- Laws, Regulations, and Federal Register Notices
Date Published: April 2016
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is amending its regulations to establish the Supportive Services for Veteran Families Program (SSVF Program). These amendments implement the provisions of section 604 of the Veterans’ Mental Health and Other Care Improvements Act of 2008 (Act). The purpose of the SSVF Program 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 are residing in permanent housing, are homeless and scheduled to become residents of permanent housing within a specified time period, or after exiting permanent housing, are seeking other housing that is responsive to such very low-income veteran family’s needs and preferences. The new SSVF Program is within the continuum of VA’s homeless services programs.
The final rule emphasizes that grantees must focus on providing permanent housing to eligible veteran families who, without SSVF assistance, would likely become homeless. It expands grantees’ authority to provide certain services to all very low-income veteran families and, more specifically, to those veteran families with significantly lower economic resources which are identified as extremely low-income veteran families. The purpose of this expanded authority is to address program implementation challenges and provide greater incentive to grantees to assist these particularly vulnerable veteran families. The final rule clarifies services that are not permissible uses of SSVF funds. The changes in the final rule reflect the intended goals of the SSVF program and are consistent with existing regulations.