Stark Metropolitan Housing Authority has administered the Section 8 Rental
assistance Program since 1975. The Section 8 program is funded by the United
States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The program, which
subsidizes rent for units in the private market, is designed to help families
afford decent, safe, and sanitary housing. SMHA operates a Section 8 Housing
Program which provides assistance to over 1400 low-income families in the local
housing community. Funds are used to maintain housing in neighborhoods
throughout the county, support the local tax base, and cover the many expenses
associated with the business of housing. Section 8 housing is located in more
than 90% of Stark County census tracts.
SMHA's Section 8 Department administers several types of rental assistance:
Housing Choice Voucher Program, Moderate Rehabilitation, and Special Programs
for homeless and disabled families.
The Housing Choice Voucher Program provides renters with rent
vouchers that can be used across the county. In this program, there is no
ceiling rent requirement. However, rents must be comparable to comparable
unassisted units. The tenant pays the difference between the property rent and
the SMHA portion determined by a calculation using local Payment Standards.
The Moderate Rehabilitation Program features designated
buildings where the rental assistance is "tied" to the building which has been
renovated through this program. All rehab apartments in the building are leased
to Section 8 eligible families; the family rent is generally 30% of their
monthly adjusted income.
Shelter Plus Care is designed to link rental assistance to
support services for hard to serve homeless persons with disabilities and their
families. Rental assistance must be matched by supportive services that are
appropriate to the needs of the population served. The Shelter Plus Care
Program targets homeless persons who have serious mental illness; are disabled
by drug or alcohol abuse; or have AIDS or related diseases.
The HOME Program provides rental assistance and stabilizing
services to Stark County's chronically homeless individuals. Participants
receive assistance in acquiring and maintaining a stable residence while they
work on issues that contributed to their homelessness, including vocational and