The HUD-Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH) program combines Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) rental assistance for homeless Veterans with case management and clinical services provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). VA provides these services for participating Veterans at VA medical centers (VAMCs) and community-based outreach clinics.
Every year since 2008, HUD and VA have awarded HUD-VASH vouchers based on geographic need and public housing agency (PHA) administrative performance. The allocation process for HUD-VASH vouchers is a collaborative approach that relies on three sets of data: HUD’s point-in-time data submitted by Continuums of Care (CoCs), VAMC data on the number of contacts with homeless Veterans, and performance data from PHAs and VAMCs. After determining which areas of the country have the highest number of homeless Veterans, the VA Central Office identifies VA facilities in the corresponding communities. HUD then selects PHAs near to the identified VA facilities, taking into consideration the PHAs’ administrative performance, and sends the PHAs invitations to apply for the vouchers. There is at least one site in each of the 50 states, in the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Guam.
HUD has awarded funding for approximately 10,000 HUD-VASH vouchers each year in 2008-2010 and 2012-2015. Congress appropriated $50 million in 2011 to serve approximately 7,000 voucher families and $40 million in 2017 to serve approximately 5,000 families. In addition, HUD has held three competitions, in 2010, 2014, and 2015, to competitively award a total of over 2,600 project-based HUD-VASH vouchers. Since 2008, a total of over 93,000 vouchers have been awarded.
Generally, the HUD-VASH program is administered in accordance with regular HCV program requirements (24 CFR Section 982). However, the 2008 Consolidated Appropriations Act (Public Law 110-161) allows HUD to waive or specify alternative requirements for any provision of any statute or regulation affecting the HCV program in order to effectively deliver and administer HUD-VASH voucher assistance. The alternative requirements are established in the HUD-VASH Operating Requirements (including the waivers and alternative requirements from HCV program rules), which were published in the Federal Register on May 6, 2008 and updated March 23, 2012.