Get HUD Exchange Updates: Get critical deadlines, policy changes, and upcoming trainings in your inbox.

HEARTH Act Implementation Updates

July 13, 2012 Print ShareThis

The Homeless Emergency Assistance and Rapid Transition to Housing Act of 2009 (HEARTH Act), enacted into law on May 20, 2009, consolidates HUD’s competitive homelessness assistance grant programs and names this merger, the Continuum of Care (CoC) Program.

  • HUD is planning to post the interim regulation for the new Continuum of Care Program to the HUD Homelessness Resource Exchange website at on Saturday, July 14. HUD expects the regulation to be published in the Federal Register in the coming week. The interim regulation will be effective 30 days after publication in the Federal Register.
  • CoC Program recipients and subrecipients are reminded that the final Homeless Definition is in effect for administration of the CoC Program interim rule. The final Homeless Definition is posted on the HUD HRE.
  • To assist CoCs, stakeholders, recipients and subrecipients in the successful implementation of the CoC Program interim rule, HUD is conducting a phased release of guidance documents, tools, and webcasts. Following are the dates of release of introductory user guides and tools to the HUD HRE:

          Week of July 16

  •  Introductory Guide to the CoC Program User Guide – provides an introduction to the CoC Program and the requirements in the interim rule.
  •  Hyperlinked version of the CoC Program interim rule.

          Week of July 23

  • Crosswalk of Changes for Program Eligible Costs: Continuum of Care Program, Supportive Housing Program (SHP), and Shelter Plus Care (S+C) Program Regulations – provides a quick reference guide to grant related citations of the CoC Program interim rule eligible costs.  The table also provides citations for relevant sections of the prior grant regulations (SHP and S+C) to facilitate identifying and comparing regulatory changes that will affect CoC grant recipients and subrecipients.
  •  Leasing and Rental Assistance Transition Tool – provides CoC program recipients assistance with transitioning former SHP and S+C projects to rental assistance and leasing projects.

          Early August

  • CoC Program Funding for Homeless Management Information System (HMIS) User Guide – provides an overview of the HMIS and the CoC’s responsibilities in relation to HMIS and describes how CoC Program funds can be used by the HMIS Lead and by other recipients to support the implementation of a HMIS.
  • CoC Program Components and Eligible Costs User Guide – provides CoCs, recipients, and subrecipients an overview of the five CoC components and costs that are eligible and ineligible for each component.

HUD has taped two webcasts that will be available the week of July 16 at

  • Continuum of Care Program: Overview of the Interim Rule and FY 2012 Competition
  • Continuum of Care: Eligible Components and Costs and the Grant Inventory Worksheet (GIW)

The following webcast will be available before the end of the month at

  • Continuum of Care Program: Implementing the CoC and the FY 2012 CoC Registration Process


  • HUD has created a new section of the HUD Virtual Help Desk, at, for questions about the new regulation. The CoC Program Policy Help Desk will be available on Monday, July 16, 2012. HUD has taken great care to anticipate questions and include as much detail in the regulation as possible. Therefore, please ensure that you read the regulation in its entirety before submitting a question. This will decrease the number of duplicative questions and responses, and increase the response time for questions that were not answered in the regulation.
  • HUD is also developing a comprehensive library of guidance documents to assist recipients and subrecipients in administering the CoC Program and the new definition of homelessness. HUD appreciates your patience as these documents are being completed. Many of your questions will be answered as the documents are published. Additional listservs will be forthcoming announcing the availability of the guidance documents and tools.

Technical Amendments to the HEARTH Act Signed Into Law

Last week, the President signed into law certain technical changes to the HEARTH Act that will ensure smoother implementation of the programs HUD is currently implementing.  These provisions improve implementation by:  

  • Clarifying that an instrumentality designated by a local government to administer its homeless grants may continue to do so.
  • Clarifying that an instrumentality designated by a state government to continue to administer its homeless grants may continue to do so and that Washington, D.C. will continue to be considered a local government under the ESG program.
  • Clarifying that HUD can continue to permit grantees to conduct environmental reviews. 
  • Clarifying that a city and urban county that are covered within a single continuum of care may administer their combined allocations under a single grant if they choose to do so.
Tags: CoC Laws and Regulations