From the Summer 2011 Tenant Talk Newsletter of the National Low Income Housing Coalition:
Years of constant prodding by public housing leaders in Charlottesville, Virginia recently paid off when both the City Council and the Housing Authority approved a Section 3 Plan. The purpose of Section 3 is to ensure that jobs and other economic opportunities created when HUD assists housing and community development projects go to low income people “to the greatest extent feasible.”
Charlottesville’s plan lays out the basic Section 3 requirements that the city, CRHA, and their contractors and subcontractors must follow when HUD dollars are spent.
To help achieve their goals, the city and CRHA will hire a Section 3 Coordinator to connect low income residents with contractors and subcontractors working on HUD-funded projects. The Section 3 Coordinator will help contractors and subcontractors understand their Section 3 obligations. The coordinator will also help them achieve their goals of hiring or training low income residents or subcontracting with Section 3 businesses. An advisory group including PHAR and key city officials will guide the Section 3 Coordinator.
Soon after Tom Perriello was sworn in as the U.S. Congressman representing the Charlottesville area in 2009, Ms. Johnson and Ms. Edwards convinced him of the value of Section 3. In June 2010, Congressman Perriello hosted a day-long Section 3 workshop with HUD Assistant Secretary John Trasviña. This added to a growing awareness that more needed to be done. When she was on the CRHA Board, Ms. Edwards introduced the idea of a Section 3 Plan. Charlottesville's Mayor, Dave Norris, is also on the CRHA Board and continued promoting the plan after Ms. Edward’s term ended. With the constant promotion of the plan, the Section 3 Plan was approved by both the city and CRHA in June 2011.
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