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Notice of Submission of Proposed Information Collection to OMB: Quality Control for Rental Assistance Subsidy Determinations

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Office of the Chief Information Officer, HUD.




The proposed information collection requirement described below has been submitted to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review, as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act. The Department is soliciting public comments on the subject proposal.

HUD is requesting approval to conduct a study to update its estimates of the extent and type of errors associated with income, rent, and subsidy determinations for the 4.4 million households covered by Public Housing and Section 8 housing subsidies.


Comments Due Date: January 23, 2004.


Interested persons are invited to submit comments regarding this proposal. Comments should refer to the proposal by name and OMB approval number (2528-0203) and should be sent to: Lauren Wittenberg, OMB Desk Officer, Office of Management and Budget, Room 10235, New Executive Office Building, Washington, DC 20503; Fax number (202) 395-6974; E-mail

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Wayne Eddins, Reports Management Officer, AYO, Department of Housing and Urban Development, 451 Seventh Street, Southwest, Washington, DC 20410; e-mail; telephone (202) 708-2374. This is not a toll-free number. Copies of the proposed forms and other available documents submitted to OMB may be obtained from Mr. Eddins.

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The Department has submitted the proposal for the collection of information, as described below, to OMB for review, as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. chapter 35). The notice lists the following information: (1) The title of the information collection proposal; (2) the office of the agency to collect the information; (3) the OMB approval number, if applicable; (4) the description of the need for the information and its proposed use; (5) the agency form number, if applicable; (6) what members of the public will be affected by the proposal; (7) how frequently information submissions will be required; (8) an estimate of the total number of hours needed to prepare the information submission including number of respondents, frequency of response, and hours of response; (9) whether the proposal is new, an extension, reinstatement, or revision of an information collection requirement; and (10) the name and telephone number of an agency official familiar with the proposal and of the OMB Desk Officer for the Department.

This notice also lists the following information:

Title of Proposal: Quality Control for Rental Assistance Subsidy Determinations.

OMB Approval Number: 2528-0203.

Description of the Need for the Information and Its Proposed Use: The Department is conducting, under contract, a study to update its estimates of the extent and type of errors associated with income, rent, and subsidy determinations for the 4.4 million households covered by Public Housing and Section 8 housing Start Printed Page 74632subsidies. The Quality Control process involves selecting a nationally representative sample of assisted households to measure the extent and types of errors in rent and income determinations, which in turn cause subsidy errors. On-site tenant interviews, file reviews, third-party income verifications, and income matching with other Federal data are conducted. The data obtained are used to identify the most serious problems and their associated costs. HUD program offices are then responsible for designing and implementing corrective actions. In addition to providing current estimates of error, results will be compared with those from the 2000 study. These comparisons will indicate whether corrective actions initiated since the 2000 study have been effective and if changes in priorities are needed.

The first QC study found that about one-half of the errors measured using on-site tenant interviews and file reviews could not be detected with the 500/58/50059 form data collected by the Department, which is why HUD and other agencies with means-tested programs have determined that on-site reviews and interviews are an essential complement to remote monitoring measures. The 2000 study showed that the calculation errors detectable with 50058/50059 data had further decreased, probably because this data was increasingly subject to automated computational checks.

This study will provide current information on the quality of tenant interviewing (e.g., whether they are they being asked about all sources of income) and the reliability of eligibility determinations and income verification. Legislation passed in 2002 requires that the Department report on the error measurements annually. A 2003 study is being completed, and this proposed data collection approval is for the next three studies.

Respondents: Recipients of Public Housing and Section 8 Housing Assistance subsidies.

Reporting Burden: The Department will survey approximately 550 PHA/program sponsor staff about (re)certification procedures, training, interview procedures, and problems encountered in conducting (re)certifications. Although more than one staff member may need to be contacted to obtain answers to all questions, the questionnaire will be administered once at each participating project and the interviews are expected to take less than 35 minutes. Researchers will survey approximately 3,000 program participants to obtain information on household composition, expenses, and income. the time required for these interviews will vary, but is estimated to require an average of about 50 minutes per interview.

The time estimates provided are based on the 2000 QC survey. This survey will again make use of Computer Assisted Interviewing (CAI) questionnaires and equipment, which are being used in part because they are known to reduce interview times. This software also provides for consistency checks and ensures that all needed data have been collected, thereby reducing the need for follow-up contacts.

Total Estimated Burden Hours: 2,742.

Status: Reinstatement, without change, of previously approved collection for which approval has expired.

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Authority: Section 3507 of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, 44 U.S.C. 35, as amended.

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Dated: December 17, 2003.

Wayne Eddins,

Departmental Reports Management Officer, Office of the Chief Information Officer.

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[FR Doc. 03-31633 Filed 12-23-03; 8:45 am]