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09-14-1999SpecialMtg I MINUTES OF SPECIAL MEETING OF 2 THE HOUSING AUTHORITY OF THE CITY 3 OF LAS CRUCES BOARD HELD ON 4 SEPTEMBER 14, 1999 5 6 The Board Meeting of the Housing Authority of the City of Las Cruces was held at 10:10 a.m. 7 at 926 S. San Pedro, in the City of Las Cruces, state of New Mexico. 8 9 1. Roll Call 10 11 The meeting was called to order by Frances F. Williams, Chair 12 13 MEETING: James M. Kadlecek, Vice Chair 14 Trevas Y. Ryan, Commissioner 15 Rita J. Abitz, Commissioner 16 Sylvia I. Chacon, Commissioner 17 18 OTHERS: J. L. Wingard, Executive Director 19 Caroline Velarde, Executive Secretary 20 Andrew T. Holguin, Deputy Director 21 Sharon Hansen, Accountant 22 Al Vizcarra, Com. Act. Coordinator 23 24 2. Work Session 25 26 Grant applications and expenditures 27 28 Mr. Wingard referred to the monthly financial report that provides essential information on the 29 grants such as the Public Housing Drug Elimination, Multifamily Drug Elimination, and the 30 Comprehensive Grant Program. Four active grants are progressing well. Mr. Vizcarra told the 31 commissioners that he is waiting to hear whether the Community Activities Program (CAP)will 32 be awarded the 1999 drug elimination grant. He pointed out that there will be a 15% reduction 33 in funding. Mr. Wingard explained that future grants will be transformed into block grant 34 categories such as operational or capital improvements. 35 36 Commissioner Abitz asked if progress has been made. Mr. Holguin noted that vandalism has 37 decreased while school attendance has increased. Through the truancy policy, families can 38 be evicted for their children's non-attendance in school. The CAP program strives to work with 39 the families through a network series of agencies such as the Las Cruces Public Schools, 40 Families and Youth, Inc., the STAY Program, Job Corp and Southern New Mexico Legal Aid. It 41 was noted that the original intent of the program was to focus on parenting skills and provide 42 educational opportunities for adults. 43 44 Mr. Vizcarra briefly explained that in 1992, the CAP program was enlisting interest among the 45 high school students to apply for a collage scholarship offered by NAHRO (National 46 Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials). It was discovered that there would be 47 no students graduating that year. The Housing Authority had an approximate 76% school 48 dropout rate. 49 50 Since that time, the CAP program, and staff have made great strides to ensure that HACLC students complete their education. Thirteen seniors graduated this past spring. For those young people 16 and older, who decide not to complete high school, the program attempts to refer them to other sources previously mentioned. The CAP program has exposed its youth to -1- `W1I 1 various educational opportunities and recreational activities during its tenure. Mr. Wingard 2 explained that the Housing Authority would like to establish partnerships with other entities 3 such as the Boys and Girls Club and the Court Youth Center. The local club has a new 4 director named Grace Gonzales, who is progressive and caring. The Boys and Girls Club 5 offers a wide array of sports activities for both boys and girls. Court Youth Center could 6 provide drama classes, arts, and cultural events. Drug elimination funds can help with some 7 of these programs. Mr. Wingard would like the CAP staff to focus in other educational areas 8 beyond tutoring classes. 9 10 Commissioner Chacon asked if the funds can be used to build community centers. Mr. 11 Wingard replied that the money can be put to use to build improvements within an existing 12 unit. He explained that a couple of housing units were taken off the 'rent rolls" and converted 13 into community centers. Commissioner Ryan wanted to know if the youth was asked what 14 their wants and needs are when the Housing Authority applies for these grants. Mr. Wingard 15 explained that when the HACLC applies for comprehensive grant funding, the agency is 16 required to hold public meetings with its residents to determine what their needs and wants 17 are. Chair Williams asked if any comprehensive planning is done when preparing grants 18 applications. Mr. Wingard replied that the HACLC has not done any long term planning. 19 Welfare reform appears to be working because of the high turnover rate in unit vacancies 20 within the Authority's housing stock. Mr. Vizcarra mentioned that the grants come in two-year 21 increments which makes it difficult to have long term planning. Vice Chair Kadlecek is in favor 22 of the idea of block grants that would allow for planning the expending of funds. 23 24 As for the Comprehensive Grant Programs, Mr. Wingard briefly explained that HUD changes 25 the formulas annually. The HACLC is required to go through the public and application 26 process. CGP funds, which range from $360,000 to $405,000 annually, oversee physical 27 improvements of housing units and 20% of management improvements. The commissioners 28 feel that they need to have a more active role concerning the grants. They asked for a list of 29 eligible and ineligible activities to be included in the September board packets. 30 31 Wage comparability survey 32 33 Ms. Levey briefly explained that she sent out surveys to various housing authorities 34 comparable to the size in staff of the HACLC. These included places in New Mexico, Texas, 35 Arkansas, Arizona, and Nevada. She received a 46% response rate based on 13 housing 36 authorities. Ms. Levey prepared a spreadsheet for the commissioners to review the results of 37 the wage survey. Administratively, some positions are below the minimum rate compared to 38 their counterparts. In order to bring these positions to the minimum board approval will be 39 required as it will have a budgetary impact. 40 41 Ms. Levey noted that not all positions descriptions are parallel with the HACLC's. Some of the 42 respondents stated how long their employees have been in their positions to validate the 43 salaries listed on the surveys. Ms. Levey proposed to work up a 35% range within the 44 positions accelerates them to midpoint. The Board suggested that Ms. Levey prepare a list of 45 positions for proposed increases. They want to see the current salaries for these positions, 46 and the increase to bring them at minimum range. They also want to see steps to be 47 implemented bringing these positions to the maximum range. 48 49 50 3. Executive Session The Board of Commissioners had no need to go into close session. -2- 1 4. Other Business 2 3 Ms. Levey reported that HACLC resident, Paloma Reyna has been placed at Matrix Capital Bank for 4 employment opportunities through the economic development job-training program. 5 6 5. Adjournment. 7 8 Chair Williams adjourned the meeting at 11:40 a.m. 9 10 SEAL .: ';�,;.w+w.�,,y APPROVED BY, 11 ..0o'" Of THE C','' 12 13 �° r r ° 14 15 a NEW MEXICO ` 16 = .t_ 1061 rances F.Williams, Chairman 17 ���%••...... 18 �s. . 19 20 21 22 SUBMITTED BY, 23 24 25 ` 26 L 2 J. L. Wingar xecut a Dire or 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 -3- EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR: GENERAL OFFICES: J.L.Wingard 926 S.San Pedro St Housing Authority of the City of Las Cruces, New Mexico TELEPHONE(505)528-2002 FAX PHONE(505)526-8452 LAS CRUCES,NEW MEXICO 88001 September 22, 1999 Ms. Shirley Clark, City Clerk City Clerk's Office P.O. Box 20000 Las Cruces, NM 88004-9002 Dear Ms. Clark: Enclosed are copies of the approved board minutes for August 17 and September 14, 1999. Sincerely, Caroline J. Velarde Executive Secretary encis.