HUD No. 12-100A
Contact: Brian Sullivan
June 14, 2012
HUD AWARDS $5 MILLION THROUGH NEW TENANT RESOURCE NETWORK Grants to empower tenants and preserve multifamily assisted housing
WASHINGTON – In an effort to help low-income tenants receiving Section 8 project-based rental assistance and to preserve affordable housing, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development today awarded nearly $5 million to 15 nonprofit organizations through HUD’s new Tenant Resource Network (TRN). The purpose of TRN is to make grants to qualified nonprofit organizations to assist, inform, educate and engage tenants living in certain Section 8-assisted properties at risk of losing affordability protections or project-based rental assistance.
“The Tenant Resource Network is designed to help working families who are at greatest risk of being priced out of their rental market,” said Carol Galante, HUD’s Acting Assistant Secretary for Housing. “The whole purpose of this program is to empower families living in HUD-assisted housing, giving them the information and options they need to stay in their homes.”
HUD is awarding grants to the following nonprofit tenant assistance organizations (see attached grant summaries):
LA Center for Affordable Tenant Housing
Connecticut Public Housing Resident Network
Atlanta Legal Aid
Metropolitan Tenants Organization
Housing Counseling Services
Boston Affordable Housing Coalition
United Community Housing
NY Tenants and Neighbors
Coalition on Homeless and Housing in Ohio
Housing Alliance of Pennsylvania
Statewide/ Housing Action Coalition
Texas Tenants’ Union
North Carolina Housing Coalition
Tenants Union of Washington State
One goal of the TRN program is to assist tenants living in project-based Section 8 housing regarding their rights, responsibilities and options when a property owner ‘opts-out’ the program, pre-pays their mortgage, or repeatedly fails to meet HUD’s housing standards. The second purpose of the program is preservation of HUD-assisted affordable housing by engaging tenants in efforts to preserve eligible properties as affordable housing.
TRN is a new program developed under the authority of Section 514 of the Multifamily Assisted Housing Reform and Affordability Act of 1997 (MAHRA). The TRN Program targeted certain Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) which include a high proportion of TRN-eligible housing units.
HUD’s mission is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. HUD is working to strengthen the housing market to bolster the economy and protect consumers; meet the need for quality affordable rental homes: utilize housing as a platform for improving quality of life; build inclusive and sustainable communities free from discrimination; and transform the way HUD does business. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet at www.hud.govand http://espanol.hud.gov. You can also follow HUD on twitter @HUDnews, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/HUD, or sign up for news alerts on HUD’s News Listserv.
TENANT RESOURCE NETWORK GRANT AWARDS
The Los Angeles Center for Affordable Tenant Housing (LACATH) proposes to work with the California Housing Partnership Corporation (CHPC) and The Coalition for Economic Survival (CES). LACATH will assist tenants living in 2,501 HUD-identified units in 31 properties located in the Los Angeles Metro Area. Contact: Marilyn Johnson 626-585-0691.
The Connecticut Public Housing Resident Network, Inc.’s Resident Engagement Preservation Project is awarded $100,000 to assist residents living in 230 units located Multifamily developments in New Haven, West Hartford and Southington.
PHRN began as a project of the Connecticut Housing Coalition in 1999 and has grown into a statewide network of resident leaders who bring the voice of public housing tenants to the public arena. PHRN established its organizational independence in 2005 when it became incorporated, gained 501(c)(3) status, ratified by-laws, elected a Board of Directors, and established a schedule for quarterly membership meetings. Contact: Kim McLaughlin (860) 563-2943, ext. 11.
Atlanta Legal Aid Society is working with one local team member, the Atlanta Volunteer Lawyers Foundation (AVLF). Atlanta has lost a great deal of affordable housing in the past decade and hundreds of the current Section 8 project-based units will have mortgages maturing in the next 10 years. With no local organization currently focusing specifically on the preservation of affordable housing, this project is aimed at establishing a network of advocates with the expertise to assist tenants with issues surrounding housing conditions, continuation of Section 8 project-based housing, and assistance with Housing Choice Vouchers as needed. The Metro Atlanta Affordable Housing Preservation Project will both address the current TRN goals and serve Atlanta’s long term need for preservation of affordable housing. Atlanta Legal Aid is awarded $360,000 to cover eligible properties in the Atlanta area. Contact: Amanda Styles (404) 614-3905.
The Metropolitan Tenants Organization (MTO) will leverage its 26-year history of working with renters in both market rate and subsidized housing to provide the management, support and service necessary to meet the goals of the TRN Project. MTO will be working with the following team members: Organization of the NorthEast (ONE), Southsiders Together Organizing for Power (STOP), Kenwood Oakland Community Organization (KOCO) and Housing Action Illinois (HAI). MTO is awarded $600,000 to work eligible multifamily properties in the Chicagoland area. Contact: John Bartlett, (773) 292-4980 ext. 226.
Housing Counseling Services (HCS) will conduct outreach and research activities in multifamily properties in Prince George’s County, Montgomery County, and Baltimore City and County. Last year, HCS conducted education and outreach efforts to more than 6,000 households at risk for displacement from affordable housing. HCS applied for $300,000 to do work in at least 1010 units of affordable housing in eight properties in Maryland, representing 65 percent of the TRN-eligible units in the state. Contact: Marian Siegel, 202-667-7006.
Founded in 1983 as the Boston Affordable Housing Coalition, the Mass Alliance of HUD Tenants (MAHT) is the only resident-run, membership coalition providing organizing and technical assistance to tenants in privately owned, HUD multifamily in Massachusetts. MAHT has preserved more than 11,400 units as affordable housing since 1983 through tenant organizing, one building at a time. MAHT’s mission is to preserve and improve at-risk HUD buildings as permanently affordable housing with a maximum of resident participation, ownership and control.
MAHT is awarded $300,000 to work with the Chinese Progressive Association to conduct outreach efforts in seven properties totaling 964 units in Springfield, Boston, Framingham, Lowell, Cambridge, Plymouth and Taunton. Contact: Michael Kane, Director, 617-233-1885.
United Community Housing Coalition (UCHC) is awarded $480,000 to serve the 1,530 threatened units identified by HUD. In addition to UCHC staff and volunteers, the project anticipates subcontracting with Michigan Legal Services (MLS), and with the Michigan Poverty Law Program (MPLP), a joint project of Legal Services of South Central Michigan (LSSCM) and the University of Michigan Law School. Contact: Ted Phillips, (313) 963-3310.
HOME Line is awarded $300,000 to cover TRN-eligible properties in Minnesota and North Dakota. HOME Line’s involvement with the TRN program will actively focus organizer resources on HUD-subsidized properties. Contact: Eric Hauge, 612-728-5770, ext. 119.
TheNew York State Tenants & Neighbors Information Service, Inc. will do required outreach in eight of the 10 eligible properties in New York State. New York State Tenants & Neighbors Information Service, Inc. is awarded $200,000 to cover the TRN eligible properties in New York City and the surrounding areas that are not currently receiving organizing assistance, as well as other HUD-assisted properties that may become eligible during the grant period. Contact: Maggie Russell-Ciardi, 212-608-4320 ext. 302.
Coalitionon Homelessness and Housingin Ohio (COHHIO) is awarded $300,000 toprovideservicesateligiblepropertiesintheirlocalregion of Ohio. Local team members will be staff of tenant servicing organizations who are Rental Housing Information Network in Ohio (RHINO) partners. RHINO at COHHIO reaches 72 members, including tenant serving organizations, planning and social service providers, tenant leaders, organizers and group members and advocates through its quarterly meetings, website and list-serves. Contact: Douglas Argue, 614-280-1984.
Housing Alliance of Pennsylvania is awarded $200,000 to provide intensive outreach, training, mentorship and support to the residents occupying 594 units in designated HUD-assisted rental housing at risk due to owner opt-out, mortgage pre-payment and/or serious disrepair leading to foreclosure (354 units in Southwestern PA and 240 in Philadelphia). Contact: Elizabeth G. Hersh, 215-576-7044.
The Housing Action Coalition (HAC) works through outreach and advocacy to meet the needs of underserved Rhode Islanders including low-to-moderate income households, minorities, recent immigrants with limited English proficiency, individuals with disabilities, and those affected by foreclosure inequalities. HAC is awarded $200,000 will work with local team members to carry out all of the required activities at four eligible properties in Rhode Island. Contact: Brenda J. Clement, 401-521-1461.
The Texas Tenants’ Union (TTU) was established in the 1970’s to empower tenants through education and organizing. TTU has an extensive track record working with tenants to improve and preserve HUD multifamily housing and training tenant leaders so they have a voice in their communities. TTU will use $250,238 to achieve these goals in Texas. Contact: Sandy Rollins, 214-823-2999.
TheNorth Carolina Housing Coalition is awarded $300,000 to empower and engage tenants in the process of preserving affordable HUD assisted multifamily housing by working with five Tenant Resource Network-eligible properties listed in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The North Carolina Housing Coalition will partner with local police to address safety and crime prevention, resulting in a decrease in incidents and will partner with housing counseling agencies to educate tenants on relocation opportunities outside of highly concentrated areas of poverty. Contact: Chris Estes, 919-881-0707.
The Tenants Union of Washington (TU) is a non-profit grassroots membership organization with 34 years of experience organizing tenants for decent affordable housing and a track record for multifamily preservation victories. The Tenants Union organizes tenants to work together to improve their housing conditions, empowers tenants through education about their rights, and collaborates with other housing groups to build a strong tenant movement in Washington State. TU will use $200,000 to target TRN Eligible housing in Washington State. Contact: Jonathan Grant (206) 722-6848 x112.