AMHA Resident FAQ on COVID-19

Enlarge Image: aaaaaa

(Updated 6/25/2020 at 11:15 am)

For additional information, resources, and updates about AMHA's response to the COVID-19 outbreak, please visit our coronavirus main page here

Holiday FAQs (updated 11/24/2020)

Q:  Can I have a holiday gathering in AMHA housing?

A: Akron City Council passed legislation to prohibit large private gatherings and require face coverings at small private gatherings in the City of Akron, based on the recommendation of local public health officials and healthcare leaders.  Under Akron’s temporary Private Gathering Ordinance (until December 16th):

Large private gatherings are prohibited:

  • No household in the City shall host more than 6 additional visitors (non-residents) at a private gathering
  • Visitors include anyone who does not permanently reside in the home, even family members who reside elsewhere.

 Small private gatherings are permitted with restrictions:

  • For small gatherings with 6 or fewer outside visitors – masks must be worn at all times when a non-resident is in the same room or within six feet, unless an exception applies.
  • Exceptions include: individuals under 10 years old, when actively eating a meal, those who should not wear a mask due to a medical condition, or when outdoors and maintaining 6 feet of social distancing, etc.

Property owners or occupants that fail to enforce the requirements of the ordinance and host large gatherings could face a potential civil penalty of $250. Enforcement of the order will be conducted by Summit County Public Health (SCPH) with support from the Akron Police Department.

For more information, please visit: https://www.akronohio.gov/cms/news/7f81116b42250875/index.html

Q:  What does Summit County’s newest Stay at Home Advisory mean for me?

A:  On Thursday, November 19, 2020, Summit County Executive Ilene Shapiro and Summit County Health Commissioner Donna Skoda issued a Stay At Home Health Advisory in response to a rapid increase in the number of COVID-19 cases. The advisory urges all residents to stay at home to the greatest extent possible due to the rise of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations in the county. Residents should only leave home to go to work or school, or for essential needs such as seeking medical care, going to the grocery store or pharmacy, picking up food, or receiving deliveries.  To learn more about Summit County’s Stay at Home Advisory, please visit:  https://co.summitoh.net/portal/County-of-Summit-Ohio.html.

 

Rent & Income Changes

Q: Can I be evicted during the CDC/Covid-19 moratorium? (Updated 9/16/2020)

 A: The answer is yes except for non-payment of rent. 

On September 1, 2020, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) announced an order to temporarily stop evictions in the United States from September 4, 2020 through December 31, 2020 BUT that temporary halt or moratorium applies only to evictions for non-payment of rent. Other lease violations can still result in eviction.

Eligibility for the moratorium

To be eligible for the moratorium you must show that: 

  • You are being evicted for non-payment of rent (or late fees, interest or penalties)
  • You have used best efforts to obtain all available government assistance for rent or housing
  • You are income eligible. You qualify as income eligible if:
    • You expect to earn no more than $99,000 in annual income for Calendar Year 2020 (or no more than $198,000 if filing a joint tax return)
      OR
    • You were not required to report any income in 2019 to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service
      OR
    • You received an Economic Impact Payment (stimulus check) 
  • You are unable to pay your full rent or make a full housing payment due to:
    • Substantial loss of household income, loss of compensable hours of work or wages, lay-offs
      OR
    • Extraordinary out-of-pocket medical expense (greater than 7.5% of your adjusted gross income (AGI) for the year)
  • You used best efforts to make timely partial rent payments as your circumstances might permit
  • You have no other available housing options and if you are evicted you would:
    • Likely become homeless
      OR
    • Need to move into a homeless shelter
      OR
    • Need to move into a new residence shared by other people who live in close quarters because you have no other available housing options

If you believe you are eligible for the moratorium, to stop a pending eviction you should file a declaration form with the court where your eviction case was filed. You must also provide a copy to your Property Manager.

If you are behind in rent payments but an eviction case has not yet been filed, you should fill out the declaration form and send a copy to your Property Manager. Keep the original for your records.  

Presenting the certified declaration allows you to delay rent payment and temporarily avoid eviction but it does not waive/forgive rent, fees and /or financial penalties which can still be charged and must be paid when the temporary moratorium ends.  Importantly, too, you must comply with all other lease obligations and you can can be evicted for failure to do so. The temporary eviction moratorium applies to non-payment of rent only. 

Q: How do I pay my rent? (Updated 6/25/2020)

Please pay rent online at www.akronhousing.org (All credit card fees have been waived for the remainder of the year), or mail your rent to the address in your rent statement using check or money order.   

Q: My income has decreased because of COVID-19.  How soon will my rent decrease?

Please immediately report any income changes (increase or decrease) to your property management office or recertification specialist even if you have applied for/are receiving unemployment benefits or began new employment.  You may report income changes online by visiting our website at www.akronhousing.org and submitting the online form.  If possible, please take a screenshot or a picture of any documentation you have and attach it to the form. All changes of income must be reported within ten (10) calendar days.     

We’ve temporarily changed our policy to help households that have lost income due to COVID-19. Tenants reporting a COVID-19 related loss of income prior to the end of the month are eligible for a decreased rent beginning on the 1st day of the month following the date the change was reported.

Q: Some residents are receiving $1,200 stimulus payments from the federal government under the CARES act.  Is this payment to be reported and factored into income and rent calculations?

The stimulus check is a tax credit and no different than the tax refund or earned income tax credit that AMHA does not count as income.  

Q. If I receive or will be receiving unemployment benefits will it be counted as income? What about the extra payments provided with the recent stimulus bills?  

Regular unemployment benefits are considered income. The extra payments of $600 per week enhancement provided by the CARES Act will not be counted because this is temporary and likely non-recurring after the pandemic emergency ends. 

Q:  What is the suspension of evictions about?

Evictions for nonpayment of rent, and charges/fees for nonpayment of rent, have been temporarily suspended. This applies to all HUD-assisted participants from March 27, 2020 to July 24, 2020. Although AMHA’s Admissions and Continued Occupancy Policies (ACOP) and/or Administrative Plan may not be updated, please be aware that the suspension of evictions for nonpayment of rent is in place.  Please remember, rent is still due during this time period and will accumulate if unpaid.


Maintenance & Work Orders

Q: Can I still submit a work order if I live in AMHA housing?

Yes, we are taking work orders.  Effective June 1, 2020, AMHA will begin addressing HVAC, electrical, and plumbing work orders.  Additional work orders will be addressed in phases. Essential work orders will continue to be addressed as usual

Q: Maintenance staff is performing work in my home, is it safe to stay in my home while the work is being performed?

Yes, AMHA maintenance staff will be using the hygiene and social distancing practices recommended by the CDC; however, if you or any of your family members are sick, please disclose this to the AMHA maintenance staff prior to maintenance staff entering your home.  If the work order is not an emergency, we will reschedule.  If you and your family members are not sick and a member of AMHA Maintenance staff is performing an emergency work in your home, we are asking that you move to another room. If you are uncomfortable staying in your home while the work is being performed, you may leave your home and either go to the lobby or take a walk.  


Building Policies & Changes

Q: What is AMHA’s Policy on Face Masks or Facial Coverings? (Updated 7/14/2020)

A: In accordance with the Summit County Level 3 mask requirement and Akron City Council’s mask ordinance, AMHA will now require anyone visiting AMHA offices, living in AMHA residences, or visiting AMHA units to wear a mask or face covering. Facemasks are mandatory in all public spaces including commonly-used areas of residential buildings including but not limited to: high rise elevators, stairwells, hallways, jungle gyms, and lobbies.  

 Q: If the Governor is reopening the state, why is AMHA not reopening?

AMHA is following Governor DeWine’s Responsible RestartOhio guidelines and preparing our offices and spaces to safely reopen to the public. As of June 1st in – person meetings have begun by appointment only.  You will be asked to wear a face covering when in the building.  If you do not have one, one will be provided to you when you arrive. If you are unable to wear a mask or you or someone else in your home have been sick, you will be asked to reschedule or make other arrangements in order to complete the appointment.  Important contact information is located on our website at https://www.akronhousing.org/pages/FAQ.html.

Q: Why did you take away furniture in the lobbies?

In an effort to reduce COVID-19 exposure, AMHA has removed most of the furniture in the lobbies to avoid the congregation and gathering of many residents at one time.  We have left chairs in areas where you may wait for rides.  If the weather is pleasant, we recommend getting some fresh air and taking advantage of our outdoor seating areas while practicing responsible social distancing and hand washing.

Q: Am I permitted to use the elevators in my building?

Yes. Please avoid crowding on elevators and make sure there is adequate space between riders. If you are uncomfortable riding the elevator with another resident, it is okay to wait for the next ride. It is recommended that you use your elbow or a gloved hand to push elevator buttons to avoid any exposure of COVID-19 to other riders. As always, wash your hands and use hygiene practices recommended by the CDC regularly when leaving your unit.

 

Q: Can my kids use the playground at my property? (updated 6/25/2020)

Effective July 1st, AMHA playgrounds will be reopened for responsible use. If residents are feeling sick or have COVID-19 symptoms, they are encouraged to refrain from using the equipment until they have been symptom free for 2 weeks. Please note, if residents choose to use the playgrounds, they do so at their own risk. AMHA does not regularly clean or sanitize playground equipment. Children must wash their hands before and after playing on equipment. All individuals—including children—should practice responsible social distancing by maintaining 6 feet from individuals who are not members of their household.

Q: Can we stop all people from coming into the building? (updated 5/21/2020)

Governor DeWine’s OHIOANS PROTECTING OHIOANS URGENT HEALTH ADVISORY recommends that people stay home when possible to continue to help slow the spread of the coronavirius. We continue to advise all residents to limit visitors coming into the building to those that are essential to maintaining their health and safety, but we cannot stop all people from coming into the building. Additionally, signs have been posted at the property and in the buildings that advise guests to stay at home if they are experiencing any flu-like symptoms such as fever, cough, or shortness of breath—no matter how mild. We encourage you to notify your guests if they are experiencing flu-like symptoms to not visit until they have been symptom-free for 2 weeks.

Q: Can I still smoke at my property?

Yes.  While AMHA’s properties are still smoke-free, you may utilize AMHA’s designated smoking areas.  If your property does not have a designated smoking area, you may still smoke at least 25 feet away from any entry points of the property. Please practice social distancing recommendations and maintain at least 6 feet from other residents when smoking outdoors.

Q: Can I still take my animal outside or on a walk?

Yes. You may walk your dog and seek medical care for your pet should they require it. Be sure to practice social distancing while out on walks, maintaining at least 6 feet from other neighbors and their pets.

Q: Why have property management office schedules changed? How do I get in touch with my Property Manager?

In an effort to avoid exposure and keep AMHA residents and staff safe and healthy, AMHA has adjusted property management schedules to either working remotely or alternating shifts.  If you have an immediate need, please call your property office and leave a message.  For prompt response, please make sure you provide AMHA with your most up to date phone number and an email address. Please see "Important Contact Information" below to find your property's contact information.

Q: Can I still do my laundry?

Yes. Laundromats, dry cleaners, and laundry service providers are considered essential businesses that will remain open.  AMHA laundry rooms are still open; however, we encourage you to maintain at least 6 feet from others doing their laundry. As always, wash your hands and use hygiene practices recommended by the CDC regularly when leaving your unit.


Coronavirus Notices

Q: Will AMHA notify the residents if another resident or staff member has coronavirus? (updated 4/9/2020)

Yes. Once a case has been reported and confirmed by Summit County Public Health, a notice will be provided to all residents living in the building or property that has been affected. A notice will also be posted in the building. The notice will NOT share specific information about the case due to medical privacy laws.

If a case is confirmed with an AMHA resident or staff member, please be assured that we are taking steps provided to us by our local health and government officials to ensure that we are doing all we can to keep others safe. Please note that effective immediately, Summit County Public Health, in coordination with the Ohio Department of Health, issued the following guideline for businesses as soon as a positive COVID-19 infection is identified:

  • Immediately report employee or customer infections to the local health district at www.scph.org/workplace-positive-reporting.

We urge you not to panic, but to stay informed. To help prevent spread of COVID-19, AMHA has closed community rooms and postponed non-urgent work.  Common areas and common surfaces (bathrooms, elevators, door handles, railings, chairs, tables and countertops, etc.,) are disinfected at least twice daily. We will continue this effort throughout the course of the current COVID-19 outbreak.

Q: Should I wear a facemask?

For guidance about facemask usage, please see the Summit County Public Health coronavirus website at https://www.scph.org/covid-19 or the CDC website at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/cloth-face-cover.html.

Q: What can I do to help slow the spread of COVID-19?

Do not permit guests to visit your home.  Find other ways such as talking on the phone, face timing etc. to socialize. Make sure to utilize CDC recommended health and hygiene guidelines: wash your hands frequently; avoid touching your face, eyes, and mouth, sanitize commonly used surfaces, and maintain proper social distancing.


Staying Informed

Q: How long is this going to last?  

AMHA is not a public health agency, and is not able to predict when it will be safe to lift safety protocols. AMHA is constantly updating our webpage and Facebook pages to reflect changes, and we will keep residents up-to-date about current recommendations as they become available.

 Visit the Summit County Public Health website at www.scph.org/covid-19 to learn more about COVID-19.  We are updating our website at www.akronhousing.org/pages/coronavirus and on our Facebook Page.  If you would like updates via email, please provide your service coordinator or property manager with an updated email address. If you need services, please call Resident Services at 330.376-9699 or email us at rs@akronhousing.org.  

Q: How will I know if something changes at AMHA?

AMHA is asking all residents to please ensure we have the most up to date contact information for them by calling or emailing their property managers. Additionally, you have the opportunity to “opt in” to the AMHA Resident email list, which is used to provide important updates to residents as they are announced. This can be done below.

 

 

Important Contact Information:

COVID-19 Resident Hotline: 330-376-9908

Resident Services:  330-376-9699 or rs@akronhousing.org

Customer Service:  330-376-9990

Alpeter:  330-753-3049

Belcher: 330-374-2812

  • Crystal Neloms, Property Manager cneloms@akronhousing.org

  • Ronny Vandyke, Service Coordinator rvandyke@akronhousing.org

Buchtel:  330-374-2812

  • Brandy Lovett, Property Manager blovett@akronhousing.org

  • Ronny Vandyke, Service Coordinator

Cotter: 330-253-5058

Allen Dickson: 330-825-7811

Fowler: 330-762-7463

Keys: 330-678-0805

Lauer: 330-376-9141

Nimmer: 330-633-1508

Saferstein Towers I: 330-762-9371

Saferstein Towers II: 330-762-0719

Sutliff: 330-923-9708

Bon Sue: 330-535-4654

Barberton Scattered Sites: 330-753-0379

Colonial Hills: 330-376-2285

Crimson Terrace: 330-753-0379

Dorothy Jackson: 330-253-9595

Edgewood Village: 330-379-3535

Harding Road: 330-753-0379

Honey Locust: 330-920-1652

Jenkins Annex: 330-724-9355

Joy Park: 330-724-9355

Lakeshore & Lakeshore Duplexes: 330-253-9595

Lobello Lane: 330-920-1652

Maplewood Villa & Gardens: 330-929-9124

Mohawk: 330-374-5092

Pinewood Gardens: 330-650-4299

Roulhac Circle: 330-253-9595

Spicer Terrace: 330-376-9558

Scattered Sites: 330-374-5092

Summit Lake: 330-253-9595

Valley View: 330-374-5091

Van Buren: 330-753-0379

Willow Run: 330-724-9355

Wilbeth Arlington: 330-773-6825

Hilltop House: 330-773-6825

Thornton Terrace: 330-773-6825

Eastland Woods: 330-633-1614

 

As always for a the latest updated information visit us at www.akronhousing.org/pages/coronavirus or follow us on Facebook or call the Resident Hotline at 330-376-9908 for the latest updates and resources available. Don’t Panic. Stay Informed.