HHA & Tenant Obligations
- What is a Resident Council?
Resident councils are organized, self-governing, decision-making groups within public housing communities to allow residents to voice their needs and concerns and to have input into the activities, policies and issues affecting their lives. Through a resident council, residents can positively impact their community, making it a reflection of their preferences and values. Resident’s representation and power is assigned to elected officers (resident council leaders) who perform on behalf of residents at the site (resident members).
- Role of Resident Council
Resident Council leaders are expected to facilitate the following tasks, at their sites:
- Serve as liaison between Management and Residents to promote lease compliance and housing stability
- Meet on regular basis to discuss concerns, develop suggestions and plan activities
- Improve communications by distributing information that provides facts and dispel rumors
- Identify problems early, when it is easier to resolve
- Identify and access resources to improve the community and families
- Help individuals seek assistance to address their needs and overcome fear of retaliation Speaking up as a group is easier than speaking as an individual
- Assist in developing timelines, policies and budgets to pursue opportunities
- Provide input on annual plans (ACOP, Capital Needs Funds, House Rules, 5-year plans, etc)
- Resident Council Requirements
A resident council consist of persons residing in public housing who meets the following criteria:
- Maintain a governing board (elected officers) of at least 5-officers
- Host fair and frequent elections, at least every 3-years
- Adopt written procedures (by-laws)
- Acknowledge voting members as adult residents who are at least 18-years old and whose name appears on the current lease
- Establishing a written partnership with the HHA via a Memorandum of Understanding
- HHA Interaction with Resident Council
The HHA believes residents are in-control of their resident council. HHA’s involvement with the resident council is limited to consulting, advising, encouraging and motivating. HHA’s main role is to encourage resident participation by being cheerleaders for the resident council and providing assistance, when needed. Resident Councils, leaders and/or members, shall request HHA’s involvement in addressing certain matters pertaining to the resident council. The HHA will assign representatives from Client Services and/or the Property Management Company (PMC) to serve as an advisor to resident councils. The advisor will act as an enabler and not a director of the council.
- Continuity & Availability of Resident Councils
Availability of Resident Councils at Public Housing sites are at the discretion of residents, residing at the site. While the HHA provides technical assistance in creating and sustaining Resident Councils, the availability and level of activity various by sites.