Fulton Housing Authority to reopen June 2

New people will soon be able to apply for the Section 8 voucher program in Fulton for the first time in nearly a year.

The Fulton Housing Authority (FHA) has announced it will begin taking applications for the program and open its wait list on June 2. The housing authority was required to close its waiting list for the federal residence rental assistance in July 2013 after its wait list exceeded 24 months.

"In accordance with our published procedures the Section 8 application list will remain open until the waiting period is more than a 24 month wait," a Fulton Housing Authority press release states. "When the wait list becomes more than a 24 month wait, a public announcement will be made at least 10 days before we stop accepting applications."

FHA Section 8 Coordinator Sheila Sanders said that she has processed about 25 applications this month alone, and noted that many peoples' situations change or find housing elsewhere before their application can be reviewed.

"At this time right now it's lower (than 24 months) because we've been working the wait list currently, and it's diminishing, of course," Sanders said, who noted a recent increase in demand for Section 8 at her office.

Sanders said Fulton currently serves 48 people in its Section 8 voucher program, a federal program "for assisting very low-income families, the elderly, and the disabled to afford decent, safe, and sanitary housing in the private market," according the to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's website HUD.gov.

Unlike the Fulton Housing Authority's established rental properties for residents meeting certain criteria, qualified Section 8 participants are free to select "any housing that meets the requirements of the program and is not limited to units located in subsidized housing projects," HUD's website states.

Section 8 vouchers are handled locally by qualified agencies such as the Fulton Housing Authority. Central Missouri Community Action covers Section 8 for the rest of Callaway County.

The Section 8 wait list has no affect on FHA's public housing program or its application process. Applications for both programs can be found online at FHAMO.org or at the housing authority's office, 350 Sycamore St. in Fulton, during normal business hours. For more information, call (573) 642-7611.

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