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Implementation & Accountability

Reduce Home Foreclosures

Implementation & Accountability

Implementation

Because of the variety in proven interventions, states and communities have leeway to find programs that suit local values, opportunities, and budgets. The key is to select strategies that have documented effectiveness, assure that they are implemented well, and recognize the critical importance of a strong commitment to continuous program improvement.

  • Match expectations with sufficient resources. Be clear about the goals, purpose and target audience for specific programs. Provide sufficient resources to ensure fidelity to the evidence-based model, or modify expectations to accommodate variances.
     
  • Identifying barriers. Effective policy development requires the identification of factors that may impede effective implementation.
     
  • Make provisions for broad-based input. When involvement will increase the likelihood that the needs of children and families are being met by the policy, engage community stakeholders (families, banks, community organizations) in implementation.
  • Support local capacity and communication. Provide technical assistance, monitoring, and oversight to local programs and agencies. Create opportunities for local-to-local communication, best practices sharing, and local input on state policy decisions.
  • Support ongoing evaluation and continuous program improvement.

Managed by the Washington State Department of Commerce, the Foreclosure Fairness Program was created in 2011 by the state legislature’s Foreclosure Fairness Act, which mandates that the Department annually evaluate the program and report to the state legislature. Evaluation measures include the numbers of borrowers who are referred to mediation by a housing counselor or attorney, the results of the mediation program, information received by housing counselors regarding outcomes of foreclosures, and any recommendations for changes to the mediation program.

Accountability

Evaluation is essential for successful policy implementation and to ensure intended outcomes. Accountability requires determining whether programs are implemented correctly, the right programs and strategies are used, progress is measured appropriately, and children and families are benefiting. This is established through both monitoring results (what we are trying to accomplish) and monitoring performance (how we tried to accomplish it).

  • Monitoring Results. Through data, other information, and consultation, it is possible to determine if the results we set out to achieve for children and families have been attained. By reexamining the selected indicators we can measure our progress toward the desired result.
  • Monitoring Performance. Oversight requires policymakers to determine if policy objectives have been achieved by focusing attention on the performance of specific programs or agencies. This involves reviewing individual programs and their impact on the lives of the people the program is designed to serve.

Determining if the strategies are contributing to better results and meeting performance standards.

  • Assign responsibility for realistic outcomes. Responsibility for outcomes should be designated based on the appropriate roles, resources and capacity of public and private stakeholders.
  • Establish oversight bodies that consistently review key actions by state agencies.
  • Measure and report progress to stakeholders and the community. Require public availability of data to allow administrators, policymakers and the public to measure the state’s progress on key outcomes.

Several states have increased regulation of and licensing requirements for mortgage lenders as well as stepped up enforcement. Some states have also expanded their consumer protection activities and capacity to respond to claims made by residents against predatory lenders.

question

1. Are we consulting with appropriate experts, advocates, and constituents?

2. Are we ensuring that families are being consulted and that their views and experiences are being considered?

resource

A checklist of questions to ask to monitor results and performance.

question

1. Does this policy take into account differences in cultures and community norms?

2. Will/Is this policy improving racial equity?

resource

A checklist of questions to ask in order to increase the likelihood of successful implementation.