In April 2017, Massachusetts released new regulations for state public housing:
- New Yearly Plans
Housing authorities with state public housing must submit a yearly plan to the Department of Housing and Community Development. These plans will include repair plans and plans to modernize state public housing. Housing Authorities must consult Local Tenant Organizations and give all residents the chance to comment on plans. It is not clear when the planning process will begin, but Massachusetts Union of Public Housing Tenants will let you know. Housing Authorities with federal public housing already submit yearly plans.
- New Online Information
Housing authorities must have a website or webpage with information that includes:
- how to report maintenance problems,
- housing authority office hours, and
- names, phone numbers, and email addresses of senior staff.
- Access to Polices
Housing authorities must post in their central offices, on their websites or webpages, and if practical, in each development
all rules and policies of the housing authority and state regulations.
- 5-Year Recognition of Local Tenant Organizations
If you have a Local Tenant Organization that is recognized by your housing authority, you are now officially recognized for the 5 years, until April 2022. To stay recognized you must have at least 2 community meetings a year and follow the regulations. Massachusetts Union of Public Housing Tenants will provide more information about this.
- Funding for Local Tenant Organizations
Local Tenant Organizations (LTO) in state public housing get an increase in tenant participation funds of $6 per state public housing unit or $500, whichever is more. If there is more than 1 state-funded LTO the amount is pro-rated.
- Quarterly Meetings with Housing Authority
Your Executive Director (or a person who they designate) must meet with your LTO at least 4 times a year to discuss issues you care about such as modernization and what should be included in new yearly plans. You can meet more often.
- All Residents Have a Right to Participate
A housing authority must now give all residents an opportunity to participate in matters that impact them, whether or not there is a LTO.
- Who Can a LTO Represent
A LTO can represent residents in a particular development, city-wide, town-wide, neighborhood-wide or program-wide. It can represent tenants in state and federal public housing. And it can represent tenants living in state public housing units in mixed-income housing that is operated for a housing authority but not owned or managed by it.
- LTO Notices
LTOs must give residents it represents sufficient notice of its meetings at least 7 days before the event by posting it in prominent locations, such as development lobbies and community rooms. Notices delivered by flyers, mail or email are encouraged. If it is an emergency, 48 hours notice is ok.
Get the flyer.
For more information contact
Massachusetts Union of
Public Housing Tenants