Rental as­sis­tance wait­ing list opens

Daily Freeman (Kingston, NY) - - FRONT PAGE - By Paul Kirby pkirby@free­manon­line.com paulat­free­man on Twit­ter

RUPCO, an af­ford­able hous­ing provider, on Mon­day will open its wait­ing list for rental as­sis­tance for the first time in two years.

Ap­pli­ca­tions for el­i­gi­bil­ity for the “Hous­ing Choice Voucher Pro­gram” will be avail­able in English and Span­ish through Dec. 14.

The pro­gram pro­vides rental as­sis­tance for ex­tremely low-in­come fam­i­lies, RUPCO says in a press re­lease.

“Fund­ing en­ables peo­ple with limited in­come to choose and lease safe, af­ford­able, pri­vately owned, rental hous­ing,” the agency said. Ulster County in­di­vid­u­als and fam­i­lies earn­ing 50 per­cent or less of the area me­dian in­come are el­i­gi­ble to ap­ply. For a fam­ily of four to be el­i­gi­ble, they must have a house­hold in­come of $37,950 or less. For sin­gle peo­ple, the in­come thresh­old is $26,600.

Ap­pli­cants need­ing help com­plet­ing the pa­per­work can at­tend a free ap­pli­ca­tion sup­port day at The Kirk­land Ho­tel, 2 Main St., Kingston, on Oct. 31, Nov. 14, and Dec. 13, from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. “Be­ing placed on the wait list doesn’t guar­an­tee re­ceiv­ing a Hous­ing Choice Voucher right away,” Vanessa Secore, direc­tor of Rental As­sis­tance for RUPCO, said in the press re­lease. “Many ap­pli­cants

wait up to a year to re­ceive rental as­sis­tance.” The agency says ap­pli­ca­tions will be en­tered into a ran­dom lot­tery draw­ing to be con­ducted after Dec. 14.

The first 1,000 ap­pli­ca­tions se­lected from the lot­tery will be added to the wait­ing list. All ap­pli­cants will be no­ti­fied by mail whether they were se­lected for the list. Let­ters will be sent by Jan. 31, 2017. The pro­gram, com­monly re­ferred to as Sec­tion 8, is funded by the U.S. Hous­ing and Ur­ban Devel­op­ment De­part­ment. The money is fun­neled through the state

Homes and Com­mu­nity Devel­op­ment agency.

The last time the wait­ing list was open in Ulster County was Novem­ber 2014. RUPCO cur­rently owns or man­ages 15 prop­er­ties with 430 apart­ments pro­vid­ing hous­ing to more than 500 peo­ple, the agency said.

“The ma­jor­ity of those res­i­dents rep­re­sent our com­mu­nity’s most vul­ner­a­ble pop­u­la­tions: the elderly, se­niors, dis­abled and work­ing class fam­i­lies,” the press re­lease says. RUPCO’s Hous­ing Choice Voucher Pro­gram as­sists 1,959 fam­i­lies

with rental sub­si­dies. RUPCO awards $11 mil­lion to lo­cal land­lords in Ulster and Greene coun­ties through the pro­gram.

Peo­ple in­ter­ested in ap­ply­ing for the voucher pro­gram can down­load an ap­pli­ca­tion at www.rupco. org/hcv-ulster-county-wait­list-2016 as of Mon­day or ob­tain a copy at RUPCO’s Ulster County of­fice, 289 Fair St., Kingston. Ap­pli­ca­tions can be mailed or dropped off. No faxed or emailed ap­pli­ca­tions will be ac­cepted. The dead­line for sub­mis­sion is Dec. 14 at 4 p.m.

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