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Congratulations to the winners of the 2014 NMA Housing Awards!

Posted by BEMuser on Aug 18, 2014 9:59:38 AM

This morning at the second annual NMA Housing Conference, Nan McKay and Associates announced the five winners of the 2014 NMA Housing Awards. We first launched these awards nearly a decade ago to recognize excellence and innovation in the affordable housing industry.

Since then, we’ve been honored to read and evaluate a great number of worthy entries, and this year was no exception. Read on to learn more about this year’s winning agencies.

2014 Excellence in Housing Award (Large Agency)

Housing Authority of the City of Norwalk

Over the past year, the Housing Authority of the City of Norwalk (NHA) saw the culmination of years of hard work when it received several highly significant awards and grants. Most visibly, in June HUD awarded NHA with a $30 million Choice Neighborhoods implementation grant to rebuild the Washington Village development and revitalize the community. However, also very important to NHA was the award of a Head Start grant which makes it the only housing authority in New England to operate Head Start.

2014 Excellence in Housing Award (Small Agency)

Everett Housing Authority

For the past several years, the Everett Housing Authority (EHA) has partnered with Domestic Violence Services (DVS) of Snohomish County to assist survivors of domestic violence and their families with the provision of project-based voucher assistance, including building a new development on the same property as a DVS facility that includes an emergency shelter, administrative offices for support staff, and a daycare for children of occupants of the shelter.

2014 Pioneer in Housing Award (Large Agency)

Rockford Housing Authority

With high crime rates and high unemployment rates, the Rockford Housing Authority (RHA) decided to address the negative headlines and challenges being placed upon its city and its residents. With a collaborative effort of RHA and the Rockford Area Arts Council, it created a platform for creative entrepreneurship called New Mix. The program is so successful that New York City is currently using New Mix for its residents, and Dallas and Chicago are also exploring the implementation of New Mix for their communities.

2014 Pioneer in Housing Honorable Mention (Large Agency)

Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority

Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority (CMHA) developed an innovative initiative called Fairfax Intergenerational Housing, one of the first of its kind in Ohio and only the seventh such intergenerational housing in the country. The project offers an affordable, sustainable, and supportive environment for seniors 55 and older who have legal custody of children.

2014 Pioneer in Housing Award (Small Agency)

Housing Authority of Lancaster

The Housing Authority of Lancaster (HAL)'s Map to Success Family Literacy Program (MAP) is an innovative research-based program that combines the teaching of adult literacy skills with child development and family education empowerment. The creative onsite program targets low-literacy adults and their families who are public housing residents and Section 8 participants, equipping them with the tools necessary to become better parents and community members.

The NMA Housing Awards is an annual event created to honor agencies that build bridges to the future and generate real change in their communities and the affordable housing industry. Read about the 2013 winners and the 2012 winners.

Topics: Choice Neighborhoods, domestic violence, entrepreneurship, literacy, NMA Housing Awards, PBV, seniors and elderly, The Housing Conference

Working with sequestration in the public housing program: Tip #8

Posted by NMA on Apr 24, 2013 11:29:03 AM

Cara GilletteAs we know, public housing funding for April is at a 73% proration level. HUD plans to issue a second funding to bring the April proration level up to 79%.

The business of owning and managing affordable housing in decent, safe, and sanitary condition and in good repair remains our mission. PHAs need to plan more strategically than ever before. So, as all businesses must ask in tough times: How can we maximize dollars and cut costs?

Tip #8: Look at entrepreneurial opportunities.

What about renting space to outside entities? Don't do this if a nonprofit is providing an essential function, like daycare, in your community room. But are there opportunities to use some spaces at your central office or at the properties? If you manage your stock well, what about acquiring or managing some properties in the private sector?

Next: Working with sequestration in the public housing program: Tip #9

NMA senior associate Cara Gillette trains, consults, and provides technical assistance nationwide in fair housing, public housing management, hearings, economic self-sufficiency, and governing boards. Prior to joining NMA, Ms. Gillette served at the San Diego Housing Commission, administering its public housing and Section 8 waiting lists, serving as hearing officer, managing public housing, and overseeing resident economic development programs. She has previously written for the NMA blog about blended occupancy projects.

If you find that you need staffing help during sequestration, NMA can assist your agency with recertifications (done remotely), quality control, outsourced hearing officer services (done remotely), HQS inspections, and more. Email for more information.

Topics: budget cuts, entrepreneurship, sequestration

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