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Housing Services Act. Overview. January 1, 2012. Housing Service Act (HSA) comes into force HSA Regulations come into force Social Housing Reform Act is repealed. Housing Services Act. Housing Services Act. HSA - Regulations. Housing Services Act. Purpose of the HSA is to provide for:

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Housing Services Act

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    Presentation Transcript
    1. Housing Services Act Overview

    2. January 1, 2012 • Housing Service Act (HSA) comes into force • HSA Regulations come into force • Social Housing Reform Act is repealed

    3. Housing Services Act

    4. Housing Services Act

    5. HSA - Regulations

    6. Housing Services Act • Purpose of the HSA is to provide for: • community based planning and delivery of housing and homelessness services • flexibility for service managers and housing providers in social housing administration

    7. Housing and Homelessness Plans • Service manager must have 10 year housing and homelessness plan • Reviewed at least every 5 years • Plan will assess need, set priorities, and establish objectives, targets and performance measures • Development of initial plan and any amendments to it must include public consultation

    8. Housing and Homelessness Plans • Plan must incorporate matters of provincial interest • Active engagement of non-profit and co-operative housing providers in local strategies • Consultations • Social Housing Advisory Group • Plan must be approved and in place no later than January 1, 2014

    9. Application of HSA • Designated housing providers under section 68 of the HSA include all providers for all programs transferred to service manager under SHRA • Part VII providers are subsidized under the HSA funding model and are required to operate in accordance with Part VII of the HSA • HSA is silent on the end dates for the service manager’s duty to pay subsidy and for the provider’s obligation to comply with Part VII of the HSA

    10. Restrictions • Section 162 of the HSA requires housing providers have consent for the following transactions: • Service manager consent to mortgage a housing project or its land • Minister’s consent to transfer a housing project or its land • Similar restrictions were to have been registered on title under SHRA – deemed to have been changed under HSA • Will be reviewed at next Operational Review

    11. Duty of Housing Providers • Section 69 of the Housing Services Act sets out general duties of housing providers: • General management of housing projects • Collection of rent and administration of leases • Provision of information to service manager as required • Preparation and implementation of plans related to governance and operation of provider • Section 75 of the HSA, allows the service manager to set local standards for housing provider operations

    12. Housing Services Act Housing Provider Plans

    13. Housing Provider Plans • Housing providers must have plans for: • training of staff and volunteers • board succession strategies • education of members about governance of housing co-ops • Applies to all housing providers

    14. Questions • What are the key considerations in the development and implementation of the housing provider plans? • What resources are available to providers in the development and implementation of the housing provider plans? • What supports will housing providers need from the Region of Durham in the development and implementation of the housing provider plans?

    15. Housing Services Act Housing Provider Standards

    16. Housing Provider Standards • Service managers may set housing provider standards: (O. Reg. 367/11, s. 100) • Conflict of interest • Minimum number of Board meetings • Remuneration of directors • Property management • Leases • Multi-year financial plans • Applies to Part VII providers only

    17. Conflict of Interest • Directive 2002-03 Conflict of Interest • Prohibits conflict of interest for directors, officers, agents and employees of provider: • business or personal interests conflict with provider • gain, benefit, privilege due to decision of provider • Notice to Board of all potential conflicts • Records of conflicts including minutes • Resolution of conflicts and involvement of Housing Services

    18. Minimum Number of Board Meetings • Four per year under SHRA • No provincial standard under HSA

    19. Remuneration of Board Members • Under SHRA, remuneration prohibited except for reasonable expenses • Under SHRA, paid employment prohibited except if: • Resident and employed part-time or temporarily • Non-resident and non-supervisor / non-management and: • not more than one fifth of directors are employed • if less than 5 directors, only one is employed • No provincial standard under HSA

    20. Property Management • Projects must be well managed, in satisfactory state of repair and fit for occupancy • Only provincial standard under HSA – same as SHRA • Under SHRA, open and competitive hiring and procurement practices • Exceptions to open and competitive procurement practices if service manager agrees that such a process is not reasonable

    21. Property Management (cont’d) • Under SHRA, property management contracts: • Maximum 3 years • Renewable • Able to be terminated in 60 days or 30 days for breach of contract • Set out goods and services to be provided by PM service and amount to be paid provider • Non- assignable • Provider must be given notice if control of property management corporation changes

    22. Leases and Housing Agreements • Directive 2006-01 – Leases and Housing Agreements • Lease signed by all household members over age 18 or whose income is used to calculate RGI • Directive 2009-02 – Lease and Housing Agreement Provision Regarding Arrears • Provision in lease for sharing of arrears information with: • the Region of Durham • access centres under SHRA • SHSC • a credit information company

    23. Leases and Housing Agreements • SHRA standards required that the lease not exceed one year: • Set out market rate for unit • Set out RGI for one month / subject to change • Set out all other allowable charges for the unit • Restrict occupancy of unit • Require household notice if occupants change • Provider cannot refuse vacant possession if household agrees to payment schedule for unpaid charges at lease signing (e.g. last months rent)

    24. Leases and Housing Agreements • Provincial standards for leases under the HSA: • must have a lease before providing RGI • notice of market rent prior to receiving RGI • cannot refuse to enter into a lease if household agrees to a payment schedule for unpaid charges at lease signing

    25. Multi-year Financial Plans • No provincial standards under SHRA or HSA • Encouraged as a best practice

    26. Housing Services Act RGI, Waiting Lists, Regional Reviews and Special Needs Housing

    27. Housing Services Act Comes into force January 1, 2012 Replaces the Social Housing Reform Act Part V – Rent-geared-to-Income Assistance and Special Needs Housing Part X – Miscellaneous Review of Certain Decisions – sections 155 - 159 Dealing with Information – sections 144 - 147

    28. Housing Services Act - Regulations • Ontario Regulation 367/11 – General • Part VI – Rent-geared-to-Income Assistance and Special Needs Housing • Part XI – Miscellaneous • Ontario Regulation 298/01 – Determination of Geared-to-Income Rent Under Section 50 of the Act • Transition regulation

    29. Housing Providers RGI, Special Needs Housing and Review provisions apply to: DRLHC Part VII housing providers Rent supplement including OCHAP and CSHP Wider application - prohibition re: obtaining assistance, assistance improperly received, ERO, FSW Dealing with Information provisions apply to all transferred housing programs

    30. Service Agreements • Similar to SHRA, HSA gives service manager responsibility for RGI and wait list administration • Under Service Agreements with providers, the Region of Durham delegates authority under HSA for: • Determination of RGI eligibility • RGI calculations • Directives, memos, policy direction • New service manager rules required under HSA • RGI training

    31. RGI Eligibility – Provincial Rules At least one member of the household is over the age of 16 and able to live independently All members of the household must be a: Canadian citizen Permanent resident or applicant for permanent residence Refugee claimant No enforceable removal order

    32. RGI Eligibility – Provincial Rules • No arrears owing for rent, damage by current member of the household, or misrepresentation with respect to a previous social housing tenancy unless: • Repayment agreement • Reasonable efforts to obtain a repayment agreement • Extenuating circumstances • Special priority applicants are responsible for only half the arrears on a joint tenancy with the abuser

    33. RGI Eligibility – Provincial Rules Divestment of property remains a provincial rule Property suitable for year round occupancy must be divested within 180 days of move-in May extend time frame 12 month rule remains a provincial rule RGI households that pay equivalent to market rent for 12 consecutive months are no longer eligible for RGI

    34. RGI Eligibility – Provincial Rules • Service manager may require pursuit of income: • Ontario Works • Employment Insurance • Support payments • OAS/GIS/GAINS • Sponsorship income • Pursuit of CPP is no longer required • Guidelines to be developed

    35. RGI Eligibility – Local Rules Income limits New exclusion for income from the service manager toward the household's savings goals (asset building) Memo 03-01 Income Limits Modified to reflect changes in HILs

    36. RGI Eligibility – Local Rules • Asset limits • Clarifies that only one vehicle per member is excluded • New exclusions for all RESP funds and the value of asset building accounts • Directive 2002-17 Asset Limits • Ensure ALL RESPs are excluded under asset limits

    37. RGI Eligibility – Local Rules No provincial ineligibility for convictions for fraud or misrepresentation, but service manager can set a local rule Conviction must have occurred no more than two years before determination of RGI ineligibility, and be for an offence under: the SHRA or HSA Criminal Code in relation to receiving RGI DASH to exclude LTB decisions

    38. RGI Eligibility – Local Rules • Service manager can have a local rule regarding absence from unit • Maximum absence cannot be less than: • 60 consecutive days; and/or • 90 days in a year • Exceptions for absences due to medical reasons • Directive 2002-16 Absence from Unit

    39. RGI Eligibility – Local Rules • No provincial ineligibility regarding number of offers • Service manager can make a local rule • Minimum 3 offers • Circumstances where an offer is not counted • DASH to continue with current practice of three offers pending review

    40. Notification of Changes Household must report changes within 30 days (or longer per service manager) increased from 10 days (or longer) letters do not refer to 10 day time limit Directive 2002-04 (revised) Notification of Changes by Households Receiving RGI Assistance

    41. Failure to Provide Information Household must provide all information requested to determine RGI eligibility or RGI payable No minimum provincial requirement Provider to determine reasonable time frame for requested information Allow for extenuating circumstances

    42. Occupancy Standards Service manager must have a local rule for occupancy standards Local occupancy standards under HSA must make exceptions for: medical/disability reasons full time students living away from the household Directive 2003-02

    43. Occupancy Standards - Overhoused Moving overhoused households is no longer a provincial requirement, but service manager may have a local rule Local rule must ensure that overhoused households are not ineligible for RGI if: overhoused for less than a year following service manager process to transfer Directive 2006-03 Overhoused Households to be amended Review internal transfer lists

    44. Review of RGI Eligibility • RGI eligibility reviewed every 12 months • Similar to SHRA, information is not required if: • service manager believes household is unable to provide • living in alternative housing and unable to provide • special priority could be at risk of abuse if provided • Review annual review forms and letters to ensure they reference HSA and not SHRA

    45. RGI Waiting List DASH continues to manage RGI waiting list Region of Durham / DASH to develop system and rules per HSA: System must include a centralized waiting list of new RGI applicants and RGI transfer requests DASH determines priority on the waiting list Applicants on waiting list under SHRA must be maintained

    46. RGI Waiting List - Options • Option 1 • Select highest priority household • Current system • Option 2 • Select highest priority household that expressed interest in a vacancy • Vacancy information must be made available to all households eligible for unit

    47. RGI Wait List - Priorities • Provincial Priority • Special Priority for victims of violence • Chronological according to date of application or request for transfer • Local Priority • Directive 2003-01 In-situ Priority • Directive 2004-03 Critical Priority • Memo 02-02 Transition to New Local Priorities

    48. Internal Transfers • Providers may select an internal transfer for a vacant unit before proceeding to the RGI waiting list • Internal transfer requests – within the same provider – who are eligible for Special Priority have highest priority for the internal transfer • Provider determines priority of all other internal transfers requests

    49. In-Situ Applicants • Service manager must have a rule for in-situ applicants • Provider may select a current market tenant for a vacant unit with service manager approval • Priority applies only with respect to other in-situ applicants in same project • Directive 2003-01 In-situ Priority

    50. Transfers from Outside Service Area • Service manager may set a rule to allow for a transfer from outside service area • without regard to wait list or priority • if the applicant is RGI eligible in service area • if transfer is part of an exchange agreement with another service manager • Durham will not be setting this rule at this time