Friday, August 29, 2008

Housing guidelines unanimously adopted

Blaine County Housing Authority codifies procedures

Express Staff Writer

New, more "user-friendly" county-wide housing guidelines are now on the books.

By unanimous approval Wednesday, Aug. 27, the Blaine County Housing Authority adopted the new regulations, which have been in the works for more than six months.

"I hope that although this pile looks very thick, the guidelines really have been streamlined," said housing authority Chairwoman Susan Passovoy.

Passovoy also gave a public pat on the back to Commissioner John Flattery, whose "blood, sweat and tears are in every single page of this document," she said.

The new housing guidelines establish rules and procedures on how stocks of deed-restricted community housing in Blaine County are managed, distributed and procured. They were most recently updated in 2005.

An introduction to the new 2008 guidelines says they are intended to assist municipal staff, the development community and the general public in understanding the priorities for and processes of governing community housing development and administration.

"These guidelines are intended to support the attainment of Blaine County Housing Authority goals and to supplement, rather than supersede, city and/or county land use and uniform building codes," the introduction states.

"There was a lot of criticism over the past couple of years on the guidelines, that they were difficult to understand, poorly organized and conflicting with some of the city's processes," said Blaine County Housing Authority Executive Director Jim Fackrell in an interview early this summer. "This is an attempt to update them, make them streamlined and more user friendly."

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