Forum Post: A federal court denied the Obama Administration’s motion to set aside a 1993 court order against the federal government ....
Posted 2 years ago on March 23, 2013, 9:04 p.m. EST by BradB
from Washington, DC
This content is user submitted and not an official statement
A federal court denied the Obama Administration’s motion to set aside a 1993 court order against the federal government requiring compliance with Title V of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act
Occupy Seattle (from https://www.facebook.com/OccupySeattle )
WASHINGTON, D.C. – March 22, 2013 – (RealEstateRama) — In a ruling issued earlier today in Washington, D.C., a federal court denied the Obama Administration’s motion to set aside a 1993 court order against the federal government requiring compliance with Title V of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, a law that gives homeless services providers access to unused federal properties for free.
The National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty opposed the government’s motion and sought to modify the order to require the government to take additional steps to ensure compliance with the law. The court granted that motion and ordered the government to engage in improved training, monitoring, and reporting of properties while the order is in place.
The government argued that the injunction was unnecessary because it had demonstrated nearly two decades of unblemished compliance with the law. U.S. District Judge Royce C. Lamberth, who in a prior order described the government’s position as “baffling”, disagreed. The court found that, “[m]any landholding agencies appear to be hiding potentially eligible properties from the Title V process”, and that this “widespread” form of “landbanking” constitutes a serious violation of both the injunction and the Act itself.
This ruling represents an important win for homeless service providers who rely upon the Title V program to provide affordable access to unneeded federal properties for use as shelters, food banks, job training centers, and other public benefits. “With some 3.5 million Americans homeless each year, Title V is more important than ever. This program works, and we believe that today’s order will further increase the program’s effectiveness,” says Maria Foscarinis, Executive Director of the Law Center.
Federal Court Victory for Homeless Advocates http://www.realestaterama.com/2013/03/22/federal-court-victory-for-homeless-advocates-ID019839.html
The federal government is the largest single owner of real estate in the nation. Every year, dozens of landholding agencies determine that many of its properties—ranging from massive warehouses to military barracks and vacant land—are excess to their ongoing needs. Title V of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act of 1987 grants homeless services providers an exclusive right of first refusal to apply to own or lease any surplus federal property at no charge. Non-profit groups, state agencies, and local governments can all apply for Title V property.
NATIONAL LAW CENTER ON HOMELESSNESS & POVERTY WHAT IS “TITLE V”? http://www.nlchp.org/content/pubs/TitleVFactSheetApril20111.pdf
Under the Title V program (part of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act), for instance, the federal government requires that empty or “underused” properties that it owns be made available to homelessness advocacy organizations. There’s also the 1994 Base Closure Act, which converts closed bases into homeless housing (run by a local redevelopment authority).
Housing the homeless in vacants – why not? http://www.baltimorebrew.com/2013/03/18/housing-the-homeless-in-vacants-why-not/