Charlottesville Redevelopment and Housing Authority

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The Charlottesville Redevelopment and Housing Authority (CRHA) is a quasi-governmental entity separate from the City of Charlottesville which receives its funding from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). CRHA does, however, receive federal Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds from the City for capital projects and other specific programs.

Contents

Functions

The CRHA manages 376 public housing units in Charlottesville and administers approximately 300 Housing Choice Voucher (Section 8) rental units that are supported through federal funding. It has an annual budget of approximately $4.5 million.

Approximately 2,000 people are housed through these subsidy programs. Participants typically pay 30% of their income for rent and HUD pays the rest. While 70% of the public housing households have an annual income under $10,000, 13% have income under $3,000 per year according to the CRHA.

In order to encourage homeownership, the CRHA provides loans through the Housing Opportunities Program to assist families in purchasing homes if they do not qualify for large enough mortgages. Additionally, through their Down Payment & Closing Costs Assistance Program and the Housing Choice Voucher Home Ownership Program the CRHA helps low income families with down payments and closing costs.

Redevelopment

In August 2010, the CRHA voted to approve a master plan to shape the future of the city's public housing stock. A final draft is expected to be finished in the spring of 2010. [1]A Residents' Bill of Rights guarantees that no resident will be displaced during the redevelopment process.

2009

In 2009, HUD lifted CRHA's profile from "troubled" to "standard performer", enabling the agency to qualify for more federal funding[citation needed]. On March 12, 2009, it was announced that the CRHA will receive around $797,000 from the federal government as a result of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act in order to improve and modernize some aging public housing buildings[citation needed].

2010 funding

In December 2010, the Charlottesville Area Community Foundation awarded CRHA $10,000 for salary support for a resident services coordinator position[2].

2012

On October 3, 2011, City Council was asked to allocate 140,000 in the Charlottesville Housing Fund towards the purchase of two properties in order to redevelop them as part of the CRHA master plan. One is located at 204 8th Street NW and will be purchased for $60,000. The other is 210 8th Street NW and will be purchased for $80,000. Both sales were well under assessment. The ultimate goal is to develop the whole block, even though the city does not own all of it yet. The city cannot directly purchase the properties, but will buy them on behalf of a non-profit. [3] The Charlottesville chapter of Habitat for Humanity holds the deed for the properties.

Residents file suit over utility surcharges

In June 2012, seven residents filed a class action lawsuit in federal court against the CRHA claiming surcharges on utility bills were higher than allowed by law. [4] Their lawsuit was filed with help from the Legal Aid Justice Center and former city councilor John Conover.

2013

In February 2013, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development issued a preliminary report that outlined several area of mismanagement at CRHA. The CRHA responded in March that it would address the issues. Meanwhile, the Public Housing Association of Residents complained that both HUD and CRHA both failed to take tenants rights sufficiently into account. [5]

In response to the HUD report, CRHA sought to increase the minimum rent from $25 to $50 and to increase late fees from $10 to $15. PHAR responded that such moves would be "barbaric." [6]

Later in the year, PHAR became concerned about the potential that CHRA would opt to become a pilot participant in HUD's "Rental Assistance Demonostration" project. That would change the financing structure between HUD and CRHA. [7]

Personnel

Board of Commissioners

The CRHA is governed by a seven member Board of Commissioners that consists of at least two CRHA residents and one former or current recipient of Section 8 vouchers. The board meets on the fourth Monday of each month in City Council Chambers[8]

Staff

Communities

Charlottesville communities with CRHA-managed public housing include:


References

  1. Web. August 2010 Minutes, Charlottesville Redevelopment and Housing Authority, retrieved June 28, 2012.
  2. Web. More than $500,000 in grants awarded, Daily Progress, World Media Enterprises, December 15, 2010, retrieved December 15, 2010.
  3. Web. Allocation of Charlottesville Housing Funds Towards the Purchase of Properties on 8th Street and Page St. - $140,000, Kathy McHugh, City of Charlottesville, October 3, 2011, retrieved September 30, 2011.
  4. Web. Charlottesville public housing residents sue over utility surcharges, Daily Progress, World Media Enterprises, retrieved June 12, 2012.
  5. Web. Housing authority responds to report, Ted Strong, Daily Progress, World Media Enterprises, March 25, 2013, retrieved March 27, 2013.
  6. Web. Local housing authority met with opposition over proposed changes, Aaron Richardson, Daily Progress, World Media Enterprises, April 23, 2013, retrieved April 24, 2013.
  7. Web. CRHA to hold public meeting today on new avenue for funding, Aaron Richardson, Daily Progress, World Media Enterprises, October 10, 2013, retrieved October 11, 2013.
  8. Web. Charlottesville Redevelopment and Housing Authority - Commissioners, City of Charlottesville, retrieved November 3, 2014.

External Links

CRHA Website

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