A Service of UA Little Rock
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Little Rock City Directors express concerns with Metropolitan Housing Alliance

City Board Director Joan Adcock is requesting a hearing from board members of the Metropolitan Housing Alliance. During a meeting of the Board of Directors, Adcock said she wants to hear from the alliance, after learning about issues it had managing housing vouchers.

During the Little Rock City Board of Directors meeting Tuesday, May 9, directors expressed concerns with the Metropolitan Housing Alliance (MHA).

According to the MHA’s website, it's a governmental body that manages federal housing assistance in Little Rock. The agency manages a total of 902 traditional public housing units, 200 affordable housing units and 158 market-rate units. The agency also administers Section 8 housing vouchers.

Director Joan Adcock said she wants members of the MHA to testify before the city board. She said she is making this request because the agency is having problems with getting vouchers to help tenants relocate from Big Country Chateau apartments, which had a lawsuit filed against it by Arkansas Attorney General Tim Griffin, Republican, for violating the Arkansas Deceptive Trade Practices Act.

“I’m asking each of the [MHA] board members to come and address us. If we find that information is correct then move forward with that. If we find they are not fulfilling the needs of this community then I think we have a right to look at what we need to do next,” Adcock said.

She clarified to board members she’s not requesting to have MHA board members removed.

Director Brenda Wyrick questioned whether having hearings for individual board members of the MHA is the right approach because decisions for the agency are made by the entire board.

Director Lance Hines said the issue with MHA has more to do with the Central Arkansas Housing Corporation (CAHC), which is part of the MHA. The CAHC helps MHA facilitate the development, financing and construction of multi-family and single-family residential housing.

“Right now, I’m hearing there’s no financial accounting back from CAHC to MHA,” Hines said. “MHA is the one who houses CAHC but CAHC has created its own offices and its own sidebar system. That’s where the problem lies and the financial mismanagement.”

Hines said the City Board handled a similar situation like this with the MHA about eight to ten years ago, when he first became a city director.

Ronak Patel is a reporter for Little Rock Public Radio.