Admissions and Continued Occupancy Policy

Effective: January 1, 2024

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The New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) has published the Admissions and Continued Occupancy Policy (ACOP), which incorporates NYCHA’s existing admissions and occupancy policies.

NYCHA made a draft of the ACOP available for public review and comment for a period of 45 days (September 13, 2023, through October 28, 2023). The final ACOP is available below

The public comment period closed on October 28, 2023, and NYCHA considered all feedback before determining what, if any, changes to the ACOP are appropriate before implementing.

Executive Summary

Chapter 1: General Policies and Objectives

This chapter provides an introduction to the New York City Housing Authority’s (NYCHA’s) proposed Admissions and Continued Occupancy Policy (ACOP). The ACOP defines the policy guidelines NYCHA uses in determining eligibility for Section 9 public housing admission and continued occupancy. These guidelines are governed mainly by requirements of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and, where applicable, by local policies and procedures. These policies and procedures for admission and continued occupancy apply to public housing applicants, residents, and NYCHA. The ACOP is a compilation of policies from various documents, including the NYCHA Management Manual, Applications and Tenancy Administration Department Manual, and Tenant Selection and Assignment Plan. In the event of inconsistencies between policies as stated in the ACOP and other policies as stated in other NYCHA documents, the ACOP controls.

Full Chapter 1

Chapter 2: Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity

This chapter provides an overview of NYCHA’s policies to ensure fair housing and equal opportunity. It is NYCHA’s policy to provide equal housing opportunities for all qualified applicants, transferees, and residents. In the selection of households and in the provision of services, NYCHA will not discriminate against any person on the grounds of race; color; religion; national origin; sex; sexual orientation; actual or perceived gender identity; age; familial status; marital status; partnership status; military status; disability; lawful occupation; alienage or citizenship status; actual or perceived height or weight; or status as a victim of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking.

The Fair Housing Act and other federal laws require reasonable accommodations in rules, policies, practices, and services so that persons with disabilities have equal opportunity to use and enjoy programs or housing. This chapter describes some common types of reasonable accommodations provided by NYCHA.

Full Chapter 2

Chapter 3: Applying to Public Housing

This chapter describes the steps taken to begin the application process to reside in NYCHA housing. To be considered for public housing, each applicant must complete NYCHA’s application. This chapter describes how to apply and what happens once NYCHA receives an application, including the eligibility and screening policies for admission. Applicants who are found ineligible for the program have an opportunity to explain their circumstances, provide additional information, receive an explanation of decisions made by NYCHA about their eligibility, and may request an informal hearing.

Full Chapter 3

Chapter 4: Waiting List Management

This chapter describes how NYCHA’s waiting list is administered. NYCHA maintains its public housing waiting list in accordance with the following guidelines:

  • All applicants and transferees on the waiting list are maintained in order of preference and priority as described in this chapter;
  • Applicants with the same level of preferences and priorities are then ranked by date of application; and
  • All applicants must meet applicable income eligibility requirements as established by HUD.

Full Chapter 4

Chapter 5: Resident Selection and Apartment Offers

This chapter describes the process by which NYCHA applicants are selected for public housing apartments. Applicants will be listed in sequence based upon date and time the application is received, the size and type of apartment they require, and factors of preference or priority. Current residents who are transferring to a different NYCHA apartment (transferees) are also on these waiting lists with applicants. Please see Chapter 10: Transfers for more information on NYCHA’s transfer policy.

In filling vacancies, NYCHA offers apartments to applicants and transferees using its Tenant Selection and Assignment Plan (TSAP) rotation system until the apartment is accepted.

Full Chapter 5

Chapter 6: Leasing

This chapter describes leasing activities and NYCHA’s policies pertaining to lease execution, security deposits, and other charges.

Full Chapter 6

Chapter 7: Rent Calculation and Verifications

This chapter describes the process by which rent is determined. NYCHA verifies all household information, including family composition, income, assets, and expenses, to determine rent in accordance with federal law and HUD regulations to ensure that families are paying the correct rent amounts.

Households must provide proof of their income whenever required by NYCHA, and the information they provide must be true and complete. HUD regulations require that rent (including income, assets, and allowable deductions) be verified by NYCHA at new lease signing and annually. NYCHA’s verification policies are designed to meet HUD’s requirements and to maintain program integrity.

Full Chapter 7

Chapter 8: Recertifications and Continued Occupancy

This chapter outlines the HUD-mandated annual recertification process that residents must complete to continue to reside in public housing. This chapter also outlines when residents are required to inform NYCHA of changes to household composition and changes to income between annual recertifications. After reviewing and verifying the information submitted by the resident, NYCHA determines the resident’s rent.

Full Chapter 8

Chapter 7- Rent Calculation and Verifications

This chapter describes the current-state process for determining tenant rent through the use of HUD’s Enterprise Income Verification (EIV) system. Outlines what is included in income determinations and what qualifies as an asset, as well as outlining deductions from income and the Earned Income Disallowance (EID).

Chapter 8- Reexaminations and Continued Occupancy

This chapter described the current-state process for completing HUD mandated annual income recertifications and outcomes for failure to comply. In addition, it covers interim reviews and rent hardship.

Full Chapter 7 & 8 Current State

Chapter 9: Inspections

This chapter outlines the process by which NYCHA inspects apartments to identify issues and perform preventative maintenance to ensure legal compliance and safe living conditions. Inspections provide the opportunity for NYCHA to identify potential problems in apartments, ensure residents’ continued access to safe and quality housing, and support resident compliance with NYCHA rules and regulations. Residents, in turn, have the opportunity to interact with NYCHA staff and inquire about the proper methods of maintaining an apartment.

Full Chapter 9

Chapter 10: Transfers

This chapter describes NYCHA’s transfer policy. Residents are permitted to apply for a transfer to another apartment within their current development or to another development. Residents may apply for a transfer during any period of tenancy. Residents must choose a development or borough, as applicable, at the time they submit a transfer request.

Transfers may only be approved for reasons that comply with NYCHA policy, as described in this chapter.

Full Chapter 10

Chapter 11: Lease Terminations

This chapter provides an overview of lease terminations. As defined in the lease agreement and in accordance with NYCHA’s Termination of Tenancy procedures, a tenancy may be terminated for violations of NYCHA’s rules and regulations. NYCHA’s Termination of Tenancy procedures afford tenants due process rights, including the opportunity for an administrative hearing.

Full Chapter 11

Chapter 12: Grievances

This chapter provides an overview of NYCHA’s grievance procedures. NYCHA’s informal hearings and grievance procedures are applicable to applicants and residents who dispute an action or failure to act by NYCHA in accordance with the resident’s lease, or any rule or regulation that adversely affects an applicant’s or resident’s rights, duties, welfare, or status. This includes, among other things, residents who seek to challenge the calculation of their rent or who seek remaining family member rights.

Grievances will be handled in accordance with NYCHA’s Grievance Procedures, NYCHA form 040.302, and as outlined in this chapter.

Full Chapter 12

Chapter 13: Community Service and Self-Sufficiency Requirements

This chapter describes NYCHA’s policy related to the federal requirement for certain residents to perform community service. This chapter describes ways to satisfy community service requirements; situations in which residents are exempt from performing community service; and the consequences if a resident fails to complete their community service requirements.

Full Chapter 13

Chapter 14: Assistance Animals and Pet Ownership

This chapter provides an overview of the rules related to animal ownership in NYCHA apartments, for both household pets and assistance animals. Subject to NYCHA’s Pet Policy, a NYCHA household may have one NYCHA-registered cat or dog in their apartment. A NYCHA household may also seek a reasonable accommodation for an assistance animal.

Residents must meet all applicable New York City pet-related requirements, including dog registration and licensing requirements. Residents must also register their pets and assistance animals with NYCHA.

Full Chapter 14