When RCAC received its new short-term contract with Rural Development, I reached out to tell all of you about the new requirement for a “Quality Control Assessment” (QCA). This is a new requirement in the contract and we wanted all of you to be aware of the new process before we started conducting the assessments in conjunction with quarterly meetings.
The T&MA Contractors were asked to submit five month proposals to continue their work. These small contracts were then awarded without interruption, and Rural Development continues to work on the new solicitation. Essentially, this means we are still working on contract extensions and waiting on the new multi-year solicitation.
The President has released what is called the skinny budget for FY 2018. As the President said in his first State of the Union Address, he is proposing a significant increase to the defense budget, which he intends to offset with cuts to domestic discretionary spending.
In the last newsletter I discussed some of my concerns regarding USDA Rural Development’s use of income banding for low-income families even though it may also benefit very low-income households. My concern was that this may end up benefiting households who do not really need assistance and who, absent banding, would not be eligible borrowers. In spite of these concerns … there are real benefits to income banding for small households.
As we have reported, Rural Development (RD) has announced a pilot to use the “banded” method to determine low- and very low income status in 23 states and territories across the country. Arizona, California, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah and Washington are the six western states where this pilot will be tested for the next two years.