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Planting seeds to enhance neighborhood development

A community garden provides common ground for people of any age to share their knowledge, passion, and curiosity . . .  and because gardening is a universal language, there are no limits to who can be involved.  

On March 24th, a ribbon cutting ceremony was held for the Rainbow Village community garden.  The garden, soon to be planted with a variety of vegetable plants and seeds, will be a catalyst for bringing the community, both young and old, together to share in the positive experiences and education that gardening can bring and by encouraging healthy eating.  The Greater Ridgecrest Area Youth Development Initiative (GRAYDI) team will coordinate resident involvement, planting and harvesting.  “This is a wonderful opportunity for residents in the community to work together to harvest healthy foods and to teach their children the art of gardening.  I look forward to coming back to see the garden a few months from now” said Angela Rouson, Vice-Chair of PCHA’s Board of Commissioners.  


Partnership Preserves HUD-Assisted Affordable Housing in Pinellas County

Too many Pinellas County residents are losing their homes due to unemployment and foreclosure. The percentage of families falling into homelessness is increasing due to the shortage of affordable housing for low-income families. There is hope for forty-eight (48) families living in a distressed and failing apartment complex in Clearwater, Florida.  These very-low income residents will be able to remain in their homes due to a combined effort of the resident families, HUD, the Pinellas County Housing Authority (PCHA), the Pinellas County Housing Finance Agency (HFA), Gulfcoast Legal Services and Carlton Fields, P.A.

Norton Apartments, an aging forty-eight (48) unit HUD-subsidized multifamily community has been purchased out of Chapter 11 bankruptcy by the Pinellas County Housing Authority. The purchase was made possible by the use of federal Neighborhood Stabilization funds provided by the Pinellas County HFA.  The aging Norton property, constructed in 1982 for the purpose of providing affordable housing to very low income families, had fallen into disrepair and had recently failed three consecutive HUD inspections.    HUD was in the process of moving to abate the rent subsidy and terminate the project-based housing assistance contract due to the condition and management of the property.  

HUD’s Regional Administrator for the Atlanta Region Edward L. Jennings, Jr. said, “We are excited about this new partnership for the preservation of affordable housing units in the great State of Florida. This investment in “Norton Homes” will ensure that Pinellas County residents will have access to safe, secure affordable housing for decades to come. The project will also create good paying construction jobs to help stimulate the Bay area’s economy.”


PCHA Honored as Finalist for Tampa Bay's Best Places to Work in 2011

The Tampa Bay Business Journal (TBBJ) announced that PCHA is a finalist for Tampa Bay’s Best Places to Work in 2011.  PCHA employees were each asked to anonymously answer a questionnaire directly to TBBJ.  According to the Tampa Bay Business Journal, the employee survey measured 10 key engagement categories focusing on items including team effectiveness, trust in senior leaders, feeling valued, manager effectiveness, compensation and benefits.


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