OHA administers approximately 2,400 Section 8 housing
choice vouchers. The housing choice voucher program is the federal
government’s major program for assisting very low-income families, the
elderly, and the disabled to afford decent, safe, and sanitary housing available
in the private market. Program participants are free to choose any housing that
meets the requirements of the program and is not limited to units located in
subsidized housing projects. Section
8 housing choice voucher program participants may move at the end of their
lease term to other locations within the jurisdiction of OHA or anywhere in the
United States where there is an agency operating a housing choice voucher
program. OHA strongly encourages
families to search for housing outside economically distressed neighborhoods.
In the housing choice voucher program, eligible families
generally are required to pay 30 % of their adjusted income towards gross rent
(owner rent and the amount of the OHA Utility Allowance for tenant-paid
utilities that are not included in the rent to the owner). OHA pays the
difference between the amount of the required tenant payment and the gross rent.
The amount of the subsidy paid by OHA is dependent upon
the Payment Standard adopted by OHA for each unit size (number of bedrooms), or
the gross rent of for the unit if less than the payment standard. If the gross
rent for a unit exceeds the Payment Standard, a Section 8 housing choice voucher
holder may choose to pay the higher rent. However, a Section 8 family moving
into a unit is not permitted to pay more than 40% of its adjusted income for
Regardless of the Payment Standard established for a
unit size, OHA must determine that the rent asked is “reasonable” given the
location, quality, size, unit type, age, amenities, services, maintenance and
utilities to be provided by the owner.
OHA also administers a 100-unit Section 8
Single-Room Occupancy (SRO) Moderate Rehabilitation Program for Homeless
individuals. In this project-based program, eligible individuals may only be
assisted while they reside in the single SRO project.