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As we wait for the full confirmation of HUD Secretary Nominee, Dr. Ben Carson, I would like to take time to consider the opportunity that lies before us.
First, I publicly acknowledge and express gratitude to Senator Mike Crapo (Id) of the Senate Banking Committee for his opening statement remarks during Dr. Carson's hearing. If you did not have the opportunity to view the hearing, I am including his remarks here:
"If confirmed, I hope to work with Dr. Carson on how to reimagine housing policy at HUD.
"I look forward to working on streamlining requirements for local Public Housing Authorities, especially for smaller housing authorities.
"One example is the Small Public Housing Authority Opportunities Act, which seeks to encourage innovative approaches to determining tenant rents and to adjust the level of federal oversight over small housing authorities.
"We should also look at the Section 8, Moving to Work, Rental Assistance Demonstration, and public housing programs, where there has been interest in reforms for many years.
"I hope to work with Dr. Carson, if confirmed, on improvements to the programs that would produce cost savings, reduce burdens on local housing authorities, and encourage self-sufficiency.
"Another issue this Committee has worked on is strengthening HECM. I look forward to working with you on this program.
"While the Low Income Housing Tax Credit is under the Finance Committee's jurisdiction, it is very important to the U.S. housing market. It provides essential capital to underserved communities and provides key financing for small and rural affordable housing developments.
"Tackling homelessness, especially among our nation's veterans, is another issue that is important to me and other members of this Committee. It is critical that HUD allow local communities to craft solutions that work best for their needs"
(Senator Mike Crapo. Nomination Hearing. January 12, 2017).
These comments remind us that the work we do and the people we serve do not go unnoticed by those we have elected to represent us in DC. They remind us that we are heard. Thank you, Senator Crapo.
Second, as I have stated before, I do believe that Dr. Carson is a brilliant man with a compassionate heart. In his testimony he acknowledged the link between housing and healthcare, an area where his expertise is widely known.
Good health is essential as the children we serve meet educational outcomes required to help them advance through school and onto college. It is essential as families move into the workforce and work to obtain self-sufficiency. And, it is essential to help individuals age in place with dignity and security. As we begin to think creatively about the nexus between housing and healthcare, we can envision many partnerships that can help meet each of the items outlined above. These partnerships are where we will find great opportunity for our agencies and for those we serve. I look forward to working with HUD to develop health related partnerships. That is opportunity!
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CAMPAIGN FOR GRADE-LEVEL READING NAMES 40 PUBLIC HOUSING AGENCIES TO 2015-2016 HONOR ROLL
January 23, 2017 -
The Campaign for Grade-Level Reading today names 40 public housing agencies (PHAs) to its 2015-2016 Honor Roll for exemplary work to boost children's literacy.
More than one million children from birth to age 8 are living in public housing in the United States. Research shows that 80 percent of children from low-income families enter kindergarten so far behind that they do not catch up and are unable to read proficiently by the end of third grade, a key predictor of high school graduation.
"Housing is a critical platform and portal for early learning and early school success," said Ralph Smith, managing director of the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading. "We applaud and celebrate each of these public housing agencies for taking up the challenge to increase reading proficiency, improve the overall academic achievement and ultimately improve the life trajectories of children in low-income families. Their commitment to maintain, strengthen and scale existing literacy programs and partnerships demonstrates that the momentum for this work will continue to build."
The PHAs named to the GLR Campaign's 2015-2016 Honor Roll are recognized for their leadership in one or more of the following areas:
- Bright Spot (Attendance/Chronic Absence): Exemplary work to raise awareness in PHA communities about chronic absenteeism and the importance of attending school every day.
- Bright Spot (Book-Rich Environments): Exemplary work to transform PHA communities into book-rich environments.
- Pacesetter (HUD/GLR Memorandum of Understanding): Partnership with the Department of Housing and Urban Development and the GLR Campaign to promote and increase the work being done across the country to improve the grade-level reading skills of children living in federally assisted housing.
- Pacesetter (Read for the Record): Participation in Jumpstart's Read for the Record campaign, an annual event that inspires adults to read with children, spurs policymakers and organizations to take action toward transformative change in early education, and puts books in the hands of more children across the country.
- Leadership Cohort (Book-Rich Environments): Commitment to co-designing and participating in the Book-Rich Environments Initiative, a collaborative effort newly launched by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the U.S. Department of Education. The initiative aims to establish strong, local coalitions that support PHAs nationwide with providing diverse, high-quality books and literacy support to children and families living in public and HUD assisted housing.
Congratulations to Pacific Northwest Honorees on the GLR Campaign's 2015-2016 Honor Roll
Nampa Housing Authority
Andy Rodriguez, Executive Director
Leadership Cohort (Book-Rich Environments)
Housing Authority of the City of Pocatello
Sunny Shaw, Executive Director
Bright Spot (Attendance/Chronic Absence), Leadership Cohort (Book-Rich Environments)
King County Housing Authority
Stephen Norman, Executive Director
Bright Spot (Attendance/Chronic Absence)
Seattle Housing Authority
Andrew Lofton, Executive Director
Bright Spot (Attendance/Chronic Absence)
Tacoma Housing Authority
Michael Mirra, Executive Director
Bright Spot (Book-Rich Environments), Pacesetter (HUD/GLR MOU), Leadership Cohort (Book-Rich Environments)
About the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading
Launched in May 2010, the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading is a collaborative effort of funders, nonprofit partners, business leaders, government agencies, states and communities across the nation to ensure that many more children from low-income families succeed in school and graduate prepared for college, a career and active citizenship. Since its launch, the GLR Campaign has grown to include more than 285 communities, representing 42 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands with 2,300 local organizations (including 130 United Ways and 250 state and local funders).
King County Housing Authority Purchases 146-unit Apartment Complex
Finding affordable housing is a huge challenge in our region, but KCHA's recent purchase of Abbey Ridge will preserve the affordability of the 146-unit apartment complex in SeaTac. The property is located close to the Angle Lake light rail station, where rents are becoming increasingly unaffordable to low-income families. The property features 66 one-bedroom units, 73 two-bedroom units, and seven three-bedroom units. Rents, including utilities, range from $1,075 for a one-bedroom one bath unit to $1,525 for a three-bedroom, two-bath apartment home.
Abbey Ridge has secured entrances, laundry facilities, a gym, an outdoor playground, and a swimming pool. Renovations, which will include new roofs, parking lot improvements, and unit upgrades, will begin later this year. KCHA has prioritized the acquisition of affordable housing near or adjacent to light rain to address a shortage of affordable housing with access to reliable public transportation. "Housing around light rail is appreciating significantly and quickly," said Senior Director of Development and Asset Management Tim Walter. "Our purchase of Abbey Ridge means that we can lock in affordability now before increasing rental costs render this housing, with its convenient access to public transportation, too expensive for low-income households."
Channel 9 KCTS Creates Video About Housing Challenges in Renton
Soaring Rents Squeeze Section 8 Tenants
After tenants using Housing Choice Vouchers were singled out, an alliance was formed as nonprofit tenants' rights and legal advocacy groups stepped in to help.
NAHRO Candidates for Senior Vice President
CR&D COMMITTEE MISSION
NAHRO's Community Revitalization and Development (CR&D) Committee addresses a broad range of issues related to the economic vitality of cities and the development and conservation of neighborhoods, including administrative, legislative, regulatory, and funding issues of community development programs and operations. The Committee recommends policies to the Board of Governors in support of its primary goal -- the achievement of well-planned, socially and economically sound communities.
CR&D COMMITTEE VISION
Promote Sound Policy - The Committee is committed to advocating for the appropriate laws, funding levels and responsible public policies related to the community development programs that are important to the NAHRO membership and the communities that they serve.
Share Knowledge -The Committee is committed to fostering the community development knowledge and skills of the NAHRO membership. This is achieved by sharing and facilitating awareness of emerging trends, best practices and new research.
Build Relationships - The Committee is committed to expanding NAHRO's community development membership by promoting relationships with community development professionals, community development agencies and redevelopment authorities. The Committee is committed to investing in relationships with other industry organizations that result in collaborations and partnerships for common goals.
The CR&D Commmittee comprises 3 representatives from each Region and 14 at-large members appointed by the NAHRO president. Of the presidential appointments, each Region is entitled to at least one representative.
Regional Vice President for Committee
Jacob Fox, PHM, Executive Director, Housing/Community Services Agency of Lane County
Cara Carter, Director of Housing Programs, Housing Authority of Jackson County
Julie Williams Mitchell, CMPO Executive Vice President, Idaho Housing & Finance Association
Jillian Patterson, Grant Programs Manager, Boise City Ada County Housing Authority
Celebrating 10 Years of Housing America
Established in 2007 by the NAHRO Board of Governors, Housing America is the national public affairs campaign that raises awareness of the need for and importance of safe, quality, affordable housing. This year, the campaign will celebrate its anniversary in a variety of ways.
During the Washington Conference, Housing America will host a book drive. Book drop-off will be located in the NAHRO conference registration area.
Please represent our region by donating a book!
The Housing America Task Force will also host a concert Monday, March 27, 2017 from 8-10 p.m. at the conference hotel. The concert will feature the alternative country band, The Honeycutters, and art from past "What Home Means to Me" calendar contest winners, which will be available for purchase.
Thank you for your continued support.
More information can be found
NAHRO's Call for Session Proposals for the 2017 Summer Conference is now open.
Share your experience as a housing and community development professional by submitting a session proposal for consideration as a presentation at the 2017 NAHRO Summer Conference in Indianapolis, IN. We are looking for sessions on current and emerging issues, best practices, and strategies to handle challenges facing the industry.
Session proposals should fall under one of the following identified topic tracks - Public Housing, Section 8/HCV, H/CD Finance, Community Development, Commissioners, Organizational Management and International.
Deadline to submit: March 15.
Proposals must be submitted thru NAHRO's on-line submission tool.
Submissions should be complete with a clear and concise session title, description, three learning objectives and identified panelists.
Submit a Proposal Now!
For more information and to submit a proposal, click
Looking for a new job or just want to see what's out there?
Bookmark the Job Openings page on our website to see.
Positions are updated regularly.
Family Self Sufficiency (FSS) Training and Proficiency Test
March 27-28, 2017
King County Housing Authority, Tukwila, WA
Cost is $550 for members and includes training, electronic materials and testing fee.
Description: Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) is a critical element to the future of the Housing Choice Voucher Program. Gain or refresh your knowledge of the elements needed to create a successful FSS program through participating in a FSS laboratory. Here you will discover how to classify the dynamics of case management, including dissecting regulations to insure proper reporting, measuring the logic model and collecting data, and creating a linkage from Section 8 to Homeownership. Learn to generate a positive image through creative marketing and media usage. Find out how to create a support system, forming a non-profit organization, to assist with future FSS funding. Includes a proficiency exam
Who Should Attend: Executive Directors, Senior/Key Management staff, Supervisors, and FSS Coordinators
Day 1: 8:00 am - 8:30 am - Registration
- Understand the importance of case management by identifying new roles and responsibilities.
- Organize an FSS program to meet current demands and be prepared for positive evaluations.
- Use the logic model as a foundation to create the outcomes needed to occur in order to achieve long-term goals.
- Engage in the development and operation of a Section 8 Homeownership program including management, counseling, recruiting and financial issues.
- Change the image of Section 8 through FSS to create positive community awareness.
- Establish a non-profit organization to support the basic operations of the FSS program and create a platform to become self-sustaining.
Day 1: 8:30 am - 4:30 pm - Training
Day 2: 8:30 am - 2:30 pm - Training
Day 2: 2:30 pm - 4:30 pm - Proficiency Test
NAHRO Continuing Education Units (CEU's)
Training Completion = 1.10
Proficiency Test = 0.20
Total = 1.3
Bring NAHRO Training to Your Agency - Including e-Learning!
Did you know that you can bring almost any NAHRO seminar and certification product to your agency? If multiple members of your agency's staff require professional education, contracting with NAHRO for an on-site training can be a smart - and affordable - investment. The on-site approach allows instructors to devote more time to issues that are specific to your organization. The on-site approach also reduces or eliminates travel time along with lodging and transportation costs for your staff. And, depending upon the number of staff members that participate in the training, the per-person cost for the training product can be significantly lower than our regular registration fee. New for 2016, we can also make many of our e-Learning sessions available to your agency through our on-site model.
Whatever your training needs, NAHRO will work with you to design an on-site program that meets your budget and is scheduled with your agency's calendar in mind. For more information, please contact Kristen Damazio, Regional Service Officer at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 202-580-7203.
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