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Welcome to the Pinellas County Housing Authority

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Pinellas County Housing Authority Honors Fathers!

With Father’s Day approaching, the Pinellas County Housing Authority took a different approach to honoring fatherhood this year.  Residents (fathers and mothers) were recruited to attend a conference hosted by ReachUp, Inc.   The 2014 Annual Affirming Fatherhood Conference was themed “Scoring Goals for Fatherhood”. The conference “demonstrated the valuable role of fathers and fatherhood to our present and future generations” - ReachUp, Incorporated.

PCHA staff accompanied 15 interested fathers and mothers from our communities to attend the 3-day conference which focused on how to reverse the negative views of fatherhood.  A wonderful welcome reception set the tone for the entire conference. Guest speakers shared their stories and viewpoints on fatherhood. They also surveyed the attendees to find out why they chose to attend the conference. PCHA’s HCV participant, Julio Maldonado said, “I’m here because I want to be a better father to my 7 year-old son.”

The second day of the conference began with guest speakers and the topics covered included:

  • A historical overview on fatherhood,
  • The large system and institution view on fatherhood,
  • Legal aspects, and the
  • Involvement of the Father in programs.

Additionally, there was a segment dedicated to a panel discussion entitled “His Understanding of the Game”.  This panel consisted of father’s ranging from teens to older fathers who shared their experiences with their father’s, their view of fatherhood, their own trials and tribulations, and what they have done and continue to do to enhance their fatherhood/parenting skills. Their heartfelt stories were very captivating!  

PCHA’s public housing resident, Jacinta Arce, stated, “I really enjoyed hearing the stories of the guys on the fatherhood panel and how they opened up to share their experiences.”  Public Housing resident, Andrew Denson, said regarding the panel, “I enjoyed the conference and meeting the fathers. I’ve gained respect for others, and now realize it’s not just about me.”

The 2014 Affirming Fatherhood Conference was a great success! The residents of PCHA thoroughly enjoyed the 3-day conference. Public Housing resident, Azania Ali, said, “I walked away with so much information and received many new ideas on starting a new program assisting fathers.” The conference opened her eyes to the lack of programs in place that support fathers and their parenting.  

In addition to the conference, the PCHA also is planning to partner with the Resident Associations of Crystal Lakes Manor and Lakeside Terrace Apartments to host a Father’s Day event on June 14, 2014.  The event plans to honor and recognize Fathers and Grandfathers in the communities with a cook-out celebration. 

PCHA pledges to continue to support both the fathers and mothers of our communities; to encourage them to be active in the lives of their children. 

Pinellas County Housing Authority to Host Free Landlord Workshop for Rental Property Owners

Pinellas County Housing Authority will host a workshop to introduce prospective landlords to the Housing Choice Voucher rental assistance program on Thursday, June 12, 2014 at 3:00 pm.  Property owners with available rentals in PCHAs area of operation for the program, which includes unincorporated Pinellas County and the following cities: Largo, Oldsmar, Tarpon Springs, Dunedin, Gulfport, Kenneth City, Belleair, Palm Harbor, Pinellas Park, Safety Harbor, and Seminole, who are interested in finding out more about the HCV program, are invited to attend. 

      Join us to learn:

  •        How participation in the program can benefit property owners
  •        Owner and tenant responsibilities
  •        Unit requirements
  •        How to participate

Special Note:  PCHA is also seeking owners of handicap accessible properties to participate in the HCV program.

The workshop will be held at the Pinellas County Housing Authority’s central office which is located at 11479 Ulmerton Road, Largo, FL  33778.  Please RSVP by calling (727) 443-7684, ext 3124.

For additional information on this workshop, as well as on other workshop opportunities that PCHA offers, please visit our website at


PCHA’s New Pinellas Heights Community Receives National Green Building Standard SILVER Award!

We are very excited to announce that Pinellas County Housing Authority’s new Pinellas Heights senior community has received the National Green Building Standard SILVER Award!  

The NGBS certification provides independent, third-party verification that an apartment building is designed and built to achieve high performance in six key areas: Site Design, Resource Efficiency, Water Efficiency, Energy Efficiency, Indoor Environmental Quality, and Building Operation & Maintenance.  To learn more about the National Green Building Standard Certification and its process, please visit:

“This accomplishment is one more step taken toward meeting PCHA’s strategic goal of implementing green initiatives,” said Debbie Johnson, PCHA’s executive director.  Accreditation is a direct result of the hard work and dedication of our developer partner, Norstar Development USA, LP. 

Congratulations to all PCHA and Pinellas Heights partners on successfully completing a beautiful, energy-efficient, and sustainable housing community for low-income seniors!





Approximately 200 attended the Pinellas County Housing Authority’s Ribbon Cutting and Grand Opening Celebration recently for the beautiful new Pinellas Heights senior apartments in Largo.  In addition to all of the partners that made Pinellas Heights possible, other attendees and participants in the ribbon cutting included Senator Latvala, representatives from Congressman Jolly’s Office and State Representative Larry Ahern’s office, Largo Mayor Pat Gerard, HUD Region IV Administrator Ed Jennings, and PCHA board members Joseph Triolo, Angela Rouson, and Alan Swartz.   Jennings praised the efforts of a well-run housing authority that spends public funds wisely with the objective of creating community. Many of the speakers heralded the organization’s efficiency and called Pinellas Heights “a shining example of how private-public partnerships work.”


Pinellas Heights is the result of public-private partnerships providing mixed-financing for 153 one and two bedroom units. The new property has income-based rents for low-income seniors ages 62 and older.  Each unit has Energy Star appliances, emergency assistance pull cords, and walk-in showers.  The entire community is accessible and the building has controlled access.  On-site amenities for active senior living include Angela’s Library, named for Vice Chair Rouson who named the new community, as well as touch-screen computers and internet access, arts and crafts and card rooms, fitness center, and TV lounges and laundry facilities on every floor. A large veranda overlooks the pond with views of the picnic gazebo, grilling area and shuffleboard court. 


The apartment community is pet friendly and is a 100% smoke-free building. The community was constructed to Florida Water Star requirements and National Green Building Standards.  Florida-friendly landscape completes the beautiful exterior of the building.  The community is professionally managed by Norstar Accolade Property Management.


Norstar Development USA, LLP and PCHA co-developed Pinellas Heights.  “This development is the culmination of a lot of effort made easier by the strength of our partnership with the Pinellas County Housing Authority and the commitment of the many professionals involved.  Everyone involved should be proud of the results.  I know we are” said Richard Higgins, President of Norstar Development USA, LP.


The exceptional community was designed by Bessolo Design Group, Inc. and constructed by Brooks & Freund.  Funding for the construction of Pinellas Heights was made possible by:


           U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

           Housing Finance Authority of Pinellas County

           Federal Home Loan Bank of Atlanta

           Pinellas County Community Development

           City of Largo

           Norstar Development USA, LLP

           RBC Capital Markets

           JP Morgan Chase

           Pinellas County Housing Authority


“Thank you first to PCHA’s board members for their vision and their steadfast commitment to the agency’s mission of providing housing for those in need” said Debbie Johnson, PCHA’s executive director.  “We couldn’t have selected a better partner than we have in the Norstar team.  From the developer, Norstar Development USA and the architect, Bessolo Design Group, to the builder, Brooks and Freund, the Norstar team was outstanding to work with and provided a superior product, an extraordinary community for low-income seniors” Johnson said.


Johnson continued by saying “We’re also tremendously grateful for the support of all of our Pinellas Heights partners and very excited to introduce Pinellas Heights to the community.  These new apartment homes will ensure that 153 low-income seniors have a safe home that is affordable and the City of Largo and Pinellas County will have a safe, beautiful, affordable rental community for many years to come.”

The Pinellas County Housing Authority is a HUD designated High Performing Agency and was named the Florida Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials 2012 Housing Authority of the Year. As the largest housing authority in Pinellas County, PCHA owns and operates over 1000 units of non-subsidized affordable rentals, in addition to Federally subsidized rentals and rental subsidies, providing housing opportunities for over 8,000 county individuals. PCHA’s focus is on providing affordable housing through the development, ownership, and management of properties, and administration of rental assistance programs. For more information about PCHA, visit

Norstar Development USA, LP has been involved as lead developer in more than twenty (20) separate mixed-finance/mixed-income public housing authority transactions. Norstar’s first Florida project (in partnership with the Punta Gorda Housing Authority), Gulf Breeze Apartments, was recognized as the National Winner of the Charles L. Edson award for public housing revitalization by the Affordable Housing Tax Credit Coalition as well as being the featured project in the November 2008 issue of Novogradac’s “Journal of Tax Credit Housing”. Norstar has completed or is in the process of developing or constructing over 2,300 mixed-finance multifamily and senior units and has over 1200 more units in various stages of construction and development with housing authorities in New York, Michigan, Florida and Alabama.


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