HUD Great Plains Region VII News
Serving Kansas, Iowa, Nebraska, Missouri

Bi-Monthly Newsletter
October 2012

View the published version of the Newsletter with photos


A Message from the Regional Administrator | News & Events from around the Region | Kansas | Iowa | Missouri | Nebraska | What's New | Quick Resources | Stay Connected

A Message from the Regional Administrator

Welcome to the first issue of HUD Region VII's bi-monthly e-newsletter. This issue marks the beginning of a new communication channel to inform our many stakeholders about activities and success stories that are occurring across our region in Kansas, Iowa, Missouri, and Nebraska.

This e-newsletter will also feature updates about HUD programs, new partnerships, and HUD resources.

We hope you find the newsletter informative. I encourage all of you to make use of this platform to remain connected with us. Help us tell your stories; if you have articles you wish to share, please let us know.

Our region experienced a great deal of success this past fiscal year due to your hard work, and we look forward to many more successes in the year ahead. Thank you for all that you do.


Derrith Watchman-Moore

News & Events from around the Region

HUD in Kansas

Bringing Kansas Home - 2012 Kansas Housing Conference
Several HUD staff, from the Kansas City regional office, attended the Kansas Housing Conference in Manhattan, Kansas on September 12-14, 2012. The conference was an excellent opportunity to network with other organizations, as well as provide information about HUD's programs. Conference sessions covered a large variety of topics including, housing finance, the state of the housing market, sustainability, and homelessness. HUD employees were conference presenters and Deputy Regional Administrator Terri Porter, was featured as a keynote speaker. The event ended with the 2012 Ad Astra Awards, which recognized the achievements of Interfaith Housing Services, Echo Ridge, Broadview Towers, Homestead Senior Residences Mulvane, and Poehler Lofts. In addition, Margene Swarts, Assistant Director of Development Services for the City of Lawrence was named Affordable Housing Trail Blazer of 2012. Congratulations to all award winners!

Kansas City Kansas Housing Authority Breaks Ground on Single Family Homes
October 16, 2012 - Wearing hard hats and armed with shovels, Deputy Regional Administrator, Terri Porter, Mayor Joe Reardon, representatives from Congressman Yoder's office, and city/county and Kansas City, Kansas Housing Authority officials broke ground for the development of two Energy Star-rated, three-bedroom single-family public housing homes in the Juniper Gardens Community. Juniper Gardens is the oldest public housing development in the State of Kansas. KCKHA received approximately $490,000 in HUD funding. Region VII's Office of Public Housing has provided ongoing support for this project, and in her remarks, Deputy Regional Administrator Terri Porter reiterated that HUD is committed to assisting in future development. Mayor Reardon added that "change is coming to 3rd Street and the Housing Authority is leading the way". Housing authority staff indicated that this project is a culmination of many years of hard work on the part of the Board, Development Committee Staff, HUD, KCK/Unified Government of Wyandotte County, and other community partners.

November 8, 2012 - Enterprise Income Verification (EIV) Training presented by KHRC! KHRC staff will explain all the new requirements and answer your EIV questions. Location, time, and registration online (

HUD in Iowa

Polk County Housing Trust Fund Fall Bus Tour
On October 19, 2012, HUD Staff, in the Des Moines Field Office, participated in the Polk County Housing Trust Fund Fall Bus Tour. The tour took place in the oldest section of Des Moines, known as the Urban Core. Participants of the tour were able to observe some of the challenges facing low-income families in these neighborhoods. Through the work of Habitat for Humanity, HOME, Inc., Polk County Housing Trust Fund, and Anawim Housing various urban core neighborhoods are being restored and strengthened. The tour also made stops at Royal View Manor, a Public Housing Complex, and Oakridge Neighborhood, a HUD Multi-Family Section 8 property consisting of 300 units. This complex was recently renovated through the Low Income Housing Tax Credit program.

Housing's Ribbon Cutting and 25th Anniversary Ceremony
October 25, 2012 - Des Moines Field Office Management Analyst, Julie Sleeper, attended Anawim Housing's Ribbon Cutting and 25th Anniversary Ceremony. The event showcased the newest townhomes that were developed by Anawim Housing that are set to open with full occupancy on November 1, 2012. Funding for the townhomes was comprised of Low Income Housing Tax Credit, Community Development Block Grant, and funding from the Polk County Housing Trust Fund. Anawim owns and manages nearly 500 units in the Des Moines metropolitan area serving 1500 low-income individuals. In addition, Anawim Housing manages the Shelter Plus Care program in cooperation with the Housing Services Department of the City of Des Moines.

HUD in Eastern Missouri

Paquin Tower Geothermal Conversion and Building Renovations
Public Housing high-rise apartment building provides housing for low-income persons with disabilities and the elderly October 10, 2012, Columbia, MO - A ribbon cutting and Mayoral proclamation was held for the major renovation project that will convert Paquin Tower's heating and cooling (HVAC) systems to a geothermal HVAC system that utilizes free energy on a year-round basis from 40 geothermal wells. This was accomplished with funding from an American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) Capital Fund competitive grant combined with funding from a HUD approved energy performance contract (EPC). The Columbia Housing Authority also utilized ARRA formula funding for Public Housing and HUD funds for capital improvements and operations to complete other building renovations.

Arlington Grove Ribbon Cutting
On Friday, October 12, 2012, Region 7 St. Louis Field Office Director, James Heard, attended a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Arlington Grove, Phase I Development Project in St Louis, MO. Arlington Grove will incorporate a number of special green features and innovative design features that also meet the Enterprise Green Communities Criteria, required by the Capital Fund Recovery Competition - a competitive stimulus grant of $10 million awarded to the St. Louis Housing Authority (SLHA) by HUD. Read more online (

HUD in Western Missouri

Sustainable Housing Conference
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) partnered with the Builders Development Corporation (a not-for-profit KC Metro 501c3) and several other federal agencies in presenting the Sustainable Housing Conference that took place on September 20-21, 2012 at the Kaufmann Conference Center in Kansas City, MO.

Participants in the housing, transportation, environmental, planning and government fields gathered to learn how they can work with their colleagues to achieve the common goal of building the compact, sustainable, equitable communities of the future from across the four- state region (Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, and Nebraska). Participants attended breakout sessions that included various tracks regarding Energy Efficiency, Healthy Homes, Housing, and Sustainable Neighborhoods.

Deputy Regional Administrator Terri Porter provided Opening Remarks, and HUD staff served as moderators and/or panelists for several of the breakout sessions.

First Regional Refinancing Roundtable Held in Kansas City, MO
On October 16, 2012, Deputy Regional Administrator Terri Porter joined Kansas City, MO Mayor Sly James to host the first refinancing roundtable in the region. The roundtable, facilitated by Senior Advisor, Clifton Jones, was held at the Brush Creek Community center where city officials, HUD staff, local housing counselors, lenders, advocates, and homeowners gathered in a lively discussion to discuss resources available to help homeowners refinance and save their homes, to help take advantage of low-interest rates, and to brainstorm, on a local level, to provide additional assistance.

The roundtable centered on HUD refinancing tools, availability of programs and marketing strategies, and homeowner challenges to refinancing.

Based on the outstanding participation, more sessions are planned to discuss further solutions. Clifton Jones ended the meeting by thanking everyone. "This was an incredible session, he said, and the stories will help the White House improve program effectiveness and serve our customers."

Joplin Officially Receives $45.2 Million for Disaster Recovery
October 11, 2012 - Joplin city officials received a ceremonial check for $45,266,709 in Community Development Block Grant - Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) funds from Deputy Regional Administrator Terri Porter to help the City recover from the devastating destruction of the May 22, 2012 tornado. City Manager Mark Rohr and Mayor Pro Tem Bill Scearce accepted the award for the City.

The City has submitted its plan to use approximately $6.5 million for Infrastructure activities, $5.4 for economic development, $31.2 million for mixed housing activities, and the remaining funds for program planning and administration activities. Rohr thanked HUD and added, "Since the disaster, we have worked with many agencies and support organizations at both the state and federal level. This award will help the City continue assisting our citizens affected by the disaster."

Homelessness in Kansas City Metro
USICH sponsors Resource Information Forum for Homeless Programs
On October 19, 2012, the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness (USICH) for Region 7 sponsored a Federal Resource Information Forum for Homeless Programs, at the Kaufmann Conference Center, for all key stakeholders in the Kansas City metro area. Each partner agency held a breakout session to provide an overview of the programs and /or services they provide that help prevent and end homelessness. Federal agencies represented included HUD, HHS, VA, SSA, DOL, ED, FEMA, and CENSUS.

Upcoming Events in Western Missouri

November 9, 2012 - Mid-America Regional Council (MARC) presents Housing after the Crisis - This lecture will assess the current state of housing and housing policy in the United States, focusing on recent trends, the impact of federal housing policies and prospects for the future. Space is limited to 36 seats Location, time, and registration online (

HUD in Nebraska

Omaha Homeless Symposium
On September 10-11, 2012, the Omaha Field Office sponsored the Nebraska-Western Iowa Symposium on Homelessness. They were in partnership with the VA Nebraska-Western Iowa Health Care System, Metro Area Continuum of Care for the Homeless (MACCH), Lincoln Homeless Coalition, and many other federal, state, and local agencies. The event was held at the University of Nebraska Omaha Thompson Alumni Center in Omaha.

The two-day Symposium brought together Nebraska's homeless services professionals and speakers to conduct workshops for local/regional public and nonprofit advocacy organizations. Along with national speakers, they met to discuss what's working and explore best practices through the HEARTH Act (Homeless Emergency Assistance and Rapid Transition to Housing).


OFFICE of LABOR RELATIONS (OLR) FLASH! BULLETINS - keep up-to-date on developments and events concerning the Office of Labor Relations, client agencies and other partners, and labor standards administration and enforcement in HUD programs.

GET THE MOST OUT OF POST (Public and Indian Housing One-Stop Tool for PHAs) - designed to serve as a reference tool for PHA staff to obtain quick access to PIH systems, tools, training opportunities, program requirements, commonly used external websites, PIH contacts, and much more!

NEW CPD Income Eligibility Calculator ( - an interactive tool that makes determining the income eligibility and assistance amounts for beneficiaries of CPD programs as easy as 1-2-3.

HUD LAUNCHES "INNOVATION OF THE DAY" - a new online platform that will collect and share innovative practices in affordable housing, community development, and urban planning from around the world. Share your innovations with us or search our database for emerging practices in your own community or from around the world

HUD launches the Affordable Green Academy - comprised of: (1) Training in Energy Efficient, Green Building: (2) Green Technical Assistance, and (3) Green Organizational Accreditation Pilot. The objective of this program is to assist HUD's stakeholders in implementing policies, practices, and projects that improve the energy performance, environmental quality, and sustainability of HUD-supported housing assets. Training and services are available to public housing authorities, community housing development organizations, multifamily housing providers and property managers, and other HUD grantees or partners. For information on the trainings, visit here (

HUD announces the launch of Ask A Question (AAQ) on the OneCPD Resource Exchange - New tool enables HUD's customers to ask policy questions online and to receive timely responses to their questions. Learn more (

NEW! HUD HRE Learning Management System (LMS) (, which contains previously recorded Ready, SET, Go! webinars and self-paced training sessions

From Our Federal Partners

Sustainable Communities Program ( - Communities can apply for free technical assistance: EPA's Building Blocks Program

Communities on the Move! Resources ( - HHS website offers resources, community practices, curricula and other ideas that we hope will help your community make healthy choices the easy choices!

Online Toolkit Aims to Support Mental Health Providers Serving Veterans in the Community - The Department of Veterans Affairs has developed a new online Community Provider Toolkit aimed at delivering support, therapeutic tools, and resources to community providers treating Veterans for mental health concerns. Read more at


QUICK LINKS - Use our quick links directory to access HUD information from one location Quick Links (

CENSUS TRACTS ( Find out which Census tracts are for Low Income Housing Tax Credits in 2013


Stay Connected

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HUD Contacts in Kansas
HUD Contacts in Iowa
HUD Contacts in Missouri
HUD Contacts in Nebraska

We welcome your comments and feedback and invite you to share your stories and/or news with Agatha (Aggie) Gutierrez (


Content Archived: November 12, 2014