September 26, 2013
City News Service
The Minority Apartment Owners Association (MAOA) held its bi-monthly membership meeting on September 12. Members and friends welcomed guest speaker Mr. Peter Lynn, director of the Los Angeles Housing Authority for the City of Los Angeles. The Housing Authority staff membersjoining Mr. Lynn were Ms. Angela N. Adams, Assistant Director of Section 8 Service Delivery and Christine McKinney, Ombudsperson, Section 8 Administration. Mr. Lynn provided the standing room crowd an in-depth status of his department, and how the sequestration cuts in funding to the Section 8 program affects both tenants and property owners who participate in the program.
Mr. Lynn indicated his department was hit with a $35 million cut in his budget, and that they are spending down their $26 million in reserves going into 2014. As a result of these cuts Mr. Lynn stated that his department has stopped issuing new vouchers in that there is less money coming into the department. Mr. Lynn stated that starting July 2014 there will also be reductions in rents. He also stated that current vouchers coming up for renewal will see increases in tenant portions of the rent. Mr. Lynn indicated that there has been a shrinking in the program and his staff has been reduced by over a 100 positions over the last few years. On the positive side, members asked what they could do to help.
Mr. Lynn indicated one of the first things owners can do is to sign up for direct deposit, and that the department could save considerable funds by reducing the cost of postage and paper, which will reduce the amount of administrative cost. At the end of the presentation Ms. Adams and Ms. McKinney participated in a question and answer period.
Rounding out the program was Mr. Regional Cox of American Cash Recovery Systems (ACRS). Mr. Cox presented a hand out that he went over, which details the steps owners should take when first renting to an applicant in the event a loss incurs and when it becomes necessary to seek recovery. Mr. Cox walked attendees through the complete collection process. International Realty & Investments the parent company for the MAOA, has been using ACRS for many years and he has provided excellent service. Mr. Bennett, who is president of the MAOA and Broker/CEO of International Realty & Investments, provided a brief update on AB 1229, the most important landlord tenant bill in decades and what owners can do to help. Mr. Bennett encouraged attendees to be sure they keep their membership current and continue to respond to Red Alerts on important legislations.
Members signed a special birthday card for Ms. Ruth A. Hayles, executive director for the Association and general manager for International Realty & Investments, as she was celebrating her birthday.
For more information about the MAOA, International Realty & Investments and Urban Housing, Inc., visit their website at www.intlrealtyinvestment.com, or call our corporate office at 323.754.2818.