The Latest News

August 2016

President's Message
Welcome to August Recess! This is the month that your Congressional Delegation is home and I challenge you to reach out to them. NAHRO has created an advocacy plan that is easy to follow.
The first week is our opportunity to thank the House and the Senate for hearing our request and passing HR3700 and S3083. This legislation, although seemingly small, really is monumental considering how long it has been since any housing legislation has been passed.
During week 2 we will have the opportunity to educate and advocate on behalf of the Small Housing Agency Opportunity Act (S. 2292, H.R. 4816).  This bill will provide much needed regulatory relief to small agencies. Even if your agency is not small, please lend your voice to encourage support of this bill. We must all help to carry the message.
Week 3 will focus on Low Income Housing Tax Credit and the Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act (S. 2962). This legislation will make the 4% tax credit permanent as well as increase the number of tax credits made available to each state.
During week 4 we will advocate on behalf of Public Housing Capital Fund Spending and in week 5 we will focus on FY2017 Transportation HUD Spending Bill.
NAHRO makes advocating for these issues really easy. All you have to do is log in and access the advocacy center. Each week you will be able to send a letter to your delegation with the simple push of a button. You can send the letter that is already created or you can make changes as you see fit. Remember, our goal is to inundate them with our message. The volume of letters adds to the volume of our voices.
In addition to your letters, take advantage of the fact that your delegation is home. Host an event, meet up with them at a town hall, or simply contact their office to echo your verbal support of housing issues. Utilize this month to use your voice for those who have not yet found their own. Housing matters!

Regional News RegNews1

Four Renowned Artists Will Bring 
Art to Life at Yesler

SEATTLE - July 18, 2016 - For the first time in its history, Seattle Housing Authority (SHA) will incorporate a comprehensive arts program into a major housing redevelopment. Funded by a grant from The Kresge Foundation, four artists will create permanent artwork and arts programming at Yesler. Artwork will enhance the many planned parks and open spaces, providing beautiful places for all to enjoy, and new avenues will be created for community members to engage in the arts.

Artists Charles Parrish and George Lee will create permanent works of art. Pat Graney Dance Company and D.K. Pan will develop community-based projects and programs. The grant also funds a summer youth media program managed by Seattle University and provides assistance to artisans living in Yesler to build their commercial endeavors.

"We are very excited by the caliber of artists who will be working at Yesler," said Andrew Lofton, Executive Director of SHA. "Their commitment to engage with residents at all levels, including youth, will create a more vibrant and connected environment."

Yesler is a 30-acre site near downtown Seattle that was developed by SHA in the early 1940s as the city's first publicly subsidized housing. Beginning in 2013, after years of working with the community on a master plan for replacing aging buildings and infrastructure, SHA embarked on a full redevelopment of Yesler into a new urban mixed-income community.

Changes have already been taking place, including new residential housing, a new community center in the historic steam plant, green spaces, pedestrian pathways, educational services and increased transportation options. The new Yesler Hillclimb, a terraced public stairway and ramp connecting Yesler with surrounding neighborhoods, showcases beautiful custom mosaic medallions, commissioned earlier by SHA.

Parked on land across from the main Yesler Community Center is the new Yesler Arts Mobile Studio (YAMS), a large recreational vehicle wrapped with its name translated into numerous languages, reflecting the diversity of those who live and work in the neighborhood. YAMS provides a working space for artists to interact with residents and community members.
Unique programming includes artists working with P-Patch gardeners and the Black Farmers Collective, which will manage a 1.5 acre urban farm located along the western border of Yesler.

Under the current Kresge grant, the selected artists will work in the Yesler community over the next two years, establishing a foundation for ongoing artistic endeavors in the new community.

About the Artists

The Pat Graney Company creates, performs and tours new dance/installation works and conducts arts-based educational programming. Their Keeping the Faith (KTF) Artist Team residency program features dance, expository writing, American Sign Language and visual arts.

"The Pat Graney Company/KTF artist team is so excited to begin our year-long artist residency serving those in Yesler and surrounding                                             communities." -Pat Graney

George Lee is a sculptor and installation artist specializing in site-specific art, community engagement, and investigating unseen elements and interconnections in everyday lives. Lee's work engages multicultural and underserved communities.

"I am excited to practice art as a catalytic process at Yesler, engaging community members as I work on site-specific sculpture that integrates concepts of memory, place, time and home." -George Lee

D.K. Pan investigates the intersection of place and memory through video, performance, install ation and interventions. Pan is interested in art as a catalyst for social change, in service of  love and freedom.

"Yesler reminds me of the neighborhood I grew up in, Koreatown in downtown Los Angeles. Our neighborhood was the street and parking lots, shared public spaces. It is this intimacy I wish to encapsulate as a document of a specific time of shared memory." -D.K. Pan

Charles Parrish
Charles Parrish is a sculptor who has lived at Yesler for 30 years. Specializing in stone carving, Parrish creates portraits in low relief and three dimensional forms. He considers his work to be about the politics of black 
people  and often chooses black historical figures as his subjects.

"The ideal of Yesler Terrace residents is to unite and live side by side in peace with equal respect for all. I would like to instill that into my work at Yesler." - Charles Parrish

About The Kresge Foundation
The Kresge Foundation is a $3.6 billion private, national foundation that works to expand opportunities in America's cities through grantmaking and social investing in arts and culture, education, environment, health, human services, and community development in Detroit. In 2015, the Board of Trustees approved 370 grants totaling $125.2 million, and nine social investment commitments totaling $20.3 million. For more information, visit

The Portland Housing Bureau (PHB) has awarded approximately $47 million in local andfederal funds to eight affordable housing projects. The six new developments and two renovation projects come as a result of the agency's 2015 Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA), released October 2015, which made an unprecedented $61.6 million, as well as 100 Project-Based Section 8 vouchers and five publicly owned sites available for affordable housing projects.
The award is expected to generate nearly 600 new units of affordable housing and preserve another 255 through renovation projects-including more than 120 total units for the lowest-income households earning up to 30% of the Median Family Income.
Project sponsors represent a mix of private nonprofit and for-profit developers, as well as local housing authority Home Forward. The awarded projects are expected to leverage approximately $141 million in additional private    and public funding. View project details and renderings online here.
In July, the Portland Housing Bureau, together with local partner REACH Community Development, also celebrated the grand re-opening of the historic Bronaugh Apartments, following a substantial renovation and seismic upgrade. Home to more than 50 seniors and disabled households in the transit-rich "walker's paradise" of downtown Portland, the Bronaugh is among the last of the 11 Section 8 properties saved from possible market conversion under Portland's 11x13 Preservation Campaign. Launched in 2008, the City-led campaign identified 11 privately owned buildings-amounting to more than 700 units-at risk of losing their affordability by 2013 due to expiring rent subsidy contracts and HUD-insured mortgages. In partnership with developers, funders, as well as HUD, the state of Oregon, and several area non-profits, the bureau secured preservation plans for all 11 properties by 2013.
In total, the City invested $22.3 million of Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), Section 108-guaranteed loans, and local urban renewal dollars in the 11x13 projects. This leveraged over $136 million in other development funds, and will leverage more than $120 million in federal rent assistance over the next 20 years-a rate of $6 from other investors and lenders for every City dollar invested. Renovations by Oregon nonprofit Northwest Housing Alternatives are under way at one final 11x13 project, the Hawthorne East, and will be complete in September.
National News
NAHRO's August Advocacy Issues:
  • Week 1 (August 1-5): Thank You for Passing the Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act (H.R. 3700 and S. 3083)
  • Week 2 (August 8-12): Small Housing Agency Opportunity Act (S. 2292, H.R. 4816)
  • Week 3 (August 15-19): Low Income Housing Tax Credit and the Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act (S. 2962)
  • Week 4 (August 22-26): Public Housing Capital Fund Spending
  • Week 5 (August 29- Sept. 2): FY 2017 Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Spending Bill
Last year over 1,000 letters were sent to Capitol Hill in support of housing and community development programs. This year, please help us get to our expanded goal of 1,500 letters!
We hope that you will join us in standing up and speaking out for affordable housing in quality communities for those in need. We thank you in advance for your efforts. Contact John Bohm or Tess Hembree on the NAHRO staff if you need assistance.

August Recess Advocacy, Week One: 
Thank Your Legislators for H.R. 3700/S. 3083!

Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs committee members Tim Scott (R-S.C.), Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), along with Senators Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), and Christopher Coons (D-Del.) took a big step this week by introducing S. 3083, which is companion legislation to the House-passed H.R. 3700.  Substantially, the bills are the same.

This is a huge victory, but our work is just beginning in the Senate. Contact your Senators today to urge them to take action immediately on S. 3083 -  send a letter to your senators and tweet at them (your Senators' Twitter handles can be found on their  websites).

Sample tweets:
  • TY @RoyBlunt @SenatorTimScott @ChrisCoons @SenatorMenendez for #S3083 - I will help you pass this critical legislation @NAHRONational
  • #PHAs hit hard by budget cuts, over regulation - S 3083 protects residents, helps #PHAs serve comm better- @SENATOR pass #S3083
  • House passed #HR3700 unanimously 4 months ago. @SENATOR please act on #S3083
NAHRO has supported many of the reforms within the bill since it was originally drafted in the House; NAHRO President Steve Merritt testified at a hearing on H.R. 3700 in October 2015 and NAHRO has been working with a coalition of housing stakeholders pushing for the passage of the bill. In April, NAHRO joined the coalition on a letter to Senators urging the quick passage of the legislation.

Specifically, NAHRO supports these provisions of HOTMA (H.R. 3700 and S. 3083):
  • Capital Replacement Reserves - Using NAHRO language also included in the Senate FY16  and FY17 Appropriations Acts, HOTMA would allow PHAs to voluntarily establish Capital Fund replacement reserves.
  • Subsidy Flexibility - HOTMA would allow for PHAs to transfer 20 percent of their Operating Funds to their Capital Fund, language NAHRO has advocated for strongly over many years.
  • Income Review Safe Harbors - HOTMA would allow PHAs to use other federal data to determine income including TANF, Medicaid, and SNAP.
  • Project-Based Voucher Program - PHAs would be able to calculate project-based vouchers (PBVs) based on authorized units instead of voucher funding. Additionally, those PHAs that have units targeting homeless individuals and families, veterans, elderly households, disabled households, or units in areas where vouchers are difficult to use, would be permitted to project-base up to 30 percent of those targeted units. In other instances, PHA project-based voucher (PBV) assistance may not exceed 25 percent of the units in a project or 25 units, whichever is greater. In areas where vouchers are difficult to use and in census tracts with a poverty rate of equal to or less than 20 percent, PHAs may provide project-based voucher assistance for up to 40 percent of the units in a project. HOTMA allows PBV contracts and extensions of up to 20 years; allows PHAs to permit site-specific waiting lists managed by owners; and clarifies that PHAs may project-base HUD-VASH and Family Unification Project (FUP) vouchers.
  • Extended Family Unification Vouchers - HOTMA would increase the age of eligibility for FUP vouchers from 21 to 24 and make youth who will leave foster care within 90 days and are homeless or at risk of homelessness eligible. S. 3083 contains provisions that would also expand FUP vouchers by allowing eligible youth "who have attained 16 or 17 years" and who have left foster care to remain in the program for up to 36 months.
  • PHAs and LRAs as ESG Subrecipients - HOTMA includes statutory language, supported by NAHRO, that would permit any state or local government receiving Emergency Solutions Grants (ESG) allocations to distribute all or a portion of its grant funds to PHAs and local redevelopment authorities (alongside private nonprofit organizations). 
  • Special Assistant for Veterans Affairs and an Annual Supplemental Report - HOTMA would create a new position of Special Assistant for Veterans Affairs that reports directly to the Secretary of HUD and would be responsible for, among other things, ensuring veterans have access to housing programs and homeless assistance, coordinating veteran-related programs at HUD, and serving as a liaison between HUD, the VA, and the USICH, and officials of state, local, regional, and nongovernmental organizations. HOTMA would also require HUD to collaborate on and submit to Congress an annual supplemental report on veteran homelessness.


Alaska Housing Finance Corporation (Anchorage) 

Cook Inlet Housing Authority (Anchorage)

grey-curve-footer.jpg IDAHO

Boise City/Ada County Housing Authority

Idaho Housing and Finance Association

Nampa Housing Authority

grey-curve.jpg OREGON

Home Forward

Housing and Community Services of Lane County (Eugene)

Housing Authority of Douglas County (Roseburg)

grey-curve-footer.jpg WASHINGTON

Bremerton Housing Authority

Housing Kitsap

King County Housing Authority

Seattle Housing Authority

Spokane Housing Authority

Tacoma Housing Authority

Walla Walla Housing Authority

Bookmark the Job Openings page on our website to see the positions available in the region. Positions are updated regularly.
Professional Development
Stay Connected