The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) through 24 CFR 982.207 authorizes Public Housing Authorities to establish local preferences for selection of families admitted to the Housing Choice Voucher program. Preferences must be based on local housing needs and priorities. The Bellingham Housing Authority acknowledges the community would benefit from additional opportunities for service enriched housing that offer long-term rental assistance. Applicants referred through the local preference program are eligible for placement on the voucher waiting list even if it is otherwise closed, and they will generally be placed at the top of the waiting list thereby expediting the selection process.

The purpose of this RFP is to solicit proposals from qualified agencies interested in accessing tenant-based Housing Choice Vouchers (HCVs) and providing ongoing supportive services to program participants. The objective of the program is to offer individuals and families an opportunity for permanent affordable housing and provide supportive services that will enable them to stabilize their living conditions and remain successfully housed.

Agreements resulting from this RFP will be for an initial one (1) year period with two (2) one-year options to renew at the sole discretion of Bellingham Housing Authority (BHA). It is estimated that the total number of vouchers available for the program will be 60 (5 released per month) and the evaluation criteria for ranking proposals places emphasis on collaboration between housing, supportive services, and educational institutions (i.e., public schools, community colleges, etc.).

All supportive service agencies operating in Whatcom County are invited to submit a written proposal outlining the organization’s qualifications, capacity, and willingness to provide ongoing supportive services. A more detailed explanation of the Scope of Work to be addressed in the proposal is set forth in Exhibit A of this RFP.

This RFP is to provide access to rental assistance through the Housing Choice Voucher program and does not provide physical housing options or funding for supportive services.

This RFP is being issued as an expansion of BHA’s current local preference program and is specifically targeted toward organizations who operate time-limited subsidy programs within Whatcom County. BHA is expanding its current local preference program to specifically address the identified need for long-term rental assistance among Whatcom County participants in short/medium-term subsidy programs. Short/medium-term subsidy programs are defined as programs operated by public, private, or non-profit organizations who provide time-limited rental assistance for permanent housing in combination with support services (e.g. rapid re-housing). The duration of rental assistance must be time-limited based on Federal, State, or Local regulations.

Proposals that do not meet the intent and target of this RFP as stated above will not be reviewed.

Individuals and families referred for HCVs in connection with Agreements resulting from this RFP must meet the following criteria:

  1. Currently reside in Whatcom County; and
  2. Currently be assisted through a short/medium-term subsidy program that will end within one hundred eighty (180) days based on regulatory time limits; and
  3. Are in compliance with all current program requirements including but not limited to active engagement with supportive services; and
  4. Without long-term rental assistance the applicant would likely return to homelessness because they lack adequate resources to maintain housing.

Please see the full Request For Proposal below for all details and deadlines.

RFP - Referral Vouchers Expansion 2023