Housing Program

ATTENTION FAMILIES LOOKING FOR SECTION 8 VOUCHER ASSISTANCE:  Watch out for SCAMS! Reportedly, there are Internet Sites claiming to be application sites for voucher assistance.   They are taking fees and personal information from people claiming to put them on waiting lists. These are BOGUS! The only way you can apply for voucher assistance is directly through a local housing authority. In Texas, go here  to find the applicable housing authority.

About the Program

The Ark-Tex Council of Governments (ATCOG) administers a Section 8 Rental Assistance Program funded by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) in the nine northeast counties of Texas. Eligibility for assistance is based on family income as established by HUD, as well as other factors determined by federal regulation and local policy. Assistance is available through Housing Choice Vouchers.

The ATCOG Housing program is assigned to provide improved living conditions for low-income families; promote freedom of housing choice; provide decent, safe and sanitary housing; and provide an incentive to private property owners to rent to low-income families by offering timely assistance payments and counseling to tenants on obligations under their lease. Eligibility for this program is based on “very low” income limits as published by HUD annually.

Housing Choice Vouchers are issued to eligible families and remain with the family. Rental units must meet the Housing Quality Standards as established by the U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Rental units on the Housing Choice Voucher Program are not subject to Fair Market Rent limitations, but must meet the rent comparability test. This test is necessary to ensure that the landlord is not charging more rent for their unit than other landlords are charging for similar units in the same general area. The tenant’s maximum portion of rent is subtracted from the applicable Fair Market Rent to determine the amount ATCOG will pay. The tenant is responsible for the remaining portion. If a tenant’s portion exceeds 30% of family income, counseling is provided to make the family aware of its responsibilities. In no case will the tenant’s portion of rent plus the estimated utility cost exceed 40% of the family’s monthly adjusted income.

Eligibility


To be eligible for the Section 8 program a person (family) must:



  • be very low income.  This means your income must be at or below 50% of the area-wide median income for your county as determined by HUD.


  • be a citizen or a non-citizen with “eligible immigration status.”


  • meet HUD’s definition of “family,” which includes most individuals, and households with an adult member who has a disability.

Applicants may be denied Section 8 assistance if they do not meet the above criteria OR if any member of the applicant’s household has:



  • been evicted for cause from other rental housing.


  • been terminated from another Section 8 program for cause.


  • committed recent drug related activity or exhibited violent criminal behavior.


  • committed fraud or criminal acts in connection with a federal housing program.


  • not reimbursed a HA for unpaid rent or damages or currently owes money to a HA.

Termination of Tenant Assistance
Tenant failure to abide by the conditions of the voucher or the lease may result in termination of assistance.

Termination of Contract
Owner failure to abide by the conditions of the lease or Housing Contract may result in termination of the Contract.

Waiting List Application
When the waiting list application is open for enrollment, please use our waiting list application to apply for housing.
Notice is given when the waiting list application is open for each county.  Please check our website periodically for waiting list availability.

Housing Reports


PHA 5-Year and Annual Plan OCT 2015




Admin Plan 2018


Waiting List Application

Notice: If you have already applied for the waiting list in the past for any county, your information may already exist in the system. If that is the case please use the Waiting List Contact Information Update Form to make any changes.

If you have previously applied for the waiting list and would like to update you address, please use the Waiting List Contact Information Update Form.

If you would like to apply for the waiting list, please use the Waiting List Application.  Name from the list will be chosen by a lottery system.  Those needing assistance or without access to the website will not have a disadvantage.