Housing

Jena Band of Choctaw Indians Housing Department

The Mission of the Jena Band of Choctaw Indians Housing Department is to manage and administer the Tribal Housing Program and provide adequate housing for eligible low-income Tribal Members by utilizing all available resources.

Objectives:

  • Inspections of Tribal low-income rental homes
  • Maintenance on Tribal owned homes
  • Oversee sewer systems (installments/replacements)
  • Assist/Place Tribal Members in affordable housing

Libby RogersLibby Rogers
lrogers@jenachoctaw.org

Housing Department
P.O. Box 14
Jena, LA 71342
(318) 992-0135
Email: info@jenachoctaw.org


The Tribe operates under guidelines as defined in NAHASDA regulations. We have included a brief history of NAHASDA.

HISTORY OF NAHASDA

The Native American Housing Assistance and Self-Determination Act (NAHASDA) was signed into law on October 26, 1996. NAHASDA:

  • Streamlines the process for providing housing assistance to Native Americans, and
  • Replaces several programs that previously provided housing assistance to Indian housing authorities (IHAs).

The strength of NAHASDA is that it gives tribes more responsibility and more flexibility. Tribes now have the flexibility to determine:

  • Who they serve,
  • What types of products and services they offer, and
  • How they will deliver programs and projects.

NAHASDA also:

  • Provides for an Indian Housing Block Grant (IHBG). Both the annual grant received by tribes and the program that directs the use of this grant are known as IHBG. IHBG. is a formula-driven program that provides funding to eligible tribes nationwide.
  • Makes the IHBG and other assistance directly available to Indian tribes rather than to IHAs. Tribes may run the program directly or may designate a tribally designated housing entity (TDHE) to administer it on their behalf.

In order to interpret and implement NAHASDA, regulations were developed by HUD and tribes nationwide through negotiated rulemaking.

  • The process of developing the regulations was mandated by Section 106(b) of the Statute.
  • The regulations were developed using a 58-member Negotiated Rulemaking Committee. This Committee included tribal members from across the country, as well as HUD staff.
  • This unusual way of writing regulations is significant because this was the first step in implementing the "self-determination" intention of NAHASDA.

The IHBG regulations:

  • Replace the U.S. Housing Act of 1937 (1937 Act) regulations at 24 CFR Part 950, and
  • Set forth the necessary policies and procedures for the administration of grants made to eligible recipients under the IHBG program.

Indian Housing Plan

The IHP is a planning document for the recipient that is required by HUD prior to awarding any IHBG funds to an eligible recipient. The IHP spells out how the recipient intends to use the funds it receives under the IHBG. 

The key components of the IHP includes:

  • The IHP consists of two main parts:  the Five-Year Plan and the One-Year Plan.
  • The Five-Year Plan contains the mission statement, long term goals and objectives, and the activity plan. The Five-Year Plan covers a fixed five-year period.
  • The One-Year Plan funnels the information in the Five-Year Plan into a plan of action for the use of that year's block grant allocation. In the One-Year Plan, the recipient will describe its existing housing stock, assess housing needs and determine how it will allocate resources.

Eligible Beneficiaries

It is important that receipients know who may be served with IHBG funds.

NAHASDA regulations at 24 CFR 1000.104 permit three general types of participants:

  • Low-income Indian families. Low-income families are defined as families whose income does not exceed 80 percent of the median income for the area.

The regulations allow tribes to serve members who are within their Indian area and the tribe itself defines this area.

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