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116th Congress    }                                     {       Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 1st Session      }                                     {      116-185

======================================================================



 
              ENSURING EQUAL ACCESS TO SHELTER ACT OF 2019

                                _______
                                

August 13, 2019.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the 
              State of the Union and ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

  Ms. Waters, from the Committee on Financial Services, submitted the 
                               following

                              R E P O R T

                             together with

                             MINORITY VIEWS

                        [To accompany H.R. 3018]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Financial Services, to whom was referred 
the bill (H.R. 3018) to prohibit the Secretary of Housing and 
Urban Development from implementing a proposed rule regarding 
requirements under Community Planning and Development housing 
programs, having considered the same, report favorably thereon 
with an amendment and recommend that the bill as amended do 
pass.

                                CONTENTS

                                                                   Page
Purpose and Summary..............................................     2
Background and Need for Legislation..............................     2
Section-by-Section Analysis......................................     3
Hearings.........................................................     3
Committee Consideration..........................................     3
Committee Votes and Roll Call Votes..............................     3
Statement of Oversight Findings and Recommendations of the 
  Committee......................................................     5
Statement of Performance Goals and Objectives....................     5
New Budget Authority and CBO Cost Estimate.......................     5
Committee Cost Estimate..........................................     6
Unfunded Mandate Statement.......................................     6
Advisory Committee...............................................     6
Application of Law to the Legislative Branch.....................     6
Earmark Statement................................................     6
Duplication of Federal Programs..................................     6
Changes to Existing Law..........................................     6

    The amendment is as follows:
  Strike all after the enacting clause and insert the 
following:

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

  This Act may be cited as the ``Ensuring Equal Access to Shelter Act 
of 2019''.

SEC. 2. PROHIBITION ON IMPLEMENTATION OF RULE.

  The Secretary of Housing and Urban Development may not implement, 
administer, enforce, or in any manner make effective the proposed rule 
entitled ``Revised Requirements Under Community Planning and 
Development Housing Programs'', published by the Department of Housing 
and Urban Development in Spring 2019 (Docket No. FR-6152; RIN: 2506-
AC53), or any final rule based substantially on such proposed rule.

                          PURPOSE AND SUMMARY

    On May 23, 2019, Rep. Jennifer Wexton introduced H.R. 3018, 
the ``Ensuring Equal Access to Shelter Act of 2019,'' which 
would prohibit the Secretary of HUD from implementing a 
proposed rule that would allow shelter providers to deny 
transgender and gender non-conforming people equal access to 
homeless shelters.

                  BACKGROUND AND NEED FOR LEGISLATION

    HUD's ``Equal Access Rule'' requires shelter providers to 
ensure that their operations and policies support equal access 
to shelter and services ``in accordance with an individual's 
gender identity.''\1\ This includes ensuring that individuals 
are placed, served and accommodated in accordance with the 
gender with which they identify regardless of the sex assigned 
to them at birth and regardless of their perceived gender 
identity. It also includes ensuring that an individual is not 
subjected to intrusive questioning or asked to provide 
anatomical information or documentary, physical or medical 
evidence of their gender identity.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \1\24 CFR Part 5 https://files.hudexchange.info/resources/
documents/Equal-Access-Final-Rule-2016.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Despite the protections in the Equal Access Rule, LGBTQ 
individuals experiencing homelessness continue to have 
difficulty gaining equal access to shelters and services. 
Transgender youth in particular are often turned away from 
shelters or are placed without regard to their gender identity, 
which can lead to isolation and even unsafe situations.\2\ 
Today, research indicates that more than half of transgender 
people experiencing homelessness are unsheltered\3\ and LGBTQ 
youth are 120 percent more likely to experience homelessness 
than non-LGBTQ youth,\4\ accounting for 40 percent of the 
homeless youth population, based on a survey of a sample 
population.\5\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \2\Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago, ``Missed 
Opportunities: Youth Homelessness in America.''
    \3\National Alliance to End Homelessness, ``The Alliance's 
Statement on Proposed Changes to HUD's Equal Access Rule.'' May 2019.
    \4\Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago, ``Missed 
Opportunities: Youth Homelessness in America.''
    \5\Durso, Laura E. and Gates, Gary J., ``Serving Our Youth 
Report.'' July 2012.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    In response to continued concerns, the Obama Administration 
issued guidance to owners and operators of HUD-funded shelters 
on how to comply with the Equal Access Rule and best serve 
transgender people experiencing homelessness. However, the 
Trump Administration withdrew this guidance in March 2017. 
While testifying in front of Congress on May 21, 2019, 
Secretary Carson assured Congresswoman Wexton that he was ``not 
currently anticipating changing the [Equal Access Rule].'' 
However, HUD announced the following day that it will propose a 
forthcoming rule that would allow shelter providers to 
establish policies without regard to the gender that a person 
identifies. The proposal would permit intrusive questioning and 
documentation requirements, which may also serve as a barrier 
to access.\6\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \6\https://www.reginfo.gov/public/do/
eAgendaViewRule?pubId=201904&RIN=2506-AC53.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    H.R. 3018 would prohibit HUD from implementing, 
administering, enforcing, or in any manner making effective 
this proposed rule, or any final rule based substantially on 
the May 22, 2019 proposed rule.

                      SECTION-BY-SECTION ANALYSIS

Section 1. Short title

    This section states that the title of the bill is the 
Ensuring Equal Access to Shelter Act of 2019.

Section 2. Prohibition

    This section prohibits the Secretary of HUD from 
implementing, administering, enforcing, or in any manner making 
effective the proposed rule entitled ``Revised Requirements 
Under Community Planning and Development Housing Programs,'' 
published by HUD in Spring 2019 (Docket No. FR-6152) or any 
final rule based substantially on such proposed rule.

                                HEARINGS

    For the purposes of section 103(i) of H. Res. 6 for the 
116th Congress, the Committee on Financial Services held a 
hearing, from which H.R. 3018 was developed, entitled, 
``Housing in America: Oversight of the U.S. Department of 
Housing and Urban Development'' on May 16, 2019. Testifying 
before the Committee was Dr. Ben Carson, Secretary of HUD.

                        COMMITTEE CONSIDERATION

    The Committee on Financial Services met in open session on 
June 11, 2019 and ordered H.R 3018 to be reported favorably to 
the House with an amendment in the nature of a substitute by a 
vote of 33 yeas and 26 nays, a quorum being present.

                  COMMITTEE VOTES AND ROLL CALL VOTES

    In compliance with clause 3(b) of rule XIII of the Rules of 
the House of Representatives, the Committee advises that the 
following roll call votes occurred during the Committee's 
consideration of H.R. 3018.


[GRAPHIC(S) NOT AVAILABLE IN TIFF FORMAT]

          STATEMENT OF OVERSIGHT FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS 
                            OF THE COMMITTEE

    In compliance with clause 3(c)(1) of rule XIII and clause 
2(b)(1) of rule X of the Rules of the House of Representatives, 
the Committee's oversight findings and recommendations are 
reflected in the descriptive portions of this report.

             STATEMENT OF PERFORMANCE GOALS AND OBJECTIVES

    Pursuant to clause (3)(c) of rule XIII of the Rules of the 
House of Representatives, the goals of H.R. 3018 are to 
prohibit discrimination against transgender and gender-
nonconforming people when accessing assistance at homeless 
shelters.

               NEW BUDGET AUTHORITY AND CBO COST ESTIMATE

    Pursuant to clause 3(c)(2) of rule XIII of the Rules of the 
House of Representatives and section 308(a) of the 
Congressional Budget Act of 1974, and pursuant to clause 
3(c)(3) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives and section 402 of the Congressional Budget Act 
of 1974, the Committee has received the following estimate for 
H.R. 3018 from the Director of the Congressional Budget Office:

[GRAPHIC(S) NOT AVAILABLE IN TIFF FORMAT]


    H.R. 3018 would prevent the Secretary of Housing and Urban 
Development (HUD) from implementing a rule that the agency 
included in the Unified Agenda of Federal Regulatory and 
Deregulatory Actions in Spring 2019. The agenda item is 
entitled ``Revised Requirements Under Community Planning and 
Development Housing Programs'' (Docket No. FR-6152; RIN: 2506-
AC53) and indicates that HUD will propose the rule in September 
2019. The agency had not issued a notice of proposed rulemaking 
nor the rule itself by the time CBO transmitted this estimate; 
therefore, CBO's baseline does not incorporate any effects from 
the rule. Accordingly, CBO estimates that implementing H.R. 
3018 would have no effect on the federal budget.
    The CBO staff contact for this estimate is Elizabeth Cove 
Delisle. The estimate was reviewed by H. Samuel Papenfuss, 
Deputy Assistant Director for Budget Analysis.

                        COMMITTEE COST ESTIMATE

    Clause 3(d)(1) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives requires an estimate and a comparison of the 
costs that would be incurred in carrying out H.R. 3018. 
However, clause 3(d)(2)(B) of that rule provides that this 
requirement does not apply when the committee has included in 
its report a timely submitted cost estimate of the bill 
prepared by the Director of the Congressional Budget Office 
under section 402 of the Congressional Budget Act.

                       UNFUNDED MANDATE STATEMENT

    Pursuant to Section 423 of the Congressional Budget and 
Impoundment Control Act (as amended by Section 101(a)(2) of the 
Unfunded Mandates Reform Act, Pub. L. 104-4), the Committee 
adopts as its own the estimate of federal mandates regarding 
H.R. 3018, as amended, prepared by the Director of the 
Congressional Budget Office.

                           ADVISORY COMMITTEE

    No advisory committees within the meaning of section 5(b) 
of the Federal Advisory Committee Act were created by this 
legislation.

              APPLICATION OF LAW TO THE LEGISLATIVE BRANCH

    Pursuant to section 102(b)(3) of the Congressional 
Accountability Act, Pub. L. No. 104-1, H.R. 3018, as amended, 
does not apply to terms and conditions of employment or to 
access to public services or accommodations within the 
legislative branch.

                           EARMARK STATEMENT

    In accordance with clause 9 of rule XXI of the Rules of the 
House of Representatives, H.R. 3018 does not contain any 
congressional earmarks, limited tax benefits, or limited tariff 
benefits as described in clauses 9(e), 9(f), and 9(g) of rule 
XXI.

                    DUPLICATION OF FEDERAL PROGRAMS

    Pursuant to clause 3(c)(5) of rule XIII of the Rules of the 
House of Representatives, the Committee states that no 
provision of H.R. 3018 establishes or reauthorizes a program of 
the Federal Government known to be duplicative of another 
federal program, a program that was included in any report from 
the Government Accountability Office to Congress pursuant to 
section 21 of Public Law 111-139, or a program related to a 
program identified in the most recent Catalog of Federal 
Domestic Assistance.

                        CHANGES TO EXISTING LAW

    In compliance with clause 3(e) of rule XIII of the Rules of 
the House of Representatives, the Committee notes that there 
were no changes to existing law.

                             MINORITY VIEWS

    Committee Republicans believe all Americans should have 
access to shelters when needed. However, H.R. 3018, the 
Ensuring Equal Access to Shelter Act of 2019, is premature. 
H.R. 3018 prohibits the implementation of a rule that has yet 
to be published or even issued for public comment by the U.S. 
Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
    On May 22, 2019, the Office of Management and Budget's 
(OMB) 2019 Spring Regulatory Agenda announced that HUD would 
consider changes to the previous administration's Equal Access 
rule published in 2016. In the announcement, HUD signaled its 
intent to end the policy prohibiting shelters from establishing 
their own procedures with regard to facilities and operations. 
Rather, HUD shared its view that local shelters should have the 
flexibility to set their own policies, consistent with local 
law and practical concerns, when considering a person's sex 
during admission to a unisex or same-sex homeless facility. HUD 
views this potential change as essential to creating a 
welcoming and safe space for all individuals in a shelter that 
is best suited to attend to their individual needs. Committee 
Republicans believe that HUD is justified in opening this 
regulation up for a public comment period, so the on the ground 
service providers will have the chance to weigh in.
    Committee Republicans are fully committed to the fair 
treatment of all individuals under the Fair Housing Act. To be 
clear, HUD's proposed changes would neither repeal the rule nor 
remove fair housing protections for the most vulnerable. 
Instead, Committee Republicans believe local agencies are best 
positioned to conduct reviews of their regulations. Doing so 
will allow this type of policy to be crafted at the local 
level, by the professionals who have experience in dealing with 
the particular circumstances of their local population and 
community needs.
                                   Tom Emmer.
                                   Barry Loudermilk.
                                   Lance Gooden.
                                   David Kustoff.
                                   Tedd Budd.
                                   Scott R. Tipton.
                                   Peter T. King.
                                   Denver Riggleman.
                                   Anthony Gonzalez.
                                   John W. Rose.
                                   Bryan Steil.
                                   J. French Hill.
                                   Trey Hollingsworth.
                                   Roger Williams.
                                   Sean P. Duffy.
                                   Warren Davidson.
                                   Blaine Luetkemeyer.
                                   Bill Huizenga.
                                   Steve Stivers.
                                   Ann Wagner.
                                   Lee M. Zeldin.
                                   Alexander X. Mooney.
                                   Andy Barr.
                                   Bill Posey.
                                   Frank D. Lucas.
                                   Patrick T. McHenry.

                                  [all]