St. Charles Herald-Guide

St. John finally accepts $247,000 payment from St. Charles housing

Kyle Barnett - November 8, 2013

The St. John Housing Authority recently received a large payment from the St. Charles Parish Housing Authority to pay the living expense for former residents who have moved from St. Charles to St. John.

The payments are part of a Section 8 portability process that allows residents who receive benefits from one housing authority to move to another.

According to the Leila Jackson, director of the St. Charles Parish Housing Authority, the St. John Housing Authority receives about $29,000 per month from the St. Charles Parish Housing Authority.

A legislative audit released earlier this year on the St. John Housing Authority revealed the agency was mismanaged and used bad accounting practices.   

Earlier in the year, coinciding with their internal problems, Jackson said the St. John Housing Authority quit accepting payments although St. Charles Parish tried to make them.

Jackson said her records indicate that St. John Housing Authority finally cashed a check that was made out to them for over $247,000.

“We have paid them, and just recently, because in September we cut them a check,” she said. “There is new director and she is turning it around.”

Jackson said the payment came around the expiration of the previous fiscal year.  

“A lot of housing authorities are at the fiscal year ends so everybody was trying to get their budget straight,” she said.

The St. Charles Housing Authority participates in the portability program with other parishes as well and Jackson said it is not uncommon for the entities to owe each other money.

“It’s not just St. John, some housing authorities owed us and we owed some housing authorities. We are all working together and HUD’s (the Department of Housing and Urban Development) got us and we are trying to get it straight for the new fiscal year,” she said.