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SUMMER 2013

HOUSING Highlights A quarterly newsletter for Housing and Community Development

CITY RECEIVES HUD FUNDING NOTIFICATION Mesa has been notified by the U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) that it will be receiving $4,303,709 for the 2013-2014 fiscal year. The final awards are: • Community Development Block Grant (CDGG): $3,164,427 • Housing Opportunities Made Equal (HOME): $907,559 • Emergency Shelter Grant (ESG): $231,723 The awards are approximately $86,000 lower than what was earlier anticipated. HUD notified the City’s Housing and Community Development Department to expect a reduction in funding because of the sequestration. The City also has $1.2 million in CDBG funds that are reallocated from prior year funds. The funds are used for housing and community development activities that primarily benefit low and moderate-income residents and assist in the prevention or elimination of slum or blighting influences.

MESA RECEIVES 50 VOUCHERS TO ASSIST HOMELESS VETERANS The City was recently notified by the U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) that it is receiving $303,784 to provide 50 HUD-Veterans Affairs’ Supportive Housing (VASH) vouchers to serve chronically homeless veterans and their families in Mesa during the 2013-2014 fiscal year. The veterans are referred to the City’s Housing and Community Development Department by the Veterans Administration (VA) in Phoenix. The City operates the HUD-VASH program, which provides rental assistance for homeless veterans, while the VA provides case management and clinic services at its medical centers and community clinics. Under the plan, which mirrors Section 8 guidelines, a veteran’s portion of the rent amounts to no more than 30 percent of their adjusted monthly income. For more information about the HUD-VASH voucher program, contact City of Mesa Housing Authority at (480) 644-3536 or the VA office in Phoenix at (602) 277-5551.

2-1-1 ARIZONA: GET CONNECTED, GET ANSWERS 2-1-1 Arizona was activated statewide Oct, 3, 2011 to provide guidance for those in need of health and human services in their communities. The Arizona Corporation Commission designated Community Information and Referral Services (CIR) to be the lead agency to provide health, human and community service information and referrals. 2-1-1 Arizona, which is operated 24/7, is the primary source of information for utility and rental assistance programs, homeless services, emergency food, transportation information, medical and mental health services, community services, volunteering and donating. 2-1-1 Arizona features a Spanish speaking call option and an easy database access through www.211Arizona.org. Since activating 2-1-1, CIR has seen a 100 percent increase in service requests, now totaling more than 1.2 million. 2-1-1 Arizona features a computerized database of more than 13,000 participating programs and more than 37,000 community services, including government, nonprofit organizations and self-help support groups.


SUMMER 2013

MESA NAVIGATOR HELPS THE MEDICALLY VULNERABLE HOMELESS With the help of ESG funding allocated by the City of Mesa, Community Bridges, Inc. employs one fulltime Peer Support Specialist, or Homeless Navigator, to work with 10 of the top 50 medically vulnerable homeless individuals living on the streets of Mesa. The Homeless Navigator will locate and establish relationships with the medically vulnerable individuals, facilitate their voluntary relocation into temporary bridge housing and eventually permanent housing as units are available, and provide the support and advocacy necessary to help them maintain a stable, permanent living arrangement. One person who was helped tremendously by the Homeless Navigator is “Red” who has been homeless for 15 years and has significant medical conditions. Together, they scheduled and attended doctor appointments. The Navigator assisted in acquiring prescriptions and addressing follow-up orders. The Navigator and Red also began the lengthy process of applying for Social Security Disability benefits while he continued to live on the streets. Red was approved for SSDI benefits about a year after he began receiving services from the Mesa Navigator. They immediately went out and found an apartment within his budget. Red moved into his own apartment June 3. The Navigator continues to work with Red to teach him independent living skills, keep his apartment clean and transports him to the grocery store to help him make healthy food choices. Most importantly, Red is able to effectively manage his health issues. The Mesa Navigator also increased outreach efforts in 201213 to search for Veterans living on the streets of Mesa who had unfortunately become chronically homeless. The Navigators goal was to identify the Veterans living on the streets of Mesa who were not connected to the VA benefits they are eligible for. The Mesa Navigator has been able to locate 6 Veterans who were living chronically homeless in Mesa. All 6 of the Veterans have been connected to services through the VA. Three have received permanent supportive housing through the HUDVASH program while two are in process of receiving a HUDVASH voucher. The Mesa Navigator not only connected the Veterans to the HUDVASH program but continues to provide ongoing supportive services to ensure the Veterans retain their housing, continue to connect to mainstream benefits, and help improve their overall quality of life.

Mesa Hydration Donation Campaign The seventh annual Mesa Hydration Donation Campaign is underway to provide supplies of water to the homeless and unsheltered. Residents are encouraged to donate water at various drop-off locations throughout the City: MESA FIRE DEPARTMENT VOLUNTEER CENTER 2830 E. Adobe (located behind Fire Station 206 at Lindsay and Adobe) 24-hour drop-off at Volunteer Center door RED MOUNTAIN MULTIGENERATIONAL CENTER 7550 E. Adobe 5:30 a.m. – 9 p.m. Monday – Friday 8 a.m. – 1 p.m. Saturday RHODES AQUATICS COMPLEX 1860 S. Longmore 1 p.m. – 8 p.m. Monday 1 p.m. – 7 p.m. Tuesday - Friday UNITED FOOD BANK 245 S. Nina Drive (north of Broadway between Extension and Alma School) 7 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Monday – Friday Collection bins will be available on evenings and weekends PAZ DE CRISTO 424 W. Broadway 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. Monday – Friday 3 p.m. – 6 p.m. Saturday – Sunday A NEW LEAF – MESACAN 635 E. Broadway 6 a.m. – 5 p.m. Monday – Friday in front lobby A NEW LEAF – EAST VALLEY MEN’S CENTER 2345 N. Country Club Drive 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Daily FIESTA MALL – MANAGEMENT OFFICE 1445 W. Southern Ave. 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. Monday – Saturday 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. Sunday SUPERSTITION SPRINGS CENTER – GUEST SERVICES 6555 E. Southern Ave. 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. Monday – Saturday 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. Sunday

This year’s goal is to collect 375,000 bottles of water. The water is distributed through United Food Bank to numerous agencies in the valley, including A New Leaf-East Valley Men’s Center, Paz de Cristo, Saint Vincent de Paul and Central Arizona Shelter Services (CASS). The Mesa Hydration Donation Campaign will be collecting water until Friday, September 13. For more information, contact Mesa Community Revitalization Coordinator Rob Schweitzer at (480) 644-3024 or rob.schweitzer@mesaaz.gov.


SUMMER 2013

NON-PROFIT PARTNER PROFILE: HABITAT FOR HUMANITY In 1993, Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona (HFHCAZ) completed their first home in Mesa; they have since built 40 more homes for low-income families in need of affordable housing. Many of the lots provided to build these homes were possible through the partnership with the City of Mesa. The City has awarded HFHCAZ with HOME grant funds in order to purchase a number of these lots. “The City of Mesa should be commended for their efforts in supporting affordable housing” President and CEO Roger Schwierjohn said. “They saw a community need for affordable housing and responded. We have been extremely blessed to have this partnership with the City of Mesa”. HFHCAZ also has a ReStore located at 147 S. Dobson Road. ReStores are discount home improvement centers that sell new and gently used donated items. The public is encourages to shop and donate; the proceeds from all five valley ReStores help further the mission of HFHCAZ. For more information about Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona, visit http://www.habitatcaz.org/.

GREAT EMPLOYEES/GREAT CUSTOMERS Mary Brandon, Housing Services Supervisor, and her staff were thanked by Jill Mason, HUD/VASH Social Worker at the Carl T. Hayden Southeast Clinic in Mesa, for working with the Library to find a location for the Veterans Administration to hold training classes in Mesa. This will help our veterans who have difficulty travelling to Phoenix. Maribel Flores, Housing Specialist, recently received a letter from Michelle, one of her clients, stating she was terminating her housing assistance and that she and her son were moving into a house through Habitat for Humanity. Tammy Albright, Housing and Community Development Director, and her staff were thanked by executives from A New Leaf for their work with the agency on multiple applications and projects. In particular, they appreciated the assistance in assigning project based vouchers and working through the logistics with HUD on phase one and two of the La Mesita Apartments and Desert Leaf Apartments. Part of their letter stated “You and your staff do a phenomenal job guiding us, informing us, and working with us to provide the services we do in the City of Mesa. We truly consider the City of Mesa a partner.” Tammy Albright, Housing & Community Development Director; Rob Schweitzer, Community Revitalization Coordinator; and Community Revitalization Specialists Constance Bachman, Deanna Grogan and Scott Clapp were praised in a letter from Hacienda Healthcare President and CEO Bill Timmons about a very productive meeting they had with Councilmember Dennis Kavanaugh and Hacienda Healthcare Vice President Dani Aalfs regarding plans to build Los Ninos Hospital in Mesa. The letter states that the Hacienda staff was “impressed not only by their willingness to provide assistance but also by the depth and breadth of their knowledge” to identify the steps needed for the hospital project. Los Ninos Hospital is designed to be a 26-bed pediatric hospital to serve medically fragile children needing transitional acute care beyond the services provided in a typical hospital stay. Construction is expected to start this summer. Los Ninos will be receiving $700,000 in CDBG funds.


SUMMER 2013

CALENDAR OF MEETINGS WEDNESDAY, AUG. 7. MESA HOUSING AUTHORITY LANDLORD BRIEFING. 5pm. Mesa City Plaza, 20 E. Main St., Room 170. MONDAY, AUG. 19. CITY COUNCIL. 5:45pm. Upper Level Council Chambers, 57 E. 1st St. MONDAY, AUG. 26. CITY COUNCIL. 5:45pm. Upper Level Council Chambers, 57 E. 1st St. THURSDAY, SEPT. 5. HOUSING AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT ADVISORY BOARD. 6pm. Lower Level Council Chambers, 57 E. 1st St.

TUESDAY, SEPT. 17. DISTRICT 2 BUILDING STRONG NEIGHBORHOODS ORIENTATION MEETING. 6:30pm. Robson Elementary School, 2122 E. Pueblo Ave. MONDAY, SEPT. 23. CITY COUNCIL. 5:45pm. Upper Level Council Chambers, 57 E. 1st St. TUESDAY, OCT. 1. DISTRICT 3 BUILDING STRONG NEIGHBORHOODS ORIENTATION MEETING. 6:30pm. Porter Elementary School, 1350 S. Lindsay Road.

MONDAY, SEPT. 9. CITY COUNCIL. 5:45pm. Upper Level Council Chambers, 57 E. 1st St.

HOUSING Highlights C O N TA C T: HOUSING AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT 480-644-3536 | housing.info@mesaaz.gov | Hours 7am-6pm Monday-Thursday


Housing Highlights Newsletter - Summer 2013