Section 8 Housing Choice Vouchers / Single Room Occupancy (SRO)
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OHA administers approximately 2,400 Section 8 housing choice vouchers. The housing choice voucher program is the federal government's major program for assisting very low-income families, the elderly, and the disabled to afford decent, safe, and sanitary housing available in the private market. Program participants are free to choose any housing that meets the requirements of the program and is not limited to units located in subsidized housing projects. Section 8 housing choice voucher program participants may move at the end of their lease term to other locations within the jurisdiction of OHA or anywhere in the United States where there is an agency operating a housing choice voucher program. OHA strongly encourages families to search for housing outside economically distressed neighborhoods. In the housing choice voucher program, eligible families generally are required to pay 30 % of their adjusted income towards gross rent (owner rent and the amount of the OHA Utility Allowance for tenant-paid utilities that are not included in the rent to the owner). OHA pays the difference between the amount of the required tenant payment and the gross rent. The amount of the subsidy paid by OHA is dependent upon the Payment Standard adopted by OHA for each unit size (number of bedrooms), or the gross rent of for the unit if less than the payment standard. If the gross rent for a unit exceeds the Payment Standard, a Section 8 housing choice voucher holder may choose to pay the higher rent. However, a Section 8 family moving into a unit is not permitted to pay more than 40% of its adjusted income for rent. Regardless of the Payment Standard established for a unit size, OHA must determine that the rent asked is "reasonable" given the location, quality, size, unit type, age, amenities, services, maintenance and utilities to be provided by the owner. OHA also administers a 100-unit Section 8 Single-Room Occupancy (SRO) Moderate Rehabilitation Program for Homeless individuals. In this project-based program, eligible individuals may only be assisted while they reside in the single SRO project.