Housing Authority of Island County scores HUD grant

The Housing Authority of Island County recently received a $51,269 grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to go toward the salaries and benefits of the Family Self Sufficiency coordinator.

This year, the grant is about $3,000 more than usual, according to Teri Anania, housing authority executive director.

The Family Self Sufficiency program is for individuals enrolled in the Section 8 housing program who are recipients of housing rental vouchers to pursue educational and employment opportunities with the aim of eventually diminishing or eliminating their need for rental assistance.

Section 8 is a federal housing assistance program for low-income households.

This program is in its 25th year, and Anania said it’s been successful with any of these clients moving on to the housing authority’s home ownership program.

The program coordinators work with residents to connect them with programs and services that exist in the local community to enable families to find jobs, increase earned income and make progress toward achieving economic independence.

“It’s very unique to the family,” said Anania, regarding the assistance provided by the coordinator.

Participants in the program sign a five-year contract that requires the head of the household to obtain employment and that no member of the household will receive public assistance at the end of the term. These families have an interest-bearing escrow account established for them based on their earned income during the term of the contract. If all the terms of the contract are met, the family receives those funds that can be used for any purpose, including improving credit scores, paying educational expenses or a down payment on a home.

HUD is in the process of conducting a long-term study of the impact on individuals in the program, and the first set of results are expected in in 2018. A previous study from 2007 to 2016 showed the average household income of someone who had gone through the program more than doubled from the time of entry to completion.

More in News

Settlement reached with former police chief

Marks to receive $80,000, resigned Sept. 7

Musical tributes to honor DjangoFest founder

‘Forever and ever, this will be Nick Lehr’s festival’

Booze thieves facing felonies

A man and a woman are accused of stealing expensive liquor in… Continue reading

Transit giving groups a lift

The inaugural van in Island Transit’s new RideLink program left the lot… Continue reading

Training slated at mussel rafts

Penn Cove Shellfish employees will participate in oil spill training Friday near… Continue reading

Voters forum is set for Sept. 24

Individuals vying for county and state positions in the upcoming November election… Continue reading

Stranger found sleeping in rental house

An employee at a property management company found a stranger sleeping in… Continue reading

Photo by Maria Matson / Whidbey News Group
                                <em>Whidbey Island resident Dick Evans will be signing and selling copies of his book, Fazkils, at the Clinton Community Hall.</em><em></em>
Hollywood actor, author reflects on his life, career in new book

Richard “Dick” Evans is an actor, writer and director with a long… Continue reading

Fall festival returns to Greenbank Farm

Sept. 30 celebration of harvest and community

Most Read