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MPLP Advocate Library - Housing

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Assembling a Library to Support a Legal Services Housing Practice
There are many excellent publications available to assist legal services advocates handling housing matters. So, rather than presenting a summary of relevant housing law, we're listing resources that will help launch and support a low income housing practice.

Bill Would Radically Reshape HUD Rental Housing Programs
The State and Local Flexibility Act of 2005 (S. 771; http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/thomas), introduced in the U.S. Senate on April 13 by Sen. Wayne Allard, would significantly change the shape of the HUD rental housing programs...

By 5-4 Vote, U.S. Supreme Court Rules that Exercising Eminent Domain for Private Economic Development is a Public Use
In a 5-4 decision released near the end of its recently concluded session, the U.S. Supreme Court held that the a city's exercise of its eminent domain powers to enable private development was a legitimate public use for purposes of the 5th Amendment's Takings clause.

Center for Housing Policy Releases 2005 Working Families Report
A new report from the Center for Housing Policy based on the American Housing Survey finds that between 1997 and 2003 there has been a 67% increase in the number of low and moderate income working families facing critical housing needs, spending more than half of their income on housing or living in physically dilapidated units...

CLR's 2006 Affordability Preservation Project
In 2005 Community Legal Resources initiated work on the Affordability Preservation Project, a continuation of the Community Land Trust Project. A team of expert lawyers was empanelled to conduct a year-long research project to study affordability preservation models alternative to community land trusts, such as deed restrictions, soft second mortgages and condominuims.

Emerging Tenant Unfriendly Practices
Emerging potentially tenant unfriendly practices of public housing commissions and private HUD housing owners, and ways to respond to them, by MPLP Housing expert Jim Schaafsma.

Fair Housing Case List
The Housing and Civil Enforcement Section enforces the Fair Housing Act, the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, Title II of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Some selected cases are cited in this resource, sorted by type, with links to case summaries, complaints, settlement agreements and consent decrees, judgments, and press releases, as appropriate and available.

Homelessness, and the shortage of affordable housing that is its leading cause, are growing crises in the United States. They threaten and indeed violate basic human rights of the poorest and most vulnerable Americans. Read more about homelessness and the shortage of affordable housing through this article.

This article analyzes the recent Virginia Supreme Court decision in Virginia v. Hicks together with no trespass policies of public housing authorities.

Housing Law Links
Substantive Housing Law links for Michigan Advocates.

Housing-related provisions of the Reauthorized VAWA
On January 5, President Bush signed the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act. It contains several housing related provisions that, among other positive steps, provide additional protection for "victims of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking" living in or seeking admission to HUD assisted housing.

HUD Appropriations Act Limits Section 8 Eligibility for Some College Students
The recently enacted FY2006 HUD appropriations bill contains a provision which restricts eligibility for Section 8 housing for some members of this population.

HUD Notice outlines steps PHAs can take for voucher families with disabled members
Earlier this year, HUD issued a notice which provides guidance to public housing authorities/commissions (PHAs) about ways to assist persons with disabilities in their search for housing under the Section 8 voucher program.

HUD's Proposed Public Housing Operating Subsidy Formula Rule Bypasses Neg-Reg
Last year, as mandated by Congress, HUD reconvened a committee of "stakeholders" to develop, through a process called negotiated rulemaking ("neg-reg"), a new public housing operating subsidy formula that would adequately fund well-managed public housing. With limited resident involvement, this committee reached agreement on what the operating subsidy formula should be and how to make the transition to it...

Hurricane Assistance Information Resources
If you need to get information about the rights of and assistance available to hurricane survivors who've relocated to Michigan, there are many resources to consult.

Job Sprawl and Spatial Mismatch in Michigan
Among metropolitan areas in the U.S. with populations greater than 500,000, two in Michigan led the nation in "job sprawl", and the Detroit metro area has the highest rate of "spacial mismatch" between jobs and African-Americans in the country, according to a recent Brookings Institution report. The study identifies "spacial mismatch" as a measure of the physical isolation of people, in terms of where they live, from job opportunities in their metropolitan area.

Landlord-Tenant Law "Bluebook"
The Michigan Residential Landlord Tenant Law Manual ("The Blue Book")is available through the Michigan Poverty Law Program.

More than 12,000 HUD Assisted Rental Units Lost in Michigan Since 1995
According to the National Housing Trust, more than 12,000 HUD assisted units have been lost in Michigan since 1995 (through February 2005), including more than...

Truth in lending checklist for closed-end transactions.

New Resources for Advocates for the Section 515 Rural Housing Program
As is the case with much of the HUD subsidized multifamily rental housing inventory, there is a threat of loss of much of the housing subsidized under the USDA's Rural Housing Service's Section 515 program...

Advocates for homeless individuals and families have a powerful tool for influencing the development and prioritization of local housing issues. This tool is the public housing planning process.

Providing Civil Legal Assistance to People with Criminal Convictions in Michigan
Manual for legal aid attorneys on advising and representing clients who have criminal records with wide ranging discussion on the civil impact of criminal history in many familiar areas including housing, public benefits, employment and family law. This book is available as a PDF document with a Table of Contents linked to related sections.

An overview of public housing including information on admissions & screening, occupancy issues, and the eviction and grievance process.

Reentry Housing Training Power Point
MPLP Power Point Presentation Regarding Overcoming Obstacles to Reentry

Responding to Landlord Use of a Trespass Policy That Interferes with Guest Visits
Analysis of policies that permit Landlords to label tenant guests as trespassers and then seek enforcement of the state trespass statute against them.

Rethinking the American Housing Dream
In a recently published op-ed piece, 2 former assistant secretaries of HUD during the Clinton administration offered the following interesting perspective on the American Dream of homeownership.

An overview of the Section 8 (Housing Choice) Voucher Program including information on admissions & screening, occupancy issues, and eviction & termination issues.

A Fact Sheet about the impact of the Violence Against Women Act 2005 (VAWA) on the housing rights and options of survivors of domestic and sexual violence.

The federal Violence Against Women Act of 2005 includes important new housing legal protections and programs for victims of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking. This resource answers some questions about VAWAs impact on housing law.