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April 29, 2019 - Rental Assistance Demonstration Program Resident Meetings

RENTAL ASSISTANCE DEMONSTRATION PROGRAM (RAD) RESIDENT MEETINGS

4/24/19

To: Ripley Housing Authority (RHA) Residents:

You are invited to a resident meeting to talk about RHA’s plans to convert Willow Creek Cove, Crescent Heights, Chapel Circle, Lafayette and Chickasaw, Northcrest and Northcrest Addition from the public housing program to Section 8 rental assistance under the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD). The meeting information is:

April 29, 2019 – 10:00 am
April 29, 2019 – 5:00 pm

at

Ripley Housing Authority
101 Northcrest Street
Ripley, TN 38063

**NOTE: Please make plans to attend one of the meetings. If you cannot attend either of the meetings, please call the office at 731-635-1901 with any questions. 

RAD is a voluntary program run by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Under RAD, HUD will change the way it provides rental assistance to the property from public housing to a long-term Section 8 assistance contract. The Section 8 program would make it easier for us to access money to repair and improve the property, either now or in the future. 

This letter describes your rights under RAD and explains how a RAD conversion might affect you.
Whether we participate in RAD or not, you will still get rental assistance.

Your Right to Information

At the meeting, we will describe the RAD program and our current ideas in more detail. In addition, RAD frequently asked questions and answers are attached to this letter (Attachment 1). If we submit an application to HUD and are accepted into the program, we will have at least one additional meeting with you about our plans. You have the right to hear about major changes in the plans for the project, and we will invite you to additional meetings if key features of the plans change. You also have a right to organize and to form a resident organization to serve as your voice and to help you become well informed about the RAD plans.

Your Right to Rental Assistance

Our decision to participate in RAD does not affect your rental assistance eligibility. You are not subject to new eligibility screening. If we satisfy all HUD requirements and the property is placed under a Section 8 Housing Assistance Payment (HAP) contract, you have a right to ongoing rental assistance as long as you comply with the requirements of your lease. In most cases, your rent will not change with the conversion from public housing to Section 8. In the rare event that your rent calculation would change (most commonly, when you are paying a “flat rent”), the increase would be phased in over time.

Your Right to Return

We do not anticipate any temporary or permanent relocation or construction as a part of the RAD conversion. However, in the event there was any relocation, you have a right to return to an assisted unit once any construction work is done. If we did need to move you during construction, your post-construction home may be a different unit than your current home.

You get to return to a RAD Section 8 unit unless you choose to move somewhere else. If you believe the plans prevent you from exercising your right to return, you have the right to object to the plans. RAD program rules require us to make sure that anyone who wants to return can do so.

Your Right to Relocation Assistance

In some situations, we may need to relocate you from your unit temporarily in order to complete repairs or do construction. Since we are at the beginning of the planning process for the RAD conversion, we don’t yet know whether you will need to move. You do not need to move now.

If we require you to move, you are entitled to certain relocation protections under the RAD rules, including, in all cases, advance written notice and detailed information about the move. The other specific relocation protections depend on the situation, but may include advisory services, moving assistance, payments and other assistance.

Don’t Put Your Rights at Risk!

You are always welcome to move based on your household’s needs and personal goals. However, if the RAD effort will require relocation and you choose to move from the property on your own without waiting for instructions from us, you may lose your eligibility for relocation payments and assistance. If you want to preserve your relocation rights, please wait until you get a Notice of Relocation and instructions to move from us!

The RAD conversion, and any relocation associated with it, must be implemented consistent with fair housing and civil rights requirements. If you need a reasonable accommodation due to a disability, or have other questions about the RAD conversion, please contact Justin Jones at (731) 635-1901, ext. 1005, who will assist you.

Because we are very early in the process, the plans for the RAD conversion are likely to change. We are holding resident meetings to share our current ideas and will keep you informed about major changes to these ideas as we develop our plans. You should also share with us any information you have on repairs that need to be made, since you know the property best. We will give that information to the people who are helping us figure out what work needs to be done at the property.

We hope this letter gives you useful information about your rights. We encourage you to come to the resident meetings to learn more about how the RAD conversion would impact your property and you.

Sincerely,

Justin Jones
Executive Director

 

Frequently Asked Questions about RAD Conversions

1. Will a RAD conversion affect my housing assistance?

You will not lose your housing assistance and you will not be subject to eligibility re-screening as a result of the RAD conversion. You can remain in your unit regardless of your current income. However, your PHA will continue to follow its annual and interim re-examination processes, including re-examination of your income to adjust your rent. These requirements will be in your lease.

In a RAD conversion, your housing assistance will change from being public housing assistance to being Section 8 housing assistance under either the Project Based Voucher (PBV) program or the Project Based Rental Assistance (PBRA) program. The PHA chooses whether to convert the unit to PBV or PBRA.

2. Will a RAD conversion affect my rent?

Most residents will not have a rent increase as a result of a RAD conversion. However, if you are paying a flat rent in public housing, you will most likely have to pay more in rent over time. If your rent changes by more than 10% and requires you to pay more than $25 per month in additional rent, your new rent will be phased in. If the increase in your rent is less than 10% or $25 per month, the change in rent will be effective immediately.

3. How can I participate in the RAD planning process?

Prior to participating in RAD, HUD requires PHAs to:

  • Notify all residents at the property about their RAD plans, and
  • Conduct at least two (2) meetings with residents.

These meetings are an opportunity for you to discuss the proposed conversion plans with your PHA, ask questions, express concerns and provide comments. These meetings are also an opportunity to tell the PHA what you think needs to be repaired at the property. The PHA can then consider that information when developing plans for the property.

The PHA must have at least one more meeting with all residents of the property before HUD approves the final RAD conversion. This additional meeting is another opportunity for the PHA to keep you informed and for you to provide comments about the PHA’s RAD conversion plans.

In addition to these resident meetings, your Resident Advisory Board (RAB) will also be consulted and have an opportunity to make recommendations on your PHA’s RAD conversion plans during the PHA Plan public hearing process.

4. What if I need accommodations to participate?

Your PHA must make materials available in accessible formats for persons with disabilities and must make meetings accessible for persons with disabilities.

Your PHA must also provide language assistance to persons with limited English proficiency so that you can understand materials, participate in meetings, and provide comments on the proposed RAD conversion. This may include providing written translation of the PHA’s written materials and providing oral interpreters at meetings.

5. Will I have to move if my home or building is rehabbed?

If the repairs planned at your property are small, you will most likely be able to stay in your home during renovation. If the repairs planned at your property are more extensive, you will most likely need to be relocated during rehabilitation. Even if you are required to move during the construction, you have a right to return to a RAD-assisted unit after construction is completed.

If relocation will last longer than 12 months, you benefit from additional protections as a “displaced person” under the Uniform Relocation Act. In this situation, you will be able to choose between the permanent relocation assistance that you are eligible for under the Uniform Relocation Act and the temporary relocation assistance (including the right to return) that you are eligible for under RAD. This is your choice and the PHA must work with you so you have the information you need to make this choice.

6. What changes will I see in my lease renewal process?

At the time of the RAD conversion, you will need to sign a new lease. Unless there is good cause for eviction based on your actions, your new lease will continue to renew. Under both the PBV and PBRA programs, a property owner who tries to end your lease must give you notice and grievance rights similar to the rights you have under public housing and the owner must follow state and local eviction laws.

7. Will RAD affect my rights and participation as a resident in the development?

RAD keeps many of the resident rights available under public housing such as the ability to request an informal hearing and the timeliness of termination notification. You also have a right to organize, and resident organizations will continue to receive up to $25 per occupied unit each year.

8. Will I still be able to participate in self-sufficiency programs?

The public housing Family-Self-Sufficiency Program (PH FSS) helps families obtain and maintain living wage employment (income that covers a family’s basic needs) by connecting residents to services. If you are a current participant in an FSS program, you will still be able to participate in FSS after the RAD conversion.

If your development converts to PBV, you will be automatically moved from the public housing FSS to the Housing Choice Voucher FSS program if your PHA has a Housing Choice Voucher FSS program. The rules for both public housing and Housing Choice Voucher FSS programs are very similar.

If your development converts to PBRA, you may continue your participation in FSS until your current contract of participation ends. New participants may enroll only if the owner voluntarily establishes an FSS program at the site.

The Resident Opportunities and Self Sufficiency-Service Coordinators Program (ROSS-SC) program provides public housing residents with coordinators to connect them to supportive services and empowerment activities.

If you are a current participant in the ROSS-SC, you can continue to participate in ROSS-SC until program funding is used up. Once the grant funds are spent, your PHA cannot apply for a new grant for a RAD property.

9. What if I need more information?

For more information, go to the RAD website, www.hud.gov/rad.