[Federal Register Volume 80, Number 158 (Monday, August 17, 2015)]
[Notices]
[Pages 49318-49323]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2015-20319]


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DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS


Funding Availability Under Supportive Services for Veteran 
Families (SSVF) Program

AGENCY: Veterans Health Administration, Department of Veterans Affairs 
(VA).

ACTION: Notice of funding availability (NOFA).

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SUMMARY: VA is announcing the availability of funds for supportive 
services grants under the SSVF Program. This NOFA contains information 
concerning the SSVF Program, initial supportive services grant 
application processes, and the amount of funding available.
    Funding Opportunity Title: SSVF Program.
    Announcement Type: Initial.
    Funding Opportunity Number: VA-SSVF-021015.
    Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Number: 64.033, VA SSVF 
Program.
    VA is announcing the availability of funds for supportive services 
grants under the SSVF Program. This NOFA contains information 
concerning the SSVF Program, initial supportive services grant 
application processes, and the amount of funding available. Awards made 
for supportive services grants will fund operations beginning October 
1, 2015.

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 September 1, 2015. 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.

ADDRESSES: For a Copy of the Application Package: Copies of the 
application can be downloaded directly from the SSVF Program Web site 
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 Section 62 of Title 38, Code of 
Federal Regulations (38 CFR part 62).
    Submission of Application Package: Applicants are strongly 
encouraged to submit applications electronically following instructions 
found at www.va.gov/homeless/ssvf.asp. Alternatively applicants can 
mail in applications. If mailed, applicants must submit two completed, 
collated, hard copies of the application and two compact discs (CD) 
containing electronic versions of the entire application are required. 
Each application copy must (i) be fastened with a binder clip, and (ii) 
contain tabs listing the major sections of and exhibits to the 
application. Each CD must be labeled with the applicant's name and must 
contain an electronic copy of the entire application. A budget template 
must be attached in Excel format on the CD, but all other application 
materials may be attached in a PDF or other format. The application 
copies and CDs must be submitted to the following address: Supportive 
Services for Veteran Families Program Office National Center on 
Homelessness Among Veterans, 4100 Chester Avenue, Suite 201, 
Philadelphia, PA 19104. Applicants must submit two hard copies and two 
CDs. Applications may not be sent by facsimile (FAX). Applications must 
be received in the SSVF Program Office by 4:00 p.m. Eastern 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.
    Technical Assistance: Information regarding how to obtain technical 
assistance with the preparation of an initial supportive services grant 
application is available on the SSVF Program Web site at: http://www.va.gov/HOMELESS/SSVF.asp.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. John Kuhn, SSVF Program Office, 
National Center on Homelessness Among Veterans, 4100 Chester Avenue, 
Suite 201, Philadelphia, PA 19104; via email at SSVF@va.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Funding Opportunity Description

    A. Purpose: The SSVF Program's 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; (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

[[Page 49319]]

low-income Veteran family's needs and preferences.
    B.  Funding Priorities: VA is making funding available for up to 
four awards, not to exceed $3.5 million. Up to two awards will provide 
up to $3 million for services in the State of Wyoming. An award of up 
to $1 million will be available to provide services in western 
Nebraska. An award of up to $60,000 will be made available to provide 
services to Lake County in the State of Indiana. VA may make 
adjustments to proposed budgets submitted by applicants to ensure that 
the overall funding from this NOFA does not exceed $3.5 million.
    C. Definitions: Part 62 of title 38, Code of Federal Regulations 
(38 CFR 62), contains definitions of terms used in the SSVF Program, 
eligibility criteria, and programmatic priorities. Respondents to this 
NOFA should base their proposals and applications on the requirements 
of part 62 as it exists today. Any parties receiving supportive 
services grants as a result of this NOFA will be required to comply 
with those requirements for the duration of their grant.
    D. Approach: 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, agencies must work through coordinated 
partnerships built either through formal agreements or the informal 
working relationships commonly found amongst strong social service 
providers. As part of the application, under 38 CFR 62.22(e), all 
applicants are strongly encouraged to provide letters of support from 
their respective VA Network Homeless Coordinator (or their designee). 
In addition, applicants are strongly encouraged to provide letters of 
support from the Continuums of Care (CoC) where they plan to deliver 
services that reflect the applicant's engagement in the CoC's efforts 
to coordinate services. CoCs may elect to provide VA with a rank order 
of their support in lieu of providing individual letters of support. A 
CoC 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. It includes action steps to end 
homelessness and prevent a return to homelessness (CoC locations and 
contact information can be found at the Department of Housing and Urban 
Development's (HUD) Web site, http://www.hudhre.info/index.cfm?do=viewCocMaps). This coordination should describe the 
applicant's participation in the CoC's coordinated assessment efforts 
(coordinated assessment refers to a common process for accessing 
homeless assistance services including: Prevention, diversion, 
emergency shelter, transitional housing, rapid re-housing, supportive 
services and even permanent supportive housing). 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 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 regulation 
as (i) very low-income Veteran families who are homeless and 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. Accordingly, VA encourages eligible entities 
skilled in facilitating housing stability and experienced in operating 
rapid re-housing programs (i.e., administering HUD's Homelessness 
Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing Program, HUD's Emergency Solution Grant 
(ESG), or other comparable Federal or community resources) to apply for 
supportive services grants. 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 
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.
    E. Authority: Funding applied for under this NOFA is authorized by 
38 U.S. Code (U.S.C.) 2044. VA implements the SSVF Program by 
regulation in 38 CFR part 62. Funds made available under this NOFA are 
subject to the requirements of the aforementioned regulations and other 
applicable laws and regulations.
    F. Requirements for the Use of Supportive Services Grant Funds: The 
grantee'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 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.
    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. (NOTE: Grantees may request a waiver to decrease this minimum, 
as discussed in section V.B.3.a.)
    3. 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.
    G. Guidance for the Use of Supportive Services Grant Funds: It is 
VA policy to support a ``Housing First'' model in addressing and ending 
homelessness. Housing First establishes housing stability as the 
primary intervention in working with homeless persons. The Housing 
First approach is based on research that shows that a homeless 
individual or household's first and primary need is to obtain stable 
housing, and that other issues that may affect the household can and 
should be addressed as housing is obtained. Research supports this 
approach as an effective means to end homelessness. Housing is not 
contingent on compliance with services; instead, participants must 
comply with a standard lease agreement and are provided with the 
services and supports

[[Page 49320]]

that are necessary to help them do so successfully.
    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. The complexity of program rules and 
the stigma some associate with entitlement programs contributes to 
their lack of use. To this effect, 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. Consistent with the Housing First model supported by VA, 
grantees are expected to offer the following supportive services: 
Housing counseling; assisting participants in understanding leases; 
securing utilities; making moving arrangements; provide 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 emergency 
supplies; or using other Federal resources, such as the HUD's ESG, or 
supportive services grant funds subject to the limitations described in 
this NOFA 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. Grantees are expected to access the Substance 
Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration's SSI/SSDI Outreach, 
Access, and Recovery (SOAR) program either though community linkages or 
by training staff to deliver SOAR services. In addition, where 
available, grantees should access information technology tools to 
support case managers in their efforts to link participants to 
benefits.
    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: 
Legal services provided may be protected from release by the grantee or 
VA under attorney-client privilege; however, documentation 
demonstrating the provision of legal services are subject to audit and 
mandatory program monitoring.) 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 
and engagement to mental health and addiction 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, 
it is required that the defining question to ask is: ``Would this 
individual or family be homeless but for this assistance?'' The grantee 
must use a VA approved screening tool with criteria that targets those 
most at-risk of homelessness. To qualify for SSVF services, a Veteran 
who is served under Category 1 (homeless prevention), the participants 
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 Category 1, the grantee must document that the participant meets 
at least one of the following conditions:
    (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 recipient's approved screening tool.
    8. Where other funds from community resources are not readily 
available, grantees may choose to utilize supportive services grants, 
subject to the limitations 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, emergency housing assistance, rental assistance, 
utility-fee payment assistance, security or utility deposits, moving 
costs and general housing stability assistance as necessary.

II. Award Information

    A. Overview: This NOFA announces the availability of funds for 
supportive services grant under the SSVF Program. VA is making funding 
available for up to four awards, not to exceed $3.5 million. Up to two 
awards will provide up to $3 million for services in the state of 
Wyoming. An award of up to $1 million will be available to provide 
services in western Nebraska. An award of up to $60,000 will be made 
available to provide services to Lake County in the state of Indiana. 
VA may make adjustments to proposed budgets submitted by applicants to 
ensure that the overall funding from this NOFA does not exceed $3.5 
million.

[[Page 49321]]

    B. Funding: To be eligible for a supportive services grant offered 
through this NOFA, the applicant must be a current SSVF grantee that 
has existing operations in areas adjacent to the areas proposed for 
funding through this NOFA.
    C. Allocation of Funds: Funding will be awarded under this NOFA to 
existing grantees for a 1 year period beginning October 1, 2015. The 
following requirements apply to supportive services grants awarded 
under this NOFA:
    1. In response to this NOFA, applicants can only submit one 
application.
    2. A single application may be submitted to serve the contiguous 
area of Wyoming and western Nebraska targeted in this NOFA. Should a 
single application be submitted, the requested amount cannot exceed 
$3.5 million.
    3. Applicants must be existing SSVF grantees.
    4. To facilitate the rapid launch of services, applicants must 
currently provide SSVF services to areas adjacent to one of the 
identified target communities specific to the award being sought.
    D. Supportive Services Grant Award Period: Grant awards are 
generally made for a 1-year period, however, if a successful applicant 
currently has a longer award period for their adjacent SSVF grant, the 
new award will be combined with their existing grant and the length of 
this new award will match the current award period.

III. Eligibility Information

    A. Eligible Applicants: In order to be eligible, an applicant must 
qualify as a private non-profit organization (section 501(c)(3) or 
501(c)(19) tax exempt status is required) or a consumer cooperative as 
has the meaning given such term in section 202 of the Housing Act of 
1959 (12 U.S.C. 1701q).
    B. Cost Sharing or Matching: None.

IV. Application and Submission Information

    A. Address to Request Application Package: Download directly from 
the SSVF Program Web site at www.va.gov/homeless/ssvf.asp or send a 
written request for an application to SSVF Program Office, National 
Center on Homelessness Among Veterans, 4100 Chester Avenue, Suite 201, 
Philadelphia, PA 19104. Any questions regarding this process should be 
referred to the SSVF Program Office via phone at (877) 737-0111 (toll-
free number) or via email at SSVF@va.gov. For detailed SSVF Program 
information and requirements, see 38 CFR part 62.
    B. Content and Form of Application: Applicants are strongly 
encouraged to submit applications electronically following instructions 
found at www.va.gov/homeless/ssvf.asp. Alternatively applicants can 
mail in applications. If mailed, applicants must submit two completed 
collated, hard copies of the application and two compact discs (CD) 
containing electronic versions of the entire application are required. 
Each application copy must (i) be fastened with a binder clip, and (ii) 
contain tabs listing the major sections of and exhibits to the 
application. Each CD must be labeled with the applicant's name and must 
contain an electronic copy of the entire application. A budget template 
must be attached in Excel format on the CD, but all other application 
materials may be attached in a PDF or other format.
    C. 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 September 1, 2015. Awards made for 
supportive services grants will fund operations beginning October 1, 
2015. 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.
    D. Intergovernmental Review: This section is not applicable to the 
SSVF Program.
    E. Funding Restrictions: Up to $3.5 million may be awarded 
depending on funding availability and subject to available 
appropriations for initial supportive services grants to be funded 
under this NOFA. Applicants should fill out separate applications for 
each supportive services funding request. Funding will be awarded under 
this NOFA to existing grantees for a 1 to 3-year period beginning 
October 1, 2015 (as described in II.D.).
    F. Other Submission Requirements:
    1. Applicants shall apply as new applicant using the application 
designed for new grants.
    2. Additional supportive services grant application requirements 
are specified in the initial 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 are strongly encouraged to submit applications 
electronically. If mailed, applications and CDs must be submitted to 
the following address: SSVF Program Office, National Center on 
Homelessness Among Veterans, 4100 Chester Avenue, Suite 201, 
Philadelphia, PA 19104. Applicants must submit two hard copies and two 
CDs. Applications may not be sent by FAX.

V. Application Review Information

    A. Criteria:
    1. VA will only score applicants that meet the following threshold 
requirements:
    (a) The application is filed within the time period established in 
the NOFA, and any additional information or documentation requested by 
VA under 38 CFR 62.20(c) is provided within the time frame established 
by VA;
    (b) The application is completed in all parts;
    (c) The applicant is an eligible entity;
    (d) The activities for which the supportive services grant is 
requested are eligible for funding under this part;
    (e) The applicant's proposed participants are eligible to receive 
supportive services under this part;
    (f) The applicant agrees to comply with the requirements of this 
part;
    (g) The applicant does not have an outstanding obligation to the 
Federal Government that is in arrears and does not have an overdue or 
unsatisfactory response to an audit; and
    (h) The applicant is not in default by failing to meet the 
requirements for any previous Federal assistance.
    2. VA will use the criteria described in 38 CFR 62 to score 
grantees applying for new supportive services grant:
    3. VA will use the following process to select applicants to 
receive supportive services grants: VA will score all applicants that 
meet the threshold requirements set forth in 38 CFR 62.21 using the 
scoring criteria set forth in 38 CFR 62.22.
    B. Review and Selection Process: VA will review all supportive 
services grant

[[Page 49322]]

applications in response to this NOFA according to the following steps:
    1. Score all applications that meet the threshold requirements 
described in 38 CFR 62.21.
    2. 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, paragraphs (a), (b), (c), (d), and 
(e). The applications will be ranked in order from highest to lowest 
scores.
    3. Applicants are required to spend no less than 60 percent of all 
budgeted temporary financial assistance on homeless participants 
defined in 38 CFR 62.11(a)(2) and (a)(3). Waivers to this 60 percent 
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 HUD's Annual Homeless Assessment Report, annual Point-In-Time Counts 
and evidence of decreased demand for emergency shelter and transitional 
housing. Waivers for the 60 percent 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.

VI. Award Administration Information

    A. Award Notices: Although subject to change, the SSVF Program 
Office expects to announce the grant recipient in the fourth quarter of 
fiscal year 2015 with the grant beginning October 1, 2015. Prior to 
executing a funding agreement, VA will contact the applicant and 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 other 
applicable provisions of this NOFA.
    B. Administrative and National Policy Requirements: It is VA policy 
to support a ``Housing First'' model in addressing and ending 
homelessness. Housing First establishes housing stability as the 
primary intervention in working with homeless persons. The Housing 
First approach is based on research that shows that a homeless 
individual or household's first and primary need is to obtain stable 
housing, and that other issues that may affect the household can and 
should be addressed as housing is obtained. Housing is not contingent 
on compliance with services; instead, participants must comply with a 
standard lease agreement and are provided with the services and 
supports that are necessary to help them do so successfully. Research 
supports this approach as an effective means to end homelessness.
    Consistent with the Housing First model supported by VA, grantees 
are expected to offer the following supportive services: Housing 
counseling; assisting participants in understanding leases; securing 
utilities; making moving arrangements; provide 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 emergency supplies, using 
other Federal resources, such as the ESG, or supportive services grant 
funds subject to the limitations 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.
    C. 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 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 annual monitoring evaluations of each grantee. 
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 Financial Services Center.
    4. Grantees will be required to provide each participant with a 
satisfaction survey which can be submitted by the participant directly 
to VA, within 45 to 60 days of the participant's entry into the 
grantee's program and again within 30 days of such participant's 
pending exit from the grantee's program. In all cases there should be a 
minimum of 30 days between administration of the two surveys. In cases 
when a brief SSVF intervention results in the first survey being 
administered 30 days after exit, only one survey shall be provided.
    5. Grantees will be assessed based on their ability to meet 
critical performance measures. In addition to meeting program 
requirements defined by the regulations and NOFA, 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.

VII. Agency Contact

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: John Kuhn, Supportive SSVF Program 
Office, National Center on Homelessness Among Veterans, 4100 Chester 
Avenue, Suite 201, Philadelphia, PA 19104; email: SSVF@va.gov.

VIII. Other Information

    A. VA Goals and Objectives for Funds Awarded Under this NOFA: In 
accordance with 38 CFR 62.22(b)(6), VA will evaluate an applicant's 
ability to meet VA goals and objectives for the SSVF Program. VA goals 
and objectives 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. For purposes of this NOFA, VA goals and objectives 
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:

[[Page 49323]]

    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.
    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.

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. 
Nabors II, Chief of Staff, Department of Veterans Affairs, approved 
this document on August 12, 2015, for publication.

    Dated: August 13, 2015.
Michael Shores,
Chief Impact Analyst, Office of Regulation Policy & Management, Office 
of the General Counsel, Department of Veterans Affairs.
[FR Doc. 2015-20319 Filed 8-14-15; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 8320-01-P