Renters Stalled By Bureaucratic Red Tape
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
May 10, 2004
PORT CLINTON, OHIO--The apartments are ready. So are the renters.
But the rooms at the Rose Acre Manor housing complex are still empty -- six months after it was completed and dedicated.
What's the hold-up?
That's according to Ned Neuhausel, executive director of Ottawa Residential Services, the agency that owns and operates the 10-unit development designed to serve tenants with cerebral palsy, epilepsy, along with vision, hearing and other disabilities.
The site's construction was funded through $1.2 million in grants and local housing program money specifically for low-income households. The tenant list includes households who receive housing assistance from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.
The first tenants were expected to move into the 4-unit building and the 6-unit building at the first of the year, the News Herald reported.
Neuhausel said ORS was ready to process applications from the waiting list months ago. But the computer software HUD provided the agency for processing the applications required a verification number from the buildings' occupancy contract.
ORS couldn't process any of the tenants, because HUD's Cleveland office had not issued an occupancy contract.
"I was calling and calling and calling," Neuhausel said. Still the federal office waited months before it released the contract.
HUD finally issued the contract, allowing ORS to begin interviewing tenants from the waiting list last week.
Neuhausel said that after background checks are completed, people might be able to start moving in by the end of this month.