Job Opportunity: Executive Director, DeRidder Housing Authority

Small, High Performing, Financially viable Public Housing Authority is searching for motivated, skilled and dedicated employee to become their next Executive Director! The DeRidder Housing Authority in DeRidder, Louisiana is actively searching for the right individual to provide leadership, strategic development and program management for their High Performing authority with 122 Public Housing units and 38 Housing Choice Vouchers. Located in Beauregard Parish, the City of DeRidder is an excellent family community with a low cost of living and great school systems. For more details see www.cityofderrider.org.

This important leader will be responsible for working with a staff of six to carry out all functions of managing an affordable housing property including policy and budget management, capital planning and development and resident and community relations. This future leader will enjoy the support of a cooperative Board of Commissioners, local government and law enforcement officials to meet the needs of the resident families and the local community. The ideal candidate will have a Bachelor’s Degree in Public or Business Administration, Social Work, or other appropriate field with a minimum of five years of responsible management experience – or the equivalent combination of experience and education. Excellent oral and written communication and people skills are a must! A Public Housing Managers Certification is a bonus for rating but will be required within one year of employment. As a small PHA, direct knowledge of HUD regulations and requirements is absolute along with understanding of operating a small public business.

The DeRidder Housing Authority provides excellent benefits to all employees, including paid employee health insurance, excellent retirement contributions, and generous annual and sick leave benefits. Salary will be commensurate with experience, skills and education. This position will remain open until October 30, 2014 and qualified interested applications should submit a letter of interest, full resume, with a minimum of three professional references and their contact information, to L.V. Blount, Jr., Chairman, DeRidder Housing Authority, 600 Warren St., DeRidder, La. 70634 or via email to: DeRidderEDsearch@yahoo.com . Anyone interested in a full detailed job description or with other questions should submit a request via email at DeRidderEDsearch@yahoo.com.

Introducing LDSC Member Brittany Ramsey

Brittany RamseyLHA welcomes Brittany Ramsey as its Louisiana Delta Service Corps (LDSC) member.  Brittany is a Ponchatoula, Louisiana native and is currently in her senior year at Southeastern Louisiana University.  She is majoring in Family and Consumer Science and Business Management.  Brittany spent several years in Hotel and Hospitality Management within the Atlanta area before returning to school.  Her goal is to become an experienced elementary school teacher, earn a master’s degree in Public Administration, and organize or operate a non-profit organization that improves the lives of children and families.  She is excited about serving with LHA through LDSC to gain experience in learning the fundamentals of community organizing and involvement, and the opportunity to positively influence the lives of others.  Brittany has been involved in after school tutoring and mentoring programs.  She has also provided countless hours of service to St. James AME church in Hammond, Louisiana.  For leisure, she enjoys reading, spending time with friends and family, and exercising.

 

During her tenure with LHA, Brittany will serve as the Program and Community Awareness Coordinator. In this position, she will help provide information forums, workshops, and training sessions for nonprofit organizations, community leaders and residents, and other local/ regional community based organizations throughout 9 regions of Louisiana. You can reach Brittany by email at bnramsey@lahousingalliance.org.

Nominations are Open! 2014 Housing and Community Development Awards

TrophyNominations are now open for LHA’s 2014 Annual Affordable Housing & Community Development Awards. The awards will be given to spotlight and celebrate the achievements of those who make our communities a better place to live, and will be presented during LHA’s Annual Meeting on January 30, 2015. This luncheon meeting will begin at 11:30 a.m. and take place at Boudreaux’s, 2647 Government St., in Baton Rouge. For ticket information, click here.

Six (6) awards will be made in 4 categories:

Innovation (2 awards—1 rental and 1 ownership)

Project must demonstrate innovation in at least 1 (one) of the following: Design, Green/Energy Efficiency, Accessibility, Services, Financing, Mixed-Income, Mixed-Use, Community Connections, Long-Term Affordability (35 years+)

Excellence (2 awards—1 rental and 1 ownership)

Project must demonstrate at least 5 (five) of the following: Design, Green/Energy Efficiency, Accessibility, Services, Financing, Mixed-Income, Mixed-Use, Community Connections, Long-Term Affordability (35 years+)

Champion (local, state or national)

Person’s efforts have resulted in a victory for low- and moderate-income families needing affordable housing

Volunteer (local)

Person’s efforts have resulted in positive community change. Nominees in this category may include those involved in tenants’ rights/organizing, neighborhood watch/community organizing, community advocates (concerned citizens willing to testify or fight for what is right), etc.

Please submit nominations to lhadirector@gmail.com or to P.O. Box 2623, Baton Rouge, LA 70802.  Nominations are due by 5:00 p.m. on November 12, 2014 November 25, 2014 and Nominees will be announced to the public on January 5, 2015. Self-nominations will be accepted in all categories.

For Nomination Guidelines click here. For more information, please call LHA at (225) 381.0041.

 

October Resources: Jobs, Greenbuild and Webinars

Census Bureau LogoThe Atlanta Region of the U.S. Census Bureau is hiring for temporary positions in New Orleans. Positions include Field Leader and Field Supervisor. Job requirements include: be a United States citizen; Complete and submit application with recruitment bulletin number; pass a basic skills test along with two scored interviews; and pass a background check. More information is available here.

Have you registered for Greenbuild yet? We are proud to partner with the largest sustainable building event in the US as it marches into New Orleans! Join us this October 22-24 for Greenbuild 2014 and help us show the world why the Crescent City is the perfect setting for the green movement. Register today at www.greenbuildexpo.com.

The National Housing Conference is hosting a free webinar on October 14, 2014 to discuss and demonstrate Stewards for Affordable Housing’s new EZ Retrofit tool. Register here. As part of HUD’s Energy Innovation Fund program, Stewards of Affordable Housing for the Future (SAHF) developed a benchmarking and audit tool called the “EZ Retrofit Tool,” a free resource that gives property owners and operators the ability to identify a range of energy and water efficiency measures. Part of our Capital One Webinar Series, this webinar will provide an overview and demonstration of the EZ Retrofit Tool, and discussion from an owner and an energy engineer who have used the Tool.

The National Housing Law Project is hosting a free webinar about Preserving USDA Rural Development Rental Housing. The National Housing Law Project will hold a free webinar on how to protect residents from being displaced when USDA Rural Development (RD) rental housing loans end as a result of prepayment, loan maturity, or foreclosure. In each situation, residents (including those who live in farm labor housing) may be threatened with displacement.  The 90-minute webinar will be on Tuesday, October 21, at 2 pm ET, 1 pm CT, noon MT, and 11 am PT.  The webinar will cover protections available to residents, including the right to receive notice of and to comment on prepayment requests, and the right to secure RD vouchers and Letters of Priority Entitlement (LOPES). The webinar will also address ways in which nonprofit and public agencies can preserve RD affordable housing.  The session is designed for tenant advocates, including lawyers and persons who work to preserve RD rural rental housing. The webinar will provide detailed information on how to assist RD rental housing residents facing displacement and how to preserve RD housing. You can register for the webinar by visiting https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/4658875219389636609.  For more about the webinar, contact Jay Arellano at jarellano@nhlp.org.

Member Spotlight: Tammy Groover, Covington Housing Authority

Tammie GrooverThis month, we’re focusing on the work of LHA Board Vice-Chair Tammie Groover, Executive Director of the Covington Housing Authority. The Covington Housing Authority, in accordance with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development evaluation criteria, has been designated as a “high performing” agency.

Tammie has more than 20 years experience in public service, housing services and improving the status of underperforming agencies. She has served as the Executive Director of the Covington Housing Authority for thirteen years. Most recently, the organization completed a 36-unit tax credit complex near Abita Springs, LA.

When asked why she decided to serve on the LHA Board, Tammie referred to the central role that housing plays in the well-being of families. “Housing is key to your life, including your ability to raise children” she says.

How can others support the work of the Covington Housing Authority? Tammie encourages people not to rely on stereotypes or misinformation about low-income housing. She even invites anyone who’s interested to contact her for a tour of housing authority facilities. She says, “My main goal is to change the perception of the way people think about low-income people. Anybody can be a bad person, even homeowners, it doesn’t have anything to do with whether or not you’re low-income.”

Executive Director’s Corner: LHA Releases Report on Poverty

1outof2Last month, LHA worked with the Coalition on Human Needs to release a report detailing how Louisianans fared when it came to the latest poverty data released by the Census Bureau. The report paints a grim picture: Louisiana has the third highest state poverty rate. In Louisiana, one out of four children overall, as well as one out of two African American children and one out four Hispanic children, are growing up in poverty. 44.1% of Louisiana tenants are paying 35% or more of their income on rent.

At LHA we recognize that housing solutions are an important piece of the overall puzzle when it comes to solving the problem of poverty. As the only housing policy and technical assistance organization operating statewide to support Louisiana’s affordable housing partners, LHA represents a unified voice for housing providers and advocates who provide services critical to the state’s economic and social well-being. These partners are the cornerstone for the production and preservation of affordable rental units, as well as expanding options for homeownership, for low-wealth families, and LHA is honored to serve and support them in this important work.

Much of our current work takes aim at Louisiana’s devastating poverty figures by using housing to enhance mobility. For example, stakeholders around the state are working on regional action plans activated through our Listening Tour process, and just last week, we met with partners to strategize about how to solidify a permanent source of funding for Louisiana’s Housing Trust Fund.

The poverty report we released last week confirms that too many of our state’s residents are being left behind because of grinding poverty. This is unacceptable and, as a state, we must take steps to ensure a shared prosperity for all. At LHA, we’re working to ensure a shared prosperity for all Louisianans- won’t you join us?

LHA Releases Report on Poverty Census Data in Louisiana

On September 23, LHA in partnership with the Coalition on Human Needs released a report detailing recently released poverty Census data for Louisiana. The report also makes policy recommendations aimed at addressing alarmingly high poverty rates.

Download a copy of the report here.

Report findings include:

  • Louisiana has the third highest state poverty rate.
  • In Louisiana, one out of four children overall, as well as one out of two African American children and one out four Hispanic children, are growing up in poverty.
  • In Louisiana, 44.1 percent of tenants are paying 35 percent or more of their income on rent.
  • 23.3% of Louisiana children would benefit from raising the federal minimum wage to $10.10 per hour.
  • Current Congressional proposals purporting to reduce poverty will actually increase it. In Louisiana, we need more investments, not less, in programs that help people move up and out of poverty.

Stay connected with LHA to find out what you can do to reduce the negative consequences of devastating poverty numbers in Louisiana. If you’re on Twitter, use #TalkPoverty to join the conversation for solutions.

 

Louisiana Housing Alliance meets in Lake Charles

LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) – About a third of Louisiana households pay rent. And that number is expected to increase with the industrial boom.

Louisiana Housing Alliance officials stopped by Lake Charles Tuesday, as part of their annual Listening Tour around the state.

While they say they expect temporary housing or rental demand in our region to increase, the supply may not be there.

KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

According to the 2014 State Housing Profile, renters account for 34% of households in Louisiana. In Lake Charles, that equates to about 21,000 households.

But local LHA representative, Nicole Miller, expects that number to rise.

“There’s going to be a need for temporary housing, as our temporary workers come in and start building. Long term, we really anticipate seeing a need for rental housing,” said Miller.

LHA Executive Director Marla Newman says that was a big part of the conversation last year.

“You have workers coming in, they’re not going to be permanent workers, but they’ll still need a good, decent place to live,” said Newman.

With that comes another need.

“There’s still a tremendous need for more affordable, quality units in this area,” said Newman.

LHA officials say affordability is already an issue, but certainly not the only one.

Tuesday, local housing advocates created a new list of housing needs. What were some of their top concerns?

Tuesday’s list outlines issues from funding and communication to a need for mixed income developments.

“That all of our developments are going to address the whole range of housing needs,” added Miller.

Newman says the purpose of these meetings is to understand local housing needs, and assist in local action planning, “as well as look at opportunities we can address in issues at the statewide policy level.”

As they continue their tour, Newman says they’ll look for needs that resonate across the state.

And going forward, an LHA consultant will help each region with action planning.

Miller says they don’t want to forget about the home ownership piece of the story, but think the need for rental housing will be a priority in our region.

Copyright 2014 KPLC. All rights reserved.

 

 

LHA 2014 Listening Tour

Louisiana Housing Alliance (LHA) will host the Annual Listening Tour beginning August 25th in Monroe, LA culminating in the capital city on August 29th. The Listening Tour is a week-long road trip during which LHA visits each of Louisiana’s 9 regions to listen to the concerns and successes of housing providers, advocates, working families, local officials and policy makers.

Read more

The Louisiana Housing Trust Fund Initiative (LHTFI) – Coming the Fall 2014

The LHTFI is an effort by housing developers, advocates, local and state banks, small business owners, and a regional economic alliance to find dedicated revenue for the Louisiana Housing Trust Fund. A Housing Trust Fund with dedicated revenue helps developers and communities meet the growing demand for affordable and accessible housing which would benefit many of Louisiana’s hardworking families, seniors, disabled persons, returning veterans and others. Trust funds provide a continuous stream of funding for affordable housing. It is the Initiative’s goal to build a broad-based statewide coalition of housing partners to work with our state legislature to create a funding source which will meet the affordable housing needs of Louisiana.