As defined by gosection8.com, "The Housing Choice Vouchers Program (often referred to as "Section 8") is the federal government's primary program to provide housing for Americans who are living in poverty, as well as the elderly and disabled. It provides qualifying families with assistance in paying the monthly rental fee for homes and apartments that are located anywhere, not just in subsidized housing projects. In every major market in the country it is administered locally by municipal public housing agencies, which certify the tenants and residences for participation in the program."
Further, "The 'Section 8' Housing Choice Vouchers Program offers affordable housing choices for very low-income households by allowing families to select from privately owned residences that are being made available for rent by their owner. Local municipal public housing authorities (PHA) generally pay the landlord the difference between 30 percent of household income and the PHA-determined payment standard, which is approximately 80 to 100 percent of the fair market rent (FMR)."
"For landlords and their units to participate in the program, the rent must be reasonable. The tenants may choose a home with a higher rent than the FMR, in which case they would pay the landlord the difference themselves, or they may choose a lower cost rental and keep the difference."
This Section 8 waiting list launched on January 2, 2018, and will be open for the entire month of January. "Information about the Housing Choice Vouchers Program, including eligibility requirements for both tenants and landlords' residences, can be found from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development."
All applicants will have to meet the HUD income and eligibility requirements, and pre-applications will be accepted online only during January. "The wait list is not on a first-come, first-served basis, and all pre-applicants will have an equal opportunity of being selected." Only one pre-application per family will be allowed and paper applications will not be distributed nor accepted.
According to Assemblyman Fred Thiele
(I, D, WF-Sag Harbor) who has been instrumental in the formation of the program, along with the allocation in the state budget which has released $2.5 billion to address the homelessness issue across the state, Thiele has previously stated, "The Assembly
is committed to funding services and programs that help ensure all New Yorkers have a place to call home."
The budget provides $2.5 billion for affordable housing and is currently allocated as follows:
• $1 billion for supportive housing to construct 6,000 or more units statewide, including $50 million in operating aid;
• $472 million for the Multifamily New Construction Program;
• $150 million for the Middle-Income Housing Program;
• $146 million for the Multifamily Preservation Program;
• $125 million for public housing authorities outside New York City
• $125 million for senior housing;
• $45 million for the Rural and Urban Community Investment Fund Program;
• $41 million for home ownership programs;
• $13 million for the Manufactured Homes Program; and
• $10 million for the Main Street Program, which helps fund preservation efforts in historic neighborhoods.
The budget also increases funds for Naturally Occurring Retirement Communities (NORCs) and Neighborhood Naturally Occurring Retirement Communities (NNORCs).
Additionally, the Town of East Hampton has an existing policy in place to "Provide reasonable accommodations to those persons with disabilities so that they can participate equally in its housing programs."
For more information go to ehamptonny.gov
; or www.waitlistcheck.com
Eileen Casey spent many years working in the television and music industries in New York City on the "ABC In Concert" weekly series, as well as several prime time network and cable television specials. An award-winning journalist, editor, and artist, and former Editor-in-Chief of Hamptons.com, she enjoys staying warm in Charleston and cool in the Hamptons.