Community Service & Self Sufficiency policy
The Quality Housing and Work Responsibility Act of 1998 requires that all non-exempt (see definitions) adult public housing residents (18 or older) contribute eight (8) hours per month of community service (volunteer work) or participate in eight (8) hours of training, counseling, classes or other activities that help an individual toward self sufficiency and economic independence. This is a requirement of the Beaufort Housing Authority Lease.
Community Service-Volunteer work which includes, but not limited to:
- Work at a local institution including but not limited to: School, child care center, hospital, hospice, recreation center, senior center, adult day care center, homeless shelter, indigent feeding program, cooperative food bank, etc;
- Work with a non-profit organization such as: Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Boys & Girls Club, 4-H program, PAL, garden center, community clean-up programs, beautification programs, other youth or senior organizations;
- Helping neighborhood groups with special projects;
- Working through resident organization to help other residents with problems, serving as an officer in a resident organization, serving on a resident advisory board; and
- Caring for children of other residents so they may volunteer.
NOTE: Political Activity is excluded.
Self Sufficiency Activities-Activities that include, but not limited to:
- Job readiness programs;
- Job training programs;
- GED classes;
- Substance abuse or mental health counseling;
- English proficiency or literacy (reading) classes;
- Budgeting and credit counseling;
- Any kind of class that help a person toward economic independence; and
- Full time student status at a school, college or vocational school.
Exempt Adult-An adult member of the family who:
- Is 62 years of age or older;
- Has a documented disability that prevents him/her from being gainfully employed;
- Is the caretaker of a disabled person;
- Is working at least 20 hours per week; or
- Is participating in a welfare to work program.
C. Requirements of the Program
- The eight (8) hours of activity per month may be either volunteer work or self sufficiency program activity, or a combination of the two.
- At least eight (8) hours of activity must be preformed each month. An individual may not skip a month and then double up the following month, unless special circumstances warrant consideration. The Beaufort Housing Authority will make the determination of whether to allow or disallow a deviation from the schedule.
- Family obligations:
- At lease execution or re-examination all adult family member (18 or older) of the Beaufort Housing Authority resident family must:
- Provide documentation that they are exempt from Community Service requirement if they qualify for an exemption, and
- Sign a certification that they have received and read this policy and understand that if they are not exempt, failure to comply with the Community Service requirement will result in no renewal of their lease.
- At each annual re-examination, non-exempt family members must present a completed documentation form. This form will include places for signatures of supervisors, instructors, or counselors certifying to the number of hours contributed.
- If a family member is found to be non-compliant at re-examination, he/she and the Head of Household will sign an agreement with the Beaufort Housing Authority to make up the deficient hours over the next twelve month period.
4. Change is exempt status:
- If, during the twelve (12) month period, a non-exempt person becomes exempt, it is his/her responsibility to report this to the Beaufort Housing Authority and provide documentation of such.
- If, during the twelve (12) month period, an exempt person becomes non-exempt, it is his/her responsibility to report this to the Beaufort Housing Authority. The Beaufort Housing Authority will provide the person with the Recording/Certification documentation form and a list of agencies in the community that provide volunteer and/or training opportunities.
D. Authority Obligations
- To the greatest extent possible and practicable, the Beaufort Housing Authority will:
- Provide names and contacts for agencies that can provide opportunities for residents, including the disabled, to fulfill their Community Service obligations. (According to the Quality Housing and Work Responsibility Act, a disabled person who is otherwise able to be gainfully employed is not necessarily exempt from the Community Service requirement); and
2. The Beaufort Housing Authority will provide the family with exemption verification forms and Recording/Certification documentation forms and a copy of this policy at initial application and at lease execution.
3. The Beaufort Housing Authority will make the final determination as to whether or not a family member is exempt from the Community Service requirement. Residents may use the Beaufort Housing Authority’s Grievance Procedure if they disagree with the Authority’s Determination.
4. Noncompliance of family members:
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- At least thirty (30) days prior to annual re-examination and/or lease expiration, the Beaufort Housing Authority will begin reviewing the exempt or non-exempt status and compliance of family members;
- If the Beaufort Housing Authority finds a family member to be non-compliant, the Authority will enter into an agreement with the non-compliant member and the Head of Household to make up the deficient hours over the next twelve (12) month period;
- If, at the next annual re-examination, the family member still is not compliant, the lease will not be renewed and the entire family will have to vacate, unless the non-compliant member agrees to move out of the unit; and
- The family may use the Beaufort Housing Authority Grievance Procedure to protest the lease termination.