April 26, 2012
Salish Kootenai Housing Authority receives HUD Housing award
By Lailani Upham
SKHA Director Jason Adams holds certificate from the United Native American Housing Association for the award given to SKHA organization this month for “Innovative Administration and Implementation of Programs.” (Lailani Upham photo)
PABLO — Salish Kootenai Housing Authority received the “Innovative Administration and Implementation of Programs” Regional Housing Urban Development award because of the joint efforts from all the staff members at SKHA, according to SKHA Housing Director Jason Adams.
SKHA was recognized and commended for the exemplary planning, administration, and implementation of all Indian Housing Block Grant, American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, and Indian Community Development Block Grant programs.
Adams stated the SKHA team has been “shovel-ready” in planning and implementation with ARRA funds over the past couple years to add 16 units. Through the building projects funds were used wisely and additional units were constructed, said Adams. “It’s all a staff effort for all the programs – showing exemplary efforts,” Adams stated.
Adams says HUD was pleased with the pioneering of a tribal Emergency Transitional-Living quarters that has been in existence for number of years on the Flathead Reservation. “We are the only tribe in the region with one,” Adams added.
The Transitional-Living unit opened its doors in 2000 with 14 units. With the Indian Housing Block Grant SKHA was able to add on 4 more units just recently. The units are 2-bedroom apartments where families may remain rent-free for up to six months. Through the program families are assisted in “getting on their feet” and finding a permanent dwelling, according to Adams.
The HUD region that SKHA falls under covers 6 states, Wyoming, Montana, Colorado, Utah, North Dakota, South Dakota and 32 tribes.
The award states that SKHA applied for 2 competitive ARRA grants and was awarded and has continuously been timely in its reporting requirements and successful in completing projected while adhering to the regulations.
The Northern Plains Office of Native American Programs and the United Native American Housing Association states that SKHA is an example of successful administration of working towards “the betterment of its community.”
Two years ago HUD officials made a monitoring visit to SKHA premises and raved when they seen SKHA and CSKT employees cleaning up the adopted two-mile stretch along Highway 93 in Pablo from CSKT center of operations to SKHA headquarters, Adams said. “They were really impressed seeing everyone cleaning up, and with that they added it in the award.”