that the
properties involved are self-supporting in the future?
Lynch (chair), Collins (vice chair), Bozzuto, Colton,
Dolbeare, Glover, Penman, Stanley
- How well do current programs (e.g., HOME, CDBG, HOPE VI,
§202, §811) operate as production tools? How well do
they work with each other? How can they be improved?
- What are the merits of the various proposals to create a new
housing production program? What unmet needs are being addressed
in each proposal?
- What innovative and creative programs are being used by states
and local governments to produce affordable housing?
Basgal (chair), Dolbeare, Glover, Stanley
- Should we recommend fundamental change in the public housing program?
- Do we want PHAs to operate more on a business model than the current political model? If so, how do we preserve their social mission?
- Do we want to encourage PHA access to the capital markets authorized by QHWRA?
- Were the changes to the capital funding system and operating subsidies in QHWRA effective? Should we go further in moving to a block grant system with less HUD micromanagement?
- Should non-performing PHAs be taken over by other PHAs? Other entities?
- Does HUD regulate PHAs effectively to ensure quality housing for income-qualified residents? Are there other ways to assure performance such as the monitoring for housing credit properties?
- How can PHA capacity to use broader authority be improved? Should PHA consolidation be encouraged?
- What preservation strategy should the MHC recommend for public housing?
- Should the MHC make different recommendations for small vs. larger PHAs?
Stanley (chair), Penman (vice chair), Alexander, Burum, Collins,
Dolbeare, Fauske, Moseley, Rector
- How could the various tax policy “tools” (e.g., tax credits,
bonds, passive loss allowances) be better used to promote (a) the
production of affordable rental housing, including housing for
extremely low-income families, and (b) homeownership?
- Regarding the preservation of affordable housing, what changes
to tax policy would enable owners of assisted properties and older
Low-Income Housing Tax Credit units to either maintain these
properties as affordable housing or sell them to owners who would
In addition to the priority questions identified by the MHC Task Forces, the full Commission has identified a number of cross-cutting issues.
- How are the challenges of meeting very low-income and extremely low-income households' housing needs best met? To what extent should this challenge be met with debt subsidies, capital subsidies, or tenant-based subsidies?
- How should technology be best used to meet housing challenges?
- How should quality control be best ensured in an era of devolution? How can accountability be assured without unnecessary bureaucracy?
- How should housing policies best intersect with issues of place, including sprawl, “smart growth,” and neighborhood revitalization?
- How should policies to increase housing availability and affordability best intersect with fair housing policies?