On Wednesday, the board of the Housing Authority of the City of Asheville approved a plan to overhaul current management rules, Carolina Public Press reports, though board Chair Brian Weinkler stressed that final approval of the overhaul will be voted on at a later date.
However, CPP reports that there was confusion about the issue, and Housing Authority CEO Gene Bell and COO David Nash say the vote gives Bell the power to approve it without another vote:
“The change, known as Rental Assistance Demonstration, has been a source of controversy for months,” CPP reports. “HACA officials and supporters of the plan have said it will offer a sound financial footing and the ability to better serve residents and maintain Asheville’s aging public housing projects.”
“During public comment, resident Nikita Smart said she worried about a RAD rule that would penalize residents if their 5- to 21-year-old children are not in school,” the article continues. “She noted that under state law and school district rules, anyone older than 16 can drop out of school without parental permission.
“‘Then that child might put my residence in jeopardy if he or she chooses not to go to school,’ Smart said. ‘How can that be?’
“Bell responded that ‘I thought this would have been well-accepted in the community—part of the disconnect with our residents is on education.’
“Smart continued, and said that while she does value education, it’s wrong to penalize a parent for a decision a child can legally make on their own.”
Click here for the full story by David Forbes from Carolina Public Press.