Job Opening: Housing Specialist

POSITION TITLE: Housing Specialist
DEPARTMENT: Housing Choice Voucher Program
DATE POSTED: 06/01/2018
CLOSING DATE: September 11, 2018
SALARY RANGE: PAY Grade 18 $ 17.12 – $ 21.05 – Hourly $ $35,601 – $43,784 – Annually
FLSA CLASS: Non-Exempt
To apply, please visit: www.civilservice.louisiana.gov


 

SUMMARY
Under the supervision of the Executive Director, the Housing Specialist is responsible for delivering superior customer service when performing a variety of case management functions related to the HCV/Section 8 program. In addition, the Housing Specialist performs a wide range of activities related to determining and documenting participant eligibility, income, rent and contractual relationships with owners in support of HCVP/Section 8 program operations. The Housing Specialist may perform admissions, re-certifications, interim adjustments, rent increases, leasing, portability, project based and single room occupancy voucher program requirements and deal with both participant and landlord issues.


ESSENTIAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
The below statements are intended to describe the general nature and scope of work being performed by this position. This is not a complete listing of all responsibilities, duties and/or skills required. Other duties may be assigned.

General

  • Works cooperatively with other members of the Voucher Administration group, adjusting workload as necessary when other members are ill or on vacation;
  • Investigates and resolves participant and landlord complaints minimizing involvement of supervisor to the satisfaction of all parties;
  • Communicates with applicants, participants, landlords/owners and co-workers in a manner that is courteous and professional;
  • Answers resident and landlord questions, providing information on status of rent, damage claims, property inspections, provisions of the lease and contract, program regulations, Housing Authority policies, and procedures, etc.;
  • Returns calls to participants and landlords within one workday;
  • Places information received through the mail, by fax or email in appropriate part of participant file within two workdays of receipt;
  • Submits monthly performance reports as required;
  • Provides clients with information on HANO policies and procedures, and responds to requests for information within the scope of authority;
  • Maintains absolute confidentiality of work-related issues and SCPHA information;
  • Performs other duties as assigned.

Waiting List Management

  • Processes applicants (waiting list and special admissions) as directed by Supervisor in a manner consistent with achieving a 97 percent utilization rate;
  • Purges the waiting list annually;
  • Recommends opening or closing the waiting list at least two months before the action is needed;
  • Places 98 percent of applicants on the waiting list in accordance with the Administrative Plan;
  • Selects 98 percent of applicants from the waiting list in accordance with the Administrative Plan.

Admissions

  • Conducts eligibility interviews with applicant and port-in families;
  • Conducts interviews in the client’s home or field office as needed;
  • Conducts criminal history check on all adult members of applicant families;
  • Determines eligibility of applicants from the waiting list, special admissions and port-ins. Informs ineligible families of informal meeting procedures;
  • Documents family composition, citizenship or eligible immigrant status and social security numbers of family members over age six (or certification that no number exists) in accordance with HUD requirements;
  • Determines Annual Income in accordance with HUD rules;
  • Obtains EIV or third-party verification of income (or documentation of why third party verifications are not present);
  • Calculates Adjusted Income correctly in accordance with HUD rules;
  • Obtains third party verification of deductions (or documentation of why third-party verifications are not present);
  • Calculates Total Tenant Payment accurately;
  • Determines the Voucher size for which each family qualifies in accordance with the Administrative Plan;
  • Issues Vouchers and briefs Voucher-holders, emphasizing housing opportunities outside areas of minority and low-income concentration;
  • Sets up complete and accurate files with all necessary participant-supplied documents and third-party verifications (or documentation of why third-party verifications are not present);
  • Receives Requests for Tenancy Approval, HAP contracts (with HUD-required Tenancy Addendum) Inspection reports, rent reasonableness determinations and leases. Checks to ensure that no participants will be paying more than 40 percent of adjusted monthly income in TTP, reviews for original signatures and internal consistency (particularly with respect to who pays for various utilities), places in participant files and authorizes HAP payments to owner;
  • Enters correct information and forwards accurate and timely 50058 form to Housing Choice Voucher Program Manager for submission to HUD.

Leasing

  • In addition to the duties described elsewhere in this document, the Housing Specialist in leasing will demonstrate a complete understanding of the leasing and admissions rules as determined in the HUD regulations;
  • Reviews Requests for Tenancy Approval (RTA) for completeness, logs RTAs and inputs data into computer; • Requests all documents required with Request for Tenancy Approval;
  • Notifies clients of missing documents;
  • Determines clients meet affordability as determined by Housing Authority on Request for Tenancy Approval;
  • Maintains automated record keeping system and updates records; • Cancel applicable contracts;
  • Contacts the owner for a contract signing and ensures that all contracts are fully executed.

Project Based (PB) / Single Room Occupancy (SRO)

  • In addition to the duties described elsewhere in this document, the Housing Specialist in PB and SRO will demonstrate a complete understanding of project-based rules as determined in the HUD regulations;
  • Performs technical and customer service functions for the Section 8 PB program;
  • Processes and reviews Section 8 PB program applicants; verifies completeness and accuracy of information;
  • Schedules and perform Housing Quality Standards (HQS) inspections; updates database and other files;
  • Monitors and maintains the PB vacancy report, supporting documentation for the program, contracts, and other activity reports;
  • Communicates with Site Managers, and relays information on property vacancies, transfers, and eligibility and availability information;
  • Performs associated administrative support duties.

Portability

  • In addition to the duties described elsewhere in this document, the Housing Specialist in Portability will demonstrate a complete understanding of port rules as determined in the HUD regulations, and their application;
  • Receive incoming ports requests, and timely schedule appointments;
  • Communicate requests for extensions with the other Housing Authority;
  • Schedule and signs contracts within timelines prescribed by the regulations;
  • Submit 52665s to initiating PHA within the timelines prescribed by the regulations;
  • Maintain a log of all port-in requests processed and their status.

Continued Occupancy: HUD Annual Re-certifications, Interim Adjustments and Owner Rent Increases

  • Provide case management to participants in the HCV program;
  • Requests inspectors to schedule and conduct annual and special inspections;
  • Schedules and conducts annual recertification interviews in a manner that ensures that notices of rent increase are provided at least 30 days before the anniversary date and the entire process is completed by the anniversary date;
  • Determines whether the participant family qualifies for a different unit/Voucher size than previously, issues new voucher for correct unit/Voucher size when appropriate;
  • When families move later than 120 days after the most recent annual recertification (in a manner acceptable under program guidelines and the Administrative Plan), conducts a full annual recertification (including working with Inspector to set up inspection) and changes the family’s anniversary date;
  • When participant reports changes in income or family circumstances, processes Interim Adjustment;
  • Documents all information (complete information for the annual recertification, only changed information for the Interim) using EIV when available, otherwise third-party verifications or documentation of why third-party verification was unavailable;
  • Makes determination in accordance with the Administrative Plan when tenants request to add family members for reasons other than the birth, adoption or Court-awarded custody of children;
  • Receives owner rent increase requests and performs rent reasonableness determinations. Forwards completed package to the supervisor to determine whether the program can afford the rent increase within available budget;
  • When rent increases are approved by Supervisor, notifies owner in writing and finance department within two working days;
  • As the utility allowance schedule is updated, ensures that the utility allowances used in determining tenant rent are correct and accurate, considering the size and type of unit and the utilities paid directly by the tenant;
  • Enters correct information and forwards accurate and timely 50058 form for submission to HUD;
  • Properly processes client files as assigned within prescribed timeframe;
  • Performs rent reasonableness analysis based on fair market values;
  • Utilize market research techniques to establish rental levels for assisted housing units in accordance with HUD and the St Charles Parish Housing Authority, (SCPHA) guidelines;
  • Issue the vouchers for the families that are requesting to move; contacts the owner for contract signing and ensures that all contracts are fully executed.

BEHAVIORAL COMPETENCIES
This position requires the incumbent to exhibit the following behavioral skills:

Problem Solving: Identifies and resolves problems in a timely manner; Gathers and analyzes information skillfully; Develops alternative solutions; Works well in group problem solving situations; Uses reason even when dealing with sensitive topics and/or irate customers.

Customer Service: Meets/exceeds the expectations and requirements of internal and external customers; Manages difficult or sensitive customer situations; Responds promptly to customer needs; Solicits customer feedback to improve service; Responds to requests for service and assistance.

Interpersonal Skills: Focuses on solving conflict, not blaming; Maintains confidentiality; Listens to others without interrupting;

Teamwork: Balances team and individual responsibilities; Contributes to building a positive team spirit; Puts success of team above own interests.

Professionalism: Approaches others in a tactful manner; Reacts well under pressure; Treats others with respect and consideration regardless of their status or position; Accepts responsibility for own actions;


QUALIFICATIONS
To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

Job Competencies

  • Knowledge of HUD policies, and other Federal, state and local laws, rules and regulations related to low income housing and Housing Authority policies;
  • Knowledge of general office practices and procedures, business English and basic mathematics. Knowledge of spoken and written Spanish preferred but not required;
  • Comprehensive and demonstrable knowledge of HUD HQS, inspection procedures and Housing Authority Section 8 policies and procedures;
  • Certification in Income, Rent and Voucher program administration required within first year of employment (training and test at Housing Authority’s expense)
  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills. Ability to communicate with and relate to persons of diverse backgrounds and abilities and to establish and maintain effective working relationships with participants, landlords and other employees
  • Ability to complete complex and detailed tasks in a timely manner;
  • Ability to plan and prioritize duties.

Education and/or Experience
Two years of college course work and three years of experience in public housing, Section 8, case management, apartment management. Bachelor’s degree and Housing Choice Voucher Specialist Certification is preferred. An equivalent combination of education and /or experience may be considered.

Technical Skills
To perform this job successfully, an individual should have above average abilities using computer software such as MS Word, Excel, Outlook, etc. and should be capable of using internet resources for research and developing advanced reports. Ability to learn other computer software programs as required by assigned tasks.


PHYSICAL DEMANDS
The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to sit, stand, and walk. While the work is primarily sedentary, excessive walking, standing, bending, and carrying of items such as books, binders, files, and documents is required. The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 25 pounds.


EEO POLICY STATEMENT
The St Charles Parish Housing Authority (SCPHA) provides equal employment opportunity to all individuals regardless of their race, color, creed, religion, gender, age, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by state, federal, or local law. Discrimination of any type will not be tolerated.

Job Opening: Administrative Assistant

POSITION TITLE: Administrative Assistant
DEPARTMENT: St Charles Parish Housing Authority
CLOSING DATE: Until Filled
SALARY RANGE: $1,439.00 – $2,824.00 Monthly
FLSA CLASS: Non-Exempt / Classified Civil Service
To apply please visit: www.civilservice.louisiana.gov/

St. Charles Parish Housing Authority

Reporting to St. Charles Parish Housing Authority (SCPHA) Executive Director, the Administrative Assistant is responsible for performing a wide range of clerical and administrative duties necessary to support SCPHA.


RESPONSIBILITIES
This is not a complete listing of all responsibilities, duties and/or skills required. Other duties may be assigned.

Performs all duties in accordance with rules, regulations, and policies; communicate with both HCV and Low Rent supervisors. Processes routine paperwork and/or enters data into a department log or database. Develops procedures and guidelines related to the filing and/or imaging of documents. Compiles information from various sources and prepares specialized reports as needed; formats reports according to department standards. Composes, edits, proofreads and prepares routine correspondence as directed. Performs administrative support activities such as maintaining files and central records, printing and duplication services, purchasing of supplies and equipment, and preparation of payroll or personnel records. Sorts and routes mail to proper divisions. Performs a variety of administrative tasks such as organizing appointment calendar and booking meeting rooms. • Assists department personnel on special projects. Schedules and attends conferences and meetings and records and distributes meeting minutes. Greets incoming visitors and clients, determines the nature of their business, and directs them to appropriate staff.

Answers, screen and routes all incoming telephone calls, answering routine questions or transferring to the appropriate staff. Takes messages in the absence of staff. Records the caller’s name, time of call, nature of business, and staff called. Other administrative duties as assigned.


COMPENTENCIES
This position requires the incumbent to exhibit the following behavioral skills:

Problem Solving: Identifies and resolves problems in a timely manner; Gathers and analyzes information skillfully; Develops alternative solutions; Works well in group problem solving situations; Uses reason even when dealing with sensitive topics and/or irate customers. Customer Service: Meets/exceeds the expectations and requirements of internal and external customers; Manages difficult or sensitive customer situations; Responds promptly to customer needs; Solicits customer feedback to improve service; Responds to requests for service and assistance. Interpersonal Skills: Focuses on solving conflict, not blaming; Maintains confidentiality; Listens to others without interrupting. Teamwork: Balances team and individual responsibilities; Contributes to building a positive team spirit; Puts success of team above own interests. Establishes and maintains effective working relationships with others. Professionalism: Approaches others in a tactful manner; Reacts well under pressure; Treats others with respect and consideration regardless of their status or position; Accepts responsibility for own actions; Communication Skills: Conveys information clearly and effectively; uses correct grammar, spelling, punctuation, and vocabulary; Demonstrates ability to follow verbal and written instructions.


QUALIFICATIONS
To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

Job Competencies: Self-starter; Self-motivated, Strong customer service skills, Excellent telephone etiquette, Excellent time management skills, Strong oral and written communication skills, Detail-oriented with excellent organization skills, Skilled in data entry and simple mathematical calculations, Skilled in interacting with people of different backgrounds

Request for Qualifications: Development Partner Services

Public Notice

The St Charles Parish Housing Authority is soliciting qualifications from experienced development firms and/or consultants to partner with and submit application through the Rental Assistance Demonstration Program to develop/redevelop/revitalize 129 public housing units in multiple phases.
The deadline for questions is October 2, 2018 at 12pm CST
The deadline for Submission is October 5, 2018 @12pm CST

All questions regarding this RFP should be directed to the Executive Director, Leatrice Hollis
Copies of the RFP are available from the address below:
St Charles Parish Housing Authority
200 Boutte Estates Drive
Boutte, LA 70039
985-785-2601
lhollis@scphousingauthority.com

DOWNLOAD THE RFQ

Notice of Public Hearing: Rental Assistance Program

NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARING
ST. CHARLES PARISH HOUSING AUTHORITY

Notice is hereby given that the St. Charles Parish Housing Authority (SCPHA) will conduct a public hearing and invite comments on their proposed Five-Year Plan and intentions to apply for the Rental Assistance Program (RAD).

The Five-Year Plan will clearly state the mission, goals and objectives of the SCPHA and what they plan to achieve over the next five years, as well as give a status report on the accomplishments and progress made during the previous five years. SCPHA will identify all the elements of the plan that were revised since the last submission of an Annual Plan. Every program and financial approach will be planned and detailed in the Five-Year Plan, including capital improvements, demolition and/or disposition, homeownership programs, conversion of public housing, project-based vouchers as well as other housing needs. The agency plan and its attachments will be available for review at the main office of the SCPHA located at 200 Boutte Estates, Boutte, LA 70039.

SCPHA is also seeking resident/public review and comments on the agency’s plans to convert all 129 apartment units of public housing located in Boutte, Des Allemands and Hahnville to project-based assistance under the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) program. The RAD conversion will involve transfer of assistance to newly re-developed units at the existing housing sites inclusive of new roofs, new windows and doors, new wiring, central air and heat, new washers and dryers, as well as new amenities and fixtures. We will answer all questions pertinent to residents and the public at-large, including: ‘What is RAD? Why RAD? How does RAD affect me as a Public Housing Resident? Will a RAD conversion affect my housing assistance? Will RAD affect my rent?’ etc. We will assure residents that they will not lose their housing assistance and will not be rescreened because of the RAD conversion. The SCPHA intentions are to preserve public housing by applying for RAD funding to make needed improvements to the properties.

Public Housing Residents, Housing Choice Voucher Participants and the public at-large are invited to attend and provide comments at the Hearing. The Public Hearing is scheduled as follows:

Tuesday, September 25, 2018, at 5:00 p.m.
St. Charles Parish Court House, Second Floor
15045 River Road, Hahnville, LA 70057

Anyone wishing to speak about the proposed Five-Year Plan and/or the Rental Assistance Program (RAD) is invited to attend the public hearing and voice his/her opinion. Additionally, submission of written comments must be sent to: St. Charles Parish Housing Authority, Attention: Leatrice Hollis, Executive Director / P. O. Box 448, Boutte, Louisiana 70039.

For additional information, assistance or other accommodations, please call (985) 785-2601.

Request for Proposals: Fee Accounting Services

Public Notice

The St Charles Parish Housing Authority requests proposals for Fee Accounting Services. The closing date is September 28th at 3pm. All questions regarding this RFP should be directed to the Executive Director, Leatrice Hollis.

Copies of the RFP are available from the address below:
St Charles Parish Housing Authority
200 Boutte Estates Drive
Boutte, LA 70039
985-785-2601

DOWNLOAD THE RFP

Councilwoman Bellock appointed to Housing Authority Board

There has been a change on the SCPHA Board! After assisting SCPHA through a tough period and providing needed expertise in the areas of housing and finance, our Ex-Officio Commissioner Julia Fisher-Perrier stepped down Jan. 9, 2018 to pursue other activities. She is still available to provide expertise in her friendly, but firm manner and remains a valued Councilperson on the St. Charles Parish Council. She was instrumental in providing much appreciated guidance through some of SCPHA’s toughest decisions and will be missed.

In our attempt to keep pace with the changes needed, Commissioner Fisher-Perrier has been replaced by St. Charles Parish Councilperson Marilyn Bellock, District V, as the new Ex-Officio Commissioner on the Board. In the upcoming week, we will present much more about our newest Board Member. We thank her for accepting the changes and look forward to working with her on behalf of the St. Charles citizens.

Holiday safety notice

We wish you the very best in the New Year and, most of all, a safe New Year.

Please take care in the disposal of Christmas trees and the use of additional heat sources. Fires are major threats to our welfare and happiness each season, but we caution even more care in this unusually cold season.

Also, equally important is how we handle fireworks as we celebrate. Although legal in our Parish, we ask that they be used away from structures in open areas and handled in the safest manner possible. Our wellness and the safety of our neighborhoods depend on it.

We hope you have a joyous, peaceful, and successful New Year.

SCPHA Management

Application process instructions

Process for Persons interested in applying for Low-Income (Public Housing)

  1. Download the application or come into the Administrative Office and pick one up.
  2. Completed applications must be personally brought to the Administrative Office by the Applicant.
  3. Applicants must be able to provide picture identification when placing applications in the process.
  4. The application will be time stamped, reviewed and placed into the system.
  5. If all is correct, the applicant’s name will be placed on the Waiting List.
  6. Applicants will be notified by mailed at the address on the Application when their names are seriously considered for placement.
  7. It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that the information on the application is current. All changes must be made in writing at the Administrative Office..

 

Process for Persons Interested in Applying for Housing Choice Voucher Program or Section 8

The waiting list for this program is closed now. It is not expected to be open before 2019, and the specific dates will be posted, advertised and placed on the website.

Register today for the Ochsner Smoking Cessation Trust

Ochsner is pleased to kick off 2017 with the announcement of our Ochsner Smoking Cessation Clinic, a Department of Ochsner Medical Center! Our smoking cessation clinic will offer free or reduced pricing for patients for services to help them kick their smoking habit for good!

Ochsner is partnering with the Smoking Cessation Trust to offer free or reduced cost counseling and medications for anyone wanting to make a healthy lifestyle change. Smoking is the leading cause of preventable disease in the United States with 400,000 lives lost and more than 3 Billion dollars in health care cost and productivity losses in Louisiana alone.

Tell me more. What are the next steps to get started?

IMPORTANT NOTE: To be a part of the free or reduced program, you must have started smoking prior to 1988 and be a Louisiana resident. If you believe you or your spouse/domestic partner fit in this category follow these next steps:

Step 1: Contact 504-842-7490 or 1-844-371-5806 to speak to a Smoking Cessation Coordinator.

If you qualify for the free or reduced program, you’ll have access to cessation medications, individual/group counseling, telephone quit line support, a Quit Coach and more.

When will the clinic be opening?
The Ochsner Smoking Cessation Clinic is open.

Where will the clinic be located?
Clinics are located everywhere. Call 504-842-7490 or 1-844-371-5806 to find a clinic near you.

What exactly is the Smoking Cessation Trust?
In late 2011, the final judgment in a 14-year-old class action lawsuit (Scott v. American Tobacco Company) ordered certain tobacco companies to fund a 10-year statewide smoking cessation program. The new program will benefit more than 200,000 Louisiana smokers – members of the plaintiff class referred to as the Scott Class, which is defined in the judgment as all Louisiana residents who developed a smoking habit before September 1, 1988. In 2012, the court-established and court-supervised Smoking Cessation Trust (SCT) began work to set up the cessation program as planned, using funds provided by those tobacco companies. Any current Louisiana resident who was a smoker prior to September 1, 1988, and wants to stop smoking cigarettes can apply for Scott Class membership today by completing a one-page application for benefits for their card.

If you have more questions about becoming tobacco free at Ochsner, email tobaccofree@ochsner.org.

If you have more questions about how the Smoking Cessation Trust works, you can contact them directly through the resources on our exclusive Ochsner website for the Smoking Cessation Trust.

Fair Housing Notice

Fair Housing. It’s Right. It’s Fair. It’s for Everyone!

It’s Not an Option. It’s the LAW

Equal Housing Opportunity

Discrimination Complaint Hotline: 1-800-669-9777

SCP Housing Authority to phase in implementation of no smoking rule

To All SCPHA Residents:

On Jan. 18, 2017, the first notice was sent to residents expressing the intent of the St. Charles Parish Housing Authority to establish a mandated “Smoke Free Policy and Environment within 18 months. Smoking will be prohibited throughout all public housing properties, in the units and within 25 feet of SCPHA buildings or other properties. The Final Rule: “Instituting Smoke-Free Public Housing” was issued Dec. 5, 2016 under the 24 Code of Federal Regulations, Parts 965 and 966 and a SCPHA Board of Commissioners’ Resolution #17-01-24-42 passed Jan. 24, 2017.

As a followup to that letter, the St. Charles Parish Housing Authority has scheduled a public meeting to discuss the features of the proposed SCPHA Policy and to provide information and resources to help residents to stop smoking. We recognize that for many to stop a habit that has been going on for years will be difficult. Because of that, we need time to adjust to this new way of living in public housing. It is emphasized that HUD is not prohibiting smoking or the use of smoking paraphernalia etc., but has banned smoking on all public housing properties. Residents are encouraged to work with SCPHA to make this a reality. For many it will be very difficult, but together we will make it easier.

A Spring General Discussion Meeting is scheduled to begin publicly discussing this issue. This HUD mandate is unfunded and must be established using the housing authority’s existing resources. The meeting will be held at 10 a.m., March 7 at the Edward A. Dufresne Community Center, 274 Judge Edward Dufresne Parkway in Luling. At this meeting, guests and resource personnel will present some examples of available help to assist residents in making this transition.

The new rule does not and will not prohibit residents from smoking. It will prohibit smoking in or near public housing property. Please contact the SCPHA Office with all concerns (985-785-2601).

Benjamin R. Bell, Executive Director

Little Free Libraries bring books to children

A Little Free Library is a national movement where anyone can build a small box or kiosk that can resemble a nicely decorated birdhouse, place it in a community and fill it with free books that can be shared among people who live there.

The library can be as basic or elaborate as desired and the books inside depend on who uses them.

Read more about the St. Charles Parish Housing Authority’s Little Free Library in the Herald-Guide here.