[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 6 (Monday, January 11, 2016)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 1120-1121]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-00327]


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DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT

24 CFR Parts 200, 280, and 570

[Docket No. FR-5878-F-01]
RIN 2502-AJ31


Federal Housing Administration (FHA): Removal of 24 CFR 280--
Nehemiah Housing Opportunity Grants Program

AGENCY: Office of the Deputy Secretary, HUD.

ACTION: Final rule.

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SUMMARY: Through this rule, HUD removes the regulations for its 
Nehemiah Housing Opportunity Grants Program (NHOP). Under NHOP, HUD was 
authorized to make grants to nonprofit organizations to be used to 
provide loans to families purchasing homes constructed or substantially 
renovated in accordance with a HUD-approved program. In 1990, authority 
for NHOP was repealed by the National Affordable Housing Act. HUD 
removed obsolete NHOP regulations in 1996 but maintained regulatory 
provisions deemed necessary for the administration of existing NHOP 
grants. Currently, HUD administers only one NHOP grant agreement. As a 
result, HUD has determined that the remaining NHOP regulations are 
unnecessary. The existing grant and loans made under NHOP will continue 
to be governed by the regulations that existed immediately before the 
effective date of this final rule.

DATES: Effective: February 10, 2016.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Camille E. Acevedo, Associate General 
Counsel for Legislation and Regulations, Office of General Counsel, 
Department of Housing and Urban Development, 451 7th Street SW., Room 
10276, Washington, DC 20410; telephone 202-708-1793 (this is not a 
toll-free number). Persons with hearing or speech impairments may 
access this number through TTY by calling the Federal Relay Service at 
800-877-8389 (this is a toll-free number).

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

I. Background

    Established under title VI of the Housing and Community Development 
Act of 1987 (Pub. L. 100-242, approved February 5, 1988) (12 U.S.C. 
17151), NHOP authorized HUD to make grants to nonprofit organizations 
to enable them to provide loans to families purchasing homes 
constructed or substantially rehabilitated in accordance with a HUD-
approved program. Loans provided under NHOP were required to be secured 
by a second mortgage on the property involved that was held by HUD but 
that did not bear interest. On July 13, 1989 (54 FR 22248), HUD 
published regulations implementing NHOP and codified these regulations 
in part 280 of title 24 of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR).
    Section 289(a) of the National Affordable Housing Act (Pub. L. 101-
625, approved November 28, 1990) (42 U.S.C. 12839), however, repealed 
authority for NHOP. On August 19, 1996 (61 FR 42952), HUD published a 
final rule removing obsolete sections of 24 CFR part 280, but 
maintained those provisions deemed necessary to the administration of 
existing NHOP grants. As of the date of this publication, however, HUD 
maintains one NHOP grant agreement and has 1,028 active Nehemiah loans. 
Based on this, HUD has determined that there is no longer a need to 
maintain 24 CFR part 280. As a result, and consistent with Executive 
Order 13563, dated January 18, 2011, entitled ``Improving Regulations 
and Regulatory Review,'' \1\ HUD is removing 24 CFR part 280. The 
existing grant and loans made under NHOP will continue to be governed 
by the regulations that existed immediately before the effective date 
of this final rule.
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    \1\ Executive Order 13563 was published in the Federal Register 
on January 21, 2011, at 76 FR 3821 and directs that heads of Federal 
departments and agencies review existing regulations to remove those 
that are obsolete or no longer necessary.
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    This final rule also removes a cross-reference to 24 CFR part 280 
that is codified in HUD's Community Development Block Grant 
regulations, 24 CFR part 570.

II. Justification for Final Rulemaking

    HUD generally publishes a rule for public comment before issuing a 
final rule for effect, in accordance with HUD's own regulations on 
rulemaking in 24 CFR part 10. However, part 10 provides for exceptions 
to the general rule if the agency finds good cause to omit advance 
notice and public participation. The good cause requirement is 
satisfied when prior public procedure is impracticable, unnecessary, or 
contrary to the public interest. (See 24 CFR 10.1.)
    HUD finds that public notice and comment are not necessary for this 
rulemaking because the authority to provide assistance under NHOP has 
been repealed and assistance is no longer being provided under the 
program. Therefore, the regulations being removed by this final rule 
are no longer operative. For these reasons, HUD has determined that it 
is unnecessary to delay the effectiveness of this rule in order to 
solicit prior public comment.

III. Findings and Certification

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) 
generally requires an agency to conduct a regulatory flexibility 
analysis of any rule subject to notice and comment rulemaking 
requirements, unless the agency certifies that the rule will not have a 
significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. 
Because HUD has determined that good cause exists to issue this rule 
without prior public comment, this rule is not subject to the 
requirement to publish an initial or final regulatory flexibility 
analysis under the RFA as part of such action.

Unfunded Mandates Reform

    Section 202 of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (UMRA) \2\ 
requires that an agency prepare a budgetary impact statement before 
promulgating a rule that includes a Federal mandate that may result in 
the expenditure by State, local, and tribal governments, in the 
aggregate, or by the private sector of $100 million or more in any 
1year. If a budgetary impact statement is required, section 205 of UMRA 
also requires an agency to identify and consider a reasonable number of 
regulatory alternatives before promulgating a rule.\3\ However, the 
UMRA applies only to rules for which an agency publishes a general 
notice of proposed rulemaking pursuant to the Administrative Procedure 
Act (APA).\4\ As discussed above, HUD has determined for good cause 
that the APA does not require general notice and public comment on this 
rule and, therefore, the UMRA does not apply to this final rule.
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    \2\ 2 U.S.C. 1532.
    \3\ 2 U.S.C. 1534.
    \4\ 2 U.S.C. 1532(a).
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Executive Order 13132, Federalism

    Executive Order 13132 (entitled ``Federalism'') prohibits an agency 
from publishing any rule that has federalism implications if the rule 
either imposes substantial direct compliance costs on State and local 
governments and is not required by statute, or the rule preempts State 
law, unless the agency meets the consultation and funding requirements 
of section 6 of the Executive order. This final rule will not have 
federalism

[[Page 1121]]

implications and would not impose substantial direct compliance costs 
on State and local governments or preempt State law within the meaning 
of the Executive order.

Environmental Review

    This final rule does not direct, provide for assistance or loan and 
mortgage insurance for, or otherwise govern or regulate real property 
acquisition, disposition, leasing, rehabilitation, alteration, 
demolition, or new construction or establish, revise, or provide for 
standards for construction or construction materials, manufactured 
housing, or occupancy. Accordingly, under 24 CFR 50.19(c)(1), this 
final rule is categorically excluded from environmental review under 
the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321).

List of Subjects

24 CFR Part 200

    Administrative practice and procedure, Claims, Equal employment 
opportunity, Fair housing, Housing standards, Incorporation by 
reference, Lead poisoning, Loan programs--housing and community 
development, Mortgage insurance, Organization and functions (Government 
agencies), Penalties, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Social 
security, Unemployment compensation, Wages.

24 CFR Part 280

    Community development, Grant programs--housing and community 
development, Loan programs--housing and community development, Low and 
moderate income housing, Nonprofit organizations, Reporting and 
recordkeeping requirements.

24 CFR Part 570

    Administrative practice and procedure, American Samoa, Community 
development block grants, Grant programs-education, Grant programs-
housing and community development, Guam, Indians, Loan programs-housing 
and community development, Low and moderate income housing, Northern 
Mariana Islands, Pacific Islands Trust Territory, Puerto Rico, 
Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Student aid, Virgin Islands.
    For the reasons set forth in the preamble, and under the authority 
of 42 U.S.C. 3535(d), HUD amends 24 CFR parts 200, 280 and 570 as 
follows:

PART 200--INTRODUCTION TO FHA PROGRAMS

0
1. The authority citation for part 200 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 12 U.S.C. 1702-1715z-21; 42 U.S.C. 3535(d).

0
2. Add Sec.  200.1301(h) to read as follows:


Sec.  200.1301  Expiring programs--Savings clause.

* * * * *
    (h) Any existing loan assistance (including recapture of loan 
assistance), ongoing participation, or insured loans under the program 
listed in this paragraph will continue to be governed by the 
regulations in effect as they existed immediately before February 10, 
2016 (24 CFR part 280, 2015 Edition):
    (1) Part 280, Mortgage Insurance and Assistance Payments for Home 
Ownership and Project Rehabilitation (12 U.S.C. 17151).
    (2) [Reserved]

SUBCHAPTER E [REMOVED AND RESERVED]

0
3. Remove and reserve subchapter E, consisting of part 280.

PART 570--COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT BLOCK GRANTS

0
4. The authority citation for part 570 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  42 U.S.C. 3535(d) and 5301-5320.

0
5. In Sec.  570.703, revise paragraph (j) to read as follows:


Sec.  570.703  Eligible activities.

* * * * *
    (j) Construction of housing by non-profit organizations for 
homeownership under section 17(d) of the United States Housing Act of 
1937 (Housing Development Grants Program, 24 CFR part 850).
* * * * *

    Dated: December 22, 2015.
Nani A. Coloretti,
Deputy Secretary.
[FR Doc. 2016-00327 Filed 1-8-16; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4210-67-P