Section 8 is currently closed.
The Section 8 program of the Hazleton Housing Authority (HHA) is charged with meeting objectives through housing assistance programs available from the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
There is an undeniable need for low-income housing assistance within the jurisdiction of the HHA, as evidenced by the very large waiting list for the Section 8 programs.
There is also a need for quality housing units available for program participants. The HHA will strive to attain 100 percent lease-up, thereby efficiently using all its resources that were allocated.
We approach the administration of the program with a positive attitude. We have established realistic and attainable goals and have given particular thought to the numbers of families who can be expected to need and want to move to better housing.
The HHA Section 8 program strives to effectively serve its clients. We will follow and carry out the Authority’s responsibilities as set forth in applicable HUD regulations and federal legislation.
The strategy is to achieve the attainable goals in the simplest manner possible, at the least expense, while complying with the Section 8 requirements and regulations.
Public housing units are actual buildings and apartments owned by the HHA. Section 8 works basically the same way as public housing. The only difference is that the apartment or home is owned by a private landlord and not by HHA. Section 8 is a subsidy attached to the resident.
Housing Choice Voucher Program
The Section 8 Tenant-Based Housing Choice Voucher Rental Assistance Program is authorized by Section 8 of the U. S. Housing Act of 1937 and the Quality Work and Housing Responsibility Act of 1998. The funds for this program are provided by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
The purpose of the program is to help low-income families, elderly residents and the disabled afford decent, safe and sanitary housing in the private market. Individuals are able to find their own housing, including single-family homes, half-double homes and apartments. The participants are free to choose any housing that meets the requirements of the program.
The Section 8 Tenant-Based Housing Choice Voucher Program is available throughout the United States and is operated by public housing authorities like HHA. It is designed to achieve five major objectives:
- To provide improved living conditions for very low-income families while maintaining their rent payments at an affordable level
- To promote freedom of housing choice and spatial deconcentration of lower income and minority families.
- To promote economic self-sufficiency of participating families.
- To provide decent, safe and sanitary housing for eligible participants.
- To provide an incentive to private property owners to rent to lower income families by offering timely rental assistance payments and providing protection against unpaid rent, damages and vacancy loss.
Eligibility for a housing voucher is determined by HHA based on the total annual gross income and family size and is limited to U.S. citizens and specified categories of non-citizens who have eligible immigration status.
To be eligible, applicants must be:
1. A household containing:
- head or spouse with a long-term disability; or
- head or spouse who is at least 62 years of age; or
- family consisting of one or more related or unrelated adults who have established a stable relationship
- any other single adult.
2. Be receiving a total gross income within the limits established by HUD. Annual income is the gross amount of income anticipated to be received by all of the family members during the next twelve months after the date of application.
In general, the family's income may not exceed 50% of the median income for the county or metropolitan area in which the family chooses to live. By law, HHA must provide 75 percent of its voucher to applicants whose incomes do not exceed 30 percent of the area median income. Median income levels are published by HUD and vary by location. The HHA can provide you with the income limits for your area and family size.
During the application process, HHA will collect information on family income, assets, and family composition. The HHA will verify this information with other local agencies, your employer and bank, and will use the information to determine program eligibility and the amount of the housing assistance payment.
If the HHA determines that your family is eligible, it will put your name on a waiting list, unless it is able to assist you immediately. Once your name is reached on the waiting list, the HHA will contact you and issue to you a housing voucher.
Rental assistance makes market-rate housing affordable. Program participants normally pay no more than 30% of their monthly-adjusted income towards the rent and utilities. The Housing Assistance Payment subsidizes the balance of the rent to the property owner.
Program Integrity and Quality Control
The HHA is committed to assuring that the proper level of benefits is paid to all participating families and that housing resources reach only income-eligible families so that program integrity can be maintained.
The HHA will take all steps necessary to prevent fraud, waste and mismanagement so that program resources are utilized judiciously.