MRPC News Release

For immediate release
Feb. 11, 2016

For more information, contact
Linda Hollandsworth at (573) 265-2993 or

Phelps County Housing Agency receives clean audit

ST. JAMES, MO—The Phelps County Public Housing Agency (PHA) received a clean audit opinion for the year ending June 30, 2015, board members learned at the Jan. 14 quarterly meeting.

Kean & Company, LLC, a certified public accounting firm in Rolla, performed the audit. The auditors found that the agency, in all material respects, complied with all requirements during the review and had no material weaknesses.

The Phelps County PHA provides subsidized housing assistance to very low-income residents in Crawford, Dent, Gasconade, Maries, Phelps and Washington counties with the exception of the city of Rolla, which has its own pubic housing authority. Also a part of the Meramec Region, but served by other housing agencies are Osage County, served by the Boone County agency, and Pulaski County, served by Missouri Ozark Community Action (MOCA) in Richland.

Six presiding commissioners from each of the six counties govern the Phelps County PHA board along with an at-large Family Self-Sufficiency representative.

The PHA contracts with Meramec Regional Planning Commission (MRPC) to operate the program. During the 2014-15 fiscal year, 641 families in the Meramec Region received monthly rental assistance, which totaled over $2.6 million. The board learned the PHA is currently providing rental assistance for 733 families, which totals over $2.8 million.

Payments are made directly to landlords on behalf of families who qualify for rental assistance programs.

Housing Program Manager Linda Hollandsworth said that the board has used reserve funds to offset a decrease in funding so that the PHA could continue providing services to as many low-income families as possible.

“Despite funding changes over the past few years, we have been able to serve more families, and we will continue to stretch every dollar,” Hollandsworth said.

Maries County Presiding Commissioner Ray Schwartze serves as PHA chairman while Crawford County Presiding Commissioner Leo Sanders serves as vice chair. Dent County Presiding Commissioner Darrell Skiles serves as secretary-treasurer. Other board members are Washington County Presiding Commissioner Marvin Wright, Gasconade County Presiding Commissioner Larry Miskel, Phelps County Presiding Commissioner Randy Verkamp and the newly appointed Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) representative is Ashley Cooper.

Formed in 1969, MRPC is a voluntary council of governments serving Crawford, Dent, Gasconade, Maries, Osage, Phelps, Pulaski and Washington counties and their respective cities. A professional staff of 24, directed by the MRPC board, offers technical assistance and services, such as grant preparation and administration, housing assistance, transportation planning, environmental planning, ordinance codification, business loans and other services to member communities.

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