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Vermont Council on Homelessness Meeting Tomorrow in Montpelier

Posted June 25, 2014

The next bi-monthly meeting of the Vermont Council on Homelessness is tomorrow Thursday, June 26 from 2 pm to 4 pm.  The meeting will be held in the Pavilion, 4th Floor Conference Room on State Street in Montpelier.

Review the meeting agenda:

VCH June 2014 Agenda

 



Report Released on Rental Housing Discrimination in Vermont

Posted

new report by Vermont Legal Aid shows that discrimination was evident in nearly half of the test cases.

Rachel Batterson will be on tomorrow’s Vermont Edition at noon with Angela Zaikowski of the Vermont Apartment Owners Association, and Ted Wimpey, Fair Housing Project Director for Champlain Valley Office of Economic Opportunity and Chair of VAHC, to discuss the report and the steps needed to be taken to reduce rental discrimination in the state.

The report finds high rates of discrimination in the rental housing market based on race, color, national origin, disability, and minor children. The results show an aggregate rate of discrimination of 44 percent, with rates of discrimination of 46 percent on national origin; 36 percent on race/color; 45 percent on minor children; and 22 percent based on disability.  

Ten accessibility audits conducted on multi-family housing built within two years of the tests also find that 80 percent had some level of noncompliance with 1991 FHA design and construction accessibility requirements.

Yesterday on Channel 17 Tom Garrett, Executive Director of Law Line of Vermont, also spoke with Rachel Batterson, Project Director of the Housing Discrimination Law Project at Vermont Legal Aid, and Karen Richards, Executive Director of the Vermont Human Rights Commission on the recently released report. Watch online.

 



Job Opportunity at VSHA: Intake/Client Services and Site Specialist

Posted

UPDATE: As of August 22nd these positions have been filled.

Make a difference by helping individuals & families with their housing needs.  Vermont State Housing Authority, a statewide affordable housing provider, has two positions open for organized, reliable individuals to perform a variety of technical, hands-on work related to housing programs or managed properties.

Examples of work:  coordinate all aspects of the application process, determine eligibility, suitability & appropriate rental subsidies or rent for new & on-going clients, process lease-ups & reexaminations, & communicate with tenants & landlords regarding housing subsidies or rents.  Positions include extensive telephone & public contact work & are based in Montpelier.  Must be able to multi-task & work in a fast-paced environment, independently or as part of a team.

For details about both positions, click here.  Cover letter & resume to:  HR, VSHA, 1 Prospect St., Montpelier, VT  05602-3556.   VSHA is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

 



Four New HUD CoC Projects Awarded in Vermont

Posted June 23, 2014

Important news, last Thursday HUD announced a second round of grants totaling $140 million to nearly 900 local homeless assistance programs across the country.  Check out the grants received in Vermont:

VT Balance of State CoC

  • VSHA RRH1 FY13  $87,366  [former RCHC/HPC SSO & Morningside SSO projects]: new CoC Rapid Rehousing project for Families in Rutland County and Brattleboro (Windham County) in the form of temporary rental assistance (up to 16 months) with most services provided through a match from non-HUD funds.
  • VSHA S+C Rutland FY13  $117,741 [5% sequestration reallocated]:  new CoC Shelter Plus Care project to be operated by Pathways to Housing VT in Rutland County; to serve 14 individuals experiencing chronic homelessness; grant only funds rental assistance.

Chittenden CoC

  • Branches PSH  $56,673  [5% sequestration reallocated]:  CoC Permanent Supportive Housing project to serve the chronically homeless in Chittenden County.
  • Planning Project  $11,761  [renewal]:  CoC planning funds awarded to City of Burlington-CEDO as CoC collaborative applicant.

Below is HUD’s official announcement of the grants:

U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Shaun Donovan announced a second round of grants totaling $140 million to nearly 900 local homeless assistance programs across the country. Provided through HUD’s Continuum of Care Program (CoC), the funding announced today will ensure additional permanent housing and transitional housing renewal projects are able to continue operating in the coming year, providing critically needed housing and support services to those persons and families experiencing homelessness. Also included in this announcement are 436 new projects aimed to provide permanent supportive housing for persons experiencing chronic homelessness and to rapidly re-house families with children that are living on the streets or in emergency shelter.

This year, Continuums of Care were asked to make strategic and hard decisions in order to implement a required 5 percent cut as a result of sequestration. The selection criteria included in the FY2013 – FY2014 CoC Program Competition NOFA allowed HUD to fund all eligible new permanent housing projects requested in Tier 1 and Tier 2, as well as fund permanent housing and transitional housing renewal projects requested in Tier 2. Unfortunately, however, more than 300 otherwise eligible HMIS, Supportive Services Only, Planning and UFA project applications were not awarded funds in this competition.

What is promising is that in spite of the tough budgetary decisions CoCs were forced to make, most CoCs chose to reallocate funds to create new projects following best-practice models that serve those homeless persons most in need which will help communities increase progress towards achieving the goals of Opening Doors.

Learn more here.

 



Register Today: HUD and USICH – Core Principles of Housing First and Rapid Re-Housing Webinar

Posted

This upcoming Thursday, June, 26, at 2pm there will be a web opportunity to hear directly from HUD and USICH staff about rapid re-housing and housing first principles.

You can register online now!

This webinar focuses on the core principles of Housing First and Rapid Re-Housing and will be presented by Ann Oliva, the Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary for Special Needs Director at the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), and Laura Zeilinger, the Executive Director for the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness (USICH).

Participants will learn:

  • About the Housing First approach
  • About Rapid Re-housing as a housing model
  • How to implement a Housing First and/or Rapid Re-Housing model

Who Should Attend?

The webinar is relevant to anyone who is or will be implementing a Housing First and/or Rapid Re-Housing model.

This webinar is limited to 1,500 participants and registration for this training closes 24 hours before the webinar begins.

Training Point of Contact: info@onecpd.info

To find out more information about upcoming trainings and access materials from previously held trainings, go to OneCPD Training and Events.

Register for the Housing First and Rapid Re-Housing Webinar

To register, please visit HUD and USICH: Core Principles of Housing First and Rapid Re-Housing Webinar.

If you do not have a OneCPD Learn account:

  • Select Create an Account
  • Enter your information on Steps 1 and 2 of the registration page.
  • Select Register
  • You will be brought directly to the course detail page in OneCPD Learn and an email containing your username will be sent to you. Keep this for future use.
  • Select the checkbox next to the class name and location and then select Enroll in this Class

If you already have a OneCPD Learn account:

  • Enter your Username and Password; select Log in
  • If prompted to fill out additional information, please do so, and selectUpdate
  • You will be brought directly to the course detail page in OneCPD Learn
  • Select the checkbox next to the class name and location and then select Enroll in this Class

If you are unsure if you have a OneCPD Learn account:

  • Go to the OneCPD Login page, and enter your email address into the field: Forget Username or Password?
  • If a username for that email address already exists, you will receive an email with a temporary password that you can use to follow the steps above. If not, you’ll receive an error message

 



Housing Rights for Victims of Domestic and Sexual Violence

Posted

Did you know under the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 (VAWA) all landlords participating in Section 8 voucher programs must comply with VAWA?  Our friends at the Vermont Network Against Domestic and Sexual Violence have provided a helpful handout detailing tenants housing rights.  All of the following apply to landords participating in Section 8 voucher programs:

  • A landlord may not evict a tenant from housing because the tenant was or is a victim of domestic violence, sexual violence, or stalking.  [See VAWA 2013, Ch. 2 Sec 41411 (b)(1)]
  • A landlord may not use domestic violence, sexual violence, or stalking as a good cause for eviction. [See VAWA 2013, Ch. 2 Sec. 41411 (b)(2)(B)]
  • A landlord may not deny a tenant tenancy or occupancy rights to housing solely because a criminal activity occurred that was directly related to domestic violence, sexual violence, or stalking engaged in by a household member or guest if the tenant is the victim.  [See VAWA 2013, Ch. 2 Sec. 41411 (b)(3)(A)]
  • A landlord may not evict a tenant if the tenant’s partner or any household member whose name is also on the lease commits a criminal act of violence against the tenant and is evicted and the tenant can demonstrate that he or she is eligible for Section 8 housing assistance.  [See VAWA 2013, Ch. 2 Sec. 41411 (b)(3)(B)(ii) regarding bifurcation of lease]
  • A landlord may not hold a tenant who is a victim of domestic violence, sexual violence, or stalking to a higher standard than other tenants in determining whether to evict.  [See VAWA 2013, Ch. 2 Sec 41411 (b)(3)(C)(ii)]
  • A landlord may not evict you from housing because you were or are a victim of domestic violence, sexual violence, or stalking.
  • A landlord may not use domestic violence, sexual violence, or stalking as a good cause for eviction.
  • A landlord may not deny you housing rights solely because a criminal activity occurred that was directly related to domestic violence, sexual violence, or stalking engaged in by a household member or a guest and you are the victim.
  • A landlord may not evict you if your partner or any household member whose name is also on the lease commits a criminal act of violence against you and is evicted an you can demonstrate that you are eligible for Section 8 housing assistance.  In such a case, your lease may be split, and you may be able to stay in your housing.
  • A landlord may not hold you to a higher standard than other tenants in determining whether to evict if you are a victim of domestic violence, sexual violence, or stalking.

For legal information call Vermont Law Line at 1-800-889-2047.

To contact Vermont Victims Compensation Program call 1-800-750-1213.

 



VHCB 25th Anniversary Video to Air on CCTV on Monday

Posted June 22, 2014

Tune in, call in & join the discussion, and please spread the word! On Monday, June 23, from 6:30-7:30 pm, Channel 17 (CCTV – Burlington Community Access TV) will show Vermont Housing Conservation Board‘s 25th anniversary video followed by a panel discussion. Brenda Torpy, Gil Livingston, Minner Hobbs and Jeanne Morrissey will join host Nick Carter following the 20-minute video to talk about the cumulative impact of VHCB investments, current activity and future plans.

If you can’t tune in on Monday, you can check out VHCB’s 25th anniversary video below:

 



Welch Highlights LIHTC Legislation at Bobbin Mill Apartments in Burlington

Posted

In case you missed, last week CCTV aired a press conference with Congressman Peter Welch at the Bobbin Mill Apartments with Burlington Mayor Miro Weinberger, Ken Sassarossi of Housing Vermont, Sarah Carpenter of VHFA, and Brenda Torpy of CHT.

Welch was at Bobbin Mill to highlight his legislation (H.R. 4717) to improve the federal Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) and stimulate the development and rehabilitation of affordable rental housing in Vermont.  Watch the broadcast online here or below:

 



AHP Training in Montpelier Tomorrow, June 19

Posted June 18, 2014

Kathy Naczas of the Federal Home Loan Bank of Boston asked us to send out a reminder about tomorrow’s Affordable Housing Program training in Montpelier. If you are thinking of applying for the September grant round, attendance at this or one of the other regional trainings is required. If you missed the registration deadline, no worries, walk-ins are welcome. Here are the details on the tomorrow’straining:

AHP Training – Montpelier, Vermont

June 19, 2014 (Thursday)

9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. (8:30 a.m. registration/continental breakfast)

Register

Capital Plaza Montpelier (directions)
100 State Street
Montpelier, Vermont
(802) 223-5252

The Federal Home Loan Bank of Boston is offering an Affordable Housing Program application training session at the Capital Plaza Hotel in Montpelier, Vermont. At the session, you will learn ways to maximize your success in submitting an Affordable Housing Program application. You will also learn how to use certain aspects of the Bank’s online AHP application and ask our knowledgeable staff as many questions as you like during this training. A must for anyone thinking about submitting a 2014 AHP funding application.

Walk-ins welcome!

If you have any questions, please contact Paulette Vass at 617-292-9792.

If you can’t make it tomorrow, here is a link to the schedule for the entire series of regional trainings and webinars.

 



OEO’s Shining a Light on Poverty Series Continues on June 26 with Marissa Parisi

Posted

In honor of 50 years of community action in Vermont, the Office of Economic Opportunity is hosting a series of one-hour discussions on poverty every month in 2014.  The sixth of these discussions will feature Marissa Parisi, Executive Director, Hunger Free Vermont, and will take place on Thursday, June 26 from 10am to 11am.

Reserve your Webinar seat now here.  Space is limited!  More about the event from OEO:

Topic: Ending the Injustice of Hunger and Malnutrition in Vermont with Marissa Parisi of Hunger Free Vermont 

Description: Do you believe we can end hunger in Vermont and in our country?  The mission of Hunger Free Vermont is to end the injustice of hunger and malnutrition for all Vermonters.  Hunger Free Vermont has a plan to end hunger in our lifetimes by addressing the root causes of the problem.  Join Marissa Parisi, Executive Director of Hunger Free Vermont to learn about their work and how they have helped Vermont lead the way in ending hunger in the US.  In particular, she will explain why Hunger Free Vermont is working towards creating a universal meals model in all of Vermont’s schools as a key strategy to end childhood hunger.

Marissa is the Executive Director of Hunger Free Vermont, a national leader on outreach, advocacy, and education on ending hunger and malnutrition.  Since joining the organization in 2009, Marissa has grown Hunger Free Vermont to include outreach on senior nutrition, increased nutrition education programming, and expansion of the Hunger Councils to five counties in Vermont.  She has a Master of Science Degree in Human Services from Springfield College and recently completed the Senior Leaders Program at Columbia Business School.  She is a member of the Governor’s Council on Pathways From Poverty, chair of the Vermont Women’s Fund Council, and on the Corporator Board at Northfield Savings Bank.

Register now!

 



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