FY 1998 SuperNOFA Guidebook

Coordination Among Applicants Example 2:
Public Housing and Community Revitalization

A public housing agency (PHA) in a Southern city wanted to transform one of its obsolete public housing sites into a more viable and sustainable community. The PHA knew that HOPE VI Revitalization Grant funding for such a project was available, but it also realized that it needed the cooperation of many other participants to have any hope of reaching its ambitious goals. It undertook an extensive, participatory planning process for preparation and implementation of the revitalization plan. HOPE VI funding covered the costs of the partial demolition and rehabilitation of the physical housing structures and initiatives to promote resident self-sufficiency. It also provided Section 8 certificates or vouchers and mobility counseling for displaced housing residents. Still, more programs and funding were needed.

The city in which the PHA operated administered a Youthbuild program that provided training in housing construction and rehabilitation to young high school dropouts. The PHA convinced the city to target a portion of its Youthbuild program to train residents of the public housing project who were high school dropouts. Youthbuild participants contributed directly to the reconstruction of the obsolete public housing buildings while gaining experience in an employable trade. Still, more residents needed jobs if the PHA was to be able to create a viable mixed-income community. To secure additional job training for residents, the PHA involved the public housing resident management corporation (RMC) and a local university. The RMC provided job training through a Tenant Opportunity Program (TOP) grant. The university provided job training through a Community Outreach Partnership Centers (COPC) grant. The TOP program focused on training residents for jobs that were available in the public housing complex and the neighboring community while the COPC program focused on job opportunities in the broader metropolitan community.

Some of the residents of the old housing project were displaced as a result of a reduction in the number of units in the new complex. These tenants received Section 8 tenant-based certificates or vouchers and were provided mobility counseling to encourage moves to low-poverty neighborhoods. To complement the HOPE VI assistance to these tenants and more broadly meet fair housing goals, as required in the HOPE VI grant, the PHA solicited the assistance of a local fair housing organization to provide additional fair housing counseling through a Fair Housing Initiatives Program Education and Outreach Initiative (FHIP�EOI) grant. Since the HOPE VI - Revitalization Grant funded counseling for the residents being displaced, the FHIP�EOI program focused on educating landlords about the requirements of fair housing law.

Finally, drug-related crime was a dominant and highly damaging problem in the old public housing complex. While the One Strike and You�re Out program would speed up eviction of those residents involved in such activity, the PHA wanted to use a more pro-active approach. It did so by implementing a drug prevention program and voluntary tenant patrol with funding from a Public and Indian Housing Drug Elimination Program (PHDEP) grant. A local nonprofit that owned a federally assisted housing complex within a block of the public housing site was concerned that the drug activity from the housing project would relocate to its property. To avoid this potential disaster, the nonprofit secured an Multifamily Housing Drug Elimination Program (MHDEP) grant to implement a number of prevention programs in conjunction with the surrounding community and law enforcement officials.

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Content Archived: July 19, 2012