Welcome, everybody to the special joint meeting of the Longwood housing authority in the long run Housing Development Corporation. Olivia, do you want to do the call to order and I’ll do the guy just did the call the order I guess. Would you do the roll call please?
Yes. All right. We have
Elian Berger, Baxter Williams. Arlene zortman. Jean Christopher
Tim waters, Tom to be
Cameron grant. Lauren Kelly, Harold Domingues, Karen Roni
Nicole Blair, Steph Bergman, Kathy fetlar and Steven Morgan.
Thank you. The next item on our agenda is the public invited to be heard and as we were all just informed there was an initial notice that went out so that if anybody from the public wants to join, they were to contact a little I believe and let let her know that they wanted to speak. So, Olivia Is there anybody that has signed up to speak during the public invited to be heard session is not. Okay. So we will move on to item number three presentation of the bsh strategies report and I’ll turn this over to Harold.
Thanks. Good morning, everyone. I know we chatted with you on we were hoping to try to get this presentation in the special meeting is joint meeting earlier. We had a fair amount of work and conversations that we had to go through to get prepared for this. Just so you know what we’re doing. You all have received the report. We also have sent the report to the Housing Authority staff so they could review it and same fashion. When we actually finished this conversation with you all we’re going to go into To another zoom or WebEx meeting with the staff, they’re going to hear the same presentation. And we’re going to give them the opportunity to ask and the questions that they have based on what we’ve seen, we really felt that it was important that we do this back to back. There’s been a lot of change in the organization over the last few years, and we wanted to really be as very transparent with staff based on on this report and what we were seeing and have a really open and candid conversation. So in case there were questions about that, I just wanted to let you know that’s our plan.
Let me share my screen.
So I am going to
ask you all because my PowerPoint is doing something different these days. And do you see a screen with just the PowerPoint slide, or do you see the one with multiple PowerPoint slides?
Just the one PowerPoint
Perfect. I don’t know what it’s doing today, but it’s doing something different for me. As we start off in, you know, again, we wanted to go back and anchor ourselves in this vision that the lmha and Jillian worked on this with us, and the city staff that we put together in terms of where we really want to be as an organization. As we look to the future. This has really been that North Star for us in terms of how we approach things and what we try to do in keeping us grounded in what we all fundamentally have to do for our community. And why this is so important. You have heard conversations that we’ve had recently regarding issues with RVs. Affordable Housing is a significant issue for our community and it touches so many things. In a time like this, it’s also just a fundamental element as we look at economic development in providing affordable housing opportunities for the individuals that work in Longmont want to live in. When we, as we were going through this, you know, we talked to the board about here are various issues that we’re seeing in what we wanted to do in Kathy and Karen, I can’t see you. So if you need to jump in, just jump in, based on what the screen is doing. But if you’re turning your screen off, you can but just jump in, unmute and jump in. As we went through, we conducted our evaluation But we also realized we wanted to get an individual that had been more depth of knowledge in terms of housing authorities to come in and, and really analyze the current organization. So we use Betsy Martin’s Betsy was the executive director of the is it boulder housing partners. And she’s retired and she has a consulting firm. And so we really wanted to see what she had to say. And so what we asked for is, you know, analyze the current organization, do we have the optimal positions and jobs for the size of the portfolio programs we have, understand what we need in terms of support and training and then also suggest an ideal organization structure. What I will say in this and I think we were we were pleasantly surprised that when and As you read the report, we’re going to go over this at a high level. And you’re also obviously seeing more details on this. We were pleasantly surprised that we were all really lining up and seeing the same thing, she obviously provided a greater depth of knowledge and in certain components of this. And so, you know, that’s what we’re going to be going over. And then we’re also going to look at the financial condition, really look at the property operations and talk to us about what exists in terms of best practices and create a compliance tool. So there was a fair amount of work that Betsy had to go through. And what you will see in some of these recommendations coming forward, you’re actually going to see a follow up to some of the conversations that we had, as we started digging into various issues based on changes in personnel that we’ve all been made aware of that have occurred recently. I think we wanted to start off. Because as we have gone through this conversation, you know, when you go in and you dig in and you try to understand an organization, and you tend to get lost on what’s wrong. And as I’ve talked to Kathy Karen, and ellijay staff, and we’re really at the point in this transition where we understand what’s happened in the past, we know where we were. And we need we need to now start looking to the future, and really focus on what we need to rebuild. And there are some positives that are really important.
The assets are in good shape. There’s a strong balance sheet, and there’s reasonable performance in the portfolio and balance sheet in terms of the, you know, occupancy and really just the the revenue that we’re bringing in. You know, there’s Some more long term questions that we’ve all been made aware of. But as of today, in these categories were in good shape. That’s not what you will see in all housing authorities, I think is, excuse me, I’m having allergies too. As we’ve been having some conversations and talking to others, you know,
we’ve heard the
people that we’re talking to have worked with housing authorities that are in much worse shape. So, you know, we’re really pleased with this piece and it’s a strong building block for us as we move forward.
The biggest challenges that we have is organizational structure. This isn’t a surprise to any of us. staff capacity and the lack of tools to do their job. And you’ve heard us say this. It is as basic as not having The appropriate information technology systems to just carry out the most basic day to day operations. And we’ve talked in depth about this. The example that I use is are the finance staff not being not being able to open multiple spreadsheets and work. And when you have those foundational issues in play, it really starts minimizing what you can do. We all saw an audit, and we saw it once again, and Betsy review, just a lack of financial controls. I think what really came out in this was just a management analysis in terms of what we’re doing. And while we said we have we’re in a good financial position, we also have operations that are producing negative cash flow. So those are things that we have to get on top of very quickly. observations that create opportunity, roles, responsibilities and structure. We’ll get more in depth in this. But you know, you’ve heard me talk about organizational culture. And if you can establish the appropriate organization, a good organizational culture, any structure can work. But what you saw in the report is there’s just some foundational pieces that we need to tighten up to really identify who does what, when, and where training has been something that is, has been really we’ve heard from staff, we’ve heard it from this report, and there has been a lack of training. And and we need to really hit that for hard quickly, consistent processes and procedures in we’ll talk about this a little bit more. But consistency is one thing that I would say. Just generally we need to be really focused on. I’ve talked about it equipment, talks about culture. And then I think we also have to look at, you know, resident empowerment in this. One of the things that is a fundamental belief of mine is, you know, the more we work and this is as a city manager, the more we work with our community, and empower community, the more we’re actually able to do, because that brings a resource that’s not in play. And it’s everyone coming together and working toward a common purpose. As we go into the recommendations of what I would like to do is hit the sections. And then I’m going to open it up to questions for you all based on these sections, because typically, I like to get to the end of a presentation, but there’s so much depth in the report. We asked you all to try to jot your questions down so we can move through this. So, as I move through it, we will, we will stop. I will bring Kathy and Karen in and then we’ll kind of get into the questions that you have on these individual areas. You know, the thing that we saw when we were really starting to look at the finance side, and you can see this in embed C’s report is is that what we fundamentally had was a chief financial officer that was working in an area of really providing accounting services wasn’t operating in that area of the CFO. And we had a vacant accountant position that we really need to hire and bring in to to really start tightening up the
financial so that however we end up In the role of the CFO, they can really do what is required of that role. And it was interesting for us to talk to Betsy kintail was in the weeds in terms of really how he was approaching the financial side. And so that tied to the lack of financial controls. So instead of evaluate, you know, reviewing work, evaluating processes and procedures, he was just so focused on getting the daily work done that he was completely overwhelmed. You know, that leads to the second component of this is when you can fill the account position, and you can work with the chief financial officer or whoever’s working in that function. And I say that because there’s going to be a transition, really, establishing and monthly closing process. As you can see in the report, they had quarterly closing processes and that really does not lead to really understand Standing the financial performance on a monthly basis and staying on top of issues. So in many cases, by the time you see an issue, based on the closing process, you’re already two months behind what you need to do potentially. You’re going to see the next recommendation throughout the presentation. And its access to yardi expertise. I think the thing on yardi that we really found is that Robert E. rd is a very robust tool for the organization. But my gut says, at best, we’re using probably 25% of the power of yardie. And there really hasn’t been a lot of functional training in terms of how people can use yardie and what we can do, and we really need to get on top of this. The interesting piece and again, we weren’t involved in this when the organization made the decision to To move to yardie. But when you look at what yardies capabilities are, and you look at the size of the housing authority, you know, what we heard from Betsy is you wouldn’t necessarily use this system for the size of housing authority that we have. And when you look at our portfolio, we’ve made that decision. And I think we need to fully just engage in it. And in as part of you already, and you’re going to see this in some of the recommendations is really clean up in terms of how the, you know, the system was brought on, because there’s just when you bring a new financial system on, and we’ve just gone through this as an organization, what you want to do is really run parallel systems for a while. Because you want to reconcile the new system versus the old system to ensure that the date is correct. And so based on what we’re seeing, we really think that when it was implemented probably wasn’t implemented in that manner. And so there’s some questions about just the base information in it that we need to figure out. And you also saw that the next piece in the report is really the law tech, and other funder and investment training, what we were really seeing is that there wasn’t the expertise that we needed in terms of this. And so, you know, the recommendation in the report was we need to get the CFO in that training quickly. Obviously, we’re in a different position today. And so we’ll be working toward attaching this to the training function and really ensuring that we have that expertise in the organization. What you didn’t see in the report where we live to pretty quickly once we received it from Betsy was, as we started looking at the situation, understanding where we were with the chief financial officer position can taste departure of seeing the issues that we had with yardie. We very quickly came to the conclusion that we need to hire a financial firm that specializes in housing authorities to come in during this timeframe, and really reset our financials. It’ll be a cleanup phase, it’ll be establishing processes and procedures and really setting the stage for whatever step we take moving forward. We have a sound foundation and sound processes and procedures so somebody can actually be successful when they step into the role and as soon as much and for us, this is
just so you know, we have already started working with Betsy to get quotes from These firms because, you know, we talked about so what do we do with the chief financial officer, I’m just telling you that if we come in and hire that position, that person is going to have the same issues that they had. And we really need to stabilize the system. So whatever decision we make as a board, they can be successful.
So at this point, I’m gonna stop
and let you all ask questions. I can’t see the broad view based on the screen share. Are there any questions on the financial side there was much more detail in the report.
Harold, this is
Donna. I’m just curious if we’re if you all are convinced at this point. That yardi is the way to go.
Um, I think that’s why we need the yardie training and we need to bring these financial groups on to, to help stabilize it, because that’s part of the information we’ll get with them. You know, one of the things that you don’t want to lose the value that we’ve already paid to utilize you already. And that’s the challenge. So when you look at the financial issues that we’ve talked about, we don’t necessarily have the resources to bring any system on. So when that decision was made, we’re there and now it’s maximizing the use of care.
So, Carol, this is Kathy. I would also add that we have been working on I don’t want to say cleaning up that’s not necessarily the right word, but correcting how things have been entered into yardie and it Having the training for everybody will provide a lot more benefits to that and allow us to, to correct a lot of things. But I agree if we switch to another system, I don’t know that we have good information to put into that new system either. So I think we are much better off trying to correct and expand on the system that we have then trying to jump to another one at this point. And I think that was really the conclusion Betsy came to as well that while it’s more robust than we would have needed, we’re into it and we should continue with it.
I’m sorry, I was waiting by to my wife.
And I think the issue in this is to give you a sense of
how I mean, you all know how complicated these processes are. We went through what works Carlene arhats program or human resource and accounting technology system that was engaged when I joined the organization in 2012.
They had they were in the RFP process.
We’re in 2020. And we’re just now entering phase three. And we routinely will put holds on moving into different phases based on issues that we’ve gone through the beta testing on a parallel server. We think it’s working and we push it in, we find issues we will hold on moving forward on, on bringing certain sections and that system into operation to ensure that we’re on top of what we need. That’s an eight year process. It’s probably going to be a 12 year process in that transition. That’s the nature of diligence you have to go through when you convert these systems. And I just, I can’t see that that happened.
Yeah, it said a couple of comments in that. I mean, if we’re going to go after a CPA for the accounting position, I mean, that’s probably additional salary that we either didn’t have budget or are used to in that position.
And also, maybe even to make it more appealing, we might want to change that to like a comptroller position or something like that. So we could maybe find that type of position. But another thing is the are you hoping to hire the CFO before that account? as well? I get
those. Okay. Do you have any more questions? Sorry. No, that was it. Yep. Yeah. So you’re going to see some structural issues. options that we have in place in terms of how we look at that later in the presentation. And it’ll get to the answer on the CFO. Because there are some options as we look to the future. We also don’t want to necessarily move into some of these executive positions if there are options in how it interacts within the city and how that function. So we have to be careful with that. That is really also when these consulting firms that specialize in housing authorities actually have the skill sets embedded in them for somebody to serve in that function as as a CFO, or even an ed in certain places. So we’re going to be looking at utilizing that in terms of that consulting role in the existing structure of The housing authority you actually have both of those positions listed in the organizational chart. Yeah, the controller position and the CPA accounting position. What’s very clear is we just need an accountant to help process and close, not necessarily fall into that controller roll. And then you’re going to hear me talk about what’s the best approach later in the presentation in terms of getting someone with the skill sets that we need and want based on the condition that we’ve been in. And, frankly, perception of the organization. I’m actually going to touch on that I want to have a conversation with you all.
Any other questions?
Harold is the camera. Just a quick question. I’m looking at the recommendations with timing lists, and I’m Yeah, annoying. It can pay his
I think he’s transitioned out by this point, is that correct?
But one of them is that he leaves us with a plan. And they identified a number of items that was that pretty thoroughly done or how did how did he leave things and where are we at this stage?
I’ll let Kathy jump in. You’re gonna see another slide just on who we brought into this. So what I will say generally is as he was leaving, we had Troy, Gracie and Kendra and more kyndra in this case been a lot of time with him. We also brought dn Hanson who is over accounting for art for the city, and one of Dan’s accountants, Susie. And they also spent a lot of time we came to a pulling that together, getting dn access to payroll in So the first thing you want to do is access to the payroll system and how to do it because you have to pay for it. So they went through all of those processes. Kathy can speak to more detail in more detail on this, Kathy.
Well, you pretty well outlined it and we brought in Kendra, who’s the accountant for the disaster recovery program, the CDBG and Home program in my, my shop, Dan, who does I forget her title. She’s over everybody, all the accountants in the city’s financial department, and Susie, who is one of the accountants in that department, and they spent several hours with contae on Friday, I think it was and I told them a schedule it for an hour and I told them, do not let him out of the room until you have everything that you need. So it was like a four hour ish for you And then they had individual follow up meetings with him as well. I think
how I would summarize it is there was no written processes or procedures.
It was clear in his head it was not clear in any written format or any kind of processes or flow. It was very difficult to for them to get what they needed. And we can’t tell for sure whether that was because he didn’t want to share or if it was because he didn’t understand it thoroughly, or exactly what the situation was, but it was not the way you would want things to move forward, especially around your financials. So we are still doing a lot of scrambling around what and putting together schedules and processes and procedures. on how to move forward, I think we’ve captured most everything of every so often something will pop up. And we’ll go we need to add this, but
um, I guess I’ll stop there. It was very frustrating to tell you.
And I think the issue and you see this in the report, really talking about the training for the CFO position and what it needed. I know Kathy’s reached out to Lori and in many cases, she’s actually turned out to be more of a resource in terms of what we need, versus what we were able to get from, can take. And, and so, again, sort of reinforces we need to bring in that financial firm that lives in breezes and helps folks to continue putting in together because we got what we, you know, we went through ask the questions, but there’s still a question in our mind of what did he really know. And is it accurate? And that’s not a good place to be. And that would have been a question we would have had. Even if the position with Phil
Harrell, I think the only thing I would add is that you know,
staff have captured what they could from
above multiple spreadsheets.
So it’s done their best to capture everything. Questions question? What
please started logging.
Oh, Karen, you’re, you’re doing it again on zoom. So can staff or can Nicole work with You on connecting via your phone, every audio. I will do that.
Any other questions on the section? Now this Tim,
do you want questions just specifically on this section at this point just limited to that.
That would be great because I would like to just catch these and then we’ll go on accomplishing questions at the end. I’ll wait. Okay.
Cameron, are you seeing anyone else?
I think we’re clear right now. Okay.
Next section that we want to talk about is property management recommendations. So, and we’ll talk about this, this is definitely an area for us that we need to spend and we have been spending a lot of time and we’ve even made some adjustment. On our side in terms of how we’re, we’re working to manage that. But I think I mean, this is, again, the foundational issue of really needing to create a defined strategy for property management. And really, what are we trying? Where are we trying to go? How are we going? They’re creating standard operating procedures that are consistent amongst all the properties. So one of the things that we all know and that I’ve learned, since I’ve been doing this, and I’m part of the board, I think one of the challenges that we face is, and this is really a communication issue. But as as things are communicated, we hear well, someone can do this in this property, but we can’t do it in this property. We know that people know each other, you live in different properties, and they communicate about what can and can’t be done. And there’s just No consistency. And, and so what that ends up doing for all of us is then we start this what I call the spin cycle. And again, that is going to be a major component for us. We’re working on it now. And we’re starting to do this. But it’s creating a defined strategy. And I would also say, consistent process procedures, standard operating procedures, so that when you do have staff turnover, you don’t have people trying to figure it out. Again, here’s another theme, you kind of heard that in the financial side. We know that there’s a need for maintenance tech, and and this is sort of getting into a different conversation that we have in maintenance generally. But, you know, Dennis is really focused on performing many of the functions of a maintenance tech and he doesn’t have the ability to actually function as a maintenance supervisor. So we know that we need to do This. And then we need to create a team based environment. You all saw this in the report. And you’ll see this again of clarity of roles and responsibility who supervises whom. The one thing that’s very clear, and any property management section is that you have to the maintenance team and the property managers have to work as a team. But at the same time, they each have their roles and responsibilities. And that needs to be defined so that we can have optimal performance in our operating environment. This is the piece where you’ll see later on asset or community teams manager, we’ve actually made the decision internally to place Michelle wait in that capacity, and it’s tied to the previous points that I talked about is really creating the strategy defining the roles and responsibilities, creating the standard operating procedures that we need. So that we operate as an organization. And it’s consistent across the portfolio. In terms of how we operate. We can’t do this individually units, we have to do this together, and we have to be consistent. And then it gets as foundational as we need to create scheduled office hours. People need to know when they can expect the property managers to be there and when they’re open, to talk to them about the issues that they have, and then create that engagement. On top of this, some things that we’ve done, similar to creating scheduled office hours that we talked about is we also want to find schedules, how often and how many times a day in a week do you lock your property to understand what’s going on, see what’s happening in the property. in in in also use that as an opportunity to interact with the residents. And so those are the things that Michelle is developing right now on top.
You know, if we’re able to hire them to do these things,
this would put community managers roughly at 100 units per manager. I mean, we have some managers that are being stretched. I mean, they have multiple properties, and it becomes even harder for them to do some of these things. If we can make these adjustments, that’s about 100 units per manager in a campus approach. We add this to the support of the supervisor position and the maintenance staff and we really think we’re hitting what we’re seeing in terms of best practices in that arena. Again, more detail in the report. I’m going to stop here and answer any questions regarding Property Management. Harold. Yeah.
In the report, I did not see a recommendation for a separate Community Manager for Spring Creek and Fall River. And that you had mentioned you were planning to do. Are you still planning to do that? Because for properties, those four properties together are quite a load. And I, I kind of value the idea of having a separate Community Manager for Spring Creek and Fall River.
Um, Kathy, do you want to jump in and then I’ll jump in on that. Kathy and Karen?
Yeah, so that was not a this is Kathy. That was not a recommendation of Betsy. But we think that is the better way to go is to split those up so that no one has more than that. About 100 units. So our recommendation would be to have a campus approach, as indicated, and so prairie village would be a campus, Aspen Meadows would be a campus, downtown would be a campus sunset would be a campus, and then wh overcrossing would be one, so there’d be five. And the teams would be made up of the community managers for each one of those and the maintenance tech and assigned maintenance texts for those campuses as well. And then having a regional property manager that would be over all of those, we think would be a better structure. So that’s kind of the direction that we would be heading. Okay.
And it’s actually a good question gene to kind of, so everyone knows this. So you’re seeing the, the art come into this. Whether it’s this or not, Anything we do when we work with consultants? We take their recommendations, but then we also take our experience. And you’re going to see in this, there are things that we’re deferring on. And it really is about our experience. And then we’ll do like Kathy just did, we’ll jump in and say, here’s what the consultant said, here’s where we are. And here’s why we’re, we’re in a different space. Generally, we’re in the same space as a whole. It’s just the nuances and carry it out. Sure.
Any other questions? Cameron? Okay. Oh, wait, oh, hey, Richard.
I just kind of want to reinforce the ideas you have about communication living in one of the buildings. We don’t know what’s going on half the time.
There’s a lot of people that live in the building really need that older people. So I just reinforced that I think that’s very important. And, you know, that’s part of why we have Michelle, Michelle Wait, you know, Michelle’s overseeing services. And when you look at our portfolio today, senior, primarily senior properties. And you know, Michelle’s also bringing her staff into assist in this because one of the things that we learned in what we do on a daily basis is, how we communicate, and how often we communicate. We do it differently for different groups, even as an organization based on the situation we’re dealing with. And I think she’s bringing some great experience in this and so that was part of the decision. And then Steph is on this. So Steph Bergman staff is part of our public information team. She’s embedded in community services. And what you’re going to see in terms of that communication strategy is it really is going to be this holistic strategy that she’s going to be developing fires information sheets, and then we’re going to start pushing in, everyone’s gonna have the same thing.
Any other questions on property management?
See, Tim? Yeah, maybe it’s just a follow on to this.
Oh, dude, Carol, are you are you confident and maybe from our residence? We should we should get an answer to this question. How confident are we that we understand the forms that need that we need to utilize for effectively communicating with residents. I don’t know how many of our residents spend a lot of time online how many are dependent on you know, printed materials. Face to face communications. But it seems to me this is of all of the other issues, right systems issues, from finance, to accounting, to maintenance. At the end of the day, all of those are exacerbated because we’ve never had a good communication plan. And the last time we went through a transition, we chose not to go deep with residents on what they need. What would be the forums and you know, how do we message etc. And how do we listen well. So I guess I’m wondering, How confident are you and in What more should we hear from residents about these are the ways that we need to be most effective for us in terms of communication?
So Harold, do you want me to answer that?
I’ll let you jump in and then I’m going to give you know give a different I’m not a different but a something we’re learning in our world. Based in the condition the times that we’re in today, so go
Yeah. So, so yeah, so So Tim, you know, yes and yes and yes. So and to build on what Harold talked about, as far as Michelle waits role, initially, we did not envision Michelle stepping into a supervisory role over the community managers, but it became pretty clear with Michelle being the point person for resident complaints and, and just what Betsy had a report about, you know, the lack of procedures and consistency and people kind of manages doing the best that they could without grounding of consistent procedures. We decided a couple of weeks ago, go to Michelle into that into that role, to really try to provide more structure and consistency and and power This is really about what is the best way to communicate with residents. So you’re right. There are folks who have all different kinds of capabilities in terms of virtual access, no virtual access. And so part of the conversate part of what Michelle is doing with community managers is starting to identify what’s the best way to be able to communicate with residents in our various properties, and there’s not going to be a one size fits all. And so that’s the other thing that Michelle is working with community managers on is that we have to have multiple ways of communicating in interacting with our residents based on what works best for them. So, so yes, we don’t have it down yet, but it is, it is absolutely something that we are working to discover and to figure out our best communication strategies. And it’s really difficult right now, obviously, to meet in person, but that might mean that we have multiple smaller meetings. So we’re really looking at a variety ways to accomplish better interaction and communication with residents and our property.
So I’ll jump on that.
We’re gonna follow up on you said you’re going to follow up on that I don’t care and I appreciate that I, if there were two people I was going to pick out to be on the case it would be you and Michelle, I appreciate that you are, but I know I know how significant a need this is and how challenging
Yeah, and and you don’t have a better person than Michelle Wait, who understands that, you know, her life’s work over the last 40 years with the city has been in making sure that that our older adults have purpose and meaning in life and and thrive and so she is on it for sure.
So what I will say is communication is never perfect. Every emergency action that I’ve done gone through an after action review, I have yet to go through one where communication is not something that you list is something to improve on. So is it going to be perfect now? Am I confident that in what Michelle is hearing in terms of residential interactions and what she’s handling that we have probably the best sense that we’ve had in a long time on this? Yes. And what we’ve learned from COVID is we have to use every venue imaginable, whether that’s online, whether that’s Brant meeting with people, it really is going to be a multi venue, multi pronged communication approach. And I’m going to tell you, what are going to connect someone and the key is this has to be an evolution in terms of how are we learning and improving when we find those areas where we don’t connect with someone.
Let me just I’ll make one more comment and
then jeans. No guy just
on this on this show? Yeah, yeah, yeah. As you said,
You’ve never gone through an AR, or any kind of, you know, review without communication surfacing at some point and I get that I, I’m certain that will always be true. But that that I think makes the case for as we do this and we translate this report into objectives, with timelines and who’s responsible, etc. And so we can evaluate progress. There’s some baseline data just on this communication issue that that we could collect now and honestly, that’s a place where board members can be of some help, not like oh, Cheryl and her staff. If there was a way to collect some, you know, to go through a data collection, process it through interviews or survey, just to set the mark from where we are now to mark progress and we have a fairly stable audience, right or group of participants We could go back to, you know, here, we right we rated on a scale of an illiquid scale one to seven or one to five, here’s where we are now, here’s where we are six months from now, a year from now, 18 months from now, if we go back to the same group of residents to say what’s different six months or 12 months from now? technical work that’s that is work that we could help with, or, you know, if you wanted to involve board members in some, some way moving along with implementation and monitoring progress.
And I think that ties into what Karen talked to us about it, was it the last meeting, Karen, um, in the conversation work, where board members would partner with staff members, and we would have conversations, correct, Karen?
Right. Right. And I think that and I think, if I’m understanding Tim correctly to is, is as we work to improve the munication with the residents that that I think you’re suggesting is we take that opportunity to, to, to measure that to kind of set the benchmark or benchmark set what it is now, and then really continue to track that in terms of improvements,
you know, the metrics won’t be, you know, hard scientific measures, and they don’t need to be but but this communication is one of those areas where evaluation of progress is challenging if you if you’re not clear where you started, you have some consistent feedback from a consistent audience that’s been the recipient or a participant right in the whole communication effort. You know, so the methodology is not tricky. It’s just doing it. Right,
right. Yep. And I think that ties into the what she talked about in the work that we’re going to have to engage in with staff on this interview process. Jean.
Yeah, yeah. One of the things that I’m concerned about, and I appreciate you, highlighting Michelle waits role now, my concern is that a lot of our residents do not know, Michelle Mm hmm. And that creates its own little barrier. You can say the name and give a title, but they get hesitant to do anything. So there’s communicate, there are things there are complaints going on that she hasn’t heard. And I’m wondering if it’s just something to toss out. I’m not saying it has to be done. Would it be beneficial. I as staff has talked about small community meetings, you know, small groups at a time that Michelle be at those so that residents can get to know each other Another another side of the process.
Hair Loss a bad gene. Absolutely. And
and, and not only our will Michelle have a role but she has also assigned her we have now three senior resource specialists. And so we have assigned laser scans of those three specialists to various properties. So this is something that we we just we just are doing right now. And so, so absolutely, to have a way to introduce to the residents of the various properties and communities, you know, what our Senior Services staff roles are and how they complement what the community managers are doing. So that’s a great point. And I appreciate that. I appreciate that perspective.
And I’m glad to hear the progress. Thank you.
Yeah, great point. I think the other thing that we have to be cognizant of spaces and issue two and how we bring people together.
you know, the COVID world has just been interesting for all of us.
We had an issue where we were meeting and we had some anxiety because of people potentially being sick. And so to Karen’s point, yes, we also want to do it in a way that is safe for Michelle on her staff and the resident in the community managers would say for the residents. And I think that the details on that are things that we have to figure out because we all know what could happen and I frankly, want to make sure that’s completely safe. Because I could not live with myself if I put anyone in a position to where we had a bad outcome because we have some type of exposure
That’s the details we have to work through.
How can I add to that?
Some of the properties have computers that residents have access to.
Those could be put in a
in a position where people could one by one, be participate in a virtual content. I’m just tossing that out as a
good option. And I think that’s embedded in a technology system. How do we do a virtual meeting so those that can, will connect and those who can’t have the ability to go into group a room where there’s 10 or less generally socially distance where we have a screen and a projector tied to a computer, and they can participate? Those are all things we’ve got to work through. Okay. Okay.
Any more questions on This
Housing Choice Voucher Program.
They have to lease the vouchers up now.
It’s been interesting. I’ve had some some, some some good conversations with folks. And in what we have available and what we’ve heard and what that really looks like, and, you know, one of the things I had a conversation with Danny Baxter and there was some information I learned in that about well, there’s not more vouchers available. That’s not necessarily what we’re hearing. And, but the challenge is you have to utilize your vouchers, because if you don’t utilize them, they’ll be taken away. And the more you utilize your vouchers, the more opportunities you potentially have to get more vouchers. And at the end of the day, in terms of really how that program works, she saw what Betsy said. This is another example of we need to very quickly get training on the voucher program. We need to be able to use the HUD forecasting tool. We need an administrative assistant to help manage that world because there’s a lot of processing that’s going on in this. And once again, you see the rd consultant, and you see you already I didn’t put consultant training. Once again, you’re seeing yardie consultant in yardie training. This is foundational to providing housing for members of our community, but also shoring up the financial side of the organization because of the resources you get via the voucher program. And the more that we can move to a paperless program and to many of the points we’ve already talked About It probably will not be completely paperless for time to come because of people’s ability to work in an online platform. And I say this because my mom, she’s 88 I ever asked her to do this, she can’t do it. And I end up doing that remotely in a lot of occasions. But we really need to bring this together. But our foundational recommendation is and we’re getting quotes on this right now is bringing in a Housing Choice Voucher consultant that specializes in this. They can stabilize it quickly. lease the vouchers up as soon as we possibly can create the processes and procedures from a best practices standpoint. So that we can move and there are those consultants firms out there, there are a couple that are really good. What we’re also seeing is some of these also have the ability to bring in other expertise to look at the broader Housing Authority world. And I believe a couple of them if one of one of them for sure, if not a couple actually have it seasoned former Housing Authority director that may be able to come into play in this and work with us as we’re moving forward. It’s kind of like city managers, you’ll find, you know, when we tend to retire, we work for consultant wynncom in an interim stance to to work for cities, very similar function. And so for me, primary recommendation, something that we’re getting information on that we need to act on quickly. Similar to the financial side is really this HCV consultant getting that going because that has so many impacts the organization in so many different ways and impacts community because we’re getting people house.
Any questions on this one?
I’ve seen any
When we talk about the budget issues, the biggest thing consolidating back office functions it Human Resources purchasing risk management purchasing to their clients. Really consolidating that back office function, you’ve heard us talk about economies of scale. And and I think that would go a long way to also, you know, just from standard operating procedures, you know, when you look at it that I mean On a daily basis now. I mean, this happens anyway. But in the COVID world in so many cases, we point people to our human resource department, because they’re also from a staff perspective has to be a safe place where people can go and talk about and deal with their issues. That doesn’t exist. He from purchasing perspective, we know we need to tighten that up. You know, again to kind of Kinsey’s point in what we saw when we had the lightning strike. We have a risk management department and when we have those issues, they handle the insurance claims and really moves through it. kintail was doing that work. He was handling the insurance claim based on the lightning strike. And then again, that’s not a place you want to be in with that role. We and and Betsy both feel that we can expand and redefine the role of the executive system. And those are some of the things that we’re looking at now. Once again, you’re seeing, develop solid procedure manuals and increasing the training, hitting that standard operating procedure. And for me, that’s going to be foundational to the next point you decision making has been consolidated into the executive director role. And that’s not a good place for an organization because what that tends to do then, is slow down the response to issues that can be handled at at different levels within the organization. And this really is about managing within your level and empowering people to make decisions. But you can’t make that switch until you actually develop the solid procedures and have the training in place so that you position people to make the best decision that they possibly can. And so from admission administration perspective, you’re seeing this tie into some of the other audits that we’ve talked about.
Are there any burning questions on this section? Nope.
So what are we done today? You’ve heard us talk about today we are just talking about Michelle. That’s a fairly recent change that we’ve made, I believe it was two to three weeks ago when I had a meeting with the property managers and talked about this change, and talked about my expectations. And Michelle talked about her expectations. And they’re moving forward with this. We are receiving quotes on the two primary recommendations that we’re making today. As an organization, we’re working on what that consolidation on the back office piece will really look like So to give you a sense, and The city, our facility maintenance group is working to identify autom optimal structures and assess facilities. I’m going to talk a little bit right now about the amount of resources that we’re putting into this today. So Tracy, we’ve essentially repurpose Tracy from her CDBG role in She’s full time working with this on this. Cathy, three quarter time. Karen and I kind of talked about this. We we can’t really quantify the time that we spend. You know, we were actually laughing about this. In a normal basis, Kat and Karen and I base based on the city structure. We restructured a little bit with Sean’s departure where Karen’s direct report to me now, in this new talk once a week icily, it wouldn’t be extensive coming conversations. Karen and I are engaging daily. Kathy and I are engaging on multiple days and in email traffic. We can’t quantify it. We just know that our days have probably extended two to three hours. In terms of what we’re doing, Molly O’Donnell is now a quarter time on the AMA rehab, Kendra and Kathy’s department is about 40% of her time on FHA. Michelle has now moved into three quarters of her time. We talked about the enhancement and Susan McGinley from our accounting department. Cathy woods and her staff have now gone through every facility evaluated all of the ETS structure, they have put together a plan that we are beginning to work to set the stage to implement in terms of really bringing them into the city’s broader IT system. Again economies of scale are going to come into this purchasing equipment so folks can actually operate. So you heard me talk about where we have to have where we had a meeting and we had a bit of a Oh, no, it’s there is a covid mean literally, it would have been all the community managers, Michelle, Kathy, Karen, and myself. It could have potentially had to
quarantine. But the challenge in this is they don’t have the equipment to do what we’re doing now. And, and so Kathy and her group have put together the plan. Sandy cedar, who’s an assistant city manager is working with them on that and we’re setting the stage For that to be implemented, that will be part of an IGA that we need to bring both to the city council and the board in the near future to get that set up, and that’s important, because IGA is also going to be the trigger for us to utilize keres funding. To accomplish this, we need that in place. Valerie Dodd, and this is the first time you’re going to see this from next slide, is now engaged in this process. And they’re looking at helping us with the broader ETS system and connecting it into our facilities, but also looking at Internet access for all the facilities and really, when we talk about closing the digital divide, most people think it’s about younger populations. It’s not and how are we creating systems that are consistent across the portfolio where we have a single provider because We think we’re losing cost. We’re not as efficient and effective as we can be by having multiple providers. So Valerie has been working with both our ETF staff in Kathy and myself in terms of putting together some options where we can fully embrace next slide and have cost effective options for the people that live in our communities. It’s not in every facility. And, you know, right now, the one that is that we’re really focusing on is a suite, because that’s going to be a pretty significant process. We have to actually bore under the parking lot, do some other things. So Valerie’s now engaged, Jeff cedar and Cameron brush. They are our facility maintenance staff. They’re doing a couple of things they have gone through and they’ve looked at the facilities. They’re working with Joanie Marsh, who’s the assistant city manager in this area and really looking at What is potentially the best structure in terms of a broader integrated maintenance component, but they’re also engaging on the development and construction side, talking about what do we need to put into facilities when we rehab or construct that has longer lifespans so that we’re not building something and then very quickly getting into replacement cycle. The best example of this is as simple as the choice of the air conditioning units that we have, and whether or not they’re designed for ongoing use in a residential component versus probably being more in line with a hotel. And so they are working closely with Molly on the AMA rehab to really create more sustainability in terms of how we approach these projects and in addition Joni is also bringing in building inspection, fire inspection to do a wholesale review of all the properties in terms of pulling the plans together and getting us the information to understand what’s, what’s the current state of affairs? Is it consistent with the as built plans, so that when we have issues in the future, we’re not all scrambling, which then ties to the ETS world. And what we’re really looking at as we make the conversion is moving into more of a Microsoft team’s environment, which then connects to and I may get real techie on you. And so if I am, stopped me, it basically allows us to structure the files in the system in a way that is conducive and intuitive for anyone that steps in, so that they’re connected to the facilities and essentially there’s a hierarchy Where I will see everything. And then as you move down people will be more focus. But if I have a question about Spring Creek, I don’t go into a standard operating drive and try to search for I click on Spring Creek and I can find the file. So those are some things that we’re working on there.
So as you can see, we’ve got a lot of people that we’re dumping into this to the point of this really is the magnitude of what we’re dealing with. And this is an opportunity for me to also say to you all this isn’t I think a lot of times we talked about it was really sort of the the situation at the suites that may have been the impetus for this. I’m going to be very clear on this one. This this is not new. This was a decade if not decades, and what was happening. And and I’m not sure if you’ve if any of you have ever had sort of This level of detail in terms of what we’re dealing with. So, a lot of stat, we’re dumping a lot of stuff into it right now.
not seeing any.
So this is kind of what the structure looks like today. I’ve had some questions to go, how is it operating today?
And you can see
me in the blue and the executive leadership.
In the red categories you have Kathy and Karen Karen is really working on staff development, resident services, and then the cultural transformation and you can see the different staff that we’re, we’re bringing into play. And then on Kathy side, you have her in the operational side development Financial, and then the Housing Choice vouchers. And again, you’re seeing the staff that we have assigned to these different tasks. And so this is this is our working. Today, you have me you have them Kathy and Karen. And in this is the structure, it’s not unlike what you will see in our city structures, and how the reporting relationships work. As you looked at the report, Betsy gave us an ideal structure. And this is another example of where you’re going to see a deviation from from her recommendation based on what we’re seeing. So when we actually got into the conversation, and you saw in the report, she goes, here’s the ideal structure that we need to move into and when it stabilizes, we need to do this There was a key point in that conversation that came out is, you know, from a financial sustech from a sustainable financial position, that ideal structure was not going to work because you didn’t have the revenues necessary that you needed to support it in perpetuity. That was a significant issue. And and we had a lot of conversations about if you’re telling us this is ideal, but we know we can’t continue it in perpetuity. Why are we starting from that point? Because all we’re doing is is really setting the organization up for more change over time. And we need to stabilize right now and we need to set a course that is consistent, that doesn’t continue to have change in it. So we began developing some other structures based on the financial position and what we saw in the report.
And then abroad in a different competitive
in terms of how we look at structures and how we place it, and how we’re able to recruit and hire individuals. The reputation of the organization and where we currently stand becomes a significant issue. Because if that if we’re not in a good place from a reputation standpoint, it makes it much more difficult to get good people and the people that we want to fill these positions. And so, from that standpoint, we said, here’s where we are today. And you saw that structure.
we think we need to be for the next 12 to 18 months and and what you’re seeing in this is you still have me in the position As the executive director, you can see how we’ve carved out our assistant city manager of internal services that has all of the back office functions that we talked about. You have our external assistant city manager looking at facilities generally maintenance. Security, security is a big issue that we’ve heard from residents and that we’ve heard from the property managers. And then our custodial services, we really think there’s, again, a broader economy of scale we can we can take advantage of you can see Community Services still here but in a slightly different position. The one thing we know is we need to keep the connection so that we can really take advantage of the housing programs that exist within the city organization. And and what we’re doing from a housing authority perspective. So we can actually Summarizing impact to the to our community. You see the administrative coordinator. That’s that’s what we’re looking at in the redefined role, but then looking at a deputy director of the housing authority, then pulling finance, Housing Choice choice vouchers and regional property management into play. I will tell you on the finance side, we’re still having a lot of conversations when we talked about all the people involved in person I didn’t mention is Jim golden. So Jim is our CFO Jim is working Deanne and Suzy worked for Jim. Jim is engaged in the conversations with us. And so we’re still in the point of what’s the best fit there. We don’t know. We think this needs to be in place. Karen. Kathy, I would say 12 to 18 months in terms of the stabilization in this type of structure. We’re also not saying that this may be the The immediate next step, there very well may be hybrid form of a structure coming in based on the consultant and how they’re playing in this. So you heard me talk about one of the consulting firms may have somebody who is an experienced Housing Authority director, that person may slide into the box that we have for the deputy director position. So there is a chance you’re going to see another structure come forward between the one that we’re currently in and this one that we’re talking about. That then takes us down to the road where we really stabilize and hit many of the foundation, the issues related to foundation that we’ve been talking about in this report.
Then it gives us the ability to look at a couple of things.
Do we at that point, look at going into more of a traditional Housing Authority, authority structure in this form, based on where we are and where the financial set if we’re able to expand the Housing Choice Voucher Program and bring more revenue in, or do we look at a more integrated model within the city organization. And this is where you see a city, Lh, a chief financial officer, you again see the internal external components. You see our public information team coming in and providing those services. And then we’ll talk about the Community Services Director. And then you see that executive assistant position
and I’m going to slide to the next one.
So then when we break that Community Services Director piece out, you then see a Housing and Community Investment division manager where then we bring Monitoring and compliance both what we have to do on a CDBG process. And what we have within an Lh a process together. Grant funding and management brace green all of those like functions. You see inclusionary housing in development that really then starts fitting in with the work that we’re talking about the Lh DCs engaged in and really maximizing the resources, and then having a housing authority manager. Part of why I’m sitting in here, and why we have a couple of options is we also know as an organization, and I don’t know Paul is on this or not, but I know Tim’s heard this. We’re also in a state of move it we’re moving into a state of transition within our organization in terms of succession planning, and individuals that are eligible for retirement. So that’s going to come into play in the structure So we have two options. And and I wanted to set those two options because we may learn a lot of things. And once we stabilize, many of those questions may be answered over time, as we’re moving through this, within there some philosophical, philosophical questions that I think the Housing Authority Board, the Housing Development Corporation board are going to have to have in terms of and if there’s thoughts on this process, and we’d like to hear them as we move through the get through these next few slides are one more slide in terms of what that’s going to look like in the future? Those that work with me know that I tend to have a lot of I like to have a lot of options at my disposal because I think if you become too linear, you really boxed yourself into a corner. And what I mean by that is if you get a little in a habit B will happen and then C will happen. And then for some reason B won’t happen. And then you sort of get locked up again, which is I think what we’ve been in many ways in this over the last few years, I want to go, if a happens, I can go to B, C, or D. And then from B, C or D, I can go the E, F or G. And we’re continuing to move forward and we’re just adjusting based on the conditions that exist. The final piece that really comes into play in terms of Betsy is model and I think, again, this is a fundamental question that’s related to structure that we need to get into Is she really talked about the Lh a and Lh DC board model. In many ways, this structure was created based on how HUD was seeing the world and what they wanted in what they wanted to see. That has changed over time. And HUD is not in the same place that they were. And you’re seeing more housing authorities engage in the development side of the house. Is there an opportunity to lead leverage our other programs or inclusionary housing program or CD GPG funds? We do it now. But there’s a lot of processes and procedures that makes it inefficient. You know, Betsy said if, if there is, if you can integrate those more, we actually strengthen the financial position of both sides of the house. And so this is one where I would really like some feedback on it.
And then finally,
you’ve seen the schedule.
We’re not exactly on it. But we’ve had the operational IGA with the city. You’re seeing That’s really engage in the immediate needs that we’re continuing to uncover on a daily basis. And in in this report, you’re seeing what we need to do to deal with those immediate needs. What are the foundational issues we need to deal with? And what are some operational models that we can look at?
Questions, comments, thoughts? What did you like? What did you not like? Are we read trek?
Herald mystery? If so, the one thing I obviously focused on was the last slide. The Lh, Lh DC, and the recommendation that as I read it in that board, or in that report was the development step back, maybe for a year or whatever. DLA stabilized.
And as you said, there’s they may not necessarily need the hdc anymore, but for right now, it didn’t sound like
are we were necessary at this point. And I don’t disagree if they’re saying you know, before you go into development lhg needs to get stabilized in variety of ways.
yes, we need to stabilize.
Yeah, I think we also need to be careful not also miss opportunities for the potential development of properties. You know, as we talked about, element and some of the other things
you know, and this is the broader
community wide housing strategy that comes into play. I don’t think we think we, there’s things we need to do like the AMA project. I mean, those are ongoing operational components that can’t stop and we need to continue. I think we need to slow development down to stabilize. But I think we also don’t need to ignore opportunities that may hit us that we’re not aware of today, and potentially risk not gaining units in the community. I’m not saying I know of any, I’m just saying that’s how we have to be nimble in this process. But I think we do need a bit of a timeout, so that we can deal with these issues.
Not also talk about you know, other housing authorities were different velopment section was brought into the law as opposed to the board,
So we are just in terms of big picture, you laid out a lot of stuff here. And in your last slide is the one month which we’ve seen before the one month, three months, six months, one year, right. So each of those translate into decisions that need to be made within within that timeframe, right. Like the last slide where Debbie’s talking about now, I don’t know where At what point you feel a decision needs to be made about models, because once you start making those decisions, like you said, you’re going to close out some options. Right, right. When do we learned enough to know whether or not it’s the hybrid, right model or it’s a separate model, you know, of the two structures you’re talking about? If I if I you know, if I think when’s the right time for that, the bigger picture is, for me, at least in this report, we may lay out kind of the report lays out, you know, a menu, a list of things that need to be done at some point in time, and I don’t, what I’m about to say is gonna feel like adding, you know, a burden and more work. And the last thing you need, or Karen needs is more work later on you. But that said, every one of those sections tees up an objective, right with with times tied to the work that has to be done. So you have a description, and you have activities. It would be helpful to know what are we how are we going to measure success, right? What’s the smarter objective, right that lays into that? So we monitor our progress. I mean, that would be it would keep it would reduce ultimately questions for you or Karen or others. It would be really helpful for residents at some point. Take a form of that and make it you know, almost a bullet list like by these times here are the things we intend to have accomplished. But as a board to know, are we making the kind of progress on a timeline? That is, is kind of baked into or at least relevant to though that timeframe you you put up in the last slide. So I’m arguing that it would be helpful to take the report, translate the statement of condition into an objective could your activities are laid out, then who’s responsible and what kind of a timeline and at some point in time and in the true spirit of a smarter goal, we ought to be able to evaluate progress and know when we’re going to review? That’s part of what the board ought to do on some kind of a scheduled basis? It seems.
Yeah. So so that’s the next phase. I wanted to get this report to you all to hear what you have to say see if there were any significant anxiety points, any disagreement take that feedback and that’s exactly what we have to do. I’ll tell you what’s in my head. You saw the CPA. You saw the HCV position. I mean, there’s some positions that are very critical in terms of immediate peace. I underlined if I would have underlined bolded you know, but fireworks coming out of it, it’s the consultant piece. Because I really, in my mind tells me and this is what you will see in the future. But you ask the question, we get those consultants in. We bring the expertise in that we need. We stabilize, we work with them, we learned and that’s probably going to take, you know, six to nine months. And I think it’s at that point that we then start moving in some of these. Start looking at Some of those other options, which is why I said I think there’s another structural model, that’s going to be between where we’re currently in and where we go in terms of the deputy director. And, and it may be that once we bring him on, we may come to you long, okay? We know that the deputy director position is something we need, because that can fit into either scenario. That’s not going to be a decision that limits other decisions. And then what we’re thinking is ideally, based on the things that we talked about in terms of reputation, current status and these issues, it may actually be easier to find someone that’s up and coming in the world that is willing to jump in. Be honest with you, we’re still spending a lot of time going, at least in this interim phase. Did they become city employees or do they become Housing Authority employees based on everything I just said, and those are things we need to bring back to the board. That’s one
thing I saw Arlene, raise your hand.
I have a question for you. I noticed that long term, it was mentioned that you would be looking at pay raises in grade and at the market position. You’re looking at hiring people right now, such as the accountant and some of those, how are you going to be able to get qualified people and if you don’t have this in place?
So that’s what our HR departments working on right now, in terms of establishing the markets, and again, it gets into the question. If we hire those positions within the city structure, we have those markets established. And, and it’s really then looking at the market for that the Housing Authority of which they have already obtained that information for all the positions and in there putting that together, though. Yeah, we wouldn’t post it until we have it to make sure that the markets are appropriate. And again, that’s a standard operating procedure issue that we’ve seen. There’s not necessarily a pay plan that I would like to see in terms of how it’s built and defined and based on market. Okay.
Are we on the right track?
I think so.
Kathy, Karen, do you have any questions?
So I don’t have any questions, but
But I think it’s it’s.
So yeah, if there’s any questions about the information in the report, but and I think it’s really about one of the things is it’s really that slide 15. But where we really talk about, you know, this interim model that we we are looking at implementing, you know, so the next 12 or 18 months, as Harold mentioned, it might be not the thing we we really put into place in the next month or so or it might be but I think, you know, what we really, if you have any of the board’s have any comments, and certainly we can continue to talk about this at the next board meeting because we have board meetings next week. But in terms of that, of that, at least that that hybrid model that that we laid out, that Harold talked about, as far as moving forward, you know, in the relatively short term data Harold will remain in his role as executive board member, and to really be the, you know, the thank you the person that’s, that really serves as the ellijay Executive Director, and and to really look at how we’re going to contract out those back office support functions, that then that really, we can focus moving forward on very specific strengths and, and things that we need to do to strengthen I guess I should say, the financial operations, our Housing Choice Voucher Program, as well as doing the work that we need to do on regional property are basically the management of our properties. So, so in that scenario, we would be looking at bringing in someone that that serves as a as a deputy Housing Authority, director, if you will. So With Harold maintaining the Housing Authority director role, we believe that again, that gives us an opportunity to bring someone in that is that’s developing that’s on a track to move into, you know, an executive director role. And, and gives that person the opportunity to, to be mentored by Harold to get the support of the other city functions that we would be contracting with and as far as an IGA and to really strengthen those core operations of the the housing authority and set us on a path for stability in the next, you know, 12 or 18 months So, so, you know, if it’s, if the board has a direction, like stop, don’t even think about doing that. We think, you know, there should be some other path we should go down.
I think that would be really great to know.
You know your thoughts now or certainly we will have the opportunity to talk about this next Tuesday at the board meeting.
And if I can add to this, so when I talk about there may be one in the middle as we transition. So when you look at this chart, it may be, this becomes the financial consultant. This is the HCV consultant. And then we still are working in the world that we’re working in in terms of the property management and ongoing operations. And then this just isn’t filled immediately. But it very much is to Tim’s question. When I said, this makes sense, because it’ll work and no matter no matter what scenario we choose as the next step. We don’t box ourselves into a corner. So if there’s anxiety or heartburn about this, Karen, great point, I think it’d be really good to know now
I think Lauren had a comment and then him.
Yeah, I was just this hybrid model that I’m looking at. I mean, I don’t really see any other way, when you think about, we don’t have any capacity to hire an ed, our staff needs to be trained. Everything needs to be done from the ground up. When you talk about the continuation of operations, the transfer duties if the lmha wants to stay in the future, a separate entity from the city. I think it greatly increases our ability to do so if we have that training and guidance and mentorship from city officials. The you know, Deputy Director moving into a spot that can then become an executive director later. I think if if we don’t pursue that kind of hybrid model, I think we’re just gonna is going to end up in the same space, we were already.
That’s my thought.
I would say ditto to everything that Lauren just said, in, in, just from my perspective, whatever you do with structure it needs to be, it needs to be in service to mission, right? You can have, you know, structure structures can get in the way or not, at the end of the day it needs to be enable you to accomplish what you want to so whatever that means, terms of the interim, obviously we’re in, we’re not stable, so locking in a structure wouldn’t make sense as you continue to learn your way forward. And whatever that means in terms of governance, you know, who, you know, call that out immediately. I from from my perspective, whatever. Ultimately, the combination of these boards, turning one or both into an advisory board is that are you know, Policy Board for what you’re trying to get done. At the end of the day, all that has to be what best serves what we’re trying to get accomplished here. But given what we’ve learned, so
where are you? Okay? Yeah,
yeah, I want to I want to affirm what Lauren and Tim have said. I think the hybrid bottle is appropriate for right now. And I’ll be honest with you, I, I would look, I would not challenge going completely under the city and the board as the LA board hdc board becoming policy boards, rather than the kind of boards that we have been. So I’m ready for a shift. I’m ready for the change and I totally support right now. The hybrid model For sure.
I’ll say that I think the past how many years four or five years,
we as board members of both boards have
whether we like it or not learned a lot more about the inner operations of what it means to provide housing here in the city. Despite that, reading this report I won’t say I was I was shocked. I mean, I expected a lot of this but but see it in writing it, it can be a little bit overwhelming to look at this, this list maybe more than a little bit. And so I don’t know how we would manage this without this partnership with the city. So first, I just want to say thank you to Harold and Kathy and Karen and the whole team that’s that’s keeping this thing going because it’s it’s a big, big challenge. I think much bigger than we anticipated just four or five months ago when we started taking these steps, so I really do Harold, like your approach of the multiple options. I’m like Jean, no, if if the end result is pulling us into the city and becoming an advisory board, great. I don’t think we know yet. So that’s why I like this hybrid as the next step. And then let’s keep the playing field open and see what what the step after that looks like.
Yeah, this, sir. Oh, sure.
Okay, um, I, I have to comment when Cameron said he was not quite shocked at the report, but still it was a lot. Herald I was very excited to see you around. Report, having been on the ground floor, and then in that job, I was delighted to see all of the issues surfacing. And seeing some recommendations for them and seeing some progress made. So the report was no shock to me. It was a delight to read, to be very honest with
you. So thank you for getting it done. Well, Kathy, Karen and Betsy, I’m not gonna lie. I mean, there’s days when the three of us get together. I think we’re dear and you know, deer in the headlights kind of approach. Do you want to say this about ellijay staff? You know, city staff that have come into this, you know, we’ve all there’s an evolution that we’ve gone through. So when we were thinking about the back office pieces, I think everyone came into it. How can we again, I’m just going to be kidding. How can we keep the existing structure and not necessarily do certain things and it’s funny, every time we’ve had a group come in on the back office function, they start off at that point and they end up if it’s gonna work, this is how we need to do it. And you kind of see deer in the headlights in the point of where I’m optimistic.
Because this is invaluable
passion and commitment, and working within a culture that is built on teamwork. You can get those three things. It doesn’t matter what structure you’re in, because those will override everything. And as of yet, I haven’t had anyone go, I don’t want to do this. I can’t do this. It’s bury their head and they keep moving forward. And so that’s why I’m optimistic about where we’re going. Because no matter where we end up, we’re heading now in a direction and we have answers. But at the end of the day is going to be better for the community. And to Tim’s point, what’s our mission? Our mission is to provide housing for the most vulnerable in our community. And everything we do has to be about that and serve them to the best of our ability.
Jim, go ahead.
I just unrelated to the way I guess it is related to the big plan, but are there any personnel decisions that that are pending? This is not an executive session? I’m not asking for specifics, but anything we ought to anticipate just because we might hear about it from someone.
Got a question for the board. And Debbie and thaxter know this because I’ve asked, I’ve asked them this question. You heard me talk about reputation. I’m We’re not we haven’t made a decision. But as we’re moving into these interim positions, and you all have been living this for far longer than we have, do you think we would be better suited as we create some of these positions, hiring them through the city structure or hiring them through the existing structure of the housing authority? Okay,
Yeah, I’m trying.
we we’ve experienced several years now of having difficulty finding positions as the LA che, I would have no objection to hiring
those critical positions as city employees. I think it would, you would get a better response as city of Longmont.
And I would echo that. I think given the reputation and the resources issue, the city has better resources to find people, better support and also that better culture. And if we have a city employee who is transition whether this becomes part of the city or state standalone, which by the way, I’m also not opposed to it but I’m a little biased coming from the county. I think having that culture ingrained in a city employee would translate better if Lh was to stand alone. Then to have someone I hate to say like, you know, it’s toxic and be spoiled by something. But if any of that were to remain, I would hate for them to take on that culture instead.
Um, uh, yeah, I would, I would echo that. And then my only concern though, too would be if we are going to be hiring new employees and they’re going to be city employees, the equity for the current employees and making sure that either they’re all brought in or
it’s communicated to them what what the plan is, as well. Gregory, I mean, that’s kind of why I wanted this feedback because those are things we’ve got to think about.
Any other thoughts?
Yeah, I would,
I would like to request that you email. At least I would like to see the slides that you presented. I’d like to think about those before the next board meeting. If there is an opportunity, could you email those to
staff or you
give that to the board?
That the short answer is we can get it to the board. Absolutely. And,
you know, and Harold and Cameron, we are scheduled to hold our staff meeting at 1030. So we just have we, we might need to be working on the wrap up. Yeah. So We can set up for that next board not to stop the conversation and we’ll have a chance to do it again. You know, next Tuesday, but But yeah, we do we do need to be wrapping up
in the next few minutes.
Yeah. So I guess the the last question I have for you all, and you’ve answered this. I think we all went into this with not knowing what this is going to look like what we were going to get. Is this meeting your expectations? Are you seeing the progress you want to see? Are we doing what you all wanted us to do? As we were digging into this? In your mind when you said, here’s what I want to see in three months or two months? Is this what you wanted to see? Is it more is it less? You let me know because this is a feedback moment for me
him and then Lauren.
I can’t imagine where we’d be here
from March to now. I can’t just I can’t imagine what this if the conditions, la wouldn’t be a going concern we’d be I don’t think we’d be so floundering in my view that I’m just deeply appreciative of what you and Karen and Michelle and Kathy have all done to take on. Yeah, you had full time jobs before this one. And you’ve all taken on another full time job. I don’t know how you’re doing it, frankly. I promised my wife I’m sure. I’m sure. So I’m, I’m very grateful I were probably further down the road or at least where we need to be with what we’ve learned, what you’ve laid out today and in what the what that timeline looks like going forward. So
yeah, in this time, to some of that point. I’m looking at budgets, I am going to have to do some IGA stuff for Karen and Kathy and the folks that are working on this in terms of that, and I’ve got Joanne working on so No, that’s coming for those folks.
Lauren did Yes.
I just want to echo that. I think that this is exactly what we needed. Um, I don’t feel like there’s anything missing. And I just want to reiterate, thank you to you guys, because it is a lot of work. It’s way more than than I think I’m doing. So I’m really appreciative.
I’ll say that it’s more than I envisioned back in March. But as it unfolds, I can’t imagine us not digging into the level that you’re digging and so fully supportive of the path we’re on
If that was your last question, and there are no other comments, we probably had to let you at least catch a breath and stretch your legs before the next one of these.
I appreciate it.
Yeah. So we will vote. I think both boards convene next week. So give give some thought to all of this. We’ll take a look at the presentation, the slides to get sent out and we’ll revisit this next week.
In the meantime, we’re we’re ready to adjourn. So the one thing I wanted to say to Cameron is I talked about trying to sit at time to meet with you all individually. It’s just been a bit of a with everything going on TV in this it’s a little bit hard. That’s not lost on me. I think after this that’ll free us up so I can start having this conversation. So I haven’t forgot about it. It’s just a world trying to manage the world of COVID in all of our lives.
You know and camera, don’t think I would say would be Welcome, Marlene. We just jumped
right in. You’re so welcome. And we look forward to our meeting next week.
Yes. The frying pan into the housing authority. Yeah, sorry for drinking water out of a firehose today is your first meeting.
All right, well, if there’s nothing else and there’s no objection, I will declare this meeting adjourned. And we’ll see you half of you at least next week.
Yeah, eight o’clock Tuesday morning.
Eight o’clock Tuesday morning.
Very good. Thanks. Thanks.
Transcribed by https://otter.ai