HACEP’s Housing Choice Voucher Program Earns Honor by HUD for 8th Year

The Housing Authority of the City of El Paso (HACEP) announced Tuesday that the Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) Program (typically known as Section 8) is again rated a High Performer by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

“The fact that the HCV Program continues to earn HUD’s top commendation despite significant financial losses due to dwindling federal budgets is remarkable,” shares HACEP Chief Executive Officer Gerald Cichon. “This designation truly reflects the HCV staff’s hard work and dedication, all of whom are shouldering heavier workloads due to fewer resources.”

This is the eighth consecutive year that the HCV Program received this distinction, which is the highest honor that can be bestowed on a public housing authority by the federal government.

HUD officially notified HACEP that the HCV Program earned a score of 90 on the Section Eight Management Assessment Program (SEMAP) by earning 130 out of 145 points in 14 assessment categories plus five bonus points.

SEMAP measures the performance of U.S. public housing agencies (PHAs) like HACEP that administer the HCV program in 14 key areas and one bonus area.

The indicators of performance show whether PHAs assist eligible families to afford decent rental units at a reasonable subsidy cost as intended by Federal housing legislation. SEMAP uses HUD’s national database of tenant information and information from audits conducted by independent auditors.

HUD annually assigns each PHA a rating on each of the 14 indicators and an overall performance rating of high (90 percent or above), standard (60-89 percent), or troubled (59 percent or below).

“This prestigious distinction by HUD exemplifies the diligent work of our HCV team and their effort to assist as many families as possible find safe, clean and affordable housing,” states HCV Program Director Marta Mena. “In addition, we have continued our efforts to streamline our operations to improve efficiency and customer service while prioritizing content proficiency and training for each team member.”