2016 Accomplishments Report Shows PHA Adding 3,800 Households

(Philadelphia, PA - August 30, 2016) - The Philadelphia Housing Authority is serving 3,800 more households than it was just two years ago despite receiving less federal funding. That is among the highlights in the just-released PHA 2016 Accomplishments Report.

The report notes that in the past fiscal year which ended on March 31, 2016, PHA made substantial progress in four key areas: housing more veterans, reducing homelessness, revitalizing several neighborhoods, and supporting more families and communities.

"The need for low-income housing is tremendous - and even with all of our efforts, we can't come close to fully meeting this city's needs," said PHA President and CEO Kelvin A. Jeremiah. "One way we have been able to create so many more housing opportunities is by working with partners. Between this year and next, we are collaborating with 21 different nonprofit housing developers to add more than 1,500 units. These are high quality organizations such as Habitat for Humanity, Project HOME, Women's Community Revitalization Project and NewCourtland."

Nearly 200 veterans received housing under a special voucher program for vets while over 3,000 individuals and families benefited from an expansion of tenant based vouchers. Two-thirds of those tenant based recipients came from homeless shelters and transitional housing programs. Over 18,000 families now have housing through the voucher program.

Meanwhile, the agency broke ground on the first phase of a legacy development in the Sharswood neighborhood of North Philadelphia as part of a multi-year transformation plan. A $22 million investment fund was also established to help small businesses along the Ridge Avenue commercial corridor. In addition, three new developments were completed in the fiscal year as Queen Lane, Gordon Apartments, and the award-winning Oakdale Street Apartments were opened.

PHA has also maintained its leadership as one of the city's largest supportive service agencies. The self-sufficiency programs run by the housing authority have resulted in an increase of well over 40 percent in family incomes. In December 2015, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) awarded the agency a $2.7 million Jobs Plus grant to fund a test program that helps residents gain employment and meet other family and personal goals.

At the same time, Congress has underfunded the national Public Housing Operating Subsidy line item for seven of the last nine years. For PHA, this has resulted in an estimated $146 million in lost subsidies. With that trend expected to continue, PHA will increase its efforts to do more with less.
Aside from the four key areas mentioned, HUD renewed PHA's Moving to Work (MTW) agreement that allows the agency funding and program flexibility to meet Philadelphia's specific needs.