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Honolulu, Hawaii 96817

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FAQs: Federal Public Housing

This page is divided into 4 sections. Click on any of the links for questions and answers:

  1. Federal Public Housing
  2. State of Hawaii Public Housing
  3. State of Hawaii Rental Supplement Program
  4. Other Resident Programs

Federal Public Housing

How do I qualify for your federal housing program?

Applicant must meet the following:

  • Must be 18 years old or older, single, or a family of two or more individuals who intend to live together as a family unit and whose income and resources are available to meet their needs.
  • Income is within the limits set forth by HUD (Yearly Gross Income):
  • # of Persons

    Oahu

    Hawaii

    Kauai

    Maui

    1

    $54,850

    $39,100

    $48,450

    $47,600

    2

    $62,650

    $44,700

    $55,350

    $54,400

    3

    $70,500

    $50,300

    $62,250

    $61,200

    4

    $78,300

    $55,850

    $69,150

    $67,950

    5

    $84,600

    $60,350

    $74,700

    $73,400

    6

    $90,850

    $64,800

    $80,250

    $78,850

    7

    $97,100

    $69,300

    $85,750

    $84,300

    8

    $103,400

    $73,750

    $91,300

    $89,700

    9

    $109,600

    $78,200

    $96,800

    $95,150

    10

    $115,900

    $82,650

    $102,350

    $100,550

  • No outstanding balance due to HPHA.
  • Personal conduct will not be detrimental to the project or its residents.
  • Not been a former tenant evicted since March 1, 1985.
  • Meet the occupancy requirements set forth by HPHA.

Click for more detailed information.

Do I have to personally go to one of your offices to apply for housing or do you accept applications by mail?

Applications can be accepted by submitting them to any of HPHA's Application Offices or by mailing the applications to HPHA.  However, it must be understood that applicants will not be officially accepted into a housing program until all the required application data are verified by HPHA personnel and the applicant meets all the occupancy requirements set forth by HPHA.  The verification process normally is accomplished at a face-to-face meeting between you and a HPHA staff member.  If you would like an Application Form sent to you, you can call 808-832-5961or you can send electronic mail hpha@hawaii.gov and include your mailing address and phone number in the message. Click for more detailed information.

Can I apply for more than one housing program?

Yes, you may apply for any or all HPHA housing programs that are open and that you qualify for. For more detail information on the various housing programs, you can click for more detailed information.

I applied for federal public housing and I want to know when I will get housing.  Who do I contact?

The wait time varies depending upon the geographic area(s) you selected, your family size, and unit availability.  The current wait time is approximately 2 to 7 years and may be possibly longer.  To obtain current status on your position on the wait list, you should call the Application Office where you submitted your application or write the office for the latest information on your status on the list. For the addresses of HPHA Application Offices, you can click here.

I applied for federal public housing and am disabled.  I did not apply for an accessible unit because I don't want to cause any inconveniences or problems for my  family.  Will I be forced to take an accessible unit when one comes available? 

You and your family will not be "forced to accept" an accessible unit unless you specifically applied for one and even then you have the option to not accept the unit.  Once you have qualified for housing, it will be determined if a unit is available to meet your needs.  If not, you will be placed on a housing waiting list for the type of unit you qualified for and requested. 

Why does HPHA have a Public Housing Agency Plan and what is it about?

The Quality Housing and Work Responsibility Act (QHWRA) Act of 1998 requires Public Housing Agencies receiving federal public housing and/or Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher funds from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to submit a Public Housing Agency (PHA) 5-Year and Annual Plan to HUD each year.  The 5-Year Plan states the mission, goals, and objectives for serving the needs of low-income and very low-income families.  The Annual Plan details policies on the operations and management of the HPHA's housing programs such as housing needs, eligibility and admissions, financial resources, rent policies, community service and safety, capital fund improvements, and designation/disposition of housing. Click here for detailed information on HPHA's PHA plans.

Are pets allowed in federal public housing?

The QHWRA of 1998 allows residents of "federal" public housing to have household pets as along as the residents follow the pet ownership policies and procedures established by the public housing agency.  HPHA has established a pet application process and pet rules for residents of federal public housing to follow.  Before a resident is allowed to have a pet in the unit, the resident must comply with the application process to allow the pet into the housing project.  Residents must contact their project manager for more specific instructions on pet ownership before bringing a pet into their unit.  Click on this link to see the current HPHA Pet Policy.  Service animals for the elderly and/or disabled are exempt from the procedures.   See your project manager for information on service animals.

I see lots of construction going on around Kalihi Valley Homes.  Who is paying for the construction?

Being a federal public housing project, the current improvements at the Kalihi Valley Homes are funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Capital Fund Program (CFP).  Each year HUD awards public housing authorities grants to accomplish capital improvements and management activities for their federal housing projects.  Funds from the CFP grants can be used for a variety of uses:

  • Redesign, reconstruction, and reconfiguration of public housing projects.
  • Vacancy reduction.
  • Deferred maintenance use and replacement of obsolete utility systems and equipment.
  • Planned code compliance.
  • Management improvements.
  • Demolition and replacement of housing units.
  • Resident relocation during housing reconstruction.

To see the latest Capital Fund Annual Reports and 5-Year Plan, click on this link.


State of Hawaii Public Housing

Do I have to personally go to one of your offices to apply for housing or do you accept applications by mail?

Applications can be accepted by submitting the applications to any of HPHA Applications Offices or by mailing the applications to HPHA.  However, it must be understood that applicants will not be officially accepted into a housing program until all information on the application is verified by HPHA personnel and the applicant meets all the occupancy requirements set forth by HPHA. If you would like an Application Form sent to you, you can send electronic mail to hpha@hawaii.gov, but you must include your mailing address and phone number in the message. For more detail information, you can click here for more detailed information.

I applied for state public housing and I want to know when I will get housing.  Who do I contact?

The current wait time is approximately 2 to 5 years depending upon your family size and unit availability.  To obtain current status on your position on the wait list, you should call the Application Office where you submitted the application or write the office for the latest information on your status on the list. For the addresses of HPHA Application Offices, you can click here for more detailed information.

Are pets allowed in state public housing units?

Pets are NOT allowed in state public housing units.  Service animals for the elderly and/or disabled are exempt.  See your project manager for information on service animals.


State of Hawaii Rental Supplement Program

What is the program about and how do I get qualified?

The Rent Supplement Program is a State of Hawaii funded program.  The rental supplements help eligible families pay for part of their monthly rent.  Families must pay at least 30% of their adjusted family income for rent.  The difference between the family contributing rent payment and the total monthly rent, up to a maximum of $160.00 per month, is paid directly to the owner by HPHA.  To qualify for this rental assistance program, a family must:

  • Be in a properly sized unit for its family size.
  • Not be receiving financial assistance from the State of Hawaii, Department of Human Services.
  • Provide reasonable assurances that you can pay your rent on time.
  • Not have any outstanding debts owned to HPHA.
  • Must be a legal resident of the State of Hawaii.
  • Must not own or have majority interest in a dwelling unit on the same island on which you seek rent assistance.
  • Must be within the income limits as prescribed in the Hawaii Administrative Rules, Title 15, Chapter 184, Rent Supplement Program. 

For more information on the program, click here for more detailed information.


Other Resident Programs

What kinds of programs do you have to help residents of your housing projects get a job?

HPHA offers programs in job training, high school equivalency diplomas (GET), and other areas that address the needs of residents who are seeking employment.  You can contact HPHA at 808-832-5900 for more information.

If I have a job, do I still have to do community service?

A resident must be employed at least thirty hours per week to be exempt from completing the eight hours of Community Service each month.  If you have more questions about Community Service, contact your Project Management Office.

Are there residents who do not have to do any community service?

From Notice PIH-2009-48 (HA)
Exempt Residents: The Admissions and Continuing Occupancy Policy (ACOP) presents how the PHA determines if an individual is exempt from the CSSR and the documentation needed to support the exemption. Exemptions for adult residents unable to participate, as codified at 24 CFR 960.601, include persons who are:

A. 62 years or older;

B. Blind or disabled, as defined under 216(i)(1) or 1614 of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. Section 416(i)(1); Section 1382c),

1. who certify that, because of this disability, she or he is unable to comply with the service provisions of this subpart, or
2. is a primary caretaker of such individual;

C. Engaged in work activities (see Notice PIH 2003-17 (HA)). In order for an individual to be exempt from the CSSR requirement because he/she is “engaged in work activities,” the person must be participating in an activity that meets one of the following definitions of “work activity” contained in Section 407(d) of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. Section 607(d)):

1. Unsubsidized employment;
2. Subsidized private-sector employment;
3. Subsidized public-sector employment;
4. Work experience (including work associated with the refurbishing of publicly assisted housing) if sufficient private sector employment is not available;
5. On-the-job-training;
6. Job-search and job-readiness assistance;
7. Community service programs;
8. Vocational educational training (not to exceed 12 months with respect to any
individual);
9. Job-skills training directly related to employment;
10. Education directly related to employment in the case of a recipient who has not received a high school diploma or a certificate of high school equivalency;
11. Satisfactory attendance at secondary school or in a course of study leading to a
certificate of general equivalency, in the case of a recipient who has not completed
secondary school or received such a certificate; and,
12. The provision of childcare services to an individual who is participating in a community service program;

D. Able to meet requirements under a State program funded under part A of title IV of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. Section 601 et seq.) or under any other welfare program of the State in which PHA is located including a State-administered Welfare-to-Work program; or,

E. A member of a family receiving assistance, benefits, or services under a State program funded under part A of title IV of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. Section 601 et seq.), or under any other welfare program of the State in which the PHA is located, including a State-administered Welfare-to-Work program, and has not been found by the State or other administering entity to be in noncompliance with such a program.

PHAs are encouraged to use 30 hours per week as the minimum number of hours for a work activity as described in Section 407(d) of the Social Security Act, and implementing regulations 45 CFR 261.31(1)(a)(1). PHAs can use reasonable guidelines in clarifying this statutory list of work activities in coordination with the Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) agency, as appropriate (see Notice PIH 2004-17(HA)).

PHAs must describe in its CSSR policy the process to determine which family members are exempt from the requirement, as well as the process for determining any changes to the exempt status of the family member. PHAs provide the family a copy of CSSR policy at initial application and secure certification of receipt as shown in Attachment A, (see 24 CFR 960.605(c)(2)).

PHAs make the final determination whether to grant an exemption from the community service requirement. If a resident does not agree with the PHA’s determination, the resident may dispute the decision through the PHA’s Grievance Procedures (see 24 CFR Part 966 Subpart B, 24 CFR 960.607(b).

PHAs include in the CSSR policy that an exemption to the requirement is verified annually by the PHA. At least 30 days before the annual reexamination and/or lease expiration, the PHA reviews the exempt or nonexempt status and compliance of family members (see 24 CFR 960.605(c)(3)).

You should visit your Project Management Office if you have questions concerning who must comply and those who are exempt from the Community Service requirement.  The Community Service requirement is federally mandated program and non-compliance can lead to eviction action being taken against those residents who are not fulfilling their Community Service obligations.

What is HPHA doing about the crime in their housing projects?

HPHA is working in partnership with the local police departments throughout the State to address criminal activity in and around our housing projects.  HPHA is also working with many resident associations in the formation of volunteer resident patrols.  If you would like more information on forming a voluntary resident patrol, contact HPHA at 808-832-5900.

Who do I see if I think there is some kind of drug activity going on in my housing project?

You should call 911 and report the suspected illegal activity to the Police Department.

Who can I call to get information on forming a resident association in my housing project?

HPHA offers technical assistance in forming a "duly" elected and recognized resident association.  For more information on forming a resident association, call 808-832-5900.

I have some concerns about the housing project I live in.  Who can I call to talk about those concerns?

You can call 808-587-0599 with your concerns.  Please have the specific details of your concerns or problems with your housing project.  HPHA will make every attempt to resolve any issues you may have.

My neighbor in public housing project does not understand English very well and is always asking me questions about her rental lease.  Is there someone who can help her with the language problem so she knows more about her lease?

If your neighbor does not speak or understand little or any English, the HPHA provides free interpreter services at the Management Office, which is available by appointment by pointing to her primary language on the "Please point here if you need an interpreter in this language" poster posted in each Management Office. Once the Management Office knows of her language needs, HPHA will attempt to meet her language needs on understanding her lease or any other information she needs concerning her tenancy at the housing project.

 


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