Member Spotlight: Springfield Housing Authority

July 7, 2015

Member Spotlight: Springfield Housing Authority

“Changing Lives One Key at a Time”

The Springfield Housing Authority (SHA) will soon be breaking ground for a new 92-unit complex in the Vinegar Hill neighborhood of Springfield, IL. With the addition of the Villas at Vinegar Hill, the SHA will now be able to provide 781 public housing units to a broad range of persons, inclusive of but not limited to, senior citizens, individuals, families, and persons with disabilities within Springfield and its surrounding areas. SHA also administers 2,066 Housing Choice vouchers that include Mainstream, Family Unification, Near Elderly Disabled (NED), Homeownership, and Veterans (VASH).

The SHA celebrated its 75th anniversary in 2013, and the services they offer to their community continue to grow. They also provide its residents with programs to develop self-sufficiency. Through their Family Self-Sufficiency program, residents receive assistance with earning their GED, Associate and/or Bachelor degree, job skills, and obtaining a job, among several other opportunities. In June of 2013, the SHA disbursed over $1 million to Family Self-Sufficiency program graduates.

Other programs include a literacy program offered to children, as well as two Homeownership Programs that make purchasing a home more affordable for low-to moderate income families and individuals. Resident activities include an Annual Resident Fair and Charlie Brandon Day which offer resources to residents, food, entertainment, and prizes. SHA also celebrates Father’s Day to encourage participation of children with their fathers in various activities. in Over 50 bicycles were given away to children at this year’s Resident Fair, while this year’s Charlie Brandon Day provided book bags with school supplies, haircuts and groceries.

Success with First Nonprofit

SHA enrolled in First Nonprofit’s Unemployment Savings Program in 2009. Since then, SHA has saved more than $120,000 on state unemployment tax (SUTA) costs! This savings helped maximize their operating budget over the years. “The SHA has been impacted by federal cuts to our operating and capital fund programs at less than 100% funding that has made balancing the budget annually more challenging,” says Michelle Sergent, Director of Finance. “We have been able to maintain the same level of excellent service that our clients deserve by maximizing and diversifying revenue streams and decreasing or maintaining operating costs. The savings in unemployment insurance helped to decrease operating costs and to maintain a positive financial position.”

Some of First Nonprofit’s program features most enjoyed by the SHA are budgetary certainty and the unemployment claims administration provided by our third-party partners. “The SHA has been able to budget for unemployment costs with certainty by having equal quarterly payments that are a known value when budgeting,” says Sergent. In addition to day-to-day claims processing, online training or in-person assistance is also available to members to help maintain unemployment costs. “The training that is available is excellent and the annual reviews on-site have helped the SHA streamline processes and save funding.”

We look forward to many more years of success with SHA! For more information about their services, please visit their website, www.springfieldhousingauthority.org.

 

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Testimonials

NYCON members who use First Nonprofit’s programs enjoy enduring savings and improved efficiency. Our association knows that success, because from the beginning, we achieved the same great benefits. Great savings, seamless technology, and responsive service. NYCON highly recommends First Nonprofit’s remarkable unemployment solutions.

New York Council of Nonprofits, Albany, NY

We were introduced to First Nonprofit through another housing authority. In our analysis and comparison to what we were paying the State, our first year savings was $5,800 plus. We have been with them since the end of 2008 and I am glad we have been. I consider them an arm of our HR department.

Kankakee County Housing Authority, Kankakee, IL

Because INCS advocates for the operating conditions that allow charter public schools to provide high quality public education, partnering with First Nonprofit was an easy decision. First Nonprofit’s unemployment programs provide our member schools two operating elements crucial to their ability to provide high quality public education: savings and budget certainty. Capable, committed teachers are the key to student success. By participating in the unemployment insurance savings plan, charter public schools gain peace of mind and are able to invest more money in their teachers.

Illinois Network of Charter Schools

Throughout our membership in the Unemployment Savings Program, First Nonprofit understood our demands, community dynamics, and the importance of seamless services; that allowed us to serve our constituents better.

Hugh Parry, Retired President of Prevent Blindness America